YAS-11803 Animal Science in Society


Credits 3.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Group work4
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. NM Soede
Lecturer(s)prof. dr. HGJ Gremmen
prof. dr. ir. LJ Hellebrekers
MSc IJMM Boumans
prof. dr. ir. B Kemp
dr. I Reimert
dr. ir. J Nijland
dr. ir. B Beerda
dr. ir. NM Soede
dr. I Palm
dr. B Bovenkerk
Examiner(s)prof. dr. ir. B Kemp

Language of instruction:



This course focuses on the role and responsibility of the animal science professional in the interaction between (animal) science, technology and society. Students will be able to reflect critically on ethical and societal issues in animal science, including the relationship between humans and animals. They will acquire knowledge and insights that will allow them to participate in societal dialogues. The aim of this course is to empower the animal science professional so that he/she can adequately contribute to complex societal debates in the field of animal science, using five perspectives (scientific/technological, professional, philosophy of science, ethical, sustainability). These debates occur on the intersection between society and the scientific world. The course therefore deals with  topics such as, objectivity and subjectivity, context dependency, attitude, values and the social and cultural meaning of animals. For a specific case, students in small groups will analyse the role and responsibilities of animal science professionals, using the five perspectives.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- understand the five perspectives needed to analyse dilemmas in animal sciences;
- argue (in writing and orally) about the different perspectives on normative and societall issues in a specific case;
- position oneself as a professional in different debates at the intersection between society and (animal) sciences;
- understand personal values, opinions and attitudes to become (more) aware of the social responsibilities of an animal science professional.


- interactive lectures;
- participation in working groups;
- writing and presenting a group paper; 
- peer review of written assignments.


Grading of written and oral reports. No written exam.


Course guide, handouts and Brightspace.

Compulsory for: BASAnimal SciencesBSc5AF