AVS Releases the Results of its Extra Mural Studies (EMS) Survey at the London Vet Show

Nearly two-thirds (61.8 percent) of recent veterinary graduates work for or apply to a practice where they did extra mural studies (EMS), the Association of Veterinary Students (AVS) revealed at the London Vet Show on Friday 16th November.

 AVS unveiled the results of its inaugural EMS experience survey, which was completed by a quarter (24 percent) of AVS members, as well as recent graduates at the London Vet Show’s first student-led session. 1282 in total.

 The survey also found that 93.7 percent of students and 84 percent of graduates believe that it ‘would be useful to have an introductory chat to set objectives’. Contrastly, just 12.4 percent of students said that this was currently provided.

 Overall, respondents felt reasonably valued while on placements, scoring an average of 6.29 out of 10 for this. However, the average score of 6.9 out of 10 for satisfaction and the distribution of responses across the full scale demonstrates that there is still significant room for improvement in students’ experiences.

 AVS president David Charles commented: “The first ever AVS EMS experience survey was designed to allow us to understand quite how variable people’s placements can be, as well as highlighting the key things students wanted to gain from their EMS.

 “The survey also highlighted the immense power of EMS in veterinary recruitment, with students from all years identifying that EMS was an early opportunity to experience working at practices they may wish to seek employment at, a point which was heavily reinforced by recent graduate responses as well.”

 Additionally, David launched a new EMS resource during the session to aid veterinary practices. 58 practices have already signed up to use it, including all of XL Vets’ member practices and a number of Independent Vetcare (IVC) practices.

 The resource, which is initially for small animal practices, comprises a form for students to complete prior to their placement, allowing them to fit more easily into the team and gain more useful and relevant experience throughout their time at the practice. The resources aims to help prompt and structure introductory conversations, while remaining low input for all involved.

 Students are encouraged to set objectives for their placement and also self-evaluate their confidence across key competencies, which were identified by students in the survey. An additional set of skills is included for final year students.

 Farm and equine resources will be released before Christmas.

 David added: “I’m excited to close our year long EMS project (which has included launching the AVS EMS grants and Clinical EMS Guide) by launching the AVS EMS Resource. We wanted to be able to use the survey’s data to produce a product that would allow us to support our members, which I am happy to say we were able to launch at LVS. Having so many practices signed up already is fantastic and will hopefully help tailor EMS placements to specific students needs. I hope to see it used in many practices in future.”

Resource Available at: bit.ly/AVSEMSResource

 Full survey report on AVS website.

Further information about the AVS EMS Resource, AVS EMS Experience Survey & AVS EMS Grants (with VDS Training) are available online or by emailing David Charles, avspresident@gmail.com