University Centre Sparsholt (UCS) is delighted to announce the exciting news that eight of its undergraduate and postgraduate students have had their research abstracts accepted to present at the inaugural UK Equine Student Conference, of which UCS is a proud Gold Sponsor.

Taking place on the 15 July, the UK Equine Student Conference aims to showcase the best in UK based equine undergraduate and postgraduate research for those graduating or still studying in 2019 and 2020. The conference will also provide equestrian students across the country the much-needed opportunity to present new research as part of their studies as many conferences have now been cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are incredibly proud of our students and can’t wait to see the five oral presentations and three posters which have been chosen amongst tough competition from students across the country.

The presentations include:

Equine Behaviour and Welfare: Oral Session

  • Ella Barlett – UCS Postgraduate research – Equine (Equus caballus) social network construction within small domestic groups. After her postgraduate study, Ella is now studying for her PhD at SRUC in Edinburgh.
  • Kate Fletcher – UCS Postgraduate research – Contemplating the five domains model of animal welfare assessment: UK horse owner perceptions of equine wellbeing. After her postgraduate study, Kate is now working for The Brooke.

Equine Behaviour and Welfare: Poster Session 

  • Emma Brind – UCS Undergraduate Research- Sweet talking; an investigation into the impact of auditory stimulation on equine (Equus caballus) nocturnal behaviour

Equine Training and Management: Oral Session

  • Lilly Harris – Reaseheath Undergraduate Research – Coach and rider perceptions of autonomy supportive coaching behaviours. After graduating from Reaseheath, Lilly is currently at UCS for her postgraduate study.
  • Rachel Smith – UCS Undergraduate Research – Effect of breast support on 3D relative displacement and upper-body muscle activity in female horse riders on an equine simulator.

Equine Training and Management: Poster Session

  • Emma Sansom – UCS Undergraduate Research – Impact of a novel saddle on perceived back pain in horse riders. Emma will be graduating from UCS this year and continuing at UCS for her postgraduate degree.
  • Sarah Todd – UCS Postgraduate Research – Good to go? Identifying positive states indicative of preparedness to work during equine warm-up. Pilot study.

Equine Health and Rehabilitation: Oral Session

  • Eleanor Brown –UCS Undergraduate Research – Relationship between over skin cadaver measures of equine metacarpus iii and dissected bone measures. Eleanor will be graduating from UCS this year and continuing at UCS for her postgraduate degree.

Lorna Cameron, Teaching Fellow at University Centre Sparsholt, said: “With so many students due to miss out on presenting their hard work at conferences this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are delighted to take part in this event not only as Gold Sponsors but to have eight of our students presenting their research is a very proud moment. We can’t wait to see their abstracts and hope everyone attending the conference has a great time enjoying the community spirit and learning from their peers.”

The online event will run from 8am to 5.30pm and will include oral and poster presentations in under- and postgraduate categories. Prizes will be awarded in each, and the conference is open to students studying in 2018–19 or 2019–20 who haven’t already presented their research. Anyone with an interest in equine science is invited to attend, with tickets available for £10.

For more information or register for tickets, visit:

For more information about UCS Equine Courses, here: