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Minor in Equine Assisted Therapy. A minor in equine assisted therapy allows students to explore a growing field in which mental health professionals utilize horses in a therapy setting. Equine assisted therapies differ from therapeutic riding in that the therapy setting is conducted on the ground rather than in the saddle, and the horse is part of a three-pronged therapy team (mental health specialist, equine specialist, and the horse). The EAT minor takes an interdisciplinary approach to therapy giving students additional tools and experiences to carry into their professional roles upon graduation. The minor combines well with biology and psychology for students interested in veterinary studies or further study in equine assisted therapy or with business for students who wish to pursue equine-related business opportunities.
With the completion of this minor, a student will be able to:
Understand the basic care of horses and the management of their facilities.
Evaluate the effectiveness of various types of psychological interventions.
Create client activities and intervention plans based on the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA)’s model of Equine Assisted Therapy (EAP).
Equine Assisted Therapy (EAT) Course Descriptions
EAT 300: Equine Assisted Therapies.
Goal: To provide an overview of equine assisted psychotherapy (EAP), based primarily on the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) model. To utilize the EAGALA model in hands on labs in order to better understand the model, its benefits and how to set up sessions for client success.
Content: History of horses as therapy animals; use of horses as a tool to improve mental health of individuals, families, and groups; equine specialist side of the EAGALA model; evaluating horses for use in an equine assisted program. Developing and implementing appropriate activities for client and horse, understanding goals and outcomes of equine assisted therapy sessions, setting up for a session, running a session, discussion and processing of an equine assisted therapy session.
Prerequisites: EAT 200 or permission of the instructor; PSY 101.
Credit: 3 hours.
EAT 396: Special Topics in Equine Assisted Therapy.
Goal: To provide an opportunity for exploration of a topic not offered as part of the established curriculum.
Content: Examination of special topics, problems, or issues that seem particularly relevant to student needs and interests.
Taught: Offered occasionally.
Prerequisite: Dependent on topic.
Credit: 3 hours. A student may take a maximum of six to eight semester hours (two courses) of special topics in any one field.
EAT 451: Directed Independent Study.
Goal: To provide the student with the opportunity for independent study, under careful supervision, of significant topics in accounting selected in consultation with the instructor.
Taught: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
Prerequisite: Adequate course work for the topic selected.
Credit: 1–6 hours.
EAT 452/199: Field Study.
Goal: To provide the student with intensive, specialized work experience in the area of equine assisted therapy.
Content: Observation and participation in the work of equine assisted therapy.
Taught: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
Prerequisite: Adequate course work for the placement selected and permission of the faculty advisor; approval of the Director of Career Development.
Credit: 1-12 hours.
EAT 499: Honors Thesis. (Fee required).
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