The Ministry of Education in China has announced that it will be instating animal welfare and protection as a core higher education course for animal medical science students.
This exciting news comes as a result of our research partnership with the Chinese Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA). Beginning in November 2012, our work culminated last month with the draft of a new animal welfare curriculum. We will be using this to submit an animal welfare textbook for veterinary students to the Chinese government later this year.
WSPA Interim Education Manager, Evan Sun said: “This is a great step for animal welfare in China. It marks a significant commitment from the education authorities and the Chinese government to place animal welfare as an integral part of veterinary education.”
This has been the first large-scale study on the status of animal welfare education in the veterinarian profession of agricultural universities and colleges across China. A total of 1,400 students and teachers from 77 universities and colleges were surveyed. Only thirty-three of the sixty-one universities and colleges that responded had established courses relevant to animal welfare, lower than that of most European countries.
The initial draft of Introduction to Animal Welfare will be submitted at the end of this year. We are expecting it, with the support of the World Organisation for Animal Health, to become the core teaching material on animal welfare for Chinese veterinarians.