Applied Animal Behaviour for Vets

Course Modules            1. Learning Theory What is learning? An introduction to learning theories The different ways animals learn Habituation... [ Read more ]

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Registration Fee: £33.00

Product code: AABV-CPD

Course Modules
           1. Learning Theory
  • What is learning? An introduction to learning theories
  • The different ways animals learn
  • Habituation
  • Classical and operant conditioning
  • Stimulus generalisation and stimulus discrimination
  • Types of reinforcement
  • Vicarious learning
  • Learning through experience, trial and error learning and one-trial learning and the effects on future behaviour
            2. The External Environment
  • The external factors that can affect behaviour
  • The environment in which the animal lives, and the experiences it has had
  • The interactions between conspecifics and also with people
  • The importance of socialisation in early life
  • Scientific research that has been carried out into the social development
  • The problems that can occur due to poor socialisation
  • The importance of consistency when training
  • The effects of a captive environment on behaviour and stress levels
  • This module introduces some case studies for analysis to identify causes of problem behaviour
           3. Intelligence and Theory of Mind
  • Do animals think?
  • Do they experience emotions?
  • Do they recognise themselves in a mirror?
  • Are they aware of the intentions of others?
  • Can we define intelligence and what it means?
  • A review of the scientific research that has been carried out on animal emotions
  • An analysis of the selfish gene theory
           4. Behavioural Diagnostics
  • The many possible causes of a particular behavioural problem (root causes of behaviour)
  • Environment, nature, nurture, pharmacological, physiological causes, and how more than one of these could be the cause of a problem
  • How we can diagnose the cause of behaviour, by asking questions and analysing the situation
  • Drawing on knowledge gained from the previous modules to discuss all the possible reasons why an animal is behaving in a certain way
  • Designing history sheets to use during client consultations
           5.Application of Theory
  • The way we interact with animals, and how our own behaviour can potentially influence theirs
  • Fear and how to deal with it
  • Aggression and why it might occur and how to deal with it
  • The scientific study of behaviour, including presenting reports, interpreting data and graphs
  • Carrying out an observational study of your own
  • Analysing different methods of dealing with a behavioural problem to determine the likely success of different approaches
  • 6. Animal Aggression
  • This module examines the many factors that contribute to aggressive behaviour, it defines aggression and discusses aggression as an adaptive survival tool and the different approaches utilised by prey and predator. The effect and requirements of domestication and how breeding for temperament interacts with natural drives behind aggressive behaviour are examined along with the neurology of aggression.
      7. Human/Animal Bond
  • The human/animal bond has been the subject of much research and has proven to be a fundamental factor when examining behaviour. The therapeutic advantages of such a bond with companion animals are becoming more and more evident with advancing research and an in-depth understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms at work are essential part of the education of a behaviour specialist.
8. Companion Animal Loss
  • Grief is a powerful emotion and companion animal loss inevitably represents the end of the bond examined in module 2. Different people react in different ways to grief and it is this process that is examined in this module.
           9. Attitudes and Ethics
             How people develop attitudes, what influences their formation and who they
             choose to associate with through a common interest is often then reflected
             in society"s values and legislature. Strength of opinion can ultimately cause
             problems with cultural and religious differences with regard to the law and    
             animal rights, it is therefore critical that the student is equipped with the         
             knowledge to take account of how different people regard their animals.
           10.Case Studies
  • Analysis of case studies to pull together all the knowledge gained throughout the course.
  • The examination of ten different behavioural problem case studies
  • Suggesting how you would go about assessing and solving the problems.
  • Demonstrating knowledge of all factors that might affect behaviour, including learning, genetics, and biological and environmental factors
11. Critical Analysis
              In this final module students are required to offer a critical analysis of two   
              ‘real’ cases that were video recorded. Case notes and the video material are
              provided. Critical thinking is a crucial skill for all behaviourists.       
The aim of the course is to prepare vets academically to work in the role of veterinary behaviourist. It is designed to be the definitive privately provided course on applied animal behaviour for those who cannot afford the time (or money) to go to university to study the subject. It should be noted that this course will not directly involve students in the practical aspects of the subject matter as it is not possible to supervise such activity. It is anticipated that other recommended organisations will offer such training, supervision and assessment. This course is only open to vets and has been designed to satisfy the ABTC academic requirements for the veterinary behaviourist role giving credit for knowledge acquired during veterinary qualification.



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