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SCTV520 – Introduction to Diagnostic Techniques

Module code
Module title
Introduction to Diagnostic Techniques
To introduce the student to collection, processing and storage of diagnostic samples from both live and dead animals; testing for ectoparasites and endoparasites; radiography and ultrasonography; and the significance of workplace hygiene and safety. Students completing this module will: assist with the post mortem of an animal and take relevant samples, store and send for analysis; be capable of correctly collecting, labelling, storing and/or dispatching samples including blood, urine and faeces; be able to carry out routine testing for ectoparasites and endoparasites. All safety issues involved in diagnostic techniques will be considered and risks minimized. They will: have a basic knowledge of and be able to take and process a radiographic image, using correct positioning and restraint techniques; have a basic understanding of the use of ultrasonography for diagnosis.
  • SC1003
NZQA Level
Level 5
NZQA Credits
Delivery method
  • Not Web enabled
Learning hours
Total learning hours
Resources required
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:

1. Detail the role of a Veterinary Nurse in the post-mortem process, from preparation through to waste disposal.
2. Demonstrate the collection, handling, labelling and storage of diagnostic samples.
3. Explain diagnostic techniques for endo- and ecto-parasites.
4. Apply methods and principles of diagnostic imaging in companion animal practice.
5. Demonstrate safe working practices.

- Justify the requirements of the veterinarian and diagnostician when labelling and storing diagnostic samples
- Demonstrate diagnostic techniques for endoparasites and ectoparasites
- Identify the basic principles of radiology
- Describe the production and development of good quality radiographs
- Demonstrate safe working practices when taking radiographs or collecting diagnostic samples
- Describe the use of ultrasonography for diagnosis in the veterinary practice
- Post-mortem procedures
- Collection and handling of diagnostic samples (including blood, urine, faeces and integument)
- Processing and storage of diagnostic samples
- Diagnostic techniques for parasitic skin conditions
- Radiograph imaging and processing
- Diagnosis using ultrasonography
- Workplace safety and hygiene
Teaching and Learning Strategy
Practical laboratory sessions
Surgery practicals
Work experience
Assessment Criteria
Assessment Criteria: Mixed mode.

Students must attain an overall grade of 50 to pass this module.

Practical skills are outlined in a Clinical Workbook and are competency based. A pass is achieved when the assessor is satisfied that the student has reached the level of competence appropriate for the task. This ensures critical tasks are completed satisfactorily. All competencies must be achieved to pass the module.
Learning and Teaching Resource
An extended reading list will be supplied by the lecturer at commencement of the module. This will be updated annually.

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