Are you an undergraduate student who can add to the veterinary evidence base?
Would you like to be published in a peer-reviewed veterinary journal before you graduate? Do you also fancy a chance at winning one of three cash prizes?
Then the Veterinary Evidence Student Awards are just for you!
Enhance your academic and research skills by writing a Knowledge Summary and submitting it to Veterinary Evidence, the open access, peer-reviewed journal of RCVS Knowledge, the charity partner of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons.
All Knowledge Summary submissions will follow the journal’s standard editorial process, with the modification that all papers will be judged by the journal editors and reviewers using a grading criteria rubric (see ‘Related Documents’ for the full scoring system). The three top-scoring papers will be awarded the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prizes:
1st place: £200
2nd place: £100
3rd place: £50
To win one of the prizes, a submitted paper must be considered by our judges to be at a ‘publishable standard’. All submissions will be considered for publication, so even if you don’t submit one of the winning entries you still stand a chance of having your paper and name published in Veterinary Evidence.
The deadline for submissions is 12th January 2024.
If you have any queries about the entry process please contact a member of the Veterinary Evidence team.
Knowledge Summaries are like Critically Appraised Topics; they answer a specific and focused clinical question by looking at the best available evidence.
Read our bite-size guide, 6 steps to writing a Knowledge Summary, for an overview of the Knowledge Summary writing process. This guide covers the main steps and provides links to more in-depth resources.
For further detailed information and resources on how to write a Knowledge Summary, please visit our Author Hub.
Check out the previous winners' Knowledge Summaries below, along with further published Knowledge Summaries in Veterinary Evidence, for examples of how yours should look (or just for some inspiration).
Once completed, submit your Knowledge Summary to Veterinary Evidence.
First place went to Sarah Daphne Foo, Veterinary Medicine student from the University of Sydney, for her summary:
Sarah focused on this topic as rabbits are becoming more popular as pets, and as their numbers increase, so does the requirement for procedures that require a general anaesthetic. Sarah’s paper found evidence to support the use of both devices in maintaining stable anaesthesia in rabbits, concluding that the final choice of airway maintenance device should be based on the availability of equipment, the training of the practitioner and the procedure to be undertaken.
Upon winning, Sarah said, “'As a final year student hoping to publish my first paper, I was excited by the opportunity to participate in this competition, and I am honoured to receive this award. As someone very new to veterinary research and publication, I felt supported throughout the process, and feel much more confident in writing future Knowledge Summaries.
I chose my Knowledge Summary topic as I have a special interest in exotics and zoo medicine and hope to specialise in the future once I graduate from the DVM at the end of this year. It was a question I found myself asking whilst working in general practice throughout my degree, and I hope it is useful to others in the veterinary profession. I look forward to contributing future Knowledge Summaries to Veterinary Evidence.”
Second place has been awarded to veterinary medicine students Narakhanti Soenardi and Maxim Bembinov, from the Royal Veterinary College in London, for their Knowledge Summary titled ‘An assessment of client and clinician satisfaction in veterinary teleconsultation compared to in-person consultations’.
Maxim said, “As a student interested in research, I couldn't pass by such an exciting opportunity as the Veterinary Evidence Student Awards. It is a fantastic way to learn more about the inner workings of the process of publishing scientific literature, while simultaneously contributing to the knowledge base of the veterinary community. It is definitely an invaluable experience and I recommend all students to consider applying next year.”
Narakhanti said, “I've always had an interest in contributing to EBVM and was curious to see what the process of getting something published was like, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity. Safe to say, I really enjoyed it!”
First place went to Alexandra Bartlett BSc (Hons) of The Royal Veterinary College in London, UK for her summary:
Alexandra critically appraised 20 controlled trials and
she concluded that there is moderate evidence to suggest that NSAID administration before, during or after castration can reduce the signs of postoperative pain in calves castrated without anaesthesia. Alexandra’s research has the potential to improve calf welfare and benefit farm vets and farmers throughout the UK. She said that she is proud to have her research published in Veterinary Evidence, to add to the knowledge base which will ensure that clients and patients receive the highest possible standard of care, and uphold the high welfare standards for farm animals in the UK.
“I first became interested in research during my intercalated year which was unfortunately affected by the pandemic, so my final project was cut short and the summer studentship I had hoped to carry out was unable to go ahead. I was worried that I'd missed out on opportunities to get involved with research during the rest of my time at vet school, so when I found out about the Veterinary Evidence Student Awards, I was really keen to get involved.
“I'm absolutely thrilled to have won the competition and have really enjoyed the opportunity to further my scientific writing and evidence-based veterinary medicine skills. I would definitely recommend the experience to anybody interested in entering!” she said.
Second place went to Erina Leask from The University
of Sydney, School of Veterinary Science, Australia, whose Knowledge Summary looked at the efficacy of EMLA cream for reducing pain associated with venepuncture in felines.
Erina said: “I was composing a Knowledge Summary as part of the research component of my veterinary medicine degree. I challenged myself to pursue publication because I wanted to produce something that could contribute meaningfully to our industry's evidence base and assist clinicians in making decisions that improve animal welfare.
“Writing a Knowledge Summary was surprisingly straightforward! The guides and templates produced by RCVS Knowledge’s Veterinary Evidence really eliminated a lot of the guesswork. Although a little daunting overall, each step of the process felt like an achievable goal, which helped keep me on track and motivated.
“Most of all, this experience has allowed me to hone my critical analysis skills, which I believe will be invaluable as I attempt to practise evidence-based medicine in my own career! Furthermore, publishing an article has been a huge achievement for me, and has been incredibly rewarding in its own right.”
Third place went to Eleanor Best, from The University
of Bristol Veterinary School, UK whose Knowledge “In reducing surgical recovery time in rabbits, should doses exceeding 0.2 mg/kg of oral meloxicam be given and is twice daily administration more effective than a single daily dose?”
Eleanor said: “I am really passionate about research and contributing to the expanding knowledge base to improve the welfare of our patients. Entering this competition and writing a Knowledge Summary enabled me to hone my skills in literature searching and appraisal, and I hope to use these tools in general practice to make a difference in the clinic.”
First place went to the University of Bristol Vet Nursing students Carla Husband, Abbie McMillan and Lauren Sweeney for their Knowledge Summary:
The summary highlighted the paucity of evidence regarding the impact of educational interventions on hand hygiene compliance in small animal environments, a highly relevant topic during the COVID-19 pandemic, and called for more research to be carried out to support hand hygiene compliance in the veterinary professions.
Carla said “I feel so proud of myself and my co-authors for winning this competition. We worked very hard on making this Knowledge Summary the best it could be and can’t believe our hard work has paid off. I also feel very proud to represent the vet nursing profession and to come out of university with a published paper. To any vet nursing or vet students out there who are thinking of submitting to Veterinary Evidence, I say go for it! The more evidence we can contribute to our knowledge base, the better our profession can become.”
Second place went to Laura Pratley, University of Liverpool vet student, whose paper asked:
Laura said, “I became interested in research and EBVM in the latter years of vet school and was worried I'd missed opportunities to get involved with research/studentships. So when I saw the Veterinary Evidence Student Awards, I really wanted to get involved and have found the whole process really rewarding!”
Lesca Sofyan, a Veterinary Medicine student at the University of Sydney in Australia, took third place, for her paper:
Lesca said: “I entered the Veterinary Evidence Student Awards when I wanted to share my results on my research. Patients and clients deserve to be provided the top standard of care, and Veterinary Evidence allows me to do so quickly, as I can always analyse the available evidence behind my decision and choices.”
First place went to the University of Edinburgh’s Molly Vasanthakumar for her Knowledge Summary:
Molly found that there is not enough evidence that disposable synthetics reduce the risk of surgical site infections when compared to reusable woven drapes, based on her assessment of the available literature. Molly, who has a long-time fascination with the role vets can play in reducing waste, said:
“The Veterinary Evidence student competition gave me an opportunity to identify a specific issue, find and appraise the evidence and then apply it to a practical setting.
“Winning the competition has given me a chance to further my skills in evidence-based veterinary medicine [EBVM] and also raise awareness of an incredibly important and topical issue.”
Second place went to the University of Cambridge's Honoria Brown for her Knowledge Summary:
“Writing this Knowledge Summary was the perfect chance, not only to develop my ability to navigate and analyse databases, but also to present my findings for the benefit of other clinicians who face these issues,” said Honoria.
“I feel that these skills will be very useful to me later in my career, and I am grateful to Veterinary Evidence for providing me with the opportunity.”
Third place went to the University of Edinburgh’s Jacqueline Oi Ping Tong for her Knowledge Summary:
Jacqueline critically appraised the evidence for whether a daily probiotic improved clinical outcomes in dogs with idiopathic diarrhoea.
“This experience makes me recognise the importance of evidence-based veterinary medicine to the veterinary community; it connects scientific research to everyday practice,” said Jacqueline.
“It was a great opportunity to engage in EBVM early in my veterinary career, and start learning how to critically appraise the current evidence.”