For more than 60 years, the College of Veterinary Medicine at Illinois has been a leader in veterinary education. For much of that history, Illinois has pioneered the use of technology to advance learning. Illinois is also known for producing graduates prepared to meet real-world challenges, particularly in food supply veterinary practice.
ONLINE VETMED combines the college’s strengths in educational technology and in advanced knowledge transfer designed to enhance workplace performance.
Bring Technology to Veterinary Education
In the 1960s, well before computer-aided instruction was in vogue, the college implemented a program developed on the Urbana campus called PLATO, for Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations. Nearly 400 hours of veterinary instruction was made available through PLATO in its first four years of development.
The college was also among the first to offer continuing education to remote learners through “Veterinary Education Online,” launched in the early 2000s. In 2015, Drs. Jim Lowe and Brian Aldridge created a massive open online course (MOOC) on the topic of sustainable food production through livestock health management, which has reached more than 11,000 learners from six continents and 142 countries.
ONLINE VETMED continues the practice of delivering high quality education using the best that technology has to offer.
Focus on Advanced Veterinary Skills and Knowledge
In the 1980s Illinois launched the Integrated Food Animal Management Systems (IFAMS) program, the first program offering postgraduate training in systems-based food animal production. Though few in number, graduates of the IFAMS program went on to become internationally recognized veterinarians holding leadership positions in multinational firms.
Then in 1991, the college introduced its Executive Veterinary Program (EVP™). This two-year certificate program cultivates business, communication, and strategic planning skills and, like the IFAMS program before it, has prepared the next generation of leaders in food supply veterinary practice and set the standard for intensive postgraduate veterinary education. More than 200 top swine veterinarians and producers, many representing the world’s largest pork companies, have completed the EVP program. The college in 2017 added an EVP program for beef veterinarians, in partnership with Kansas State University.
ONLINE VETMED represents a next step in expanding access to the vital knowledge transfer available through College of Veterinary Medicine programs. It brings the expertise needed to build executive-level knowledge and skills into an accessible platform for busy professionals who don’t have time to reenter the physical classroom.
Leader in Educating ‘Day One’ Practice-Ready Veterinarians
Perhaps the College of Veterinary Medicine at Illinois is best known for introducing the unique Illinois Integrated Veterinary Professional Curriculum in 2009. The DVM program at Illinois expands by 24 weeks each student’s clinical exposure and hands-on experience during years one through three of the four-year curriculum. Basic science education is delivered in an integrated format that emphasizes clinical relevance. These courses are taught successively, two per semester.
To assure mastery of comprehensive course material as well as clinical skills, student evaluations, referred to as “milestone examinations,” occur midway through spring semester in year two and just before entering the final year of clinical rotations, after the first half of the spring semester in year three. During the six weeks before graduation, Illinois students tailor their program for a “professional development” period that may include advanced electives, externships, and intensive rotations. Veterinary educators from around the globe have sought out the college to see its innovative curriculum and extensive Clinical Skills Learning Center in action.
College Mission Statement
We educate future veterinarians and biomedical scientists, make discoveries that improve animal, human, and environmental health, facilitate production of a safe food supply, and deliver outstanding clinical care.