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SCTS Small Animal Medicine



One year in the first instance, renewable for periods of one year up to a total of three years.

Aims of Senior Clinical Training Scholarship (SCTS)

The Scholarship is a training position designed to provide a good foundation in all aspects of small animal medicine including oncology, dermatology and clinical pathology. 

The Scholar will be under the direct supervision of the Clinical Supervisor:
RCVS Recognised Specialist in Small Animal Medicine
European Veterinary Specialist in Companion Animal Internal Medicine
Professor of Small Animal Medicine
With additional supervision in their specialist areas from:
European Specialist in Small Animal Medicine
University Senior Lecturer in Small Animal Medicine and Clinical Nutrition
University Senior Lecturer in Small Animal Medicine and Clinical Genetics
University Lecturer in Genetics and Small Animal Medicine
Dr Mark Reading MA VetMB PhD CertSAC CertSAD MRCVS
Clinical Veterinarian in Small Animal Medicine
Dr Jane Dobson MA DVetMed DipECVIM-CA MRCVS
RCVS Recognised Specialist in Veterinary Oncology
University Reader in Veterinary Clinical Oncology
Dr Joy Archer VMD, M.S., PhD, MRCPath, DECVP, MRCVS
University Senior Lecturer in Clinical Pathology

Time allocation

At least 66% of time during the SCTS should be spent on clinical case management. Up to 33% but not less than 9 weeks of time will be allocated each year for study and holidays.
Over the three-year SCTS, time will be spent in the following areas:
·         Small animal medicine including dermatology
·         Oncology
·         Medical neurology
·         Diagnostic imaging (minimum 160 hours)
·         Clinical pathology (minimum 160 hours)
·         RSPCA clinic / Blue Cross clinical support
·         SCTS research project
·         Remaining time spent as private study / writing papers
The clinical training will utilise the small animal medical cases referred to the Hospital and the first opinion cases seen at the RSPCA Clinic.  The SCTS will be expected to discuss cases with the relevant senior clinicians, i.e. small animal medical cases with Professor Herrtage, Dr Watson, Dr Skelly or Dr Davison, oncology cases with Dr Dobson, and clinical pathology cases with Dr Archer.  Attendance is expected at daily Hospital rounds as well as small animal medical seminars, and weekly journal club meetings, clinico-pathological meetings and pathology rounds.  Additional training in diagnostic imaging is also available.


This SCTS programme will be based at The Queen’s Veterinary School Hospital, University of Cambridge.
The Hospital facilities include:
·         Fully equipped and staffed diagnostic facilities for the examination and treatment of small animal medical conditions
·         Fully equipped and staffed small animal theatres, with a new state of the art small animal surgical suite and five operating theatres, including endoscopy and laparoscopy
·         Diagnostic imaging capabilities including x-ray, MRI, computed tomography, scintigraphy and ultrasound
·         Fully staffed nursing wards and intensive care facilities
·         On site clinical pathology and histopathological staff and laboratories
·         A well-stocked veterinary library and access to the local human teaching hospital (Addenbrooke’s) library.
·         Easily accessible computer and internet facilities

Emergency service

The SCTS will participate fully in the out-of-hours rota gaining valuable and essential experience in emergency work and patient management including intensive care cases. Participation in the out of hours weekday and weekend rota is shared. Full back-up cover is provided by senior surgeons, physicians, radiologists and anaesthetists.

Primary Care

The SCTS will act as the primary veterinary surgeon at the RSPCA first opinion clinic on a regular basis, giving excellent access to first opinion cases, including many cats, dogs and exotic animals with common but often challenging medical problems.

Departmental Structure and SCTS Training

The Department has a well-established and highly successful medical SCTS programme with an outstanding achievement for specialist qualifications of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

Teaching and Continuing Professional Development

The SCTS will be expected to attend the day release courses organised by the University of Cambridge on teaching and learning in higher education. These courses deal with education methods (lectures, seminars and small group teaching etc.) for lecturers involved in tertiary education. There are also computer and audiovisual courses available.
Scholars have to prepare and attend presentations given by and to members of the department for critical appraisal by colleagues in the Hospital. In addition to this, continuing education presentations to patient owners, veterinary surgeons and nurses will be a requirement of the SCTS programme.
Excellent support will be provided to the SCTS from other clinicians in the small animal department including staff in surgery, imaging, anaesthesia, ophthalmology, neurology and clinical pathology.

Research Programme

Clinically orientated research to advance the understanding and management of medical conditions in small animals is an important and vital aspect of the SCTS training. The SCTS will be allocated time during the first and second year of the SCTS to complete a clinical research project. Research projects currently available for a new SCTS include: (1) Assessment of anterior pituitary function dogs with pituitary corticotroph macroadenoma before and after radiotherapy (a prospective study), (2)  Investigation of inflammatory and haemostatic response in histiocytic sarcoma in Flat-coated Retrievers and other breeds of dog, and (3) A pathological Investigation in to the mechanisms of multi-organ fibrosis in the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel .. The SCTS will be encouraged to apply for research grants in order to gain experience in grant applications and management.

Undergraduate Teaching Participation

The SCTS will be encouraged to participate in
·         1st and 2nd year small group teaching (supervision for Colleges)
·         4th and 5th year clinical and practical classes. In the second and third year of the SCTS the Scholar may be involved in the didactic lectures to the fourth and fifth year veterinary students.
·         6th year clinical teaching on the small animal medicine / oncology / neurology / clinical pathology rotations. During the clinical rotations he or she will be expected to contribute to seminars, practicals and case rounds. This will provide the opportunity for the development of seminar presentation techniques, supervision of students performing surgical procedures, clinical case management and continuous assessment of students.

Collaborative Arrangements

Scholars are encouraged to spend a short period of study at an alternative institution. We have strong links to internationally acclaimed referral hospitals both in the United Kingdom and abroad, and externships are encouraged. The SCTS will be expected to organise the externship.


The SCTS will be expected to prepare and publish at least two scientific papers in refereed journals during the programme. The SCTS will also be encouraged to attend small animal medical congresses. He or she will be expected to present papers on these topics at scientific meetings such as the Annual Congress of the British Small Animal Association, the European College and/or the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine Congresses


The qualifications that the applicant will study for are:    
·         The Diploma of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine
After year two the SCTS should be eligible to sit the General Examination of the ECVIM
After year three the SCTS should be eligible to sit the Certifying Examination of the ECVIM.

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