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Validation of a novel method of judgement bias testing in rats

This animal science honours project aims to validate a shortened method of judgement bias testing in rats.


We have performed the cognitive bias task multiple times in our laboratory (Barker et al 2016, 2017) and feel confident in the ability for the test to work. However, training times are long and labour intensive - around 60 days.

A recently published paper (Brydges and Hall 2017) describes a shortened method of training in this task using the same apparatus (learning of the task took 4 days). This study will validate this new method of training through administration of a pro- and anti-depressant drug.

Key methodology: Judgement bias behavioural testing

This project is part of a larger grant-funded project examining miRNA’s as a method of welfare assessment.

Alexandra Whittaker


Dr Alexandra Whittaker

Co-supervisorDr Tim Barker | Ms Laura Latimer-Marsh

Research area: Animal welfare, animal and veterinary bioscience, behavioural neuroscience

Recommended honours enrolment: Honours in Animal Science

Tagged in Honours projects - Animal science, Honours projects - Alexandra Whittaker, Honours projects - Tim Barker, Honours projects - Laura Latimer-Marsh, Honours in Animal Science subtheme - Animal and veterinary bioscience, Honours in Animal Science subtheme - Animal behaviour