Adaptation, Health and Welfare

Animal health and welfare are becoming increasingly important when talking about sustainability of animal production systems. This specialisation utilises a multidisciplinary, animal-level approach focusing on the effects of the animal’s environment on its health.

The specialisation in a nutshell

The specialisation Adaptation, Health and Welfare studies the effects of the immediate environment on physiological responses of individual animals, and what these responses mean for animal health and welfare. Immunological status, energy metabolism, thermoregulation, reproduction and behaviour are major responses of animals, being studied in this specialisation.

This specialisation has six study tracks:

- Adaptation Physiology (ADP)

- Behavioural Ecology (BHE)

- Quantitative Veterinary Epidemiology (QVE)

- Experimental Zoology (EZO)

- Animal Production Systems (APS)

- Animal Nutrition (ANU)

Below you can read more about the courses provided in the specialisation Adaptation, Health and Welfare. The online study handbook provides detailed information.

Courses ADP

Health, Welfare and Management (ADP-30306)

This course deals with multidisciplinary aspects of the functioning of animals, focusing on a selected number of themes.

Adaptation Physiology (ADP-30806)

This course goes more in depth into specific mechanisms of adaptation physiology (e.g. immunology, behaviour, reproduction or energy metabolism, including social and ethical aspects). Students will define a proper scientific work plan, based on a hypothesis gained from a literature review.

Courses BHE

Health, Welfare and Management (ADP-30306)

This course deals with multidisciplinary aspects of the functioning of animals, focusing on a selected number of themes.

Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare (BHE-31306)

In this course you learn to link concepts of animal behaviour to welfare issues in modern husbandry of livestock and companion animals.

Courses QVE

Quantitative Veterinary Epidemiology (QVE-30306)

This course addresses the occurrence and transmission of diseases in populations, as well as risk factors that contribute to the occurrence of these diseases (epidemiology) and how the importance of these risk factors can be quantified.

Management of Infectious Diseases in Animal Populations (QVE-30806)

This course is focused on preventive management of infections and diseases. Veterinary epidemiology is one of the basic sciences that contributes to management of disease, including monitoring and surveillance.

Courses EZO

Functional Zoology (EZO-30806):

In this course a theoretical basis is created as well as practical exercise in quantitative analysis of the functioning of animals.

Developmental Biology of Animals (EZO-30306):

A comparative overview of the early development in a variety of animals is taught in this course.

Courses APS

Sustainability Assessment of Animal Systems (APS-30306)

During this course  you will analyse core issues related to sustainable animal production. You will learn to apply various methods to tackle complex problems.

Future Livestock Systems (APS-31306)

In this course you will think about and explore future possibilities for livestock production.

Courses ANU

Animal Nutrition and Physiology (ANU-30806)

This MSc-course uses three (practical) modules to provide you with basic knowledge on nutrient analysis, digestion physiology and the physiology of nutrient utilisation in animals.

Nutrient Dynamics (ANU-30306)

In this course, knowledge in the area of digestion and utilization of nutrients is addressed more in depth and quantified.

Thesis and Internship

A thesis or internship project for the specialisation Adaptation, Health and Welfare is conducted at the ADP, BHE, QVE, EZO, APS or ANU chair group and results in a scientific report and a presentation. A thesis project usually links up with ongoing research at one of these research groups or is conducted in cooperation with commercial or (non-)governmental organisations. At the websites of the different chair groups, you can find more information about research topics.

ADP chair group

BHE chair group

QVE chair group

EZO chair group

APS chair group

ANU chair group

Questions?

If you have any questions about the specialisation Adaptation, Health and Welfare, you can contact the programme director dr. René Kwakkel at education.animalsciences@wur.nl.



Specialisations of MSc Animal Sciences