For students interested in animal behavior careers, the Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a concentration in Animal Behavior and Training allows the opportunity to pursue specialized knowledge and skills in animal learning and training. The psychology courses work in tandem with classes in biological sciences and behavior analysis, emphasizing biological bases of behavior, species typical learning, as well as standard principles of learning and training that cut across species lines. At the Animal Cognitive Research Center, we focus on studying nonhuman animals to better understand the evolutionary origins of behavior and cognition. The culmination of the program is an internship within a facility or institution that emphasizes animal training, husbandry, rehabilitation, or education of the public in these areas. Previous graduates have earned internships at nationally and internationally known facilities such as Brevard Zoo, Dolphin Quest-Bermuda, Epcot – Living Seas, Mote Marine Laboratory, Oregon Coast Aquarium, Sea Life Park - Hawaii, Sea World - Orlando, Shedd Aquarium, Theater of the Sea, US Navy Marine Mammal Program – San Diego, Virginia Marine Science Museum. All of these experiences contribute to readiness to begin animal behavior careers.
Courses within the Animal Behavior and Training concentration include: Learning and Motivation, Introduction to Behavior Analysis, Applied Behavior Analysis, Animal Learning and Behavior, Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy, and Biology of Marine Mammals. To further prepare students in this area, Florida Tech provides a series of classes dedicated to internship preparation and completion. Many Florida Tech students have had a great experience volunteering, and completing preinternship and internship at the Brevard Zoo. In this experience they were able to interact with the animals and gain real world experience. The animal behavior program at Florida Tech is growing; additional animal behavior courses are expected to be introduced. Florida Tech provides the skills and opportunities necessary to pursue animal behavior careers.