Embedding resilience training into the core veterinary curriculum

Development and evaluation of a contextualised intervention to embed resilience training into the core veterinary curriculum

Team Members:  Rachel Whittington, Stacy Spielman, Rob Ward, Jessie Paterson, Victoria Macklin, Susan Rhind, Kirsty Hughes, Brian Mather.


Background: An emerging term from conversations on veterinary mental health and wellbeing (and more broadly within education, and indeed society) is that of ‘resilience’. It is widely accepted that resilience has a strong, positive relationship with mental health and wellbeing and in healthcare professions, it has been linked to a variety of benefits that include decreased vulnerability to adversity, decreased chance of ‘burnout’ and better tolerance of the uncertainty which is inevitably associated with clinical work.

Aims: In this project we aim to build on an earlier small–scale pilot study where we learned that in order for students to engage fully with resilience support and resources, the materials need to be embedded within the context of the specific discipline and be a core curriculum requirement. We therefore plan to design a blended approach to a curriculum intervention (using materials from an established generic course combined with newly developed veterinary specific resources and activities) to highlight the importance of resilience and support students in developing related skills.

Methodology: Using a well validated tool we will measure resilience pre and post intervention and importantly work with students through a robust evaluation to develop the programme for the future, ensure its sustainability and share our findings with the wider community (University-wide and nationally/ internationally across vet schools).

Final project report

Download the final project report (PDF)