Compare the master's Animal Sciences

The master's Animal Sciences at Wageningen University and Research is unique in that it focuses from the start on academic biological knowledge and skills, applied to big societal problems our current animal husbandry is facing worldwide. In the world there are several programmes that focus on animals. This page contains more information about these programmes and how they compare to the Animal Sciences programme.

Compare the programme in Wageningen

MSc Biology

The master's Biology offers a specialisation in Animal Adaptation and Behavioural Biology. These specialisations focus mainly on the adaptation and behaviour in populations of wildlife animals. Research subjects are mainly related to ecology and evolution. Within this specialisation you will also have the possibility to do your thesis at one of the related chair groups at the department of Animal Sciences.

Difference: Within the programme of Animal Sciences the emphasis especially lies on domesticated animals that have a function for humans (e.g. food production, waste management, companionship, education).

MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management

The master's Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management focuses on a very specific branch of the animal production systems: aquaculture and fisheries. You can specialise in marine ecosystems, marine governance or sustainable aquaculture. All have an emphasis on marine biodiversity, preservation and ecosystem functions.

Difference: Although the Animal Sciences department does have a Aquaculture and Fisheries chair group, their empphasis lies on nutrition and health in aquaculture systems and adaptation of fishes and fisheries to changes in the environment.

Compare the programme with other universities

Veterinary Medicine

The master's programme in Veterinary Medicine also deals with animal health but the main focus in this programme is to prepare students for a job as a veterinarian. The focus is on anatomy, physiology, diseases and treatment methods of both livestock and companion animals.

Difference: In the master's Animal Sciences, you will learn how to manage animal health and welfare in a multidisciplinary way. The mainly discussed topics within Animal Sciences are: animal behaviour and welfare, animal health, animal nutrition, breeding and genetics, housing, environment and economics.


The master's programme in Biology can be studied at different universities and these programmes also offer a specialisation that deals with animal research. Usually you will study populations of wildlife animals that do not have a direct relation to humans, thus you will not deal with livestock or companion animals.

Difference: The master's Animal Sciences study programme is more applied. Research in the master's Animal Sciences study programme provides answers to practical questions, especially with regard to animal husbandry.