Module code: VMS4008

Module Overview

This module will comprise of three clinical practice units, companion animal, equine and production practice. The content combines the previous student's knowledge of body systems, with husbandry and management of the animal into the context of holistic veterinary clinical medicine at the various stages of the life cycle. The emphasis will be on maintaining animal health, welfare, productivity and performance through a proactive approach, working in partnership with animal managers/owners.

Module provider

School of Veterinary Medicine

Module Leader

SOARES Luisa (Vet Med)

Number of Credits: 60

ECTS Credits: 30

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 355

Lecture Hours: 102

Seminar Hours: 39

Practical/Performance Hours: 78

Guided Learning: 19

Captured Content: 7

Module Availability

Year long

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

The student's knowledge, skills and attributes to support companion, equine and production veterinary practice will be covered within the teaching and assessment of this module.

Topics covered include:

Maintenance and monitoring of animal health

Animal nutrition

Management of the reproductive and parturient animal 

Neonatal and growing animal care

Disease diagnosis, treatment, prevention and control

Imaging and other diagnostics

Sustainable treatment selection

Infectious and parasitic diseases

Metabolic/ hormonal diseases

Traumatic conditions and critical care


Management of the senior/geriatric animal

Veterinary Surgeon's role in improving productivity and efficiency of production animal systems

Leadership and communication

Digital capabilities - data analysis


Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination PC Lab Companion Animal Written Exam (90 min) 33
Practical based assessment Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) Pass/Fail
Practical based assessment Portfolio Pass/Fail
Examination PC Lab Production Animal Written Exam (120 min) 34
Examination PC Lab Equine Practice Written Exam (90 min) 33

Alternative Assessment

Alternative assessments are applicable to the following portfolio assets: - The Group Herd Report  - alternatively students need to submit an Individual Report. - The Group Health Management Audit -  alternatively students need to submit an Individual Audit. - The Grand-Rounds - alternatively students will be required to watch the recordings of the presentations delivered in semester and submit a written reflection on the presentation about the case that the student worked on (maximum 500 words) 

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate: • Clinical and professional skills • Problem-solving skills, ability to assimilate and interpret diagnostic findings • Clinical reasoning and case-management skills at an individual/population level. • Knowledge of animal health management protocols. • Client ‘education focussed’ communication skills • Understanding of the relationships between life-stage, disease risk and preventative strategies, health, and welfare. • Demonstrate day-one clinical skills, in the context of simulation training and making use of live animal resources if appropriate, within a must-pass clinical skills portfolio.

There are five units of assessment that must be passed: the three individual Written Examinations, the OSCE, and the Clinical Practice portfolio.

Written examinations for this module consists of:  

Companion Animal Practice Written Examination - 33% of the module mark (90 minutes) Core

Equine Practice Written Examination - 33% of the module mark (90 minutes) Core

Production Animal Practice Written Examination - 34% of the module mark (120 minutes) Core

The pass mark for each of the 3 written examinations is 50%. 

Examination units are onsite closed-book invigilated fixed-time assessments. They are delivered through SurreyLearn using campus PC Labs.


Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) PASS/FAIL Core

To obtain a pass in the OSCE unit of assessment, 80% of the stations need to be passed.


Clinical Practice Portfolio PASS/FAIL Core

Companion animal practice (25%) In-class test

Production practice (25%) Group Herd Health Report

Equine practice (25%) In-class test

Production practice (25%) Group Herd Health Management Audit

General clinical examination peer review of three core species (completion task) 

Clinical Skills Log (completion task)

Grand-rounds attendance and case presentation (completion task)

To obtain a pass in the Clinical Practice Portfolio an aggregate of 50% of the weighted portfolio assets and completion of all the other assets is required.

Module aims

  • The Student will apply existing knowledge, clinical and professional skills to companion animal, production, and equine practice across the different stages of the animal's life.
  • The Student will develop a rational, problem-solving approach to the common presentations in companion animal, production, and equine practice at an individual and/or herd/flock/colony level.
  • Emphasise the role of the veterinary surgeon to the student in promoting animal health and welfare through a proactive, evidenced-based, and cost-effective approach to, including prevention and control, through partnership with managers/owners.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Demonstrate a rational, evidence-based, problem-solving approach to the common presentations in companion animal, production and equine practice, taking into consideration the industry/situation the vet is working in, and the use of the animal. For example the horse's use as an athlete within the various equestrian disciplines: understanding the role of the vet in optimising athletic function whilst maintaining good health. KCT RCVS D1C 2,3,4,6,10,13,14,23,24,25,30,31,39,45 RCVS KU 1, 5
002 Discuss the role of shelter/herd/flock medicine and take account of important considerations in the management of their health and welfare. KCPT RCVS D1C 1,9,14,26,37,38,39,41,44,45 RCVS KU 4,7
003 Obtain accurate historical and factual information pertaining to a clinical scenario, demonstrating clear and professional communication skills. PT RCVS D1C 1,17,20,22,26 RCVCS KU 11
004 Interpret the findings of clinical examinations, weighing their significance, in order to prioritise problem lists, synthesize differential diagnoses, and establish appropriate diagnostic plans, considering both welfare and economics. KCPT RCVS D1C 3,13,14,24,25,26,30,31,37,39 RCVS KU 1, 5
005 Identify the common and important techniques for obtaining diagnostic samples, know when their use is appropriate and interpret findings. KP RCVS D1C 24, 31,45 RCVS KU 5
006 Identify and implement routine diagnostic imaging techniques and interpret findings. KP RCVS D1C 24,32, RCVS KU 5
007 Interpret findings of health data analyses from groups of animals, integrating these with observations and weighing their significance, in order to prioritise problem lists, synthesize differential diagnoses, and establish appropriate diagnostic plans, considering both welfare and economics. KCP RCVS D1C 2,3,13,14,24,25,26,30,37,39,45 RCVS KU 5,9
008 Describe and develop a management plan for the common and important disorders in relation to the stage of their life stage/production cycle/performance, including giving appropriate consideration to euthanasia. KC RCVS14,23,24,25,26,34,35,39 RCVS KU 8
009 Demonstrate a rational approach to therapeutic decision making, with regard responsible medicines use and within the context of Public Health. CT RCVS D1C 2,7,23,25,26,34,39,44 RCVS KU 5,8
010 Devise and implement a strategic preventive health strategy appropriate for the management of individuals and groups of animals, including biosecurity. KCPT RCVS D1C 14,17,23,25,37,39,40,41,43,44, RCVS KU 5,6,7,8,9
011 Recognise signs of possible zoonotic and exotic diseases and take appropriate action. KC RCVS D1C 24,25,26,38,39,40,44,45 RCVS KU 6,7,10
012 Discuss the importance of some animal units as a business (e.g. shelter, farm, stud), and take account of the role of economics in informing diagnostic, therapeutic and preventative decision-making. KC RCVS D1C 2,9,14,15,16,19,25,26,29,39,41 RCVS KU 4
013 Describe and enact the role of the veterinarian as an educator and advocate for the health and welfare animals in their care. KCPT RCVS D1C 17,18,19,26,37,41,43 RCVS KU 3,9,11
014 Develop and rehearse effective communication skills to help motivate, manage and sustain change towards improved animal health, welfare, production and performance. CPT RCVS D1C 1,13,14,17,18,19,20,21,22,26,41,45 RCVS KU 11
015 Demonstrate a range of Day 1 clinical skills in companion animal, production and equine practice. Giving appropriate consideration to the health and safety aspects and recognizing their own limitations by asking for help when required. KCPT RCVS D1C 10,14,25-35,40,44,45 RCVS KU 5
016 Apply the principles of EBVM and 'lifelong learning', and develop skills in reflective practice. KCT RCVS D1C 3,4,11,12 RCVS KU 1
017 Enhance digital capability by interpreting findings of health data analyses from groups of animals, integrating these with observations , weighting their significance in order to priortize problem lists, synthesise differential diagnoses considering both welfare and economics. KCPT RCVS D1C 3,17,22,23,24,26,37,39,41,43,

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to build and expand student's knowledge, skills, and attributes required to become a proficient Veterinary Surgeon in companion, equine, and production practice.
The learning and teaching methods include: 

  • Lectures and seminars (including flipped classroom)

  • Small group work and discussions 

  • Case-based learning

  • E-learning using Think Aloud cases and other platforms

  • Self-directed learning, including clinical skills practice

  • Teaching activities include simulations and role-playing

  • Simulation training

  • Practical sessions involving computer-based data analysis

  • Clinical skills practical sessions

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: VMS4008

Other information

The School of Veterinary Medicine is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability, and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills, and capabilities in the following areas: 

Employability - This module contributes to the development of a range of clinical and technical graduate attributes and skills essential to the “RCVS Day One competencies”, highly valued by veterinary employers and of direct importance to a successful veterinary career. The students will be exposed to real-life workplaces (practices and farms) promoting understanding of their future role as veterinary surgeons. Through group case-based learning sessions and assessed group work portfolio assets, students are able to develop critical thinking, cultural awareness, communication skills, decision-making skills, collaboration, and leadership. Students will also have opportunities to engage with veterinary professionals working in a diverse range of roles via off-site practical sessions with our partner practices and farms, promoting students' awareness of employability within the industry.

 Digital Capabilities - Students are required to use digital technology in the creation of and contribution to shared documents in group work throughout the case-based learning sessions and assessed herd reports associated with portfolio assets. Students will also enhance digital capabilities by interpreting findings of health data analyses from groups of animals, integrating these with observations, weighting their significance in order to prioritize problem lists, synthesize differential diagnoses considering both welfare and economics.

Global and Cultural Capabilities: The University of Surrey School of Veterinary Medicine qualification is recognized, not only by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS), but also by veterinary regulatory bodies in other countries and regions, thus enabling our graduates opportunities to work internationally and in culturally diverse environments. Furthermore, even working locally, both the veterinary profession and its stakeholders, including the client base, represent great diversity. Finally, the profession operates within the context of One Health considerations, global mobility (including pet, livestock, and food import and export), and veterinary public health issues. Gaining global and cultural awareness is therefore essential. Within this module, decision-making tasks and group assignments during case-based learning sessions provide opportunities to collaborate, communicate, and build relationships with people from different backgrounds, reflecting on different experiences and adapting norms and belief systems. 

 Sustainability: The module incorporates sustainability practices in promoting more efficient production animal systems through the control of livestock disease and herd health monitoring. Students are also encouraged to make sustainable treatment and management decisions, on case-based learning activities, to prevent antimicrobial and antiparasiticide resistance, which has a potential major impact on animal and human health. 

Resourcefulness and Resilience: Students are engaged in simulations that require them to be resourceful and resilient under stressful and emotional situations. This module offers opportunities for student reflection and self- evaluation of their and their peers' performance through several activities including Think Aloud case-based learning, clinical skills logs, and in-practice practical sessions. Feedback opportunities through formative and summative assessments provide ample opportunities for students to improve and gain confidence in their skills. All these activities will promote student confidence in their skill set and attributes which in turn nourishes resourcefulness and resilience. 

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Veterinary Medicine and Science BVMSci (Hons)(CORE) Year-long Core Each unit of assessment must be passed at 50% to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2025/6 academic year.