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Auburn College of Veterinary Medicine Addresses Accreditation Limitation Report

The Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine has replied and is taking direct action following notification on March 11, 2014, by the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education (AVMA COE) that the college has been placed on probationary accreditation pending changes in curricular management.

“It is important to understand that the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine continues to be accredited by the AVMA with no impact on the quality of the educational program for our students,” said Dean Calvin Johnson.

“We have notified the AVMA COE that we are in receipt of their letter and have taken immediate steps to develop a plan to address the reported deficiencies. The college’s response will ultimately strengthen the educational program.”

In its response letter, the college has requested reclassification of the one major deficiency outlined, Standard 9: curriculum. The AVMA COE requires the college to ensure the curriculum committee has the authority to manage the curriculum centrally, and to conduct a comprehensive review of the curriculum to ensure adherence to the college mission.

“The cited deficiencies in curriculum management have exerted minimal impact on student performance based on our outcomes-assessments, therefore we have asked for this major deficiency to be reclassified,” Dean Johnson said.

The college, within the next 30 days, will issue a timetable to respond to the remaining minor deficiencies within the next six to eight months, the dean added.

The report also included three minor deficiencies to be addressed:  1. need for improvements in air quality in the anatomy laboratory; 2. assessment and management of the impact of class size on acquisition of student competencies; and 3. assessment and management of the impact of class size on AVMA COE program standards.

The college has or will be taking the following action to address the minor deficiencies: New down-draft tables have been purchased and will be installed this summer at a cost of $1.1 million before the beginning of fall semester; and issues 2 and 3 will be addressed through a complete review of the curriculum and continued collection of outcome-assessment data by the college’s curriculum committee.

“The college has an outstanding plan in place to address the AVMA report,” said Auburn University Provost Timothy Boosinger, former veterinary dean and a past member of the AVMA COE. “The college has a strong tradition of excellence in training future veterinarians while advancing animal health.”

During the past three academic years, Auburn students have met or exceeded the national average pass rate on the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE).  For the most recent class, the first-attempt pass rate of Auburn students exceeded the national average by 3 percent (94 percent vs. 91 percent) and Auburn students met or exceeded the national average for performance in 95.5 percent (21 out of 22) of content categories on the NAVLE.

Dean Johnson added, “It is important to consider the AVMA report within the context of our excellent student performance.”

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