First BSAVA Masters student graduates

4 April 2019

The first student to have been awarded a BSAVA Masters in Clinical Veterinary Research, graduated at BSAVA Congress on Thursday 4th April 2019.

Johanna Forsyth, from Gatehouse of Fleet in South West Scotland, is a veterinary advisor for diagnostic laboratory Avacta Animal Health. She conducted her Masters study ‘Co-reactivity between related and unrelated environmental allergens in equine allergen-specific IgE serological testing’ alongside her job, over a period of two years. She graduated with a distinction and was presented with her Masters by BSAVA outgoing President Philip Lhermette.

Jo, who shared her story about how she managed to combine work and family life alongside studying for her Masters, chose the BSAVA masters because of the flexibility it offered. She said: “The support the BSAVA offered was fantastic. They were very welcoming and clearly want to promote good evidence and research.

“It has given me a lot more confidence when looking at scientific papers and critically evaluating them. It’s broadened my horizons and I now look at things from a slightly different perspective. My next challenge is a post graduate certificate in veterinary dermatology.”

“Co-reactivity is important for all practitioners not just equine clinicians,” Jo explains. “Knowing when a second allergen may be involved is useful in getting atopic animals under control.”

Lucie Goodwin, Head of Education at the BSAVA said: “We are absolutely delighted to have our first graduate from the Masters in Clinical Veterinary Research. Jo has worked extremely hard to combine her studies alongside her job and to complete her project within two years; she fully deserves the award she has obtained. We are particularly pleased that the BSAVA has been able to support Jo to carry out research based in the field of equine immunology and would encourage all vets interested in clinical research to consider the BSAVA Masters programme, regardless of the species they treat.”

The BSAVA Masters in Clinical Veterinary Research is designed primarily for veterinary surgeons working in small animal clinical practice or clinical training programmes, with a particular interest in the identification and solving of problems through clinical research. The Masters course is flexible and combines online learning and a workplace-based clinical research project so students can continue working throughout the course. Enrolled students study part-time at a pace that suits them; the course may be completed within two years or be extended to a maximum of five years. The Masters is accredited through Nottingham Trent University and will carry 180 credits at Level 7.

Applications for the BSAVA Masters in Clinical Veterinary Research open in October for the 2020 intake. For further information click here.