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  • Using Behavior Analysis to Analyze Behavior, Part II. Presented by Dr. Eduardo Fernandez

Using Behavior Analysis to Analyze Behavior, Part II. Presented by Dr. Eduardo Fernandez

  • 11 Oct 2021
  • 1:00 PM
  • 22 Sep 2023
  • 2:00 PM
  • Recorded Webinar


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CEU's: PPAB 1, CCPDT (pending), IAABC (pending), KPA (pending)

Data and Animal Welfare

The use of Behavior Analysis within the animal training and welfare community has become commonplace. While the core principles of Behavior Analysis (i.e., a focus on reinforcement contingencies and functional understandings of behavior) are now frequently used for applied animal behavior purposes, the use of data to measure those applications remains virtually untapped. This creates a conundrum for hopeful Applied Animal Behavior Analysts: An increased demand for applying behavioral principles, but with limited opportunity to bring about their empirical, analytical counterparts.

The session continues the discussion of data-based training by focusing more broadly on how to incorporate measurement into overall welfare assessment. Emphasis will be placed upon Part 3 of the previous talk (i.e., behavioral inventories/ethograms), with broader discussion of (a) how do we define behaviors to assess, and (b) what those behaviors mean for “good” vs. “bad” welfare. The broader implications will be considered, including not just how we measure behavior, but why we should care to measure. Thus, this talk is an attempt to foster discussion on the overall implications of taking data, and what it ultimately means to be an empirical animal trainer.

About The Presenter

Eduardo J Fernandez, PhD

Dr. Eduardo J. Fernandez received his Ph.D. in Psychology (minors in Neuroscience and Animal Behavior) from Indiana University, where he worked with the Indianapolis and Cincinnati Zoo. He received his M.S. in Behavior Analysis from the University of North Texas, where he founded and was President of the Organization for Reinforcement Contingencies with Animals (ORCA).

Most of his past and current work involves behavioral research applied to the welfare and training of zoo and companion animals. He has worked with over 50 species of animals, with a focus on marine animals, carnivores, and primates.

He is currently a Senior Lecturer in the School of Animal and Veterinary Sciences at the University of Adelaide in Australia. His past positions include a Visiting Professorship in the School of Behavior Analysis at the Florida Institute of Technology, an Affiliate Professorship in the Psychology Department at the University of Washington, a Research Fellowship with Woodland Park Zoo, and a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship. While working with UW and Woodland Park Zoo, he started the Behavioral Enrichment Animal Research (BEAR) group, which conducted welfare research with many of the species and exhibits located throughout the zoo.

Eduardo also continues to run the Animal Reinforcement Forum (ARF), a former listserv and now Facebook group, which is dedicated to group discussions on animal training and behavior from a scientific perspective. Many of his past publications, research projects, and presentations can be found on his ResearchGate profile

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