Pre-conference Events

Pre-Conference Events & Workshops


ABS Outreach Fair: Adventures in Animal Behavior

Monday, June 12th, 9:30 am - 12:30 pm, UTSC Campus Environmental Science & Chemistry Building Atrium
Organizers: Emilie Snell-Rood, Ellen J. Mahurin and Maydianne C.B. Andrade

ABS members will present a special program for elementary school students, "Adventures in Animal Behavior." on Monday June 12, 9:30-12:30 on the University of Toronto, Scarborough campus. Faculty members and graduate students representing over a dozen animal behavior research laboratories from across the US, Canada, South America and Australia will offer multiple activities highlighting current research questions, as well as the tools and techniques used in field research. Participants will have a chance to fly "bat airplanes," check out bird parasites under a microscope, and listen to hyena calls.


Teaching Workshop: Re-Invigorating Your Classroom with Module-Based Teaching 

Monday, June 12th, 12:30pm-5:00pm
No registration fee, Lunch and snacks included
Organizers: Laura Sirot and Heather Zimbler-DeLorenzo

The goals of this half-day workshop are to demonstrate a module-based approach for Animal Behavior courses and to develop the resources for new modules with the assistance of the attendees. A module-based approach to teaching Animal Behavior involves organizing courses or sections of courses around fundamental conceptual issues taught through a series of units focused on fascinating topics or case studies in Animal Behavior. Each module includes short “Just-In-Time” lectures, deep reading of primary literature using the C.R.E.A.T.E. method (, opportunities for student-developed research projects, and multiple forms of assessment. As examples, topics used by practitioners of this method include: How do animals with the same genotype manifest different phenotypes? and The controversial evolution of monogamy. The workshop will begin with a brief demonstration of the module-based approach followed by a three-hour boot-camp style work session in which small groups complete a series of exercises leading to a final product--a module with all of the resources needed to teach it. Modules will then be made publicly available. The modules can be adapted to be appropriate for courses taught at the level of 10th grade (age of students: 15-16 years) and above. Questions can be addressed to Laura Sirot ( or Heather Zimbler-DeLorenzo (


Conservation Behavior Workshop: Merging Science and Application 

June 12th, 2017, 10:30am-5:00pm
Organizers: Preston Foerder and Cassandra Nuñez

There is often a lack of communication between the fields of conservation and animal behavior. To bridge this gap, we will be conducting a one‐day workshop aimed at applying behavioral theory and research to solving real‐world conservation problems. The workshop will provide a unique and valuable opportunity for the practitioners to learn about the challenges and rewards of applying behavioral biology in the field. Ideally this two‐way interaction will inspire future research and networking to aid in solving the increasingly complex problems of real‐world conservation. Three conservation problems for which a behavioral approach is likely to facilitate solutions will be presented by wildlife managers at the beginning of the day. We will then break out into focus groups and discuss potential solutions. At the end of the day we will regroup, report on the potential solutions and identify commonalities that may be applicable more broadly to other systems. New collaborations between wildlife managers and animal behaviorists are expected to emerge from this workshop.

Workshop Participants:

Martin-Hugues St-Laurent
Université du Québec à Rimouski / Groupe de Recherche BORÉAS
Hiker disturbance and the effects to predator-prey relationships

Tara Cornelisse
Canisius College
Animal Behavior, Ecology, and Conservation
Tiger beetles in riparian habitats OR pollinator conservation (Monarchs as a case study)

Rob Rempel
Centre for Northern Forest Ecosystem Research
Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
The response of caribou and wolves to roads

Pre-registration required for this workshop. $25 for regular ABS registrants, $15 for student registrants, and free for Developing Nations registrants. Lunch and snacks will be provided.


Public Affairs Committee Workshop: Writing Compelling Grant Proposals: Science Education and Broader Impacts

June 15th, 4:00pm-5:30pm
Organizers: Public Affairs Committee

Scientific research, in addition to expanding our understanding of the natural world, is increasingly expected to achieve broader societal outcomes. In addition, there are funding streams specifically targeted to improving science literacy and cultivating future generations of scientists. Workshop participants will discuss the criteria used to evaluate scientific research and science education grant proposals. They will begin to develop broader impacts strategies by identifying natural extensions of their own research and likely campus, community, and national outreach partners.

Presented by Dr. Kaci (Katerina) Thompson, Director, Undergraduate Research and Internship Programs, Associate Director, BioFIRE, College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences, University of Maryland


Diversity & Latin American Affairs Committee Workshop: Broadening our Impacts; establishing and nurturing research partnerships with U.S. minority-serving and Latin American institutions

June 14, 4pm-6pm
Organizers: Diversity Committee and Latin Affairs Committee

This panel-style workshop will feature faculty from U.S. Minority-serving Institutions, including Tribal Colleges and Universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, and Historically Black Colleges, along with faculty from Latin American Universities, discussing approaches to develop sustainable and productive research collaborations. The focus of the workshop is to emphasize the distinctive benefits and challenges of working at and partnering with MSI’s, highlight institutional heterogeneity, and provide participants with networking opportunities.