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Herpetology 100 Hours Certificate Course


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Herpetology 100 Hours Certificate Course

Price: £295.00Course Code: BEN209 CLD
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( Sean Michael, 12/11/2018 ) Q:

Hello, i am looking into a career in herpetology and im probably going to have to study overseas (i am from Malaysia). I havent enrolled in college yet, and im wondering how will this course benefit me and what can be my next step after completing this said course. Will i be able to get a job in this field or enroll in to a university in the UK/US?

( 12/11/2018 ) A:

Hello Sean,

It's good to hear from you.

Our Herpetology course is ideal for you if you are seeking a career in Herpetology. This is because unlike general academic qualifications, professional development courses such as this one are specific to employers' needs and therefore normally highly valued. Employers' the world over's biggest problem, is to get suitably experienced and qualified staff. By completing this course, you will have the skills they require and although not many qualifications (if any), can ever guarantee getting a job, it should enhance your chances of being selected over other applicants.

Universities may accept the qualification if you want to go on to do a degree, but each university will have its own entrance criteria and other qualifications plus an interview, will normally be taken into consideration during the application process. For example, a graduate of our Advanced Certificate in Wildlife Management, was able to use the qualification in conjunction with his other qualifications, to be accepted for a Masters at Edinburgh University and another course at Oxford University.

I hope this answers your questions Sean.



( Samantha, 02/10/2018 ) Q:

Hi, I'm really interested in doing the herpetology course, I'd like to possibly change careers and work within a reptile based store. As an owner of reptiles my self, but I don't understand the whole certificate thing, will I need to go to a centre to do the exam? Also the learning material section online doesn't include certificate? But usb does, I'm confused, I'm a full time mum so doing this from home is much better for me.

( 02/10/2018 ) A:

Hello Samantha,

Thank you for getting in touch.

Successful completion of the course will give you a certificate, regardless of whether you choose online, USB, or correspondence. All learners get online access to the course through our online classroom. USB and correspondence are optional extras.

When enrolling, you will have a choice between study option A and B. If you intend to use your certificate to gain work in a reptile store, we recommend you select study option A. This means your certificate will be endorsed and issued by TQUK - Training Qualifications UK, an Ofqual Approved Awarding Organisation, for which we are a recognised centre. Any potential employer will be able to check the status of TQUK on the Ofqual Register, and know that you have completed a bonafide course, independently assessed for quality of learning by a recognised organisation.

To gain the endorsed certificate, you will need to take a final one-and-a-half hour exam, at a time and place convenient to you. This could be at home, or at your place of work. Because your written assignments will also go towards your final mark, it is not important for you to attend an exam centre to take your final assessment. All that is required, is that you appoint an invigilator to conduct the exam on our behalf. Preferably this will be a professional person, and cannot be a member of your family or household.

There is also an alternative option of completing a final project of 2500 to 3000 words, in preference to taking the final exam. The subject of the project will be agreed by your mentor and you at the time, and you will still gain your endorsed certificate from TQUK.

If you select study option B, there is no final exam or project. Once you have completed the course, you will receive a certificate of completion from ourselves. Although this will testify to you having completed a course in Herpetology, it will not carry as much weigh in the work place as an endorsed certificate, issued by a recognised awarding organisation.

I hope this answers all of your questions Samantha.

( Anne Timperman, 30/08/2018 ) Q:

Hi My son 14 years old and biology and nature passionate is looking at taking this class. We have some questions : - is there a time line for the course or can it be completed at his own pace ? seems from the answers above that there is no deadline, can you confirm ? - is the material 100% in writing or is there audio/video ? he has dyslexia so audio/video is a lot easier for him to process - what kind of document does he get at completion ? is that something we might be able to use in the US for college credit ? - what is the nature of the assignments at the end of each lesson ? research paper ? quiz ? I read in the other responses that they can complete a project instead - what type of project would that be ? Thank you for your answers Best regards Anne Timperman

( 31/08/2018 ) A:

Hi Anne,

Thank you for getting in touch.

I am very sorry but because the herpetology course is set at level 3/4 (A levels in the UK are level 3 and taken at 16+ years of age), we cannot accept any students until they are 16. Between 16 and 18, they will also need parental consent.

For future reference and in answer to your questions, our courses are vocational and for professional or personal development purposes. Although they have been developed over many years by reptile specialists, they are unregulated and as such are not officially recognised. However, because the herpetology program will give your son an excellent grounding in reptiles, some colleges may accept the learning he gains as part of their application process. Therefore, we would advise you to approach any that he is interested in going on to, to ask them what their entrance criteria is.

There are no videos or audio lessons in the course. We believe that the old ways still work best and the course is set up to be similar in many ways to doing a degree, although not as tough of course. However, there is nothing to stop your son from using carefully sourced videos or audio tapes, during the set task section of each lesson.

It should also help you to know that the font for the lesson notes are in the calibri font, which is good for those with dyslexia to read.

How Our Courses Work

Lessons for each course (or module when longer courses are taken), begin with a set aim and reading of the notes that provide a foundation for what will be learned. The background reading is followed by a self assessment test and a set task which may include further research, networking or problem solving. After this students will submit a written assignment based on the lesson and set tasks, which is marked and graded by their tutor and then sent back with any helpful and relevant comments. Finally, once students have completed all the lessons and assignments, if they have selected study option A when enrolling, there will be one final exam. This is taken under the supervision of an adjudicator at a pre-approved time and place. The adjudicator must be a professional and not a member of your family, or household. Once the whole course has been finished, your son will receive a Certificate and transcript, endorsed and issued by a UK recognised awarding organisation.

If your son finds exams difficult, he can complete a final project of 2500 to 3000 words. The subject of the project is agreed with the tutor, after all the lessons and assignments have been completed. This option will still result in your son getting an endorsed certificate.

If study option B is selected, then no exam is necessary and the certificaste is issued by ADL.

The course hours of 100 given is only a guide. Some of our students take longer to complete their programme because they want to delve as deeply into the subject matter as possible. Others take longer due to them needing more time to process the information, if English isn't their first language for example. For this reason, we do not impose any deadlines for assignments, or an end date by which the course must be completed. 

General Information About ADL Courses

Please bear in mind that you are buying a complete learning program and so your fee will include your learning materials, professional mentor support throughout, your exam fees, certificate and transcript.

Your personally assigned mentor is there to provide support when you need it, mark and grade your assignments and set and mark your final evaluation. You should note that you will be required to consolidate and increase your knowledge through set tasks. With ADL, you will learn in three important ways: reading, researching and reporting.

All our students get access to the online classroom, where they can download the learning materials, upload assignments and communicate with their tutor. In addition to this, you can choose to have your course posted to you on a USB and in a printed format (correspondence.)

Best regards

Andrew at ADL.

( Alberto, 03/05/2018 ) Q:

Good morning, I am a student of veterinary medicine in Spain. I read that the final exam will consist of a written work during which I will be overseen by a person chosen by you, but I was wondering if this is actually doable considering that I don't reside in England. Best regards, Alberto

( 03/05/2018 ) A:

Hi Alberto,

Thank you for getting in touch.

The adjudicator is chosen by you and the final test is taken at a time and place of your choosing. There is also an option where you don't have to take the test; completing the course is sufficient. You only need to take the test if you require your certificate to be issued by a recognised body. What the course teaches is the most important reason many people complete it, so If you just need the knowledge and skills to use, then you can select study option B and save £15.00 on the course fee.

I hope this helps.

Best regards


( Jackie , 25/03/2018 ) Q:

Hello. I'm thinking of signing my son up to this course for a September start, and will be 13yrs old and homeschooled. He is on the autistic spectrum and suffers anxiety and due to this your course sounds perfect as he can be in control. I read in your notes your courses are for 18yr olds and over or with parents consent. How do I go about this please? Is this a 100hr course? And do you have a follow on course he could do when he's finished this please? Many thanks in advance Jackie

( 26/03/2018 ) A:

Hello Jackie,

Thank you for getting in touch.

We have had home schooled students on our courses and would be happy to consider your son.

There are no deadlines to our courses and so he can just take a break and then come back to it when he wants to. The course is broken up into 4 sections:

  • Reading
  • Self Assessment multiple choice questions
  • Set Tasks, which may include further research, networking or problem solving.
  • Written Assignment, which is marked and graded according to the learning shown.

We also recommend that he begins with our Academic Writing and Critical Thinking courses, which are supplied free of charge. These will help him to know how to formulate his written assignments and how to look at things from different angles.

When it comes to the final assessment, your son can elect to do a final project instead. 

If you would like him to just acquire the learning, he can just complete the course without an exam or final project (study option B). In this instance, he will receive a Certificate of Completion from us. By completing an exam or final project (Study option A), your son will get a Certificate issued by an Ofqual Approved Awarding Organisation.

I hope that this helps.

Best regards


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Herpetology 100 Hours Certificate Course

Herpetology Courses

Learn how to develop your ability to understand the biological and ecological characteristics of reptiles and amphibians through our online herpetology courses 

Our herpetology course also covers conservation issues and as well as learning how to keep them at home.   

Definition - Herpetology:  noun. “The branch of zoology concerned with reptiles and amphibians”, Oxford Dictionary.   The term is derived from Linneas’s classification in which he combined reptiles and amphibians into the one category.

Our online herpetology courses examines the biology and ecology of these animals and their importance to the planet. Herpetology as a scientific study and as a hobby can have positive impacts on the conservation of threatened reptile and amphibian species.

The ADL Herpetology Certificate Course has been developed over a number of years and remains one of the most respected and sought after programmes that we offer. It is ideal for anyone working with, or wishing to work with reptiles and amphibians in various situations including:

  • Exotic Pet Shops
  • Zoos
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Adventure tourism and ecotourism
  • Keeping reptiles and amphibians at home.
  • Reptile and amphibian biology and zoology.

TQUK Recognised Centre logo


This course has been endorsed by TQUK. Endorsement of our courses by TQUK sets them apart from other vocational learning programmes and is an achievement to be proud of. It further demonstrates that we are an efficient academy with excellent courses and tutorial support. It also means that potential and existing students, employers and universities can be sure of the true value of the learning we provide. 


Learning Goals:  Herpetology BEN209
  • Discuss the nature and scope of reptiles.
  • Identify credible resources, and begin to develop networking with organisations and individuals involved with the study of reptiles around the world.
  • Describe a range of different reptile species, including distinguishing characteristics, their needs (eg. environmental, food, etc) and behaviour.
  • Identify and explain the anatomy and physiology of reptiles
  • Discuss the nature and scope of amphibians
  • Identify credible resources, and begin to develop networking with organisations and individuals involved with the study of amphibians around the world.
  • Discuss the nature and scope of amphibians
  • Identify credible resources, and begin to develop networking with organisations and individuals involved with the study of amphibians around the world.
  • Describe the ecological requirements, reproduction and lifecycles of amphibians
  • Describe the behaviour of a range of different amphibian species.
  • Explain conservation issues that are impacting upon populations of reptiles and amphibians.
  • Explain the management of reptiles and amphibians in captivity


Lesson Structure:  Herpetology BEN209

There are 9 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to Herpetology
    • Herpetology Defined
    • Introduction to Reptiles
    • Animal Taxonomy
    • Classification of Reptiles
    • Characteristics of Reptiles
    • Testudine Characteristics (Turtles)
    • Squamata Characteristics (Snakes and Lizards)
    • Rhynchocephalia Characteristics (Tuatara)
    • Classification of Amphibians
    • Amphibian Characteristics
    • Building Resources and Developing Networks
    • Terminology
  2. Class Reptilia (Reptiles)
    • Reptile Classification
    • Water Conservation
    • Reproduction
    • Order Chelonia (Testudines); Turtles
    • Order Crocodilia; Crocodilians
    • Order Squamata
    • Scaled Reptiles; Lizards (Suborder Sauria) and Snakes (Suborder Serpentes)
  3. Reptile Biology
    • Reptile Anatome
    • Skeleton
    • Scales and Skutes
    • Ectothermal Regulation
    • Coloration
    • Respiration and Metabolism
    • Food and Digestion
    • Senses
    • Locomotion
  4. Class Amphibia (Amphibians)
    • Order Anura (Frogs and Toads)
    • Order Apoda (Caecilians)
    • Order Urodela (Salamanders and Newts)
  5. Amphibian Biology
    • Amphibian Skeleton
    • Skin
    • Ectothermal Regulation
    • Colouration
    • Respiration and Metabolism
    • Branchial
    • Buccopharyngeal
    • Cutaneous
    • Pulmonic
    • Food and Digestion
    • Senses
    • Locomotion
    • Reproduction
  6. Ecology of Reptiles
    • Species Richness
    • Constriction
    • Injected Venom
    • Inertia Feeding
    • Biting and Grasping
    • Suction Feeding
    • Reproductive Strategies
    • Viviparity
    • Oviparity
    • Nest Building
    • Habitat Use; Aquatic and Terrestrial
    • Basking
    • Hibernation
  7. Ecology of Amphibians
    • Use of Habitat
    • Temperature Relationships
    • Feeding
    • Vocal Communication; Advertisement calls, Territorial calls, Release calls, Distress calls
    • Social Behaviour
    • Dealing with Predators
    • Reproduction and Parental Care
  8. Conservation Issues
    • Habitat change
    • Edge Effects
    • Pollution; especially water pollution
    • Environmental Acidification (Acid Rain)
    • Pesticides
    • Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals
    • Spread of disease
    • Invasive Species
    • Climate Change
    • Spread of Disease
    • Disease in Wild Populations
    • Trade in Reptiles and Amphibians
    • Conservation
    • Conservation Genetics
    • Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals
  9. Keeping Reptiles and Amphibians
    • Introduction
    • Legal Issues
    • Special conditions for Amphibians
    • Special Conditions for Reptiles
    • Preventing Spread of Disease from Reptiles to Humans
    • Housing
    • Reptile Captivity Problems
    • Reptile Feed and Feeding
    • Amphibians and Reptile Species that are in Captivity
    • Feeding Amphibians
    • General Care
    • Common Ailments in Reptiles and Amphibians
    • Parasitic Diseases
    • Fungal Diseases
    • Viral Diseases
    • Metabolic Bone Disease
    • Thiamine Deficiency

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the academy, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.




The major anatomical feature that differentiates reptiles from other animals is their skin covering of scales or scutes. They are tetrapods, either having four limbs or descending from animals with four limbs.

A reptile skeleton shares the same general components of most other vertebrates: a bony skull, a column of vertebrae enclosing a spinal chord, and a framework of limbs
Snakes do not have limbs as such; but they do have remnants of hind limbs, presumably from their ancestors,
Marine dwelling dinosaurs (eg. Ichthyocaurs) had significantly reduced limbs on the skeleton (to support a flipper for swimming rather than legs for walking).


  • Reptile skulls are different to an amphibian skull in several ways:
  • Reptiles do not have an otic notch (i.e. indentation at the back of the skull)
  • Reptiles lack several small bones at the back of the top of the skull
  • Reptile skulls are also different to mammal skulls in a number of ways, including:
  • Reptiles have several bones in the lower jaw; but only one of these bones has teeth.
  • Teeth of reptiles are all relatively unspecialised (unlike the diverse specialisation into molars, incisors etc, that is found in mammals). Lizards have conical or blade-like teeth.

All reptiles are covered by either scales or skutes.

  • Snakes and most lizards are covered by scales
  • Crocodilians, turtles and some lizards (Heloderma) are covered by skutes

Scales are made of Keratin. They can be plate like or tubercular in shape, and overlap each other (i.e. are imbricate). Scales are formed from the epidermis of the animal (lizards and snakes have scales).

A skute (also referred to as osteoderm) is a bony external plate that covers part or all of an animal’s body. Examples of a skute include the shell on a tortoise or turtle; and the skin of a crocodile or alligator. Skutum (plural) can also be found on the feet of some birds, the tails of some mammals, and on parts of some insects. The skin of an Armadillo is also described sometimes as a skute.

Skutes are formed from a lower layer of the animal’s skin together with the epidermis. The epidermis is only the outer layer of the skute. In crocodilians and some lizards, the skutes fuse with elements of the skull to form a rigid skull cap.

Turtles have the unique carapace (shell) which is the fusion of the skutes and vertebrae with the ribs. The lower shell of the turtle is the fusion of the skutum and sternum. All limbed reptiles with functioning digits have claws. The tips of these claws are covered by a keratinous sheath. The outermost layer is formed by rigid beta-keratin.

The upper and lower jaw sheaths of turtles are keratinous structures. These replace teeth to cut and crush food. Hatchling turtles, crocodilians and the tuatara are all born with an egg tooth (or caruncle) to assist with hatching.

Moulting or shedding of scales (also known as “ecdysis”) occurs in lizards and snakes.
Moulting removes old tissue, and at the same time can help remove parasites (eg. ticks) that may be attached. Lizards generally shed their scales in flakes, but snakes generally shed their scales as one complete layer. All Lepidosaurs share the same sequence of epidermal growth and shedding. They have distinct resting and renewal stages for shedding and sloughing. This cycle is repeated at regular intervals when food is of abundant supply. The renewal (growth/shedding) stage requires about 14 days. The resting phase can range from a few days to many months.

Many reptiles (especially the lepidosaurs) have many small, epidermal sense organs. These are usually minute, appearing as pits or projections. These organs are not shed during the renewal phase. These organs are believed to respond to tactile stimulation. The sea snake has light-receptors on the tail which suggests a larger range of receptors on reptiles. Sensory organs on the skin are generally concentrated on the head of the animal, but can be widespread across all parts of the body.

Reptiles and amphibians are both ectotherms. They rely on external environmental factors to regulate their body temperature or thermal energy. These animals can gain or lose energy through different pathways such as solar radiation, thermal (infrared radiation), convection, evaporation, conduction and metabolic heat production. By adjusting the flow through different pathways the animal can warm itself or cool down.

In general, reptiles have two types of colour manufacturing cells. These are melanophores and chromatophores. The melanophores are found throughout the basal layer of the epidermis (outer layer). These send out pseudopodia that transfer melanin into the differentiating keratocytes during the renewal phase of shedding. Chromatophores are found in the outer portion of the dermis (below the epidermis). These are absent in reptiles that are unable to change colour. The presence, density and distribution within each layer will vary between species and individuals within the same species. Chromatophores enable animals to produce different colours and colour patterns


Course Info
How Do Our Tuition Fees Compare?
Course StartBegin your course at anytime.
Course Prerequisite None - Our course levels are an indication of the depth of learning you should receive. They do not describe the level of difficulty.
Course Qualification (Study Option A)Endorsed Qualification from TQUK - Training Qualifications UK, an Ofqual Approved Awarding Organisation - Completed written assignments, plus final exam (N.B. there is a Final Project alternative).
Course Qualification (Study Option B)Certificate of Attainment from ADL - Completed written assignments only - no final exam.
Comparative Credits InformationUK Course Credits: 10 - U.S. Credit Hours: 3 - when compared to regulated courses.
Course Duration and Deadlines100 hours approx. Course hours given are a guide only. Work at your own pace with no assignment deadlines or completion date. You are in control!
Study SupportPersonal tutor/mentor support from industry relevant professionals throughout your whole course. Mentors are contactable by e-mail, telephone and through the online classroom. They provide assistance with your course material, plus discuss, explain and give advice when needed.
Suitability for Self Employment and Small BusinessesOur courses are ideal for sole traders and small business owners and their staff. Customer confidence in what you can do will determine how successful you are in getting clients. Completing one or more of our courses for the service you have to offer, will give you the tools to grow your business.
Recognition of Your Course By EmployersWe aim to achieve the correct balance between your qualification being recognised and providing you with the in-depth learning, to empower you to succeed. Select study option A when enrolling, so an employer can check the status of the awarding organisation for your qualification on the Ofqual Register.
Recognition of Your Course By UniversitiesPrevious students have used their qualification to get into university. However each one will have its own entrance criteria and acceptance may also depend on your other qualifications and experience.
Designing Your Own QualificationBundle up your choice of related courses to form your own qualification. Choose from a Diploma (6 courses), Advanced Diploma (8 courses) and Higher Advanced Diploma (12 courses.
How Can I Enrol?Online via eCommerce, by completing our Online Application Form, or by calling us on +44 (0) 1227 789 649. Lines open 9am till 5pm Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays and between Christmas and New Year.
How Can I Get a Pro-forma Invoice for my Employer?Contact us with details and we will email your employer an invoice. We will need: employer's name, address, telephone number, email address and contact name. We will also require your name, telephone number, email address, date of birth and the course and code you wish to enrol for.

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Previous Customer Experiences with our CoursesWoman leaping to the next level in her career development

"Fantastic Teacher. Well organised modules. Assignments force me to learn and research more so I can prepare well for exams. I really enjoyed studying via ADL.  I can now continue study at Ulster University which accept my certificate from ADL".    Level 4,  Advanced Certificate in Applied Science,  VSC001,  Stanislawa,  Poland.

Its with great pleasure I am announcing you my new job as 'Park Manager' for a 5 star hotel in Reunion Island.  Its definitely my courses with ADL (Botany, Agronomy and Trees for Rehabilitation) which were decisive for my nomination. Accordingly, my sincere thanks goes to all the ADL team.

"The course was a valuable learning experience as it provided me with the knowledge and understanding for me as a Careers Advisor. The feedback was very good from my tutor, and allowed me to  build upon my assignments that were marked. The comments were very informative  and very useful. Well written course material."  Andrew W, Careers  Counselling, UK

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Disclaimer: Every attempt is made to ensure all information from the academy is accurate and that the student has attained the competencies taught in a course, at the point of their assessment. Beyond this point, the graduate is responsible to maintain their acquired competencies, and apply acquired knowledge and skills in a way which is appropriate to the unique characteristics of each application. This will release the academy from any liability, action and claims of whatsoever nature in connection with, or arising from any such information, instruction or advice, given by any student or ex-student, whether directions given during the course are followed or not.