Application Guidelines for Assessment of Eligibility for Registration As a Veterinary Specialist

Revised procedures for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic

From 12 May 2020 until further notice

Please read the following guidelines carefully before applying for an assessment of your eligibility for registration as a veterinary specialist.

Download a .pdf copy of these Guidelines here.

Please note:

This application is for assessment of your ELIGIBILITY for registration as a veterinary specialist. It is NOT an application for specialist registration. The final decision on specialist endorsement and registration is made by the veterinary registration boards. The Advisory Committee on the Registration of Veterinary Specialists (ACRVS) conducts assessments of an applicant’s specialist qualifications, training and experience on behalf of its member veterinary registration boards in Australia and New Zealand.*

* Applicants seeking specialist endorsement with the Veterinary Surgeons’ Board of South Australia should apply to the board directly.

On completion of the ACRVS assessment, AVBC will notify you and your veterinary board of its recommendation on your eligibility for specialist registration.

Before applying to the ACRVS you must meet certain eligibility requirements. For more information on these, please consult the AVBC website, www.avbc.asn.au or the Specialist Eligibility Assessment applicant guide which can also be found on the AVBC website.

All applications for assessment of eligibility for registration as a veterinary specialist, together with the supporting documentation MUST be emailed directly to the AVBC at specialists@avbc.asn.au

Submission of documents

The documentation required to support your application is as follows:

  • Completed application form.
  • A current comprehensive curriculum vitae, which provides information on qualifications, professional employment and activities, publications, attendance at conferences, and ongoing participation in the profession.
  • Colour scans of your original specialist qualifications at 600ddpi resolution. No black and white documents will be accepted unless the original document in black and white.
  • Evidence of membership of professional bodies relevant to specialist qualification.
  • Evidence of current registration/practising status (e.g. colour scan of your current registration certificate, receipt of payment for renewal of registration or specific confirmation by the veterinary registration board where a current registration certificate is unavailable.
  • Applicable fees.

Completing the application form

The eligibility for specialist registration application form is a FILLABLE FORM. You can either:

  • Complete the form electronically – you will need to use the latest version of Adobe Acrobat DC or Adobe Acrobat Reader DC to fill in this form. You can download the free latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader DC from: https://www.adobe.com/go/reader. Then attach your complete application form to your email; OR
  • Print the form and complete it clearly and legibly by hand and then scan your completed form at 600dpi.
  • Initial and date any alterations to any hand-written form.
  • To complete the signature sections, you can digitally sign with Adobe Acrobat DC or Adobe Acrobat Reader DC or upload a scanned image of your signature.
  • The following image files are accepted: JPG, JPEG, PNG, GIF, TIFF, TIF, and BMP files.
  • Alternatively, you can print, sign and re-scan the document for submission.

Supporting document requirements

The scans of your documents must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a colour scan of the ORIGINAL document at 600dpi resolution. No black and white documents will be accepted unless the original document ids black and white.
  • Include all edges and corners
  • Have all text be readable
  • Have visible security features (such as the issuing authority’s official stamp, seal, signatures, hologram etc.)
  • Be in pdf. format
  • Each document must be provided in a separate pdf.
  • Where a document has more than one page and/or side, please ensure all pages and sides are scanned and combined into the one file.
  • Name each file with your SURNAME and content. For example. SMITHApplicationForm.pdf, SMITHPassport.pdf, SMITHTranscript.pdf
  • Compressed files (e.g. zip) will not be accepted and AVBC will not accept scans that are illegible.

Your application will be delayed if your documents do not meet the above requirements and, in all cases, the AVBC reserves the right to request to see the original document(s).

 

Frequently Asked Questions – General

What if I cannot provide a colour scan of the ORIGINAL document?

Under these circumstances you must provide a scan at 600dpi of a colour copy of the original document which been certified as a true copy of the original.

 

What is a certified copy?

A certified copy of an original document is a colour scan of the original document which had clearly been authorised as a true copy of the original by an appropriate person. The certified document is the document which has been physically signed by the person doing the certifying. It is this document which must then be scanned and sent to AVBC.

 

Who can certify documents?

A person on this list of authorised witnesses is generally acceptable to the AVBC to certify a document http://www.ag.gov.au/Publications/Pages/Statutorydeclarationsignatorylist.aspx. These persons include Justices of the Peace (JP), Notaries public, legal practitioners, veterinarians and admissions officers of all Australian and New Zealand universities. Individuals should be an independent, neutral third party who is not related to the applicant.

To have your copies certified you will need to present both the original and the copy of each document to the person certifying the copies.

Each copy of the document must be certified separately and must include:

  1. the words “certified true copy of the original”.
  2. the signature of the certifying officer.

iii. the name and address, and provider/registration number (where applicable) of the certifying officer legibly printed below the signature.

  1. the certifier’s email address and telephone number.

From the details provided, it must be possible for AVBC to contact the certifying officer if necessary.

 

What if my documents are not in English?

If your supporting documents are written in a language other than English, you must provide:

  1. All supporting documents in the original language; and
  2. Official English translated versions of all documents.

The translations must be included in the .pdf file for the documents to which they refer (extract translations will not be accepted).

All scanned documents (both in the original language and translated) must meet the supporting document requirements, as set out in Section 2.

Please note that AVBC reserves the right to request applicants to provide translations completed by a translator in Australia, accredited by the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI).

 

What if I can’t send all of my documents in one email?

If you cannot attach all of your documents in one email, send separate emails. However, please let us know how many separate emails you are sending. Contact specialists@avbc.asn.au if you have difficulties emailing your supporting documents.

 

What happens next after you receive my application?

We will acknowledge receipt of your application via email. After your application has been acknowledged, we will process the payment of your application fee. The assessment of your application will only begin after payment has cleared. If additional information is required as part of your application, the ACRVS Officer will contact you via email. Once your assessment is complete, you and your veterinary board will receive a letter of recommendation on your eligibility for specialist registration via email.

Following this recommendation, in order to proceed with your application for specialist registration, you will need to complete your respective board’s application form and submit it for their consideration along with any fees. The final decision on specialist endorsement and registration is made by the veterinary boards. This usually takes place at the next board meeting after receipt of the ACRVS’ recommendation letter. It may therefore take some time to receive your board’s decision after the ACRVS has completed its assessment.

What if there are any issues with my application?

If there are any problems with your application form or any of your supporting documents, we will be in touch by email to let you know, with guidance on how to resolve any issues.

 

Can I ask for my assessment to be reviewed?

Any appeals must be made through the registration board to which an application for specialist registration is submitted. Each board has its own appeals mechanism and an appellant should contact the Registrar or Executive Officer of that registration board in the first instance.

 

How long will the assessment take?

For applications which involve a standard training program (see Section 5.5.3 of the Specialist Eligibility Assessment applicant guide for more information) it is expected assessments may take up to six weeks to process, provided no additional information is required.

For applications which involve a non-standard or alternative training program (see Section 5.5.3 of the Specialist Eligibility Assessment applicant guide for more information) assessments may take up to 12 months to complete. Non-standard training programs need to be assessed/evaluated by the ACRVS before the application is assessed. Applicants need to provide detailed information about the training program so that this assessment can be done.

We will be doing our upmost to work through applications as quickly as possible but please recognize that there may be some unavoidable delays because of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Processing of your application will be delayed if it is incomplete.

 

What if I have further questions?

Please refer to the AVBC website, www.avbc.asn.au for updates or for more information about the assessment process. You can also contact the AVBC via email at specialists@avbc.asn.au

 

Frequently Asked Questions – Assessment of eligibility for registration as a veterinary specialist

I have a specialist qualification but I trained as a vet overseas. My veterinary qualification is not listed in the AVBC’s veterinary qualifications generally recognised document. Can I still apply to have my eligibility for specialist registration assessed? 

In order to apply to have your eligibility for specialist registration assessed, you must first be registered with an Australian or New Zealand veterinary board. Registration in Australia and New Zealand is generally based on the primary veterinary qualification a person has. If your qualification is not one of the ones listed in the AVBC’s qualifications generally recognised document, the normal route to registration would be for you to pass the Australasian Veterinary Exam (AVE). More information on the exam can be found on the AVE page of the AVBC website.

However, all decisions regarding registration are made by the state/territory veterinary registration boards of Australia and New Zealand. A few individual overseas qualified specialists may be working in Australia or New Zealand under a specific or limited registration because they do not hold a qualification that is recognised without further examination, but they are highly experienced in an area of veterinary science for which there is currently a shortage of highly experienced veterinarians in Australia or New Zealand. In order to obtain full registration, they would be required to sit the Australasian Veterinary Examination or another recognised examination.

If you feel this would apply in your situation, please contact the veterinary registration board where you would be interested in working for more information. You will find a list of contact details for each of the registration boards on the contacts page of the AVBC website.

 

I have a specialist qualification (e.g. a Diplomate or Fellowship) but my qualification and/or specialty is not listed in Annexe A of the Specialist Training Assessment an applicant’s guide. Can I still apply to have my eligibility for specialist registration assessed?

Yes. The AVBC requires that the ACRVS carefully examine each application and compare it to the requirements set out in the Minimum Standards Document (Section 5 of the AVBC publication Specialist Eligibility Assessment applicant guide). The process is therefore more involved than validating that appropriate qualifications have been obtained. Every application received is assessed against the most current version of the Minimum Standards Document as well as its own merits. Annexe A is a list of examples of qualifications whose full-time formal training programs generally meet the standards accepted for specialist recognition in Australia and New Zealand. The list is a guide only and is neither exhaustive nor exclusive.

If your application for assessment of eligibility for specialist registration features a specialist category/qualification combination not listed in Annexe A, then your training program will need to be assessed/evaluated by the ACRVS before your application can be assessed. This requires you to provide detailed information in your application about your training program and examinations and how they meet the criteria listed in the Minimum Standards Document. The ACRVS will use the additional information you provide to compare your training program directly to the Minimum Standards Document.

 

I’m qualified in a new area of specialisation and have not completed a formal training program within a recognised specialty College as there is no training program currently available in this area. Can I apply to have my eligibility for specialist registration assessed?

You may be able to apply for recognition as a Founding Member of a new specialty. Please see Section 6 of the Specialist Eligibility Assessment applicant guide for more information on the minimum standards Founding Member applicants need to satisfy. If you think you meet these criteria, please contact the AVBC office at specialists@avbc.asn.au for a copy of the Founding Members of New Specialties application form.

 

Check this website regularly for updates.