|Comparative psychology is the branch of psychology that focuses on the study and analysis of animal behavior. Charles Darwin and George Romanes were the first modern day comparative psychologists. Their initial work and findings in comparative psychology have grown into a multidisciplinary subject. Today, psychologists, biologists, ecologists, anthropologists, geneticists and other professionals are involved in the study of animal behavior and comparative psychology.|
As the name denotes, comparative psychology frequently uses the comparative method to study animal behavior. Employing the comparative method, psychologists and scientists compare the similarities and differences amoung species in order to better understand evolutionary relationships. This same method is also utilized to compare modern animal species to ancient species.
While career opportunities in comparative psychology are not as numerous as in other psychology fields, there are still many career options. Many comparative psychologists teach or perform independant research at colleges and universities, in biology, zoology, or psychology departments. And an increasing number of comparative psychologists working with universities are being hired to apply behavioral knowledge to the production, management, care and conservation of domestic animals. Comparative psychologists can also be found working with government and private research institutions, zoos and aquariums, conservation groups and museums.
While a few jobs only require a Bachelor of Art (B.A.) or Bachelor's of Science (B.S.) most careers in comparative psychology and/or animal behavior require a graduate degree, sometimes a master's degree, but usually a PhD.
The colleges and universities below offer undergraduate and graduate degree programs in comparative psychology and animal behavior.
|University of Mary Hardin-Baylor |
|Western Washington University |