Extramural studies (EMS) are compulsory for all veterinary students in the UK. The benefits of a strong EMS programme are considerable, and have been clearly set out by the RCVS in its EMS recommendations, policy and guidance notes. Although universities take primary responsibility for delivering ‘Day 1 competencies’ for students, EMS placements provide the ‘real world’ environment in which undergraduates can develop their practical skills further and continue to build the professional skills essential for a successful career. Here, Paul Mahoney and Nicola Martin outline how the Royal Veterinary College and the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals are working together to ensure that students get the most from their EMS placements.
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