WAEC Animal Husbandry (ALT A) Syllabus 2020
This is a comprehensive syllabus on Animal Husbandry for the 2020 West African Examination (WAEC)
The syllabus has been structured to assess candidates’ basic knowledge and skills in the production, processing, storage, packaging and marketing of farm animals and their products. It is also intended to assess the capability of the candidates to pursue further training at the tertiary
AIMS OF THE SYLLABUS
The syllabus will therefore seek to assess candidates’ knowledge and skills in
(1) basic animal production practices such as feeding, housing, pest and disease control;
(2) the efficient and effective management of animal enterprises;
(3) the application of environmentally friendly practices to sustain production;
(4) the identification of basic problems hindering the improvement of the Animal Industry;
(5) the efficient processing, preservation, packaging, storage and marketing of animals and their products.
Schools offering Animal Husbandry are expected to raise at least one species of farm animals from each of the following groups:
(a) Monogastrics e.g. poultry, pigs, rabbits.
(b) Ruminants e.g. goats, sheep, cattle.
(b) Non-traditional farm animals e.g. grasscutters,snails
It is recommended that the schools should have agriculture laboratories where specimens, equipment and chemicals would be kept.
It is also recommended that candidates keep practical notebooks which should contain records of activities undertaken and observations made on the school farm and on field trips and of specimens collected.
For candidates in Ghana only
There will be three papers, Papers 1, 2 and 3, all of which must be taken. Papers 1 and 2 will be a composite paper to be taken at one sitting.
PAPER 1: Will consist of fifty multiple choice objective questions all of which must be
answered within 1 hour for 50 marks.
PAPER 2: Will consist of six essay-type questions. Candidates will be required to
answer four questions within 2 hours for 80 marks.
PAPER 3: Will be a practical paper for school candidates or a test of practical paper for
private candidates. The paper will consist of four questions all of which must
be answered within 2 hours for 60 marks.
Meaning, scope and importance of animal husbandry
Problems in animal production
3.Quality and Safety standard of animal food products
Classification of farm animals
ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY OF FARM ANIMALS
Meaning of the terms:
anatomy, physiology and the external orientation of farm animals
(a) Comparative anatomy of digestive system of farm animals
(b) Digestion and Absorption processes in the various classes of farm animals
Central Nervous System
(a) Parts of the Central Nervous System (CNS) and Autonomic Nervous System (ANS)
(b) Functions of the ANS
(c) Endocrine System
(i) Endocrine glands and their functions
(ii) Hormones and their functions
Integumentary, skeletal and muscular systems
(a) Anatomy of the reproductive system of poultry and livestock
(b) Functions of organs and parts of the reproductive system
(c) Reproductive processes
(a) Structure and functions
(b) Heart and Pulse rate
(a) Meaning and Importance of Respiration
(b) Structure and Functions of the Respiratory System
(a) Meaning and Importance of the Excretion
(b) Structure and Functions of the Excretory System
(c) Excretory Products
1. Introduction to Animal Nutrition
(a) Meaning and Importance
(b) Modes of feeding
Feedstuffs and Feed Supplements
(a) Types, composition and functions of the feed nutrients
(b) Classification of feedstuffs
(c) Food tests
(d) Producers and suppliers of feedstuffs and supplements
Formulation and Preparation of Animal Feeds
(a) Common terms used in feed formulation
(b) Factors considered in the formulation of ration
(c) Steps in the formulation of ration
1. Introduction to range
pasture and range
(b) Types of pasture
and their features
(c) Importance of
pastures and forage
crops in animal
(d) Factors that affect the
different types of
(e) Major forage crops
(f) Poisonous plants in
(a) Qualities of good
pasture and forage
(b) Establishment of
(c) Improving natural
(d) Management of
(e) Harvesting of forage
(b) Preparation of hay
(c) Utilization of crop
residue in feeding
Rabbit and Grasscutter
(a) Common breeds
(b) Importance of
(d) Processing and
(a) Meaning and
(b) External features of
(c) Types of species
(d) Site selection
(e) Management Practices
(f) Processing and marketing of snails
enterprises in animal
Classification of farm
Physiology of Farm
Main Pests and
Parasites of farm animals
Diseases of farm
10 Animal Products
Range and Pasture
Animal Housing and
Knowledge of the meaning (rearing of farm animals), scope (nutrition, health, etc.) and importance (source of food, employment, income, etc) of farm animals are required.
Knowledge and understanding of the problems in animal production in West Africa and possible solutions to the problems will be assessed.
Description of the quality and safety standards of animal food products. Practices for maintaining standards, effect of consuming poor animal products and roles of agencies involved in the animal food products safety and quality will be assessed.
Classification based on;
(a) Ruminants e.g. sheep, goat, cattle
(b) Non-ruminants (monogastrics) eg.
(c) Non-ruminant herbivores e.g.
rabbits, grasscutter, guinea pigs.
2. Concept of traditional
(cattle, sheep, goat) and
(rabbit, grasscutter, snails).
Understanding of the terms anatomy and physiology; and knowledge of parts and positions of the various external parts (orientation) of farm animals e.g. the head of the cow is anterior to the hind limb or udder; will be assessed.
The main features of the digestive systems of ruminants, non-ruminant herbivores and monogastrics and the differences in structure and functions will be assessed.
Candidates’ understanding of digestion processes in the various classes of farm animals, the role of specific enzymes in the digestion of specific nutrients e.g. carbohydrates, proteins, fats and oils in farm animals, and the structures and processes involved in absorption of nutrients will be assessed.
Ability to identify the parts of the CNS and ANS and describe the mode of action of the CNS and ANS is required.
Knowledge of the functions of the ANS is required. The ability to explain how nerve impulses are transmitted and how homeostasis is ensured will also be assessed.
Knowledge of what endocrine glands are, their location in the body and functions will be assessed.
Hormones, their functions and mode of action, and understanding of the need to administer synthetic hormones will be assessed
The structure and functions of the integumentary (skin), skeletal and muscular systems will be assessed.
Understanding of reproductive terms e.g. puberty, oestrous cycle, oestrus/anoestrus, ovulation, fertilization, libido, etc will be assessed.
Knowledge of the main features of the reproductive system of poultry and livestock will be assessed.
Knowledge of equipment employed in the measurement of temperature, humidity, respiration rate, heart beat, etc. and the ability to use the equipment and interpretation of generated data are required
Indirect and direct effects of climate on farm animals (e.g. disease prevalence, feed quality and quantity, heat stress, increased abortion) will be assessed.
Understanding of the terms thermo-neutral zone and optimum temperature and their relation to animal productivity will be assessed.
Ways of modifying the environment e.g. provision of appropriate housing, shading, cooling; and management (e.g. better feeding, time of grazing, etc.) on improved animal productivity will be assessed. Strategies to minimize stress e.g. design and lay-out of houses, provision of cool water, modified feeds, proper timing of drug administration will also be assessed.
Candidates will be assessed on their understanding of the term poultry and knowledge of the characteristics of poultry e.g. possession of beaks, wings, feathers.
Knowledge of the different types of poultry e.g. chicken, turkey, ducks, Guinea fowls and ostriches will be assessed.
Knowledge of the breeds of the various types of poultry:
Chicken e.g Rhode Island Red, Plymouth Rock;
Guinea fowl e.g.Grey, Red-wattled (Pearl variety);
Turkey e.g. Broad Breasted Bronze:
Ducks e.g. Muscovy, Khaki Campbell;
Ostriches e.g. Blue Neck, Red Neck will be assessed.
The importance of the production of the various types of poultry will be assessed.
The various systems of poultry keeping and the advantages and disadvantages of the various production systems: extensive, intensive, semi-intensive systems will be required.
Understanding of terms such as fertile egg, hatchability, incubation and broodiness will be assessed.
Ability to describe and differentiate between natural and artificial incubation, the advantages and disadvantages of each method of incubation will be assessed.
Knowledge of the characteristics of eggs suitable for hatching and the ability to select them for hatching are required.
Knowledge of the incubation period of the types of poultry and the conditions necessary for hatching of eggs will be assessed.
Ability to describe the process of incubation and knowledge of hatchery practices that would ensure production of healthy chicks e.g. fumigation, temperature will be assessed.
Understanding of the process of candling of eggs is required.
Techniques and precautions for the marketing of day-old chicks will be assessed.
Management practices i.e. housing, breeding, brooding, feeding, sanitation, pest and disease control, identification, record keeping, etc. will be assessed.
Knowledge and understanding of the activities involved in the processing and marketing of poultry i.e. slaughtering and Processing, Quality Control, Packaging, Preservation and Storage, Marketing Outlets, transportation and advertisement will be assessed.
The prospects for keeping the various types of poultry, consumer preferences, market availability, cost etc will be assessed.
Candidates will be assessed on their knowledge of
(i) Types of pig. i.e. bacon, lard and pork types
(ii) Breeds of pig e.g., Yorkshire, Ashanti
Black, Large White, Landrace, and
(iii) The characteristics of the breeds of
The importance of pig production to the economy i.e. source of employment, income, insulin used in pharmaceutical industries etc will be assessed.
Candidates’ understanding of and ability to describe the various management systems of pig production i.e. Intensive, Semi-intensive and Extensive systems will be assessed.
The advantages and disadvantages of each of the management systems will also be assessed.
The various management practices used in pig production e.g. breeding, housing amd feeding will be assessed.
Knowledge and techniques of slaughtering, processing and marketing practices, e.g. bacon making, quality control, packaging, storage, identification of marketing outlets, advertisements etc.
Techniques of slaughtering and processing of carcass, maintenance of safety standards, packaging and sale of meat products will be assessed.
The negative effects of poor management of beef cattle on the environment, as well as problems of feed and water shortages, cattle theft ,pestsetc and their solutions will be assessed.
Examples of pure and cross bred dairy breeds in tropical and temperate regions; and the distinguishing features of dairy cow will be assessed.
Knowledge of the composition and nutritional value of fresh milk will be assessed.
Knowledge of sources of milk such as goats, sheep, buffaloes, camels and cattle and the importance of milk from dairy cattle including food, income,employment, trade etc. will be assessed.
The requirements, using a value chain approach, for producing milk from dairy cattle e.g. market demand for milk and dairy products, inputs for producing wholesome /healthy milk etc. Selecting suitable breeds and management systems will be assessed.
Knowledge of symptoms and methods of controlling mastitis, tuberculosis and ketosis is required.
Equipment and tools required for milking, milk handling and processing; pasteurization of milk; examples of products e.g. yoghurt, cottage cheese, tinned milk, powdered milk will be assessed.
(i) Knowledge of consequences of consuming contaminated milk will be assessed.
(ii) Knowledge in maintaining quality and safety standards in milk processing and marketing will be assessed. Knowledge of packaging,storage and marketing practices will also be assessed.
Effects of warm climate on dairy animals and milk production; and the solutions to the problems will be assessed.
Candidates will be assessed on their understanding of the basic terms in pasture and range management e.g. pasture, pasture rotation, stocking rate, range, forage crops
Types of pasture (natural/range and artificial/cultivated) and their features will be assessed.
The role of forage and pasture crops in animal production will be assessed.
The factors that affect the productivity of different types of pasture eg. rainfall, soil fertility, temperature, weeds, etc. is required
Knowledge of the common and scientific names of the major forage crops and their classification are required.
Knowledge of poisonous plants in pasture e.g. Lantana camara, Crotalaria rotundusis required.
Knowledge of qualitites of good pasture and forage species e.g. high productivity,
palatability and fast growth is required.
Cultural practices associated with pasture establishment e.g. site selection, land preparation, methods of propagation of pasture, their merits and demerits, i.e. seeding, vegetative means will be assessed.
Understanding of the need to improve natural pastures and the techniques for improving natural pastures will be required.
Skills in managing cultivated pastures e.g. control of fire, proper stocking rate, disease prevention and control will be assessed.
Knowledge of tools/equipment for harvesting forage crops and yield determination will be assessed.
Forage conservation and its importance; the various forms of conserved forage e.g. hay and silage; and differences between hay and silage based on the physical,chemical and nutritive properties will be assessed
The processes and precautions in the preparation of hay and silage e.g. cutting herbage at the right time, proper compacting, use of additives,etc will be assessed.
The different types of crop residue, the merits and demerits of using
residue for feeding ruminants is required.
Knowledge of the common breeds of rabbits and grasscutter will be assessed.
Importance of producing the animals e.g. source of meat, pelt, income, will be assessed.
Production and management practices i.e. housing, feeding, sanitation, breeding, disease and pest control, record keeping will be assessed.
Activities involved in the processing and marketing of rabbits and grascutter will be assessed.
Meaning and importance of snail farming are required
Ability to identify pests of stored feed and feedstuffs; their effects and control measures will be assessed.
Ability to identify the main pests and parasites of farm animals ( ectoparasites and endoparasites); their effects and control will be assessed.
Ability to draw and label the life cycles of tapeworm and roundworm is required.
Ability to identify the main diseases of farm animals, and causal agents is required.
Simple preventive and control measures such as drenching, dipping, spraying, vaccination; and the various equipment and tools used in their control are also required.
Ability to identify the tools and equipment used in artificial insemination and their uses will be assessed.
Ability to identify and use equipment to determine parameters such as temperature, relative humidity, respiration rate and heart beat; and interpret data will be assessed.
Ability to identify tools and equipment used for management practices such as housing, breeding, brooding, feeding, identification, debeaking, castration,dehorning, and candling; and their maintenance will be assessed.
Ability to identify, and knowledge of the uses of animal products and by-products such as milk, skin, blood meal and feathers will be assessed.
Ability to identify forage crops e.g. Panicum maximum; Poisonous plants e.g. Lantana camara; and conserved forage e.g.hay and silage is required
Ability to identify tools and equipment used in the cultivation and managment of pastures and conservation of forage is also required.
Ability to identify suitable material to use in constructing animal houses and structures e.g. cement, bamboo, wire mesh and wood is required.
Ability to identify appropriate structures for various farm animals e.g. hutches for rabbits, open -sided houses for pigs.