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STAF121-0911: Veterinary Medical Terminology-The Basics

INSTRUCTOR(S): Barb Burri, MEd, MBA, CVT, LVT

COURSE OPEN: September 1-October 6, 2011

REAL TIME SESSIONS (RTS): Mondays, September 12, 19, and 26; 9:00pm-10:00pm ET (USA)
Course RTS Times in Your Area: World Clock Converter
Practice Sessions: In order to prepare you for a successful experience in your CE course, we request you attend a practice session prior to the first Real Time Session. Times and dates will be listed in your course confirmation email. Expect to spend up to 1 hour at one of the 2-4 practice sessions held prior to the first Real Time Session.

* The instructor for this course will be using audio which will require you to have a headset or speakers to listen. If you have any concerns regarding your computer's audio capabilities, please be sure to attend a Practice Session.

Level and Prerequisites: All members of the veterinary support staff may join the course and its discussions; this course is focused towards front desk/client service staff, veterinary assistants, and veterinary technician students.
VSPN CE Course. This course has been submitted for RACE approval for veterinary technicians only and is VHMA approved for CVPM credits.

Course Description:
Medical Terminology is an important part of daily activities in any veterinary practice. Correct use of terminology in the veterinary workplace enhances client education and practice-wide communication. This course will introduce the concept of breaking down medical terms into their component root words, prefixes and suffixes for ease of understanding. Terminology by body system will be introduced, and the participant will be able to "decode" medical terms, as well as demonstrate the correct medical terms for many signs and symptoms. Medical terms for the body parts, as well as terms for diseases, pathologies, diagnostics and treatments for each body system will be covered. This is a terminology course and will not branch into the physiology of various diseases and conditions.

This course will consist of three (3) Real Time Sessions of sixty (60) minutes each, supplemental library materials, interactive message board discussions, a mandatory end-of-course test, and may include online multiple choice quizzes (after each Real Time Session). Successful completion (scoring 80% or better) on the end-of-course test is required to be considered for a course certificate of completion.
** The lecture portion of this course will combine both text and audio presentation. Please be prepared to listen.

Upon completion of this course, the participant should be able to

Course Materials: Course materials will be available in the course library prior to each Real Time Session.
Required Texbook(s): There is no required textbook for this course.
Recommended Textbooks:

About the Instructor: Barb Burri is an adjunct faculty member at Great Bay Community College in their veterinary technology program. In addition to this course, Barb has been a long time member of VSPN and teaches several other VSPN CE courses.

Course Outline:
Week 1 (Real Time Session September 12): The Basics of Veterinary Medical Terminology and Body Structure
Content: The basics of veterinary medical terminology including decodable terms, the basic rules for combining terminology, non-decodable terms, acronyms, eponyms, symbols and abbreviations, signs and symptoms. We will also specifically cover terms for body planes and directional terms, including those used in radiologic positioning and body structures, cells, tissues, and cavities; additionally covering the musculoskeletal system including the anatomical terms for bones, names of major bones in the skeleton, terminology of muscles and major muscle groups.

Week 2 (Real Time Session September 19): The Circulatory, Nervous, Respiratory and Integumentary Systems
Content: Blood, lymph and circulatory terms will be covered including associated terms for pathology, conditions, and treatments. The nervous, respiratory and integument will also be covered.

Week 3 (Real Time Session September 26): The Urinary, Reproductive, Endocrine and Digestive Systems
Content: This week's terms will cover the urinary, reproductive, endocrine and digestive systems, including anatomical and medical terms relating to treatment and pathology within these body systems. for canine and feline patients and begin to compare them to abnormal recordings. Specifically, we will review normal sinus rhythms and normal variations such as sinus arrhythmia and sinus tachycardia.

CE HOURS: 3

Tuition: $60 ($54 early bird special if enrolled by August 18, 2011). This course opens early due to the Labor Day holiday weekend in the USA; please note the Real Time Session dates.
*Students currently enrolled in and taking at least 2 classes or 5 units at an AVMA accredited or CAAHT approved Veterinary Technician Program may be eligible to receive a 50% discount off the regular rate for this course (upon verification of student status).
** To ensure participants are ready and prepared for classes, enrollment will close when the maximum number of participants is reached or at 5pm ET the day of the first Real Time Session unless otherwise noted. If the first Real Time Session is on a weekend, course will close on the Friday before the first Real Time Session.

**For more on how online CE works see the Participant Resource Center


  1. Enrollment qualifications: VIN CE courses are open to VIN member and non-member veterinarians. Veterinarians enrolling in a VSPN CE course must be a VIN member. Veterinary support staff must be a VSPN member to enroll in a VSPN CE or a VIN CE course open to VSPN member enrollment.
  2. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from @vspn.org and @vin.com addresses. Email is our major form of communication with participants; personal emails are highly recommended rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  3. Each person is individually responsible for his/her own registration. To ensure that all information received is secure and correct, please do not enroll for a course on behalf of another individual.
  4. For further assistance call 1-800-700-INFO (4636) or email (VIN CE) CEonVIN@vin.com or (VSPN CE) VSPNCE@vspn.org). Please include the course title, your full name, and contact information in your correspondence.
Note: "This course has been submitted for approval for 3 continuing education credits in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education." Call VSPN CE at 1-800-700-4636 for further information. (Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for information regarding recognition by their board).
Course withdrawal and refund policy: A complete refund of the paid course price will be issued when your withdrawal request is received prior to the listed start date of the course. If you wish to withdraw after the start date please contact the VIN/VSPN office 1-800-700-INFO (4636) to discuss eligibility for a pro-rated refund.
**Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN/VSPN office at 1-800-700-INFO (4636).
** For More Information on VSPN's upcoming CE Courses, check out http://www.vin.com/CE/VSPN/VSPN_M02231.htm

Nanette R. Walker Smith, M.Ed., RVT, CVT, LVT
VSPN Content Director & VSPN CE Director

VSPN CE Services: VSPNCE@vspn.org
1-800-846-0028 or 1-530-756-4881 or direct line to VIN/VSPN from the United Kingdom: 01452226154
Charlotte Waack (Charlotte@vspn.org), ext 193
Chris Upchurch (Chris@vspn.org); ext 197
Darci Palmer (Darci@vspn.org); ext 179
Debbie Bess (DBess@vspn.org); ext 178
Jennifer Withrow (Jennifer@vspn.org); ext 159
Nanette Walker Smith (Nanette@vspn.org); ext 187

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