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Understanding Equine Behavior
ES 120



Understanding equine behavior is a critical skill any equine professional or horse enthusiast should acquire.  A good knowledge of equine behavior allows you to become a better trainer and horse handler, recognize your horses' housing and social needs and stay safer as you work around your horses.  Horsemen who apply the concepts of equine behavior to the horses in their care have horses who learn more quickly and who have more enjoyable lives.

         Instructor, Jennifer Williams, PhD, earned her Masters and Doctorate in Animal Science with emphasis on equine behavior, learning and welfare at Texas A&M University.  In addition to teaching Understanding Equine Behavior, Dr. Williams runs
www.EquineBehavior.net, serves as an expert witness on cases involving equine behavior, and writes articles for magazines, including Equus, Trail Blazer Magazine, Stable Management, AQHA Journal, Dog Fancy, Cat Fancy and others.  She is the author of “How to Start and Run A Rescue.”

          Dr. Williams works with a variety of horse behavior problems associated with rescued horses at Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society (BEHS) which she co-founded in 2005 and now directs as president. 

          This course will cover the following topics that will help expand your knowledge of equine behavior and enable you to better communicate your knowledge to those around you.

Lesson 1:
      1.Psychological Terms Part I
             A.Operant conditioning
             C.Classical conditioning

Lesson 2: 
      1.Psychological Terms Part II
             B.Desensitization and sensitization

Lesson 3:
      1.Language of horses
             A.Verbal communication
             B.Non-verbal communication

Lesson 4:
       1.Feral horse behavior
       2.Herd dynamics

Lesson 5:
      1.Aggressive and defensive behaviors
      2.Gender differences in behavior
              B.Breeding Stallion
              C.Maternal behavior

Lesson 6:
      1.Foal training

Lesson 7:
      1.The use of the senses

Lesson 8:
       1.Behavior problems and their causes and treatments
       2.Horse and human interactions

Lesson 9:
      1.Welfare and ethics
      2.Donkey and mule behavior

Lesson 10: 
      1.Behavior Research 

Required Reading: Horses Behaving Badly, Dr. Jim and Lynda McCall
Click Here to order the book.   

        There is no completion deadline for the course.  The student works at his or her own pace.  The student will not be "locked-out". 

         The grading scale for this course is as follows:
                 90-100%  =    A
                 80-89%    =    B
                 70-79%    =    C
                 Below 70%     Fail

        You are strongly encouraged to communicate via email with the instructor.
        If at any time during this course you change your email address, please be sure to notify the instructor and office right away.
        Do not use text messaging shorthand or acronyms when communicating with the instructor.
        Please include full name and address in all correspondence.  

       Many lessons require written assignments or essays.  They should be submitted as an attachment to an email using Word or similar word processing software.
       Students may be required to provide video of situations with horses....and may be assigned individual projects by the instructor.
       Please be sure to include full name and email address on all documents - not just in the email message. 
       Proper grammar and spelling will be graded.
       Do not use text messaging shorthand or acronyms - this is college level work.

        Access to a horse is required.
        All assignments and quizzes must be completed.

To order course - Click Here

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