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GAW3010 - Ethics and welfare

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Leader: Dr Pauleen Bennett


Caulfield First semester 2007 (Off-campus)


This unit provides an overview of an animal's biological systems in relation to adaptation to various stimuli, stress and pain. This overview is integral to the subject's focus on animal care on farms, in new livestock industries, in laboratories and care of companion animals (pets) and our obligation toward animals in terms of conservation and biodiversity. The unit presents these key-learning areas in relation to the legal aspects of animal ethics and welfare, research into animal welfare and ethics, and community education about animal welfare and ethics.


On successful completion of this unit students will:

  1. demonstrate a basic understanding of common ethical frameworks and how these relate to our relationships with other animal species;
  2. understand the concept of animal welfare and how 'welfare' might be scientifically assessed in species other than our own;
  3. appreciate the effect of animal husbandry practices on animals and the consequent obligations of animal workers;
  4. be aware of common problems experienced when working with animals on farms, in new animal industries, in laboratories, as companions and in the area of conservation and biodiversity;
  5. be familiar with appropriate strategies for resolving these problems, in terms of codes of practice, welfare audits and legislation;
  6. appreciate the importance of research concerning animal welfare, ethics, conservation and biodiversity in the development of good practice in relevant industries;
  7. understand the importance of transferring this knowledge to the general community via industry education and training and public education strategies.


Essay (2500 words): 40%
Oral presentation: 15%
Exam (3 hours): 45%