932011 Journal club animal husbandry

Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Hintze, Sara , Kull, Kristina
Offered in
Wintersemester 2022/23
Languages of instruction


If we want to improve the welfare of farmed animals, we need to understand how they feel. Unfortunately, the animals cannot tell us that directly, so we need to infer their feelings from physiology, behaviour and cognition. Knowledge of the emotional states of farmed animals has the potential to highlight mismatches between husbandry practices and the needs of the animals.

In this journal club, we will discuss scientific articles relevant for the field of farmed animal affective states, cognition and welfare. Potential topics include facial expressions, vocalisations, stress hormones and memory of farmed animals. Students are encouraged to suggest own topics, e.g. concerning their own (future) master projects.

Previous knowledge expected

No, but willingness to critically read and discuss scientific literature is expected.

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

There are two main course objectives. The first one is to discuss in detail what implications do affective states and cognitive characteristics of farmed animals have for current farming practices. For example, what does it mean for inquisitive social animals, such as pigs, to be kept in barren environments which lack mental stimulation?

The second objective is to gain more experience in critically evaluating scientific publications. For example, we will address questions related to the methods and conclusions - for example, what would we do differently, if we were to repeat the experiments?
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.