Bachelor of Veterinary Science

Bachelor of Veterinary Science

JCU Inherent Requirements for Bachelor of Veterinary Science (71510)

Persons wishing to enrol in the Bachelor of Veterinary Science should read these requirements in conjunction with the course handbook.

Students should carefully consider the inherent requirements statement below as a guide to their learning during the course, and as a way to identify early possible challenges they may have in meeting these requirements.

Prospective students who remain interested or engaged in the course should discuss their concerns with College staff, such as the Course Coordinator, as soon as possible. If the challenges are related to a disability or health condition, students should contact AccessAbility Services to discuss possible strategies and reasonable adjustments.

If the inherent requirements cannot be met with reasonable adjustments, JCU staff may provide guidance regarding other study options.

Reasonable adjustments

Reasonable adjustments must:

  • Be consistent with legislative and regulatory requirements, and not compromise codes, guidelines and policies
  • Not result in unethical or unprofessional behaviour
  • Meet the necessary standards of timeliness, accuracy and functional effectiveness to ensure that self and patient care, treatment or safety is not compromised
  • Address the need to perform the full range of tasks involved in clinical practice, including undertaking learning activities in mixed gender environments, which reflect the Australian context, and
  • Ensure that performance is consistent and sustained over a given period.

Legal

Inherent Requirement

Compliance with Australian Law and professional regulations.

Rationale

Knowledge, understanding, and compliance with legislative and regulatory requirements are necessary in order to reduce the risk of harm to self and others, including animals, in an academic, clinical and professional settings. Compliance with these professional regulations and the Australian Law ensures students are both responsible and accountable for their practice.

Examples

  • Respond to the requirements for student registration with veterinary registration bodies and the Australian Veterinary Association
  • Comply with relevant animal welfare legislation and codes, work health and safety, and anti-discrimination legislation

Ethical and professional behaviour

Inherent Requirement

Ethical and professional behaviour in academic, clinical and professional environments, which include farms and industry facilities.

Rationale

Compliance with standards, codes, guidelines and policies that facilitate safe, competent interactions and relationships for students, people and the animals they engage with, in the many environments of the veterinary profession, is required for the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual wellbeing of all.

Examples

  • Comply with appropriate conduct codes, policies and professional standards
  • Identify and enact relevant applications of these codes and standards, including those relating to plagiarism, informed consent, privacy, confidentiality, and equitable, inclusive and respectful behaviour in academic, professional and clinical environments including industry related facilities and farms.

Safe practice

Inherent Requirement

Compliance with current scope of practice, work health and safety, infection control and appropriate responses to clinical and equipment alarm systems sufficient to meet patients, animals, owners and others’ care needs.

Rationale

Compliance with current scope of practice, workplace health and safety, infection control and bio-safety considerations and effective and timely response to alarm systems are required to provide safe environments for students, staff, animals and others.

Examples

  • Limit task performance to current scope of practice
  • Comply with relevant work health and safety policies for facilities, equipment use and storage
  • Remain up to date with first-aid and CPR knowledge and practice
  • Work safely in the context of bio-safety and infectious diseases management
  • Be able to respond to alarm systems and signals to maintain safety and/or effective management for self, clients and others, including animals

Cognition

Knowledge and cognitive skills

Inherent Requirement

Knowledge acquisition, utilisation and retention spanning and drawing together all coursework subjects. Cognitive skills for focus, memory, attention to detail, theoretical deliberation, and practical functioning sufficient to meet professional and health care.

Rationale

Understanding and retention of coursework information and the effective processing of this information is required for appropriate, safe and effective delivery of health care needs.

Examples

  • Make safe and appropriate health care decisions from retained knowledge
  • Assess the application of appropriate policy and procedures in the context of a professional health care situations
  • Source research and use an evidence based framework to make sound decisions between surgery and therapy options
  • Source and analyse causes of a client’s pain, or blood test abnormalities
  • Notice and respond effectively to critical small changes in instructions, measurements or observable symptoms

Metacognition

Inherent Requirement

Awareness of own thinking, and skills to reflect, evaluate, adapt and implement new cognitive strategies for improved learning, health care and professional practice.

Rationale

Understanding and ongoing learning about oneself as an instrument in health care is required for safe and effective health care and veterinary services.

Examples

  • Review the outcome of treatment for a patient's particular clinical signs and adapt your knowledge for approach
  • Review and reflect on personal responses and cultural paradigms around health care challenges, and develop safe, effective and professional care approaches
  • Manage and proactively learn from academic, professional and clinical set-backs by self-evaluation
  • Reflect on the options, ethical implications, and impact for all the stakeholders in health care and professional decisions
  • Be aware of, and take responsibility for, your personal role in the health care and service delivery process
  • Manage multiple priorities and time management decisions

Literacy

Inherent Requirement

English literacy skills that allow the creation and interpretation of clear meaning for patient care through a range of symbols and English language text.

Rationale

Information can be delivered by many different modes and competent literacy skills are essential to provide appropriate, safe and effective delivery of health care and professional practice.

Examples

  • Comprehend, summarise and reference a range of literature in accordance with appropriate academic conventions in written assignments
  • Interpret clinical pictographs, diagrams, graphs, and ECG tracings accurately
  • Produce accurate, concise and clear documentation which meets legal requirements

Numeracy

Inherent Requirement

Accurate processing and reasoning with numbers and numerical concepts for health care and professional practice decisions.

Rationale

Competent reasoning and reliable accuracy with numerical concepts are essential for safe and effective health care and professional practice.

Examples

  • Calculate correct drug dosages in a time-constrained environment
  • Calculate fluid therapy needs from observation records
  • Accurately read and interpret blood test results
  • Calculate a food ration based on nutrient content
  • Assess farm production by calculating densities of cattle per hectare
  • Statistically analyse animal disease distribution patterns

Communication

Verbal communication

Inherent Requirement

Verbal communication in English to a standard that allows fluid, clear, and comprehensible two-way discussions for health care and professional practice, tailored to the local English-speaking audiences.

Rationale

Effective verbal communication, in English, with clients, academic, professional, clinical staff and peers is required for effective learning and to provide safe and effective delivery of health care and professional practice.

Examples

  • Understand and respond to verbal communication accurately and appropriately in a time-constrained environment or high-risk situation
  • Build rapport with clients to encourage full disclosure of clinical signs
  • Present information formally and engage in developing discussions with a wider audience including clinical and industry presentations

Non-verbal communication

Inherent Requirement

Non-verbal communication skills that enable respectful communication with others to meet health care and professional practice.

Rationale

The ability to recognise, interpret and respond to non-verbal cues, to communicate with congruent and respectful non-verbal behaviour, and to be sensitive to individual and/or cultural variations in non-verbal communication is essential for safe and effective practice.

Examples

  • Use appropriate body positioning and actions to safely work with animals in distress
  • Recognise and respond to cues in facial expression, appearance, behaviour, posture, movement from clients and a range of animals
  • Deliver information to a distressed client incorporating non-verbal behaviour that matches the nature of the information

Written communication

Inherent Requirement

Ability to produce English text to a standard that provides clear and professional-level communication for patient care, with language usage and style tailored to the targeted recipients.

Rationale

Effective communication in English text is required to demonstrate applied skills in academic writing conventions and in sustained and organised academic argument and provide safe and effective delivery of health care and professional practice.

Examples

  • Communicate complex academic, industry and clinical perspectives in writing
  • Summarise and appropriately reference a range of literature in written assignments
  • Read, understand and use precise and appropriate language to contribute to both handwritten and electronic records and prescriptions in a time-constrained environment

Sensory ability

Visual

Inherent Requirement

Ability to interact with visual inputs sufficiently to manage learning environments and to meet health care and professional practice.

Rationale

Elements in the working and teaching environment are delivered by visual means, and the ability to learn from or respond to these inputs is required to provide safe and effective professional practice.

Examples

  • Detect subtle visual changes in an animal’s demeanour and behaviour
  • Set-up and safely use instruments, analgesic drugs and materials for minor surgery
  • Process visual information from ECG traces, X-rays, chemical analysers, colour-graded test-strips, electronically displayed and wall-posted information, handwritten and electronic records
  • Monitor the broader environment for own safety and those of animals and others.

Auditory

Inherent Requirement

Ability to interact with auditory inputs sufficiently to manage learning environments and to meet patient care needs.

Rationale

Elements in the learning and working environments are delivered by auditory means, and the ability to learn from or respond to these inputs is required to provide safe and effective practice.

Examples

  • Detect and discriminate changes in pain, heart, breathing or abdominal sounds
  • Detect and discriminate alarms, emergency calls over PA systems, urgent verbal information and equipment, e.g. anaesthetic monitors
  • Follow developing discussions with teachers and colleagues for health care and professional decisions

Tactile

Inherent Requirement

Ability to respond to tactile input and provide tactile interaction sufficient to meet health care and professional practice.

Rationale

Elements in the working environment are detected and measured by tactile means, and the ability to learn from or respond to these inputs is required to provide safe and effective practice.

Examples

  • Detect changes in circulation, e.g. temperature of extremities, palpable pulses
  • Feel for abdominal masses, rectal tumours, palpable veins, bone deformity and assess an animal’s responses to touch
  • Apply appropriate pressure when cannulating a vein, inserting a lumbar puncture needle, re-position a bone
  • Accurately assess foetal positioning of a calf in utero
  • Provide patient care through appropriate and reassuring touch

Motor ability

Gross motor ability

Inherent Requirement

Strength, range of motion, coordination and mobility sufficient to meet health care and professional practice.

Rationale

A wide range of physical actions in a time-constrained environment is required to provide safe and effective practice. This will include working in farms, stock yards and industry facilities.

Examples

  • Move readily around animals, between work areas and patients, and around varying surfaces and levels, around yards and facilities to complete tasks within timeframes
  • Access around equipment, across patients, across sterile areas without contaminating surfaces
  • Maintain balance and body position to safely assess and perform pregnancy testing in animals
  • Move and restrain stock animals including holding injured animals in a stockyard
  • Perform obstetric procedures, e.g. deliver calves, perform fetotomies
  • Effectively ascertain patient information from percussion or palpation of a patient's body parts e.g. moving and manipulating a horses’ foot

Fine motor ability

Inherent Requirement

Manual dexterity and fine motor skills sufficient to meet health care and professional practice.

Rationale

A wide range of fine-motor manual tasks in a time-constrained environment are required to provide safe and effective health care and professional practice as well as perform accurate tactile diagnostics.

Examples

  • Prepare and perform assessment and treatment techniques, e.g. ultrasound of abdomen, inserting a chest drain, fine needle biopsy, cannulating a vein, use a syringe to give an accurate dosage of medications
  • Perform surgery including cutting, stitching e.g. animal spaying
  • Contribute to both handwritten and electronic records

Sustained performance

Inherent Requirement

Sustained physical, cognitive and psychosocial performance sufficient to provide safe and complete heath care in a time-constrained environment.

Rationale

A range of complex, multi-component or extended patient care tasks carried out over a period of time and in a time-constrained environments is required to provide safe and effective health care and professional practice.

Examples

  • Sustain study practices and clinical performance to sufficiently engage with the learning workload for a study period, and for the degree, within a constrained timeframe
  • Sustain a working posture, associated manual tasks, cognitive engagement, performance level and emotional control for the full duration of a health care process, e.g. performing obstetric procedures in large animals which includes repositioning and bisecting unborn foetuses to assist full-term delivery
  • Perform successive and extended tasks such as pregnancy diagnosis of large stock

Behavioural adaptability

Inherent Requirement

Behaviour that adapts to changing situations sufficiently to maintain safe and complete health care, and instigates self-care consistent with professional expectations.

Rationale

Behavioural adaptation is required to manage personal emotional responses as an individual and within teams in changing and unpredictable environments, including emergency situations and times of human and animal distress. Students will also be required to adapt their behaviour appropriately during times of additional stressors in their own lives, whether this adaptation involves ways of continuing to engage with their role or withdrawing for self-care for a period.

Examples

  • Adjust ways of working within teams of varied personal and professional backgrounds and clinical opinions to facilitate effective practice decisions
  • Cope with own emotions and behaviour effectively when dealing with changing responses of individuals and families in practice and farm and industry settings e.g. euthanizing an animal; assessing welfare in an abattoir
  • Be receptive and respond appropriately to constructive feedback
  • Maintain respectful communication practices in times of increased stressors or workloads
  • Adjust to changing circumstances in a way that allows self-care while maintaining a professional-level focus