Employability mismatch in veterinary education

Developing business together: student perspectives on a key employability mismatch in veterinary education

School:  Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies

Team Members: Kirsty Hughes, Susan Rhind, Carolyn Morton, Andrew Gardiner, Rachel Whittington, Jane Brown, Syafiqah Binti Mohd Shuel,  Ashley Genetti,  Amanda Podgurski


With a growing emphasis across the Higher Education sector on employability and graduate attributes there is a need to identify not only the key skills and attributes that are needed, but to identify meaningful ways to translate these into curricula. Within the veterinary profession, one key area that has been repeatedly identified as a challenge to veterinary employers and educators is graduate business skills. Typically an area that is perceived as less important by veterinary students and recent graduates, often because they feel their focus should be their patients rather than making money, in fact good business skills are a key priority for employers and a necessary driver for success and sustainability in business.

The aim of this study is to explore student understanding through surveys and focus groups of the need for business skills, both at the start of their degree and when nearing completion, once they have experienced the current teaching on business skills and spent time in veterinary practices. Students will then be involved in a business curriculum development group with other key project staff to explore the themes and develop a ‘student partnership business curriculum’ that will be embedded throughout the veterinary programme. Students will be co-creators of the material, to give them a sense of ownership and help make the teaching as relevant and appealing to them as possible so that this important skill set is more highly valued. The study will also yield insight into this type of approach to addressing graduate attribute development more generally.

Final Project Report

Download the final project report (PDF)