Course Guide Information | Learning Objectives | Teaching Method | Students Roles | Expectations & Grades
Course Guide Information:
||Dairy Cattle Husbandry Practicum
|Course Guide listing:
||Dy Sci 302
||Dy Sci / An Sci 101 or cons of instructor
||Thursdays, 2:25 pm to 5:25 pm
||201 Dairy Cattle Center
||Michel Wattiaux Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
||Claudia Arndt Email: email@example.com|
Marina Danes Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Expected Learning Outcomes:
The Dairy Cattle Husbandry Practicum has three main learning outcomes. First, students will gain experience in hands-on, cow-side practices related to health and management of dairy cattle. Second, students will learn how to assess the transition period of a dairy cow by collecting, summarizing, analyzing and graphing cow performance data (changes in body weight, body condition score, dry matter intake, milk production, etc.) using an excel spreadsheet. Thirds, students will improve their written communication skills by writing reports to present their findings.
The course has been designed as a hands-on laboratory
to provide students with an opportunity:
- to work with large animals;
- to learn basic aspects of animal health (physical exam, injection, new born care, etc.);
- to learn industry concerns and recommended solutions from veterinarians, and specialists in animal nutrition, reproduction and health;
- to learn scientist and veterinarians approaches the evaluation of dairy cow transition by collecting, summarizing and analyzing cow performance data (body weigh, dry matter intake, milk production, body condition score, etc.);
- to learn how to use excel spreadsheet to summarize and graph cow performance data;
- to learn how to write a report following the scientific method in the field of animal sciences.
Emphasis will be placed on animal handling and management practices including the use of diagnostic tools for early detection of disorders and disease prevention techniques in newborn calves, heifers, dry cows and lactating cows.
Topics will be covered in relation to:
- Preventing health-related problems (e.g., colostrum handling and feeding);
- Detecting health-related problems (e.g. nutritional disorders vs. infections);
- Handling sick animals (e.g., animal handling and prevention of the spread of diseases);
- Maintaining reproductive productivity (e.g., heat detection, reproductive hormonal treatments)
- Administering simple health-related procedures (e.g., injections).
The teaching method used in this class emphasizes ACTIVE participation of students before, during and after the weekly labs. The weekly labs includes pre-assigned course material. The "in-class" time includes a variety of learning activities
(Mini-lectures, quizzes, small and large group discussions, and hands-on practicum.) PowerPoint presentations will be used sparingly only to clarify key concepts as needed. Most of the material has been posted on the course Schedule & Material page
. Reference material include also a Required CD
on management of the cow during the transition period. Please contact your TAs for more details. The work you are expected to complete outside of the weekly labs (wrapping the previous lab and preparing for the next) will be part of your class participation grade, which is an important part of the final grade.
Interaction with guest instructors:
Almost every week of the semester, a different guest instructor will come to help teach, provide guidance on husbandry, share with you current "industry" recommendations, and address your concerns.
Cow monitoring project:
Typically, you and a partner will be assign a cow at the beginning of the semester. At the beginning of the semester the cow will be approximately two to three weeks from anticipated calving date. This cow will be "yours" to monitor during the semester. Some of the data will be collected by barn personnel (feed intake), some of the data will be available through electronic records (milk production) and some of the data will be collected by you (health). THis project include the submission of a partial and and final report.
My role as an instructor:
I hope this class will motivate you to expand your interest in dairy cattle health, nutrition and issues related to the transition period. As course organizer and instructor, my goal is to help you learn (and as a result help you get good grades). I hope that the variety of instruction strategies used for the course will help you acquire knowledge that makes sense to you. My roles can be summarized as follows:
- To define the course topics and work with guests to plan impactful labs every week
- To provide you with the information and resources you need to learn
- To communicate with you in a way that facilitates your learning
- To set expectations and evaluate your progress toward the expected learning outcomes.
Good courses include good communication. Don't be afraid to email the course instructor or TAs, if you have any concerns.
Your role as a student:
Your role is to take an ACTIVE approach in developing your cow-side practice skills and your understanding of transition cow management. For making sense of the course material, you have to continually question yourself, your teammates, your classmates and your instructors. Active participation in class means listening, thinking, taking notes and asking questions. There are (almost) no "stupid questions" in this class. As long as you have a genuine interest in learning the subject mater, all questions will be valid questions! The ways you can be "proactive" and do well in this class include:
- Allocate enough time to prepare for each lab and complete your report workbook after each lab. Think of the reading and homework assignments as a way of helping yourself find out what you know, what you don’t understand, and then what you have learned;
- Work with your team partner for the cow monitoring project. It's a lot of work. However working with your partner will make it a lot easier. Team grade will be adjusted for your contribution to the team effort.
Here is what you are expected to do during the
Between weekly labs:
During Weekly labs:
- "Wrap-up" the previous lab by completing the workbook after each lab;
- Prepare for the next lab by reviewing all pre-assigned material for the subsequent lab and complete a blog entry.
- Go the the barn to carry out observations, collect data, and practice your skills at completing a cow physical exam of your cow and measurements. Keep up with your data collection spreadsheet where you will be recording health events and other data. There are not substitute to going to the barn to find out how your cow is doing. Don't be afraid to visit with Valerie Schutzkus, the barn personnel, and the herd veterinarian, especially around calving time and when/if your cows is getting sick. Doing this will help you tremendously to write your progress and final report.
- Make the best of having the guest instructors with us: ask questions and take notes to complete your workbook;
- During the hands-on or computer lab parts, work as a team member (e.g.,help each other);
- Be a critical thinker. Ask yourself not only "how" to do a procedure correctly but also "why" do we do it that way?
Course Expectations and Grades:
- Weekly lab assignments (class participation grade)
- Wrap-up the completed lab by updating your 302-Lab-Report-Workbook.doc and uploading it in the course drop box by Wednesday 11:00 PM. This portion of the grade will be based on your answers to lab-related questions and the accuracy, clarity and thoughtfulness of the writing you will do after a lab to help yourself capture what it is that the lab helped you learn (300-500 words).
- View or read pre-assigned material as directed by the lab itinerary found under Course Material & Schedule page. The pre-assigned material may include web posted material or a presentation of the transition dairy cow management CD-ROM.
To perform a cow physical exam that demonstrates that you know how to diagnose common disorders and diseases of dairy cattle.
To submit a progress report that summarizes the data that you will have collected on your cow up to this point and compares your cow performance relative to the other cows in the class. For more details, see the Cow Project Page .
To submit a final written report that describes the overall health status and production performance of your cow relative to the other cows in the class through their transition period.
To perform cow-side or diagnostic tests that will demonstrate that you know the proper technique to perform certain diagnostic tests and how to interpret the results. Examples of test include: cow locomotion score, penn state shaker box, reproductive records from Dairy Comp 305, aseptic milk sampling procedure, California mastitis test and the "SNAP" test.
To take a written final exam of mini-essay questions (and multiple choices) drawn from your weekly questions and answers.
How will the grade be assigned?
- After viewing and reading the required material, submit a blog entry by Wednesday 11:00 PM. Bogs are on the Material & Schedule page.
A criterion-referenced grading system will be used in this class. In other words, grades will not be curved and therefore you do not need to worry about your standing relative to others in this course. In fact, working with others may be to your advantage
. For this class, there is 200 pts to be assigned as listed in the Table below. Final course letter grade will be assigned according to the following scale (which may vary slightly depending on specific circumstances)
: A = 92-100 | AB = 85-91 | B= 75-84 | BC = 70-74 | C = 65-69 | D = 55-64 | F = 54 or less.
The Grade Book
will be updated periodically throughout the semester.
||Individual — Class participation — Before lab blog1
||Wednesdays 11:00 PM
||Individual — Class participation — Lab book Report1
||Individual — Cow Physical Exam Practicum
||Team — Cow progress report — written
||04/13 11:00 PM
||Individual — Final — written
||Individual — Final — oral/hands-on
||Team — Cow Final Report — written
||Friday 05/11 (5:00 PM)
1As the semester includes 12 weekly assignments, at least the one lowest weekly score will be dropped in calculating the final grade.