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Ten-minute chat
  1. Peter Hastie and
  2. Jo-Anne Murray

Abstract

Peter Hastie and Jo-Anne Murray have developed an app called ‘Be a vet’ to help anyone who is considering a career in veterinary medicine to decide whether it is right for them.

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Who is the app for?

This app is for anyone including school children and graduate students. It will also be of use to careers advisers and parents supporting students in their career choices.

The app is divided into four sections. The first section contains information about potential career options for veterinary surgeons and what core skills are required. Within this section are short videos from leading veterinary surgeons discussing the key aspects of working in different careers; for example, first-opinion, referral practice, government, veterinary public health, research and academia. The second section contains advice on what students need to do to give themselves the best chance of being accepted onto their chosen veterinary programme, such as qualifications and practical experience. The third section focuses on preparation and transition to university life and the veterinary course. The final section is dedicated to the University of Glasgow's School of Veterinary Medicine, with information on its history, accreditation, campus, facilities, course details and key staff contacts for students entering the course.

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What does it aim to do?

One of the most difficult tasks for school children is deciding on a career path, and it is often hard to find information on what a specific career can entail. This app has been developed to help students and their families in that decision-making process. In addition, transitioning from school to university life can be a daunting and sometimes overwhelming experience. Again, this app helps this transition by providing information on some of the key differences between school and university life, and what is required of a student in the first year of studying veterinary medicine.

How did you develop the content?

Many of the resources that we have included in the app are available to students who are accepted onto Glasgow's veterinary medicine programme. However, for the first time this app makes the information available pre-application to help students navigate the journey from initial interest in being a vet through to starting their chosen veterinary degree.

Jo-Anne Murray and Peter Hastie

Have you developed an app before?

The University of Glasgow has developed a number of apps to support students in their learning. However, this is the first in veterinary medicine and the first to focus on supporting students pre-arrival.

How long did it take?

It took approximately six months. Time was divided between gathering and editing the necessary information and technical development.

Did you come against any challenges?

Developing the app required specialist technical knowledge, and, without the input of an experienced app developer, it would have been incredibly difficult to achieve.

How much does it cost?

This app is available free of charge.

Where can it be found?

It can be found on the Apple app store and Google Play.

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