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Bears, Tigers, Hedgehogs—OH MY!

Pictured:  Ricky Eredia with a lesser Madagascar hedgehog tenrec


Drew Foster, UAT adjunct instructor, enjoys bringing live animals into the classroom. In classes such as Conservation & Zoos and Animal Diversity, the use of hands-on, live animal demonstrations is the best way to foster appreciation for animals.


The lesser Madagascar tenrecs, also known as lesser hedgehog tenrecs (pictured), are small nocturnal animals covered in spines. Since their eyesight is poor, they have super sensitive whiskers and well-developed senses of hearing and smell. These little animals grow to between 5.5 and 7 inches in length and weigh 4 to 7 ounces.


Found in southern Madagascar, tenrecs live in coastal regions, dry forests and semi-desert areas. Here, when seeking shelter, they look for cavities in trees to make dens. When living in the wild, these creatures forage through fallen trees for invertebrates and small animals. They can live for 8 to 10 years in the wild, and about 14 years in human care.


In addition to engrossing lectures, bringing animals into the classroom gets students excited and allows them to make real connections with the animals they are learning about. In-class animal demonstrations supplement the lectures and foster greater understanding of wildlife!


Learn more about UAT’s learning model.


Live animals are hard to pass up in lecture, but Professor Foster isn’t the only one offering cool courses. Students are stoked for Space Expedition—a course where students create a stratospheric satellite program, developed by UAT and operated by students. In industry Innovations, students explore methods used to innovate while exploring a new proprietary framework. Students will test the framework in real time as they complete class assignments and projects.


Another thriller is Comic Art History. The class is a whirlwind tour through the art of comics, how visual stories are told and the literary elements of comics. Students start by learning the parts of a comic and the magic of storytelling. Then students explore the earliest visual narratives (from the Bayeux tapestry to Trajan’s Column) to see what these ancient stories have in common with contemporary comics. From there, students will see the modern comic evolve from broadsheets to early newspaper comics and eventually to the comic books we know and love today.


What class are you looking forward to?


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