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Course Descriptions

Management of the Equine Environment

Explore many of the important aspects of running a horse-housing establishment, including barn hygiene, air quality, safety audits, and fencing and pasture maintenance and improvement. This course will provide you with access to the latest research and practical information needed to ensure a safe and healthy environment for horses, through effective and responsible management techniques. You will immediately be able to apply what you learn to your situation in a practical way.

 

Management of the Equine Environment

Equine Nutrition

Gain the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to develop and maintain a healthy nutritional program for your horse. Learn about the basics of nutrition, balancing rations and special populations, and how to identify the unique nutritional needs of different classes of horses. You will benefit from practical information on diet and nutrition and its relationship to the health and performance of your horse.

Individuals responsible for the nutritional requirements of horses—including owners, trainers, coaches, barn managers, grooms, and sales and technical personnel working in the feed and tack industries—are well-suited participants for this course.

Equine Nutrition

Equine Health & Disease Prevention

Be an effective advocate for your horse. Explore many of the common problems faced by horses—many due to management problems—and learn how to develop a year-round health maintenance program that will ensure their optimal health. Examine new research that includes practical applications for the horse owner and the appropriate steps to take so you can reduce the risk for your horses and enhance your role in helping your veterinarian as part of their health care team.

Health & Disease Prevention

Equine Functional Anatomy

This course examines the components of the systems that enable the horse’s athletic achievements. It is a study of the functions of those components, and the anatomical structures that fulfill those functions. Students will learn the important anatomical structures and their function, view anatomy from the form vs. function approach and understand how feeding, movement and health of the horse is dependent on its anatomy.

Functional Anatomy

Equine Exercise Physiology

Examine many of the important aspects of conditioning the equine athlete in various disciplines. Investigate topics including base conditioning, aerobic and anaerobic exercise and recovery, monitoring of conditioning gains, and prevention of health and performance problems. Gain the practical and updated information needed to ensure a safe and effective training program through applied scientific knowledge of exercise physiology.

Exercise Physiology

Management of the Broodmare, Stallion and Foal

The future career of a horse depends on the development of a solid foundation, even before conception! This non-degree online course will introduce you to sound management practices for your broodmare and stallion, then follows through the breeding to the birth cycle of the life of the horse. You will gain practical knowledge that will aid in the effective management of broodmares and stallions to produce an energetic, healthy foal. Along the way, you will learn the basic anatomy, physiology, nutrition, equine behaviour and problem conditions that can occur. The emphasis will be on supporting the welfare of the horse and the prevention of problems. This course will not make you an expert in the breeding shed or foaling barn, but you will be more prepared and confident, in partnership with your vet, to move into the fascinating area of equine reproduction.

This is a valuable course if you are involved in breeding horses, whether with your own horses or if you are working at a broodmare facility, stallion station or foaling barn.

Please Note: This is an equivalent course to Equine Growth & Development. Do not take this course if you already have completed Equine Growth & Development.

Growth & Development

Equine Behaviour

Achieve a better understanding of why horses do the things they do and how to provide the best environment possible for their well-being. Gain insight into horse behaviour, through their eyes, and learn how to properly communicate with them to ensure appropriate behaviour. By reviewing and discussing the most recent research on equine behaviour—particularly as it relates to welfare, environment and handling—you will be able to improve your own training, riding and horse ownership.

This course is designed for horse owners, trainers, grooms, breeders, stable employees, veterinary technicians, industry representatives, coaches, and individuals with an interest in horses.

Equine Behaviour

Equine Genetics

 

Learn and understand important concepts of equine genetics, how they relate to the selection and breeding of horses, and how each horse is a product of its genes. Examine how the genetics of a horse influence its potential to perform or render it susceptible to disease, unsoundness, or genetic disorder.

You will be guided from Mendelian inheritance and medical genetics to the polygenic determination of coat colour. Study the quantitative traits determined by the interaction of multiple genes and the environment. The significance of pedigrees, methods of parentage testing, and how breeds are genetically distinct will also be covered.

Equine Genetics

Stewardship of the Equine Environment

Understand the importance of properly managing the natural environment and built facilities to optimize the health of your horses. Explore the concepts related to the natural ecosystem, ecosystem services, and beneficial management practices. The relationship between the health and well-being of the environment and the health and well-being of the horse will be explored, as well as the role of the equine industry in meeting broader societal goals of environmental citizenship.

A wide range of current topics—such as wildlife habitat and management, manure management, source water protection policies, and green building concepts—will also be examined through an equine industry perspective.

Stewardship of the Equine Environment

Equine Business Management

Deciding to turn your passion for horses into a profitable business requires planning. Starting and running an equine enterprise is unique in many ways, as the horse industry has many considerations that may not be common to other small businesses. From understanding the scope of the equine industry to writing a complete business plan, this online course helps you identify items that must be considered before you launch your equine enterprise, as well as guidelines for those already running a business in the equine industry.

This course is for anyone interested in establishing their own equine business, researching a business idea, as well as those already running a business and looking to develop a plan.

Equine Business Management

Marketing & Communication in the Equine Industry

Master effective marketing strategies used by successful equine businesses. Explore traditional, digital, and social media marketing tactics proven to build profitable customer relationships. In this course, you will create a comprehensive marketing plan so you can identify your target market and focus your tactics effectively. With real-life equine examples, this course will get you on the right track for building a profitable horse business.

Marketing & Communication in the Equine Industry

Equine Business Finance & Risk Management

Examine the basic principles of financial management of a small equine business. Preparing balance sheets, analyzing income statements and understanding cash flow are key tools in effectively managing a successful business. You will study common risk and liability issues for business owners as well as explore unique issues to running your equine enterprise.

This course will provide you with the skills to manage your own business or work as an employee of an equine business—including tack and feed stores, rescue facilities, boarding schools and non-profit organizations. Event and show coordinators, freelancers, and all other small business owners are well-suited participants for this course.

Equine Business Finance & Risk Management

Equine Journalism

Equine Journalism provides the necessary tools, techniques, and knowledge in order to help you become a published author and develop a career in Equine Journalism. Publishers are always looking for new writers, but these writers can fail simply because they lack the basic skills necessary to get the attention of editors.

This course has been designed to assist you in developing the skills needed, including knowing how properly analyze publications to suit your needs, to write a proper query and who to submit it to, how to properly research, interview, and create written copy that gets noticed and accepted on the first try. You will also learn how to self-edit, understand contracts and copyright rules, and how to create pleasing photographs to accompany those submissions. Nothing is more satisfying than seeing your first by-line, article and photograph in a publication.

Equine Journalism

Equine Event Management

Learn the fundamentals of event planning and examine the complexities of organizing, marketing and running an enjoyable and sustainable equine event, with or without horses. Develop effective business and event management skills that will help you plan well-coordinated and successful equine events. This course has been designed with a variety of options to help you prepare to host your own event. These options include hosting your event during this course, preparing a detailed plan for an event you will host in the future, assisting with the development of an event you may be volunteering/working at during the course, or exploring a case study of an event you would like to host. Each week you will look at specific elements of event planning as you develop and implement them into your final event plan.

Examples of equine events include horse shows, clinics, rodeos, trade shows, conferences, open houses, trail rides and fundraising events. By the end of this course, you will have developed an effective equine event plan.

Equine Event Management

The Equine Industry

Learn more about the issues and topics that have impacted and continue to impact the equine industry now and into the future. This broader vision of the industry will give you the opportunity to grow beyond the silos of your discipline/industry sector and begin to consider the role of the industry and its larger context. The goal of this course is to help you understand important concepts about the horse industry and its future, and how they relate to the welfare of horses.

The Equine Industry

Advanced Equine Behaviour

This course will provide you with a depth of knowledge on equine behaviour, learning and related welfare issues. During the course you will observe a horse’s behaviour over time and activity, design a training activity to teach a new behaviour, create a behaviour evaluation checklist to make a well – informed evaluation of a presenting behaviour – along with other activities – with the result of developing several tools and resources aimed at analysing, evaluating, and creating management practices that work for the horses in our care and based on the evidence available to us. Understanding abnormal behaviour of horses and the management decisions that contribute to them will be a part of assessing and evaluating current management practices. Also, you will have the opportunity to research a current or special topic in equine behaviour research as part of your work in this course.

 

Advanced Equine Behaviour

Advanced Equine Functional Anatomy

“The horse is often described as the perfect running machine, but every one of its anatomical adaptations – whether in the musculoskeletal system or in one of the other systems – comes with a cost or trade-off, which often predisposes it to injury or disease” is the thesis instructor Dr. Jeff Thomason poses to students in the Advanced Equine Functional Anatomy class. Students will research and discuss equine digestive, respiratory, cardiovascular, nervous, reproductive, muscular systems or any of the other systems of the horse’s anatomy in relation to this thesis.

This course will build on your experience with horses and from what you have learned in Equine Functional Anatomy and other courses to improve your interaction with horses and enhance your ability to locate and use reliable information on equine anatomy. You will have the opportunity to research and explore areas of anatomy you are most interested in whether it is the hoof, gut, skin, brain or any other area of interest understanding how the horse’s systems work together. As part of this course, you will prepare an instructional document such as a factsheet, video, infographic, recorded interview, whatever you choose on your anatomy research topic. You will provide critical analysis of available research and evidence.

Advanced Equine Functional

Advanced Equine Health through Nutrition

Horse nutrition is an essential part of a horse’s health, reproduction and performance, yet it often remains guided by mysterious concoctions and formulas which are often a detriment to a horse’s health. This advanced course recognizes that feeding decisions can be complex and the advances in nutritional research and evolving horse management practices provide an opportunity to design nutritional plans based on current research and evidence-based practice optimizing your horse’s overall health and performance.  Advanced Equine Health through Nutrition will build your knowledge by improving the way you find and analyze information based on defensible evidence and apply that knowledge to the development of nutritional plans.

 

Advanced Equine Health through Nutrition

Equine Welfare

The Equine Welfare course explores controversial and sensitive issues surrounding the use of horses. It will enable all those with an interest in horses to gain an awareness of the specific human uses of horses and the welfare problems and abuses that can sometimes occur as a result. Students will study reliable scientific research and evidence-based information to support informed debate. The course will draw on the expertise of leaders in equine health and welfare science introducing concepts and definitions of animal welfare. Students will discuss how to recognize negative emotional states, how welfare can be objectively assessed in the horse, and specific practices that may compromise horse welfare. Equine Welfare is intended to stimulate thought and discussion in the equine industry.

At the end of the course, you will be able to articulate your personal philosophy and position on maintaining the spirit and wellness of the horse.

Equine Welfare

Global Perspectives in Equine Welfare

Global Perspectives in Equine Welfare takes students through the highly emotional issues of equine welfare exploring different practices across the globe while focusing on the horse’s perspective. Students will study equine welfare by examining current issues of wild horse management, working horses in developing countries, racing and sport horse practices, slaughter legislation, horses in research, unwanted horses and equine rescue facilities and a comparison of the different equine management practices used around the world. Current advances and key persons in equine research will be discussed, as well as policy development and the legislation covering equines in different countries.

Students will be able to knowledgeably discuss equine welfare in any situation and be part of a world-wide move toward encouraging and supporting positive states of equine welfare.

Global Perspectives in Equine Welfare