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RCVS consults on competences for recent graduates

This week the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons has launched a consultation asking members of the profession for their views on a new set of Year-One Competences – the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours that the College believes a veterinary surgeon should possess on the completion of the Professional Development Phase.

The new proposed Year-One Competences cover a range of areas including general professional skills; practical and clinical competences; and, knowledge and understanding of veterinary medicine, legislation, research methods and other subjects. Veterinary surgeons are expected to be competent in these areas upon finishing the PDP, a period of structured learning and development for new graduates that should be completed within their first three years in practice.

The updated Year-One Competences were developed by a working party chaired by RCVS Council member Dr Tom Witte, with the aim of bringing them closer into line with the Day-One Competences for new graduates, which were reviewed and amended in 2014.

Christine Warman, Head of Education at the RCVS, says: “We are keen that members of the profession from all stages of their career and all types of practice participate in this consultation and provide feedback and suggestions on our proposed Year-One Competences and the supporting guidance for each. If there are any key competences that you think are missing from our list we would also like to hear from you.

“Furthermore, in light of the fact that most graduates complete the PDP within 18 months of entering clinical practice, we are asking whether we should change the name from Year One Competences to something that better reflects the situation on the ground – for example, ‘Competences expected on completion of PDP’ or similar.”

Those who are interested in undertaking the consultation questionnaire should visit, where they can also find guidance documents and other information. The deadline for completing the consultation is 5pm on Tuesday, 27 October 2015.

For further queries please contact the RCVS Education Department on 020 7202 0791 or

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