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Welcome to the e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology course powered by XYZ.co.uk. Classroom versions of this course are also available. If you would like us to host a e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology course at your premises, at a location, date and time of your choosing – then please complete this form.

e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology

At eLearning.co.uk all of our courses are delivered online. This gives you the opportunity to study at your own pace and within your own time. Online learning allows you to study in the evenings, weekends, or even the odd hour during the day! With each course you will have full tutor and technical support available via the telephone and by e-mail – so you are not on your own by any means. This e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology course will award you with the same certification as the classroom version of this course – usually for a cheaper cost and with the additional benefit of flexible study times!

Once you’ve decided to go ahead and enrol on this e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology course, you will receive an e-mail shortly after containing your user name and password, receipt of payment and full course joining instructions. Use this with the link/url provided in the e-mail and you can log into the online training system and begin learning right away. This e-Learning BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology online learning course will use various interactive features and different types of media to enable you to stay engaged whilst learning. The course has been designed to be simple to follow and solely with the user in mind – so don’t worry about the technical side of things.

About the course

Credit Value

240 UCAS Points, contributing to the Higher Education (HE) Diploma

Entry Requirements

All students must be 17 years of age and above. Students should have completed a Level 3 Diploma or A level standard course (or equivalent) before the Level 5 qualification.

Study Hours

Approximately 60 hours per unit

Assessment Method

16 tutor marked assessments

Award

BTEC (HND) in Animal Psychology

Unit 1: Using information, communication and technology ICT in the study of Animal Psychology

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

This unit aims to raise learner awareness of the different types of ICT skills, and provide the opportunity for them to develop these skills commensurate with H4 and H5 study. The course is delivered via distance learning with no face to face contact between tutors and students, therefore understanding appropriate research techniques, portfolio skills and self-reflection is important in terms of independent study at this level as well as facilitating a positive learning experience

Students are encouraged to conduct independent research related to the study of Animal Psychology using ICT skills, so that they can begin to compile their own resource list and also prepare themselves for further and more complex activities later in the course

Unit content

1 Applications of ICT in the study of Animal Psychology

  • Information, communication and technology (ICT) comprises core skills for learning.
  • Utilisation of methods , tools and strategies of ICT to establish and maintain a sound working relationship with tutors and the college.
  • Development of ICT skills in order to communicate effectively and maximise study progression.

2 ePortfolio constructs

  • Setting up an ePortfolio for use during the lifetime of the course for storage of files including coursework, self-assessment activities, independent research notes and reflective journals.
  • The ePortfolio may be requested from time to time by tutors and moderators. Learners will be asked at various points in the course to upload files for this purpose.
  • A structured system of unique information but once completed can be used as a resource for continuing professional development (CPD), and a body of revision for future studies.

3 Independent web based research

  • Independent research to equip students with confidence to source and evaluate information relevant to the core course topics within Animal Psychology
  • Develop tools and strategies with which to begin to undertake independent research and integrate this into coursework activities, for example suggesting ways to read research articles and assimilate types of information from these.

4 Principles of self-assessment and reflective writing

  • The development of knowledge and understanding through writing skills for communicating ideas and arguments to tutors and other readers of written work.
  • Reviews of writing skills
  • Reflective writing skills and practice
  • Promotion of pro-active implementation of skills enhancement through tutor feedback and self-assessment

Unit 2: Putting Psychology into Perspective

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

Modern psychology practice and science has its origins in the study of animal behaviour, and many notable theorists (for example Pavlov and Skinner) who used animals in behavioural experiments have influenced the shape of psychology today. Therefore many psychology principles and practices are directly transferable to animal psychology and in order to understand the latter fully the emergence of psychology perspectives needs to be explored and understood.

This unit aims at providing learners with the opportunity to explore the origins of psychology as a discipline and make links to key theories and experiments using animals. Learners are also encouraged to critically evaluate these theories and the work of eminent theorists in the field of psychology to develop knowledge and understanding of how approaches within psychology are shaped and informed.

Unit content

1 Historical emergence of modern psychology

  • Historical perspective: from scientific origins; Ancient Greek philosophy; 19 th C scientific discipline; Wundt, James, Pavlov, 20 th C Watson and Sinner; etymology; German experimental psychology; early American, French and British psychology; 2 nd generation – Gestalt

2 Theorists who helped shape psychological practices

  • Jung, Freud, Rogers, Ellis, Maslow, Skinner, Pavlov
  • Behaviourism (origins relate to animal studies; psychoanalytical; humanist

3 Psychology specialisms

  • Branch/specialism: clinical psychology; behavioural; forensic; cognitive; health, comparative; educational; sports; developmental; social; abnormal; cross-cultural and allied therapeutic branches including animal behaviourism and therapy
  • Exploration of the link between animal and human behaviour
  • Models: learning, cognitive, psychoanalysis; behaviour modification

4 Draw comparisons between traditional and current theories

  • Modern theorists (examples): Piaget, Kholberg, Bowlby; gardener; The Big 5 (personality), including exploration of their work relating to animals and how this has shaped animal psychology
  • Theories for exploration (examples): Cognitive dissonance; attachment (humans and animals); behaviour analysis; trait theory; personality theories

Unit 3: Approaches and constructs

Level: H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit content

The different psychological approaches are underpinned by theories, traditions and science. Therefore study of these underpinning elements is fundamental to understanding how the complex diversity of psychology specialism, contexts and applications continue to develop and expand. We now accept psychology and applications that have until recently have only been used with humans, applied to animal behaviour and consequently help scientists and psychologists further understand animal behaviour and their interaction with humans

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with the opportunity to study approaches within psychology and their application to animal psychology contexts, and to facilitate development of analytical and evaluative skills, as well as allow learners to broaden scientific knowledge.

1 Biological approach in psychology

  • Physiological psychology: relationship between anatomy and physiology of the brain and sense organs (plus other body systems) to psychological response; stressors related to hormone production and release – physiological response – flight/fright response, raised blood pressure, slow digestion etc.; relationship between external environmental stimuli (psychological as well as physical) to response and behaviour
  • Exploration of how these connections and relationships were originally made using animal studies, and discussion on the relevance to animal psychology applications

2 Evolutionary approach

  • Evolutionary approach : critical evaluation of evolutionary theories (example Darwin), natural selection, adaptation, phenotype and genotype related to behavior traits and inherited characteristics (physical and psychological); influence of social, cultural and environmental factors

3 Scientific research

  • Aims and objectives of scientific research: biological and chemical investigation of living organisms;, systematic and objective examination of the subject matter
  • Types of scientific research: research paradigms, methodologies and methods; philosophical stance; relevance to psychological and behaviour models
  • Evaluation and dissemination: analysis of scientific research, applications of data and findings; routes of dissemination; trends and probabilities; observational applications

4 Relationship between the different approaches and integration

  • Comparison of psychological approaches within specialism and branches of the field.
  • Integration of therapeutic interventions and applications, and how these therapeutic interventions have been transferred and adapted to animal psychology/therapy

Unit 4: Research methods and techniques

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The previous unit looked at the influence of scientific research on how psychology has been shaped. This unit aims to provide learners with an opportunity to study current research methods used in psychology and to explore the advantages and disadvantages of these methods. It will also give learners an opportunity to explore how animals have contributed, and still do to psychology research and influence practice both in animal and human therapy

Learners will be given the opportunity to develop analytical and evaluative skills through study of examples and theoretical models, and transfer these skills to practical applications within psychological research

Unit content

1 Study design in psychological research

  • Study parameters; research methodology related to design; aims, outcomes, hypotheses; study environment

2 Principles of quantitative research

  • Quantitative data: numerical basis, countable, assignable; identification of trends and probabilities; objectivity; validation and rigor; study design; participant recruitment; aims and objectives; methods, analysis and evaluation; ethics

3 Principles of quantitative

  • Qualitative data : non-numerical; observational and interpretative; examines complexities of human behavior for example; validation and rigor; study design; participant recruitment; aims and objectives; methods, analysis and evaluation; ethics

4 Advantages and disadvantages of different research methods

  • Presentation and evaluation of advantages and disadvantages of research paradigms, methods and analytical strategies related to study design
  • Evaluation of similarities and differences related to rationale and review of practice application of research findings as strategies and models

Unit 5: Classification and taxonomy

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with the opportunity to study classification of species from historical and modern perspectives, evaluating changes related to environment, loss of species, new species and adaptations. This knowledge and understanding will help learners to evaluate the influence of species development relate to psychological research, practice, and the use of psychological models and approaches in animal psychology.

Learners are encouraged to independently research classification of different species and draw comparisons across demographic regions

Unit content

1 Classification system

  • History: all species are categorised or classified according to their similarities. Scientific classification; used by biologists to group both extinct and living species of organisms ; system developed in the 18 th century, and involves comparison the anatomy of different species in order to group them together. Kingdom; Phylum; Class; Order; Family; Genus; Species
  • Changes: groupings of organisms linked physical appearance and descent; ancestry; genetic revisions

2 Sub-categorization of domains

  • Domain structure: each classification is divided into domains; physical and genetic characteristics of species related to domain kingdoms; reconstruction, classification of structure, function, system; three domain system shift

3 External resources relating to classification

  • Independent research: exploration and evaluation of classification and domain structure, relating to theories such as Darwin, Lamarcke. Wallis

4 Comparisons between species

  • Differentiation : between mammals and reptiles; cellular level; species and functional level
  • Cycles: nitrogen, water and oxygen
  • Characteristics: evidence for influences such as environment, habitat and evolution, adaptation

Unit 6: The biology of mammals

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to study cellular biology and reproductive processes in mammals. This will provide learners with a further opportunity to develop understanding of genetic inheritance related to environment, habitat and other influencing factors, and expand knowledge which is transferable into animal science applications

Unit content

1 Cell structure and function

  • Structure: membrane bound organelles; cytoplasm; nuclear envelope, nuclear
  • Function: gene expression and DNA replication; protein synthesis; diffusion, facilitated diffusion; osmosis; active transport; endocytosis and exocytosis

2 Mammalian cellular replication processes

  • Prophase; metaphase; anaphase; telophase
  • DNA coding
  • Transcription and translation
  • Central dogma of genetics

3 Gene expression in mammals

  • Monohybrid cross; incomplete dominance; co dominance; pleiotrophy; polygeny; epstasis
  • Influencing factors: habitat, environment, demography, food, evolution, human intervention

4 Sexual and asexual reproduction

  • Mitosis: cloning, growth, repair, diploid
  • Meiosis: gamete formation; haploid; homologous pairing; daughter cells; fertilisation

Unit 7: Genetic principles of mammals

Level H1

Learning Hours: 60

Unit description

This unit aims at providing learners with the opportunity to study genetic diversity at complex levels and explore different patterns, scenarios and processes using theoretical models, pedigree diagrams and independent research. This will provide learners with an opportunity to link genetic inheritance to animal behaviour and psychological research

Unit content

1 Processes of meiosis

  • Genotypes : genetic information, random mixing of genes during meiosis; environmental influences
  • Phenotypes : genotype plus physical and chemical appearance; adaptations related to habitat, evolution, food supply, breeding
  • Gene pool diversity: breeding; habitat; environment; food sources; predation; evolutionary theory; survival of the fittest/adaptive survival

2Pedigree diagram

  • Structure of pedigree diagram: symbols for genetic relationships; families/extended family; modes of inheritance (dominant/recessive); genes and alleles; analysis of charts and application to traits and characteristics

3 Evaluate evidence related to genetic inheritance

  • Review theories of evolution: Mendel, Darwin, Lamarke, Hunt’s chromosome theory of inheritance; current thinking – epigenetics

4 Factors contributing to genetic inheritance

  • Contributing factors: environmental, habitation and nurture; cell metabolism and adaptations
  • Strategies: adaptation (physical; feeding; mating; demographic; species evolution)
  • Factors: species individuality; evolution within species; Darwinism; Lamarckism; nutrition; movement; responses to changing climate; relationship to adaptation strategies; research into current examples within species

Unit 8: Comparative mechanics of behaviour in animals

Level H1

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with the opportunity to explore the physiological mechanics of animal behaviour and relate these to psychological principles and theories.

Unit content

1 Principles of perception

  • CNS – neurones and synapses, neurone communication
  • Sensory mechanics of perception – visual, auditory, olfactory
  • Electronic perception
  • Gustatory perception
  • Mechanics and constraint

2 Rhythmic clocks

  • Outline and explanation
  • Interaction between clocks related to external environment, influences and stimuli

3 Hormone action

  • Example of physiological action related to internal and external stimuli
  • Control and override

4 Trends in physiological mechanics

  • Discussion related to trends and changes
  • Physiological mechanisms
  • Deduction mechanisms

Unit 9: Behaviour and learning theories

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to examine and evaluate theories of behaviour learning related to animal psychology

Unit content

1 Comparative habituation

  • Definition, context and explanation of habituation
  • Differentiation between animal and human habituation, plus interaction between them
  • Relationship between habituation and behaviour and learning in animals

2 Conditioning

  • Classical conditioning
  • Operant conditioning
  • Instrumental conditioning
  • Reinforcement – positive and negative; primary and secondary
  • CNS links

3 Evaluation

  • Examples: Pavlovian, Skinner, Thorndike’s law of Effect
  • Successive approximation
  • Perceptual relationships

4 Cultural transmission

  • Explanation and definition
  • Examples
  • Observational and social influences
  • Environmental factors
  • Habituation factors
  • Reinforcement influences

Unit 10: Motivation and socialisation in animals

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to explore animal motivation and socialisation processes and relate these to theoretical concepts and models and psychological principles

This unit prepares learners for the explicit unit examples (12, 13 and 14)

Unit content

1 Animal motivation

  • Models of motivation and theoretical concepts
  • Examples and contexts
  • Intervening variables and influences

2 Animal socialisation

  • General principles of socialisation
  • Behavioural sequencing
  • Causation and intention

3 Role of homeostasis

  • Physiological and psychological influences, controls and roles
  • Examples of homeostatic mechanism linked to motivational contexts

4 Cognitive ecology

  • Definition and explanation
  • History of cognitive ecology and relationship to animal psychology principles, practice and application
  • Current theories and trends
  • Links to environment, habitat and human intervention and interaction

Unit 11: The psychology of animal emotion

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to study how animals form and express emotion and relate this exploration to psychological theories and concepts. Learners will also be encouraged to independently research current psychological therapies for animals related to understanding animal emotion and how this relates to environment, habitat and interaction with humans

Unit content

1 Social morality

  • Defining social morality in animals and examples across species and contexts
  • Principles and understanding related to research and study of animal behaviour and human interaction

2 Nature of animal emotion

  • Defining animal emotion and feelings
  • Evaluation of research into measurable and immeasurable characteristics
  • How animals express feelings to each other, other species and humans
  • Interpretation of animal emotions from human perspectives and other animals

3 Human intrusion

  • Defining human intrusion and outlining examples
  • Evaluation of effects on animal behaviour and psychology

4 Psychology principles

  • The psychological principles which apply to animal emotion and their interpretation
  • Evaluation of research principles with regard to validity and rigor in establishing context, expression and evaluation of animal emotion

Unit 12: The psychology of equine behaviour

Unit level : H2

Learning hours: 60 hours

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to explore the historical evolution of horses from the wild into various domestic roles, and to evaluate the underpinning theories which support this evolutionary journey. This exploration will also provide learners to study the psychology principles related to equine behaviour and the models used in training and addressing behavioural issues in horses. Learners are encouraged to independently research current theories and models and to evaluate principles and concepts already studied through the course, to apply to specific examples and contexts

Unit content

1 Evolution of wild horses to domesticity

  • Timeline: ten thousand years historical exploration, descendant of Eohippus;. the horse is naturally a prey animal, and so has evolved to have the instincts of a prey animal; horses originally kept by humans for food, as well as using them to work, for sport and leisure; adaptation over a short historical period, including anatomy, movement, habituation

2 Equine conditioning and learning processes

  • Suppression of instinct; reaction to stimuli; verbal and non-verbal messages; learn from each other – herd instinct; handling; classical and operant conditioning; adaptive behaviour
  • Comparative evaluation and consideration related to theoretical concepts and models

3 Equine behaviour and training

  • Imprinting; ground technique; longeing and free longeing; backing techniques; specific discipline training; dressage, clicker
  • Comparative evaluation related to psychology applications

4 Behaviour modification in horses

  • Conditioning; desensitization; counter-conditioning; applied behaviour analysis; stimulus control; shaping; reinforcements scheduling; learned helplessness; limiting distraction techniques

Unit 13: The psychology of feline behaviour

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to explore the historical evolution of cat populations from the wild into various domestic roles, and to evaluate the underpinning theories which support this evolutionary journey. Through the study of conditioning and learning models, learners will also be given an opportunity to evaluate behaviour modification techniques and strategies and independently research a variety of situations in order to develop transferable knowledge into practical skills and applications. Learners will also be encouraged to independently research current approaches in feline behaviour and psychological therapy

Unit content

1 Evolution of feral cats to domesticity

  • Evolutionary evidence; classification; predation; archaeological records; domestication (Ancient Egypt); migration and interbreeding; changes in anatomical characteristics; DNA sequencing and functional characteristics; socialization processes and interaction with humans

2 Conditioning and learning processes

  • Suppression of instinct; reaction to stimuli; verbal and non-verbal messages; learn from each other; grouping instinct; handling; classical and operant conditioning; adaptive behaviour; social hierarchy

3 Socialization processes in cats

  • Attachment (theories and models); kitten rearing and interactions; indoor marking; aggression; behavioural development; weaning process; environmental factors; independence and instinctive patterns; stimulation and interaction; genetic influences; maternal influences

4 Phobia and anxiety states

  • Separation anxiety; self-mutilation; over grooming and pica; stability of environment; stimulation and restriction; interaction and play

Unit 14: The psychology of canine behaviour

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to explore the historical evolution of dogs from the wolf into various domestic and working roles, and to evaluate the underpinning theories which support this evolutionary journey. Through the study of conditioning and learning models, learners will also be given an opportunity to evaluate behaviour modification techniques and strategies and independently research a variety of situations in order to develop transferable knowledge into practical skills and applications, particularly related to human interaction and partnerships with dogs, using psychology applications and principles

Unit content

1 Evolution of wolves to domestic canines

  • Evolutionary evidence; classification; predation; archaeological records; wolves; domestication; migration and interbreeding; changes in anatomical characteristics; DNA sequencing and functional characteristics; socialization processes and interaction with humans

2 Conditioning and learning processes

  • Suppression of instinct; reaction to stimuli; verbal and non-verbal messages; learn from each other; grouping instinct; handling; classical and operant conditioning; adaptive behaviour; social hierarchy; dog psychology and telepathic notions
  • Training techniques : clicker; positive reinforcement; luring; group; harness; pack hierarchy

3 Socialization processes in dogs

  • Attachment (theories and models); puppy rearing and interactions; territorial marking; aggression; behavioural development; weaning process; environmental factors; independence and instinctive patterns; stimulation and interaction; genetic influences; maternal influences

4 Abnormal behaviour states in dogs

  • Behaviour states: Aggression; separation anxiety; dominance; phobic patterns; possessiveness; attachment (theories); genetic influences
  • Techniques: reduction in ritualistic behaviour; positive and negative reinforcement/rewards; aversion therapy; desensitization; socialization; alternative therapy (massage, reflexology etc.)

Unit 15: Comparative psychology

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this unit is to provide learners with an opportunity to study comparative psychology and apply theoretical principles and consideration of evolutionary processes to the exploration of where animal psychology sits now within the scientific field, its applications and relevance to research.

Unit content

1 The principles of comparative psychology

  • Aims and objectives of comparative psychology
  • New knowledge
  • Relationship between animal and human behaviours and interaction
  • Farms, zoos and domestic examples

2 Ethological principles

  • Development of ethology and its aims and objectives
  • Study and evaluation of articles and research examples
  • Validation processes
  • Advantages of ethological methods over experimental methods

3 Attachment

  • Explanation and comparisons between human and animal attachment drawing on a number of key theories
  • Harlow and Harlow 1962, Formation of love in infant monkeys
  • Bowlby’s evolutionary approach
  • Hess 1958 – duckling studies
  • Innate programming
  • Types and causes of attachment
  • Lorenz’s imprint studies
  • Maternal deprivation in chimpanzees
  • Separation

4 Current ethological and models

  • Independent research
  • Discussion of current theories
  • Discussion of applications to current practice and relevance to research

Unit 16: Instinct, communication and adaptation

Level H2

Learning hours: 60

Unit description

The aim of this consolidation unit is to provide learners with the opportunity to evaluate animal instinct, communication and adaptation from a current and holistic viewpoint. Learners will also be encouraged to research current ecology related to these concepts and evaluate the influences of modern human-animal relationships on expectations and practice

Unit content

1 Common instinctive behaviour

  • Outline of examples and underpinning traditional research (Darwin and Maslow)
  • Optimal foraging
  • Ritualisation – recognition, response and action
  • Relationship to psychological principles

2 Common adaptive behaviour

  • Outline of examples and traditional models
  • Ontogenic and phylogenic adaptation
  • Species and species gender
  • Physiology of adaptation – vasopressin and dopamine receptors
  • Species counterpoint
  • Relationship to psychological principles

3 Common communication principles

  • Pair bonding
  • Orientation to physical environment
  • Eliciting responses from other animals and species
  • Arousal processes and sensory concepts
  • Relationship to psychological principles

4 Current research

  • Presentation of current theory examples and evaluation

Technical Requirements

  • Windows: Windows 98, 2000, XP, Vista, Windows 7 – Acrobat Reader 4.0 and above
    OR
    Macintosh:
    Mac OS X, Mac OS 9.2 – Acrobat Reader 4.0 and above
  • An up to date internet browser such as Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, or Safari.
  • Internet connection (broadband recommended.)

Cost - Per Person

£ 3500 + VAT

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