Client perspectives on desirable attributes and skills of veterinary technologists in Australia: considerations for curriculum design

Article


Clarke, Patricia M., Al-Alawneh, John, Pitt, Rachael E., Schull, Daniel N. and Coleman, Glen T.. 2015. "Client perspectives on desirable attributes and skills of veterinary technologists in Australia: considerations for curriculum design." Journal of Veterinary Medical Education. 42 (3), pp. 217-231. https://doi.org/10.3138/jvme.0115-001R
Article Title

Client perspectives on desirable attributes and skills of veterinary technologists in Australia: considerations for curriculum design

ERA Journal ID5529
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsClarke, Patricia M. (Author), Al-Alawneh, John (Author), Pitt, Rachael E. (Author), Schull, Daniel N. (Author) and Coleman, Glen T. (Author)
Journal TitleJournal of Veterinary Medical Education
Journal Citation42 (3), pp. 217-231
Number of Pages15
Year2015
PublisherUniversity of Toronto Press
Place of PublicationCanada
ISSN0748-321X
1943-7218
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3138/jvme.0115-001R
Web Address (URL)http://jvme.utpjournals.press/doi/pdf/10.3138/jvme.0115-001R
Abstract

Client or service user perspectives are important when designing curricula for professional programs. In the case of veterinary technology, an emerging profession in the veterinary field in Australasia, client views on desirable graduate attributes, skills, and knowledge have not yet been explored. This study reports on a survey of 441 veterinary clients (with 104 responses) from four veterinary practices in Brisbane, Queensland, conducted between October 2008 and February 2009. The included veterinary practices provided clinical placements for veterinary technology undergraduates and employment for veterinary technology graduates (2003-2007). Client socio-demographic data along with ratings of the importance of a range of technical (veterinary nursing) skills, emotional intelligence, and professional attributes for veterinary technology graduates were collected and analyzed. Overall, the majority of clients viewed technical skills, emotional intelligence, and professional attributes as important in the clinical practice of veterinary technology graduates with whom they interacted in the veterinary practice. Client interviews (n = 3) contextualized the survey data and also showed that clients attached importance to graduates demonstrating professional competence. Agglomerative hierarchical cluster analysis revealed four distinct groupings of clients within the data based on their differing perceptions. Using a multivariable proportionalodds regression model, it was also found that some client differences were influenced by demographic factors such as gender, age, and number of visits annually. For example, the odds of female clients valuing emotionality and sociability were greater than males. These findings provide useful data for the design of a professionalizing and market-driven veterinary technology curriculum.

Keywordsemotional intelligence; professional attributes; professional competence; technical skills; veterinary client perceptions; veterinary technology curriculum
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020390307. Teacher education and professional development of educators
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Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Queensland
Monash University
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
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