Canisius College offers an online Master’s Degree in Anthrozoology, the discipline that focuses on humanity’s relationship with other species. Major emphasis is given to an examination of science-based knowledge about our fellow living beings, cultural differences, the extraordinary relationships between people and companion animals, interactions with and attitudes toward wildlife, the roles of zoos and sanctuaries, policies and laws that permit instrumental and industrialized uses of nonhuman animals, and many related environmental and conservation issues.
Our program embraces the value of human-nonhuman interactions by focusing on the many benefits that accrue to humans by including other animals in their lives, as well as benefits and protections provided to nonhumans by humans. As an interdisciplinary field of study, Anthrozoology promotes critical thinking skills anchored in natural science and social science investigations, philosophical considerations, religious and cross-cultural perspectives, ethical and humane education insights, and humanities-based work on topics such as animals in the arts. Students are also encouraged regularly to examine the intersection between animal protection and environmental protection and the special relationship that exists between these two worldwide movements. Students can tailor their coursework, internships and research projects so that their own topics of interest can be explored in depth.
This program is conducted in a “modified online” format. The generic formula is one in which our students and faculty initially meet together on the Canisius College campus for an intensive four-day sequence of course orientations, planning sessions, classroom meetings, and special seminars by invited speakers. After that, the rest of the coursework is conducted in a vibrant online learning community maintained throughout the semester. In other words, except for a single, “extended-weekend” visit to the campus each semester, this program can be completed online from any geographic location. It is hoped that this formula will allow students to participate with minimal disruption to their present employment and/or living conditions.