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AZA offers many conferences and professional development courses. Or search for offerings throughout the greater zoo and aquarium community, such as animal program events and workshops.

AZA members, including accredited, certified related, commercial, and conservation partner members, are eligible to submit relevant events to be added to the calendar using this form

Environmental Enrichment in Zoos and Aquariums

03/10/2018 - 03/15/2018

Disney's Animal Kingdom, Orlando, FL map

Ashley Wynne-James, PD & Education Coordinator


Course Description:

The purpose of this course is to provide zoo and aquarium staff involved in the daily care of animals with a background and skills necessary to enrich animal environments and to continue to advance enrichment in zoos and aquariums.  This 5-day course will include classroom time that provides a historical perspective of environmental enrichment as well as an overview of enrichment concepts, focusing on aspects of the SPIDER framework.  Classroom time will also focus on communication skills, using resources wisely, safety, behavioral observation skills, problem solving techniques and other programmatic considerations. In addition to classroom time, selected enrichment concepts and skills will be taught during group activities and individual hands on skill development opportunities.  Students will have also have hands-on experience using the SPIDER framework in developing, presenting and evaluating an enrichment initiative to animals housed at the zoo.

Is This Course for You?

The typical students for this course are those involved in the daily care of animals.  Keepers and aquarists will find this course particularly useful, as the course provides an understanding of and practice with the skills necessary for animal care staff to create and maintain successful enrichment programs.

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