Module Identifier RS33510  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Mr Sebastian D McBride  
Semester Semester 1  
Course delivery Lecture   22 Hours 22 x 1 hour  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours Outcomes assessed: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7  60%
Semester Assessment Visit-based assignment Outcomes assessed: 2, 3, 6, 7  40%
Supplementary Assessment Candidates will be required to re-take the elemnt(s) of assessment that led to failure of the module  100%

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
Outcome 1 A range of normal behaviours for companion, farm and captive animal species are explained in terms of their evolution, development and underlying control.

Outcome 2 The ability to objectively quantify behaviour

Outcome 3   ''Abnormal'' behaviours are recognized and explained in terms of cause function and underlying motivation

Outcome 4 The concepts of stress and animal welfare are understood.

Outcome 5 Current animal welfare legislation is understood.

Outcome 6 Current methods of animal welfare assessment are applied to a practical situation.

Outcome 7 Common welfare and behavioral problems of companion and farm animals are understood and methods for their control explained.

Brief description

This module will provide an insight into the behaviour of the horse and farm animals, with particular reference to the evolution, development and underlying control of behaviour. The objective measurement of behaviour will be studied, and an emphasis placed on understanding and recognising 'normal' and 'abnormal' behaviour. The causes and function of abnormal behaviour will also be discussed. The concept of animal welfare will be introduced and current welfare legislation outlined. Welfare problems commonly found within the stable or farm environment will be identified and put in the context of current husbandry techniques with particular attention to strategies for their control. The module will also deal with the concept of stress, its measurement and how this relates to animal welfare.


On completion of this module, students should be able to:

1.   Describe behaviours in terms of their evolution, development and underlying control.

2.   Objectively quantify behaviour.

3.   Be able to recognise and discuss 'normal' and 'abnormal' behaviour.

4.   Understand the concepts of stress and animal welfare.

5.   Discuss current animal welfare legislation.

6.   Discuss current methods of animal welfare assessment.

7.   Describe common welfare problems of the horse and farm animals and discuss methods for their control.

Transferable skills

.1 Independent project work
This will be developed by the assignment

.2 IT and information handling
To complete the written assignment students will have to obtain information from a variety of sources including books and web sites. This will involve the use of IT to compile the finished report as well as retrieve relevant information (e.g. Voyager).

.4 Writing in an academic context
Students will be required to present information precisely and concisely in a clear and informative manner. The assignment will require all source material to be fully referenced.

.7 Self-management
Students will have to manage their own time in developing their assignment.

Reading Lists

Appleby M C and Hughes B O (eds) (1997) Animal welfare CABI
Alcock J (1993) Animal behaviour - an evolutionary approach 5th.
Carlson, N R (2001) Physiology of behaviour 7th.
Cooper J R, Bloom F E and Roth R H (1982) The biochemical basis of neuropharmacology
Lawrence A B and Rushen J (1993) Stereotopic animal behaviour CABI
McFarland D (1993) Animal behaviour 2nd. Longman
Wade C and Tavris C (1993) Psychology
Wood-Gush, D G M (1983) Elements of ethology Chapman and Hall Ltd


This module is at CQFW Level 6