The University of Edinburgh
Coursera
list 5 sequences
assignment Level : Introductive
label Biology
chat_bubble_outline Language : English
language Subtitles : French
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Users' reviews
4.6
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52 reviews

Key information

credit_card Free access
verified_user Fee-based Certificate
timer 5 hours in total

About the content

This course explains the general principles of chicken behaviour and welfare, and the behavioural and physiological indicators that can be used to assess welfare in chickens kept in hobby flocks through to commercial farms. The focus is primarily on laying hens and meat chickens (broilers) although many of the principles are relevant to other types of poultry. The course is likely to be of interest to people who own chickens as pets or keep a small hobby flock, commercial egg and chicken meat producers, veterinarians and vet nurses. Learning Objectives: at the end of this course, you will be able to - - Describe avian sensory perception and motivation - Explain the main behaviour patterns of poultry - Define welfare and explain the bases of welfare standards - Assess chicken welfare, using behavioural and physiological means - Understand common welfare problems of chickens This course is taught by staff from Scotland's Rural College (SRUC), University of Glasgow, and St David's Poultry Team. You can follow us on Twitter! #chickenmooc © University of Edinburgh and Scotland's Rural College 2016 CC BY

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Syllabus

  • Week 1 - Getting Started
    This brief module will tell you all the things you need to know to begin, including the syllabus of the course, who we are, how to engage with one another.
  • Week 1 - Introduction to Animal Behaviour: Domestication, Behaviour Development and Learning, the Senses
    Welcome to the first week of the Chicken Behaviour and Welfare Course. If you haven't seen it - watch the video which introduces you to the course: you can find it under "Getting Started; Welcome!" During this lesson, we will consider what makes a domestic an...
  • Week 2 - Behavior Patters of Chickens, Part 1
    During this week, we will consider some of the major behaviour patterns of chickens, such as maintenance behaviours of chickens, and social behaviours. Maintenance behaviours means feeding, drinking, and comfort activities. Comfort activities include preenin...
  • Week 3 - Behaviour Pattens of Chickens, Part 2
    Welcome back everyone! During this week, we will consider the reproduction process in chickens, from courtship to brooding and hatching of eggs. We will then look at some abnormal behaviours that you might see in chickens. This week will be a combination of...
  • Week 4 - What is chicken welfare? Defining "welfare", ethical obligations, and welfare standards
    During this week, we will consider what we mean by "animal welfare", and how a set of criteria known as the Five Freedoms can help you assess it. Dr Dorothy McKeegan from the University of Glasgow will discuss what the ethical obligations are of meeting an an...
  • Week 5 - Effects of housing, transport and slaughter on bird welfare
    This is the last week of the Chicken Behaviour and Welfare course, you are almost at the finish line... During this week, we will consider the welfare of layer hens and broiler (meat) chickens, from hatch to slaughter, particularly in common commercial system...
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Intructors

Dr Victoria Sandilands
Senior scientist
Avian Science Research Centre, SRUC

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4.6 /5 Average
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Best review

Second time taking the course. It's that good. Practical information and very well presented. I have put into practice (for my backyard flock) many of the practices covered. Videos great, reading material great, recommended book a super reference. Thanks!

Published on February 18, 2018
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on the February 18, 2018
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Second time taking the course. It's that good. Practical information and very well presented. I have put into practice (for my backyard flock) many of the practices covered. Videos great, reading material great, recommended book a super reference. Thanks!

on the February 1, 2018
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Excellent information on how chickens see the world and interact, the problems that can occur when keeping them and how to resolve these problems. Also the stark reality of modern farming. Recommended and required knowledge for all chicken owners and consumers.

on the January 8, 2018
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I learned a lot! I only wish that there is a section that focuses solely on keeping chickens in the backyard (comparison of breeds, examples of coops, types of feeds, etc.), although I'm not sure if that would fall under chicken behavior and welfare :) Thank you!

on the November 17, 2017
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I love chickens and i'm very happy to know a bit more about the process. I also admire how objective this course handles the subjects, even if they are ethically sensitive.

on the October 11, 2017
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thoroughly enjoyed this course. taught me a great deal about things I can and should be improving for my own. Helped me understand a lot more about the commercial side too.