Good news for those planning to take the Diploma in Advanced Veterinary Nursing (DipAVN) – we have approved another course provider. Harper Adams University College is now able to offer the DipAVN – it was conditionally approved as part of the validation of its top-up honours degree and Diploma in Higher Education.

The programme is designed to be studied largely from home, through online contact, although there are some mandatory study days. Students can study at their own pace, taking up to two modules at a time.

The first students commenced in January and a further intake is planned in September. Before enrolling for the Diploma, VNs must have at least one year's post-qualification experience. They also need to be employed in clinical practice or be able to arrange placement in practices able to offer suitable clinical experience in support of their chosen modules. For more information, contact 01952 820280.

Meanwhile, in December last year, 27 students at Myerscough College undertook the final assessment of the new modular-style DipAVN. If successful, these students will be the first to achieve the DipAVN through this method of study. All applicants first achieved the DipHE in Veterinary Nursing awarded by the University of Central Lancashire, before commencing the integrative project required to achieve the RCVS DipAVN.

The project involved students undertaking a literature review on their chosen area of veterinary nursing, and evaluating this with reference to how nursing practice could be improved. The final examination involved a 30-minute viva based on the project. The topics

chosen by the students were challenging and varied, including monitoring blood pressure in cats, the management of peri-operative hypothermia in the dog, rehabilitation following repair of surgical procedures, analgesia and nutrition in illness.

The results have not yet been published, but it is hoped that all those successful will attend RCVS Day in July to receive their awards.

In theory

The written exam results for the winter 2009 sitting are now available.

At Level 2, 77 per cent of first-attempt small animal candidates and 71 per cent of first-attempt equine candidates passed. This compares with 81 and 64 per cent respectively for the 2009 summer exams.

At Level 3, 88 per cent of first-attempt small animal candidates and 50 per cent of first-attempt equine candidates passed. This compares with 92 and 69 per cent respectively in summer 2009.

The pass lists for these exams, and the practical exams (which were not available at the time of going to press), can be viewed at Our congratulations to all those who have been successful.

New registrants

We were pleased to welcome 47 newly-qualified VNs to the College in December, to receive their certificates from the president, Professor Sandy Trees.

Student enrolment figures for 2009 look healthy too, up by five per cent at 1,114, compared with 1,060 in 2008.

Veterinary Nursing Journal • VOL 25 • No2 • February 2010 •