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Active research in the classroom with Emma Bleach

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3 December 2019

At Harper Adams, we take pride in the research our scholars are producing. This research is fed into the classrooms, giving students the chance to engage with up and coming studies and learning about best practice in the academic sphere. We encourage students to engage in the conversation, going out into their field of interest and trying out theories they have been taught in the real world setting.

Emma Bleach is a senior lecturer in Animal Production, Welfare and Veterinary Sciences with a specific interest in dairy. She spoke about how her active research is informing the way she teaches in the classroom, saying, “My study revolves around oestrus expression in dairy cows, monitoring their reproductive cycle through their activity levels. An increase in activity would signify the heat period of their twenty-one day cycle.

“This tracking of data is something that informs my teaching of dairy production where I teach undergraduates about factors that influence fertility and the science of reproductive hormones. By keeping research current, we can discuss how this is a problem within farming and remind farmers and researchers that there is a correlation between expression and detection.”

From this, research projects at both undergraduate and Masters level have been undertaken, adding student voices into the field of research that continues to expand. Such interest has opened a forum about Johne's disease in cattle, as well as the effect of body condition score for the health and welfare of dairy cows.

By using research that informs the skills and knowledge gained by our students, we are teaching the best content available and encouraging an open forum of discussion between staff and students. In doing so, we hope that students will be inspired to go onto their own research projects and be part of the ever evolving field of academia.

If you are interested in the research undertaken by Emma, you can hear her speak at Moredun Sheep and Cattle Health and Welfare Day, taking place on January 9th 2020. You can find out more and register for the event here.

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