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bachelor of science: program description

The mission of the Bachelor’s degree in Canine Studies (Cynology) is to guide the students’ exploration of the canine species through a vast array of scholarly studies and experiences that expose the uniqueness that has led to the dog’s coveted relationship with humans while providing an opportunity for the students to explore their own species as it evolved through this historical relationship with the canine. Upper degree courses move well beyond the focus of producing a trained dog, to incorporate cognitive, psychological, sociological and historical perspectives of the dog including using art, literature and genetics as prisms from which the canine is viewed. In an ever-growing dog-related job market, this degree program provides a broad-based educational perspective appropriate to a multitude of entry- and mid-level positions.

This program is designed to bring the dog into the academic mainstream as a subject of scholarly study. Program objectives include: theoretical and applied studies of the canine toward a goal of promoting and understanding the canine’s unique mind and physical capabilities; contribution to the student’s awareness of the role the dog has played in the arts; advancement of the significance of the dog in society; increased awareness of the human-dog relationship from legal and historical points of view; and examination of the symbiotic relationship between human and canine.

Program Objectives:

1. To prepare students for employment opportunities in a variety of canine business and corporate management roles due to their strengthened critical thinking and research abilities: Petco, PetSmart, and a multitude of smaller canine businesses, boarding kennel management, running a dog training business, managing a dog kennel, an animal shelter, a Humane Society program, assistance dog programs, recreational dog programs and leadership in search and rescue programs, disaster search programs, scent detection programs, and other canine related programs;

2. The use of verbal, body language, and facial expressions as the basis of communication are explored in depth, preparing students to be more effective communicators in the world of business;

3. To explore multiple canine-related careers so as to provide students, upon graduation, with a well-rounded awareness of career choices in the canine world: dog food manufacturing, puppy training, boarding, canine cancer detection trainer, canine diabetes detection trainer, epilepsy alerting trainer, agility instructor, dog walker, drug sniffing dog trainer, dog groomer, show dog trainer, search and rescue dog trainer, pointer trainer, clicker trainer, tracking trainer, traveling groomer, pet store operator and flyball trainer.

Even with the increased popularity of training dogs for recreation, assistance and work roles, few people have the theoretical basis or practical experience to examine and contribute to the expansion of human-canine partnerships.

It is imperative that there be professionals who are able to examine, understand and apply their findings to increase the dog’s supporting role in human society. The University’s BS program is designed to cultivate and educate these professionals.

Students graduating with a BS in Canine Studies (Cynology) will facilitate advancing the field from one based on limited technical and theoretical knowledge and skills to a field based firmly upon research and willingness and capability to make the most of the true potential of the human-canine partnership.

Expected Learning Outcomes

Students completing the BS degree will demonstrate:

• Theoretical and applied knowledge of the canine’s unique mind and physical capabilities;

• Ability to advance the significance of the dog in society by gaining an in-depth understanding about how to incorporate this willing partner into today’s complex world, highlighting the ways the dog’s role in our society can continue to expand;

• An awareness of the human-dog relationship from legal and historical points of view;

• An historical, scientific, psychological, and developmental perspective about humankind’s best friend, the dog, while simultaneously examining the roots of this most fascinating synergistic relationship;

• Awareness that any reference to the canine (or dog) is a testament to between 15,000 and 100,000 years of a symbiotic relationship with humans at their various levels of development;

• Knowledge of and exposure to the canine in human art and literature.

Degree Requirements

A minimum of one hundred twenty (120) credits of coursework as stipulated below: (a) 36 credits of General Education (30 required and 6 elective G.E. credits) (b) 11 credits of required lower division coursework (c) 13 credits of elective lower division coursework (d) 42 credits in upper division “area of concentration” coursework (e) 18 credits of elective

Bachelor of Science Required Core Curriculum

See Course Descriptions for more information.

LIF 110 - Human-Dog Psychology, 2 credits

LIF 120 - Pup-Child Development, 1 credit

LIF 150A&B - Canine Health, 1.5 credits

LIF 160 - Human-Canine Body Mechanism, 1 credit

LIF 200 - History of Emerging Dog-Human Culture, 2 credits

LIF 220 - History of Dog Training, 2 credits

LIF 305 - Modern Dog Breeds, 3 credits

LIF 345 - History of Dog Laws, 3 credits

LIF 350 - Dogs in Art, 3 credits

LIF 355 - Human-Canine Personalities, 3 credits

LIF 390A&B - Motor Skills III, 3 credits

LIF 430 - Human-Dog Language Compared, 3 credits

LIF 440 - Research & the Dog, 3 credits

LIF 445 - The Dog in Modern Literature, 3 credits

LIF 450 - Genetics versus the Environment, 3 credits

LIF 460 - Cynomorphic Perspective, 3 credits

LIF 490A&B - Motor Skills IV, 3 credits

Bachelor of Science Elective Courses (a sampling)

See Course Descriptions for more information.

LIF 310 Breeding Strategies 3 credits

LIF 315 Dog Products in a Changing Climate3 credits

LIF 320 Exploring Dog Business Careers 3 credits

LIF 325 Computer Systems and Databases (G.E.) 2 credits

LIF 375 History of Working Dogs 2 credits

LIF 400 Advanced Sales and Fundraising 3 credits

LIF 415 Advanced Environmental Mgmt 3 credits

LIF 420 Advanced Breeding & Care 3 credits

LIF 455 Ethical Issues of Dog-Human Activities 3 credits

ADE 300 History of Assistance Dogs 3 credits

ADE 310 Social Psychology (G.E.) 3 credits

ADE 315 Health Psychology (G.E.) 3 credits

ADE 405 Ethics of Assistance Dog Programs 3 credits

ADE 420 Advanced Disability Studies 3 credits

Please note: Bachelor students are assigned dogs to train and are required to take the dog home at night and on weekends.