For students studying animal science, interactive gaming can now help introduce concepts of working with cattle, before they’ve even stepped foot in a pen or pasture.
Nicholas Free, animal science senior at Texas A&M University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences didn’t grow up handling cattle, but he created a simulation that may help others build and expand their cattle-working skills.
Free created an interactive simulation game to focus on the best techniques to handle cattle. It benefits the student, and in turn, benefits the animals as students learn how to keep cattle calm, cool and collected when moving from one place to another, Free said.
During the spring of 2019, Free attended a presentation by Ron Gill, Ph.D., Texas A&M professor and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service livestock specialist, about proper cattle handling methods and techniques. Free said he was surprised at how many questions the audience had about the methods used.