Council on Education

The Council on Education recommends standards for veterinary medical education and evaluates and accredits veterinary colleges based on approved standards. The Council also reviews the actions of the Educational Commission for Foreign Veterinary Graduates, the Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities, and the American Board of Veterinary Specialties. The Council is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the official accrediting body for veterinary colleges in the United States. The Council acts independently in making its accreditation decisions. 


The Council includes 15 voting members of the Association and are elected by the House of Delegates for two 3 year terms. These members represent the following areas of veterinary medical activity: basic or preclinical science (2 members active in this field who are members of the faculty of a university having an accredited school or college of veterinary medicine or a department of veterinary science); large animal clinical science (1 member in this field who is a member of the faculty of a university having an accredited school or college or veterinary medicine); small animal clinical science (1 member active in this field who is a member of the faculty of a university having an accredited school or college of veterinary medicine); postgraduate education (1 member who is actively directing post-professional students in an accredited school or college of veterinary medicine or in a university department of veterinary science); veterinary medical research (1 member who is actively engaged in veterinary research for the majority of the time, or the close director of others who are); private food animal clinical practice (1 member whose veterinary endeavor is exclusively food animal practice); private mixed clinical practice (1 member whose veterinary endeavor is clinical practice with several species of animals including both food or equine and small companion animals); private small animal clinical practice (1 member whose veterinary endeavor is exclusively small animal practice); private equine practice (1 member whose veterinary endeavor is exclusively equine practice); private clinical practice, not further specified (2 members whose veterinary endeavor is exclusively private clinical practice); veterinary preventive medicine (1 member whose veterinary endeavor is in the field of epidemiology, public health, regulatory, or military veterinary medicine); non-private practice, non-academic veterinary medicine (1 member); and at-large.

The Council includes 4 additional voting members and 1 nonvoting (liaison) member as follows: representatives of the public (3 individuals who are not veterinarians) appointed by the Council for two 3 year terms; a Canadian veterinarian to be appointed and funded by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association for a term of three years; a veterinarian (nonvoting liaison) appointed and funded by the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges for a term of three years.

Examples of Council activity include annual review of educational standards; foreign and domestic accreditation; site visits; reviews of annual reports; consultative site visits and review. 


Each member is expected to attend 2, 2-1/2 day meetings, 1 in the spring and 1 in the fall, at AVMA Headquarters in Schaumburg, IL. In addition, each member will make at least 1 and up to 4 site-visit trips to colleges each year. Site visits usually start Sunday evening and end the following Thursday afternoon, and involve 12- to 16-hour work days. AVMA pays no honorariums for this service, but will reimburse members for all travel, food, and lodging expense while away from home on AVMA business.


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