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Animal Behaviour Online Course

From: $50.00 / week for 16 weeks

Duration 100 hrs / 12 months
Exam Optional
Tutor Support Yes unlimited by email
Qualification Careerline Certificate
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What is Ethology?

The study of animal behaviour (ethology) is of obvious importance in the practice of training animals especially in considering their natural behaviour and how it may be suitable for specific tasks. Additionally, understanding animal behaviour contributes to animal training by means of understanding how to encourage desirable natural behaviour and discourage behaviour traits that are undesirable.

In this online animal behaviour course you will learn to understand why animals behave the way they do. Learn to understand difficult behaviour and techniques on how to deal with it. This is a very useful qualification for anyone working with animals or for someone wishing to set up their own business. Learn about the different influences on animal behaviour such as genetics, biology, environmental influences, the part played by instinct and the difference in behaviour in domesticated versus wild populations.

Who is this Animal Behavior Course For?

Careerline’s Animal Behaviour course is suitable for anyone interested in or working with animals, trainers, pet carers, pet shop workers, zoo keepers and so on.   If you want to study more, check out our bundle of four animal psychology courses and get this course plus equine behaviour, dog psychology and cat training modules at a discounted rate.

What you will do:

  • Identify factors affecting animal behaviour.
  • Describe the influence of genes on animal behaviour.
  • Explain how animals perceive and how they respond to various stimuli.
  • Explain the influence of environment factors, such as circadian rhythms, on biological clocks, reproductive cycles, orientation and other animal behaviours.
  • Explain the social influences on animal aggression, play, sexual behaviour, communication and other behaviours.
  • Describe different ways that animals learn (such as conditioning and habituation) and some effects of learning on behaviour.
  • Discuss psychological implications of different handling techniques.
  • Identify abnormal animal behaviour (eg. psychotic, neurotic behaviour) and ways to reduce dependence on humans.

Get Free Info Pack

Get your free info pack by completing the form below.

Detailed Course Outline

Each course is made up a number of lessons or units.  Each of these has self assessment questions, a set task (practical homework) and an assignment which you can upload online.  Click below to read about each of the lessons and what you will learn.

There are eight (8) lessons in this course:

Introduction to Animal Behaviour

Influences and motivation; what is behaviour; causes of behaviour (eg. genetics, learning, external and internal influences); reactive, active and cognitive behaviour; conditioning.

Genetics and Behaviour

Understanding biology; natural selection; genetic variation; development of behaviour; behavioural genetics.

Animal Perception and Behaviour

How animals perceive things; what stimulates them and how do those stimuli function; instinct; neural control; sensory processes: sight, sound, hearing etc.

Behaviour and the Environment

Coordination; orientation; homeostasis; acclimatisation; circadian rhythms; biological clocks; reproductive cycles; etc.

Social Behaviour

Animal societies; aggression; social constraints; social order; play; sexual behaviour; communication.

Instinct and Learning

Conditioning and learning; extinction and habituation; instrumental learning; reinforcement; operant behaviour; biological and cognitive aspects of learning.

Handling Animals

Psychological affects of different handling techniques; training animals (horses, cats, dogs, etc). The student can choose which animals to focus on, though a variety are covered.

Behavioural Problems

Abnormal behaviour (e.g. psychotic; neurotic); domestication of animals; reducing human contact/dependence.

When you have completed your lessons you have the option of taking the optional exam. It's ok if you don't want the exam, we still issue your Careerline Certificate.

Course Tutor(s)

Dr Karen Catchpole  B.VSc. (Hons)

Karen brings to Careerline great experience and expertise in animal Science. Karen is a practicing veterinarian, now in her own small animal hospital, after working in varied roles over 17 years since graduation from Sydney University with first class honours.  Karen continues to maintain active involvement in education in both professional development and in tutoring both vocational and university students.  Karen's field of expertise is in internal animal medicine & surgery of cats & dogs.

Dr. Karin Dreyer-Haasbroek  B.V.S.   M.Sc.  (Parasitology)

Karin’s love and passion for animals stem from growing up on a farm in South Africa. After gaining her Veterinary Science degree she worked in mixed general practice while completing a master’s degree in Veterinary Parasitology. Living and working in South Africa exposed Karin to a vast range of experiences in the clinical veterinary field: treating patients ranging from marmoset monkeys to lions to the everyday cat, dog or horse. Two years as a Laboratory Vet resulted in helping farmers tackling livestock health problems in a variety of farm production systems. Since her move to Western Australia with her family, Karin has been working in a small animal practice.  During her 20 years as a vet, she has been involved in several research projects and the tutoring of students in various fields of animal science. She enjoys mentoring students and sharing her knowledge and she loves helping students flourish and realise their full potential.

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Melanie Reid

This has been a very valuable learning experience for me. This module covered exactly what I need to know for animal behaviour and has given me some great tools to continue working with for future courses/volunteer work....Stop thinking about it and just do it!! I have been putting off going back to school due to work commitments, I thought I would not have enough time. I also kept thinking that I had missed the boat to start a course as I am now 30. I ended up getting sick of my self saying I had no qualifications and decided to do something about it! Careerline Courses offer such a variety of courses, there really is something to study for everyone.

Melanie Reid Animal Behaviour Graduate

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Kristie Romeo

This course has taught me a large amount of information I will need to become employed in my chosen profession.

Kristie Romeo Animal Behaviour Graduate

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I pay in installments?

Yes! We offer great payment plans, however full payment up front is the cheapest. You can choose the best payment plan for you from the course page, or call us on 07 55368782 to talk to one of our course consultants for a custom plan.

Can I study from anywhere in the world?

We have many international students. Careerline's range of courses are suitable for any one, anywhere in the world.

Do I get a discount if I enroll in a second course?

Yes. You may claim a 5% fee discount when you enroll in a second course, and a further 10% off a three-course package.

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Do I have to sit an Exam?

No. If you are enrolled in a Certificate course (100hrs), the exam is optional. You will be issued with a certificate which proves that you are competent in all units, if you choose not to sit the exam.

Do you have set start dates?

There are no set start dates, you may start at any time. Our courses are all self-paced. As our home page says, ‘Courses for Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime’. ‘Anytime’ includes the start time of your choice. However, we do encourage our students to submit assignments on a regular basis. Wherever possible, we suggest developing a study routine.