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/309) reported that their home was located in a rural, suburban, or urban environment, respectively. Twenty-seven percent (85/308) reported that they had participated in 4-H or FFA, and 42% (128/308) reported having a relative that owned a family farm. Fifty

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objectives—To determine perceptions of veterinary technical and professional skills among veterinary students and recent graduates.

Design—Cross-sectional study.

Sample Population—281 students and 142 recent graduates from the Ontario Veterinary College.

Procedure—A survey was designed and administered to first- through fourth-year students and veterinarians who had graduated either 1 or 6 years before survey administration.

Results—Overall response rate was 70%. Learning about technical and professional skills was highly valued. Most participants felt they had not received instruction about professional skills, but those who had felt more competent about them. Perceptions of competence increased slightly with increased comfort discussing emotional veterinary issues with instructors. Neither gender nor increased age was related to increased feelings of competence. Almost all fourth-year students felt competent and comfortable about examining an animal with the client present, assessing suffering, diagnosing parvovirus infection, performing surgery, and working as group members. However, many did not feel competent or comfortable about delivering bad news, setting time limits yet providing quality service, helping clients with limited funds make treatment decisions, dealing with demanding people, and euthanasia. Feelings of competence and comfort were closely related but were not identical.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In the interests of best preparing entry-level veterinarians, technical and professional skills need to be emphasized in a learning environment where students feel comfortable discussing emotional veterinary issues. A professional skills curriculum addressing underlying selfawareness, communication, and interpersonal issues, as well as procedural matters, would likely increase the proportion of fourth-year students who feel competent and comfortable about professional skills by the end of their undergraduate training. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;219:924–931)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

the fall of 2012, the number of OCSL sessions was increased to 2 a week to minimize conflicts with courses and laboratories and allow students more opportunities to attend. The OCSL is promoted as an environment where students could engage in

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Equine Clinic have endeavored to produce confident, independent interns who have been able to experience and learn from the best of both the academic and a private practice environment. In the academic setting, interns are challenged to understand the

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

feedback, particularly during early skill development, it is crucial that there be a low student-to-instructor ratio, which may be difficult to obtain in formal instructional laboratories. 28 The OCSL provided an environment with unobtrusive supervision

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

veterinarians trained in the areas of population medicine and public practice. In the current environments for training veterinarians, veterinary students are exposed to most of the information needed to practice in the public sector; however, the opportunity

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

expectations exist even if the appropriate learning opportunities are not available in the curriculum? Today's new graduates are expected to be knowledgeable and able to function effectively in a changing environment. They are challenged with many emerging

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

knowledge (ie, knowledge and skills specific to the domain of veterinary medicine, including basic sciences, surgery, and medicine) and other diverse characteristics related to succeeding in an academic environment. As we had hypothesized, VGPA directly

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goal should be to ensure that trainees reach the autonomous phase of learning, allowing them to focus on additional tasks related to the context of the case or the environment. 25–28 The present study was designed to assess, through use of a survey

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