Thursday, November 3, 2011

Graduate Programs

Man it has been too long since I last posted. It seems that's how I always start off a new post. Well, I have been doing searches for weeks and weeks on graduate programs in the animal field. (And the education field and psychology field trying to figure out what I want to do). I've been searching for animal behavior, animal psychology, and ethology programs, and recently discovered a few new areas in the field- Anthrozoology and Humane Education/Leadership. I found Canisius College, which has a semi-online Anthrozoology Master's program. Here is their description of the program: 

"Canisius College offers an online Master’s Degree in Anthrozoology, the discipline that focuses on humanity’s relationship with other species.  A major emphasis is on an examination of the relationships between people and their companion animals, but the scope of our program also includes animal use in science, industry, agriculture, and zoos.Our program embraces the positive value of human-animal relations by focusing on the many benefits that accrue to humans by including animals in their lives. It also covers the benefits that are provided to animals by humans. It is an interdisciplinary field of study that includes scientific investigations, philosophical considerations, religious perspectives, animals in literature, and humane education.  Our program also examines the intersection between animal protection and environmental protection:  the special relationship that exists between two worldwide movements."

This program seems more legit -- well, that's not really the right word -- it's more... respected, I suppose? Well, it seems more respected than the American College of Applied Sciences program- their program that I'm interested in is the Master of Sciences in Companion Animal Behavior Analysis and Counseling.  "The program employs a scientist/practitioner model following the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA) and evidence based practice. It uses a blended-learning course delivery model consisting of Internet-based courses (both synchronous and asynchronous), 5-day residency lab courses with animals, real-world practicum in the student’s community, and a capstone empirical research project (thesis) designed to fills gaps in the companion animal scientific literature. The program is specifically designed for the working adult who might not otherwise be able to attend a traditional campus-based program.
Graduates are trained to work as companion animal behavior analysts in leadership positions and as part of a behavior management and intervention team that includes the behavior analyst/counselor, the family or facility veterinarian, and the animal’s caregiver(s). Graduates may be employed by animal-related organizations including animal shelters, animal sanctuaries, veterinary practices, animal behavior businesses, humane societies, SPCAs, NGOs, educational institutions, wildlife parks, government animal control organizations, health departments or other such organizations.
Graduates may also enter the profession as self-employed animal behavior professionals and consultants, and as  forensic consultants/expert witnesses in animal injury litigation matters; college, university or vocational school adjunct instructors, media consultants and alike."

Then there's Valparaiso University, which has MA and MEd programs in Humane Education. 
"Humane Education is a unified course of study that explores the connections between human rights, environmental preservation, and animal protection and provides learners with the knowledge, tools, and motivation to become conscientious and engaged citizens for a healthy, just, and humane world. Humane Educators foster creative and critical thinking, respect and responsibility, civic engagement, informed decision-making, and problem-solving in classrooms, workplaces, personal lives and the world."

And I just found another distance learning program - University of Wales Trinity St. David. They have an MA in Anthrozoology that is a completely online program- but it costs £10,719, which is almost $20,000 - and I'm not even sure if that's for the entire 180 credits, or just one year, or what. 
"The MA in Anthrozoology will be of interest to anyone who would like to investigate the many and varied ways in which humans perceive, engage, compete and co-exist with non-human animals in a range of cultural contexts.
The MA Anthrozoology is especially relevant in terms of Continual Professional Development for individuals who are involved with the care of non-human animals in a professional capacity (eg, vets, veterinary nurses/technicians, animal trainers, dog wardens, zoo keepers, conservationists, charity workers etc.), as well as for students who have completed social science undergraduate degrees or who have a science background and would like to expand their research interests into the social sciences."

All of the programs are just so expensive! And they take so long to complete. Two years for the Canisius program if you do it full time each semester! And I can't do full time right now. I have a job and two puppies and just don't have time to be a full time student again on top of all that. Also, most of them want a GPA of at least 3.0- and I had a 4.0 at one college, but by the time I graduated it was 2.9 cause I was taking so many credits (22!) and got married all in one semester. They say they let in students with lower GPAs on a case-by-case basis, so I just need to make my case really good! Canisius says the GREs are optional, but I definitely would take them before applying to help my case! So I guess the first step would be to study for the GREs... now begins my Amazon search for GRE help books. :P

So none of this is exactly related to dog training, but it is related to the field of animal behavior and my possible career path. :) I just need to start down that path sometime soon or I know I probably never will. Or I'll do it when I'm 60 and all my kids have graduated college and are out of the house and I've finished paying of THEIR education. Which is something I don't really want to do- I don't want to wait THAT long. lol. 

Well, thanks for pawsing! That's all for now, just wanted to share my search results with you all. =D

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