VSC410 Clinical Practice 1 (8)


Clinical Practice 1 is the introduction to practical clinical skills for the fourth year veterinary science student. Students will develop knowledge and skills in surgical, diagnostic and therapeutic procedures with small animals, horses, cattle and sheep, through a series of tutorials and practical classes in the University's veterinary clinics, equine centre and farm. Clinical Extra Mural Studies (CEMS) 1 is part of Clinical Practice 1.


+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 1
InternalWagga Wagga Campus
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: VSC410
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Enrolment restrictions

 Students enrolled in the follwoing courses only: Bachelor of Veterinary Biology/Bachelor of Veterinary Science
Bachelor of Veterinary Biology/Bachelor of Veterinary Science (Honours)
Bachelor of Veterinary Science

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to competently perform a clinical examination, monitor the health of animals and record clinical information, including identification data, in a legally acceptable manner;
  • be able to demonstrate novice level competence in a small animal surgical procedure, such as an ovariohysterectomy or open castration;
  • be able to describe the theoretical principles of anaesthesia and pain management;
  • be able to design, induce, maintain and monitor anaesthesia and pain management in small animals;
  • be able to describe and demonstrate the principles of diagnostic imaging, such as in radiography and ultrasonography;
  • be able to describe and demonstrate safe practice using ionising radiation in veterinary practice;
  • be able to demonstrate novice level competence in acquiring, interpreting, storing and retrieving diagnostic imaging data;
  • be able to safely demonstrate developing skills in a range of diagnostic (including collecting, interpreting, and reporting data at individual and herd levels), therapeutic and minor surgical procedures on a range of animals including horses, cattle, sheep, dogs and cats;
  • be able to relate practical skills to underlying theory and underpinning scientific principles;
  • be able to demonstrate appropriate self assessment and responsibility for ongoing development of technical skills;
  • be able to communicate clearly and effectively in all aspects of veterinary work;
  • be able to demonstrate developing skills in critical analysis and personal reflection;
  • be able to demonstrate professional behaviour in all aspects of veterinary practice; and
  • be able to demonstrate appropriate time management and organisational skills to permit completion of clinical and assessment responsibilities.


The subject will cover the following topics:
  • surgery, anaesthesia and pain management of small animals
  • introduction to radiology, radiography and diagnostic ultrasound
  • introduction to equine clinical practice
  • introduction to farm animal clinical practice (bovine and ovine);
  • veterinary private practice visits - Clinical Extra Mural Studies - CEMS 1
  • record keeping as related to legal aspects of veterinary practice.
  • client and colleague communication skills training; consultation techniques and the mock consultation

Work Place Learning

This subject contains a Compulsory Workplace Learning component of 20 days duration. The WPL component of this subject involves 4 weeks of Clinical Extra Mural Studies (CEMS 1) at different veterinary practices of the students choice across Australia and overseas and precedes 5 weeks of CEMS 2 later in Phase 2, and 3 weeks of CEMS 3 in Phase 3. There are restrictions on the type of practice. Students must contact the placement and organise suitable dates, complete a Placement Request Form which enables the Placements Officer to contact the Practice and send documents relating to the student's level of knowledge, OH & S requirements and assessment forms. Students must find their own way to the practice and organise their own accomodation. CEMS 1 is part of the compulsory Clinical Extra Mural Studies component required of all veterinary science courses in Australia and New Zealand.

Specialised Resources

Students must arrange their own transport to and accomodation at the CEMS placement of their choice.


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.