Module Identifier RS30210  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Dr Basil T Wolf  
Semester Semester 2  
Mutually Exclusive RS25020  
Course delivery Lecture   2 x 1 hour lectures per week  
  Practical   5 x 4 hour practicals per semester  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours Outcomes assessed 1, 2, 3, 4100%
Supplementary Exam2 Hours Outcomes assessed 1, 2, 3, 4100%

Learning outcomes

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

1. Outline the principles of genetics using examples from horses and discuss their application to breeding for coat colour and the control of lethal or deleterious conditions with Mendelian inheritance.

2. Apply the basic concepts of quantitative genetics to the improvement of the health and performance of the horse.

3. Describe breeding schemes for sports and leisure horses and evaluate aspects of their design that influence the rate of genetic improvement for metric traits.

4. Evaluate the potential applications of emerging technologies in the genetic improvement of horses

Brief description

This module discusses the genetic principles that underlie selection programmes for the improvement of the health, welfare and performance of horses.

This module will review current knowledge of genes that are involved in the inheritance of coat colour and health of the horse. The effects of inbreeding and heterosis will be outlined and their implications for genetic improvement, breed formation and genetic conservation will be considered. Special emphasis will be placed on a study of the principles of quantitative genetics and their application to selection for single and composite objectives. Factors that influence the design of improvement schemes for horses will be explained and the potential applications of reproductive technologies and the uses of marker assisted selection will be discussed.   

Module Skills

Problem_solving Developed in practical classes and assessed by examination  
Research skills Lectures and practical classes will develop skills in interpretation and understanding of the scientific literature. Assessed by examination.  
Information Technology Computer assisted learning will be used in the delivery of this module.  
Application of Number Animal breeding requires an understanding of statistical concepts such as probability, variance, regression and correlation. Skills in the use of numerical information will be developed during lectures and practical classes and will be assessed by examination.  

Reading Lists

** Essential Reading
Bowling, A T (1996) Horse genetics CABI 0851991017
Bowling, A T and Ruvinsky, A (2000) The genetics of the horse CABI 0851994296


This module is at CQFW Level 6