Dr. Binfet’s Research

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As a faculty member in Education at the University of British Columbia, Okanagan, Dr. Binfet investigates psychological and educational dimensions of students’ Social and Emotional Competence. His two principal thematic areas of research are: (1) Understanding students’ perceptions of kindness; and (2) Examining the effects of Animal-Assisted Therapy (A.A.T.) on the social and emotional well-being of first-year university students.

En tant que membre de la faculté d’Education de l’Université de Colombie Britannique, du campus Okanagan (UBCO), le Dr. Binfet travaille sur les dimensions psychologiques et pédagogiques des Compétences Sociales et Emotionnelles de l’étudiant. Ses deux principales thématiques de recherche sont: (1) comprendre comment les étudiants perçoivent la gentillesse, et (2) analyser les effets de la zoothérapie sur le bien-être social et émotionnel des étudiants de première année.



Dr. Binfet is the director of a program called “Building Academic Retention through K9s” (B.A.R.K.) and has 45 certified therapy dogs working under his direction. Dr. Binfet typically runs one A.A.T. study each year in which he organizes interventions for homesick first-year students that sees students grouped within small clusters and paired with certified therapy dogs.
Students are assigned to either treatment or wait-list control groups. Following is some of the research undertaken in the B.A.R.K. Lab.

Le Dr. Binfet est directeur du programme zoothérapeutique “Building Academic Retention through K9s” (B.A.R.K.) où un total de 45 chiens certifiés travaillent sous sa direction. Le Dr. Binfet conduit une étude zoothérapeutique par an, durant laquelle des étudiants de première année souffrant du mal du pays sont répartis au sein de petits groupes, chacun centré autour d’un chien thérapeutique. Les étudiants sont assignés soit aux groupes témoins soit aux groupes contrôles sur liste d’attente. Ci-dessous se trouve la liste des études conduites par le Dr. Binfet depuis son arrivée à UBC Okanagan.

Publications

Kjellstrand-Hartwig, E., & Binfet, J. T. (in press). What’s important in canine therapy? An investigation of canine-assisted therapy program online screening tools. Journal of Veterinary Behavior: Clinical Applications and Research.

Tardiff-Williams, C. Y., Binfet, J. T., & Ximnei-Rousseau, C. (in press) Flexing empathic muscles: Laying the foundations for professional advocacy through a human-animal interactions course. Society & Animals: Journal of Human-Animal Studies.

Binfet, J. T. & Struik, K. (2018). Dogs on campus: Holistic assessment of therapy dogs and handlers for research and community initiatives. Society & Animals, 1-30.

Binfet, J. T., Silas, H. J., Longfellow, S. W., & Widmaier, K. (2018). When veterinarians support canine therapy: Bidirectional benefits for clinics and therapy programs. Veterinary Sciences (early online edition) doi: 10.3390/vetsci5010002

Binfet, J. T., Passmore, H. A., Cebry, A., Struik, K., & McKay, C. (2017). Reducing university students’ stress through a drop-in canine-therapy program. Journal of Mental Health, 1-30.

Struik, K. & Binfet, J.T.  (2017) Child-canine bonding in children with ASD: Findings within and across case studies. Animalia, 1-30

Binfet, J. T. (2017). The effects of group-administered canine therapy on first-year university students’ well-being: A randomized controlled trial. Anthrozoos, 30, 397-414.

Binfet, J. T. & Passmore, H. A. (2016). Hounds and homesickness: The effects of an animal-assisted therapeutic intervention for first-year university students. Anthrozoos, 29, 441-454.

Binfet, J. T., Trotman, M. L., Henstock, H. D., & Silas, H. J. (2016). Reducing the affective filter: Using canine-assisted therapy to support international students’ English language development. BC Teaching English as an Additional Language, 1, 18-37.

Conference Presentations

Silas, H. J., & Binfet, J. T. (2018, July 4). Therapeutic for all? Observational assessments of therapy canine stress during sessions. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Association of Anthrozoology, Sydney, Australia.

Symposium at the annual meeting of the International Association of Anthrozoology, Sydney, Australia. Therapy canines: Screening and assessment, safeguarding well-being, and innovative programming.
Paper 1: Hartwig, E., & Binfet, J. T. (2018, July 4). What’s important in screening therapy canines?: A review of 320 North American canine assisted programs.
Paper 2: Silas, H. J., Calibaba, B., & Binfet, J. T. (2018, July 4). Safeguarding therapy canine well-being: Educating the public to recognize stress indicators in working canines.
Paper 3: McKay, C., Harris, N., & Binfet, J. T. (2018, July 4). Building confidence through K9’s: A pilot program to build children’s leadership through interactions with therapy canines.

Tardiff-Williams, C., Binfet, J. T., & Rousseau, C. (2017, October 12). Connections between preservice teachers’ conceptualizations of child-animal interactions and views about promoting humane education in the classroom. Paper presented at the 2017 Conceptualizing Children and Youth Conference, St. Catharines, Canada.

Binfet, J. T., Passmore, H. A., Cebry, A., Struik, K., & McKay, C. (2017). Reducing university students’ stress through a drop-in canine-therapy program. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society of Anthrozoology, Davis, California (June 22-25).

Kjellstrand-Hartwig, E. & Binfet, J. T. (2017). Best practices for screening and selection of potential therapy canine teams: Preliminary findings from a systematic review of U.S. and Canadian AAT programs. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society of Anthrozoology, Davis, California (June 22-25).

Tardiff-Williams, C., Binfet, J. T., & Rousseau, C. (2017). Fostering agents of change: Laying the foundations for professional advocacy through participation in an undergraduate course on human-animal interactions. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society of Anthrozoology, Davis, California (June 22-25).

Trotman, M., & Binfet, J. T. (2016). Reducing the affective filter: Using canine-assisted therapy to support international students’ English language development. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International
Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations
, Paris, France (July 13).

Binfet, J. T. (2016). The effects of single-session animal-assisted therapy on first-year university students’ well-being: A randomized controlled trial. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Association of Human-Animal Interaction Organizations, Paris, France (July 11).

Binfet, J. T., & Passmore, H. A. (2016). Hounds and homesickness: The effects of an animal-assisted therapeutic intervention for first-year students. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society for Anthrozoology, Barcelona, Spain (July 9).

Struik, K., & Binfet, J. T. (2016). Canine-child bonding in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Findings within and across case studies. Poster presented at the annual conference of the International Society for Anthrozoology, Barcelona, Spain (July 8).

Binfet, J. T., & Cull, I. (2016). Heavy petting on campus: An overview of the Building Academic Retention through K9s program. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Canadian Association of College and University Student Services, Winnipeg, Manitoba (June 19).

Gillett, J. & Binfet, J. T. Going to the Dogs: Considerations and implications of structured Human-Animal Interactions on campus. Paper presented at the conference of Health Promoting Universities and Colleges, Kelowna, BC (June 22-26, 2015).

Binfet, J. T. (2014). The effects of animal-assisted therapy on university students’ social-emotional well-being: A feasibility study. Paper presented at the annual conference of the International Society of Anthrozoology, Vienna, Austria (July 19-21, 2014).

Binfet, J. T. (2014). Holistic assessment of therapy dogs: Dog selection for the University of British Columbia’s Building Academic Retention through K9s Program. Poster presented at the annual conference of the
International Society of Anthrozoology, Vienna, Austria (July 19-21, 2014).

B.A.R.K. Annual Reports

  1. B.A.R.K. 2017-2018 Year 6 Annual Report
  2. B.A.R.K. 2016-2017 Year 5 Annual Report
  3. B.A.R.K. 2014-2015 Year 3 Annual Report
  4. B.A.R.K. 2013-2014 Year 2 Annual Report

Projects in Development

B.A.R.K. looks forward to working with the Kelowna Boys & Girls Club and appreciates the donations that came in to support bringing therapy dogs to build resiliency in the children attending the downtown branch. A total of $3,450 was raised and has been earmarked for programming beginning in the Fall of 2017.
For more information, please click here.