Prepare a submission

Training

In accordance with section 2.1.8 of the Australian Code for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes 8th Ed 2013 (the Code), institutions must ensure that all people involved in the care and use of animals understand their responsibilities and the requirements of the Code, are competent for the procedures they perform or are under the direct supervision of a person who is competent to perform the procedures and have access to appropriate education programs and resources.

Training is available for all Deakin University staff and students intending to and currently using animals for scientific purpose and described below.

Part 1: Regulatory issues in the care and use of animals for research and teaching at Deakin University

Part 1 training introduces individuals intending to use animals for scientific purposes to their responsibilities under the Victorian legislation. It is compulsory for individuals listed on an Animal Ethics application who intend to use live animals for scientific purposes.

Training is provided via CloudDeakin and the following steps must be followed in order to gain access:

The quiz is accessible at the bottom of the 'Animal Ethics' page under 'Assessment'.

A score of 90% is required for successful completion and official notification will be provided once this has been achieved.

External investigators must be added to an Animal Ethics application before contacting the Animal Ethics Office to gain access to part 1 training.

Part 2: The care and use of laboratory rodents in research and teaching at Deakin University

Part 2 training is compulsory for investigators approved on an Animal Ethics application to learn the principles of laboratory rodent husbandry and gain practical skills essential for ensuring animal welfare is paramount.

The training is carried out over three separate occasions so that multiple opportunities to handle animals are provided prior to learning about specific procedures or until competency assessment is reached (additional sessions may be required). Individuals with prior experience must demonstrate competency and understanding of the Deakin University procedures on at least one occasion.

Register for training by submitting your details. You will be contacted by an Animal Research Integrity staff member to arrange suitable dates and times.

Part 3: Specific training provided by Principal Investigator or delegate 

Part 3 training is provided by a Principal Investigator or delegate competent in performing a specific procedure(s), as identified in an Animal Ethics application and approved by the relevant Animal Ethics Committee (AEC).

A Part 3 training form must be submitted to the Animal Ethics Office once competency has been deemed.

Aseptic surgery training

Aseptic surgery training is compulsory for Deakin University staff and students approved on an Animal Ethics application to perform recovery surgery on animals.

The training is via CloudDeakin and consists of an online tutorial followed by a quiz that requires a score of 100% for successful completion.

The quiz is accessible at the bottom of the 'Animal Ethics' page under 'Assessment'.

Face-to-face training

The Animal Welfare Officer (AWO) conducts regular face-to-face training on the use of animals for scientific purposes at the Waurn Ponds campus and the Burwood campus. The training is designed to introduce new staff, Higher Degree Research (HDR) and Honours students to the Animal Ethics regulatory framework and to serve as a refresher for existing staff. An understanding of this framework is essential for navigating the Animal Ethics process and meeting legal responsibilities. Registration is via Eventbrite below.

Zoom videoconference (due to COVID-19 restrictions): Wednesday 9th September 2020 11am - 12:30pm

Eventbrite - Animal ethics: Reporting unepxected adverse incidents in the field (Geelong)

Zoom videoconference (due to COVID-19 restrictions): Wednesday 28th October 2020 11am - 12:30pm

Eventbrite - Animal ethics: Reporting unepxected adverse incidents in the field (Geelong)

Zoom videoconference (due to COVID-19 restrictions): Wednesday 16th December 2020 11am - 12:30pm

Eventbrite - Animal ethics: Reporting unepxected adverse incidents in the field (Burwood)

***** Once registered in Eventbrite, you will be contacted directly via email with Zoom videoconference details

Review support group

A Review Support Group is available to assist Deakin University staff and students in preparing an Animal Ethics submission. Please contact any or all of the following Research Integrity staff as required:

Review Support GroupNameContact Details
Animal Welfare OfficerDayna Johnsondayna.johnson@deakin.edu.au
Laboratory Animal SupervisorAdrian Cooperadrian.cooper@deakin.edu.au
Aviary and Wildlife SupervisorRod Collinsrod.collins@deakin.edu.au
Team Leader, Animal Research and IntegrityDavid Taylordavid.taylor@deakin.edu.au
Senior Animal Ethics CoordinatorErin Williamsanimal-ethics@deakin.edu.au

Forms, monitoring sheets and guidelines

Forms

Monitoring sheets

Guidelines

Animal Research and Integrity

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) are available to Deakin University staff and students with the purpose to provide a step-by-step description of a specific procedure and provide further information to that offered in an Animal Ethics application. They are also intended to improve consistency where applicable, attempt to reduce miscommunication and failure to comply with relevant legislation.

SOPs do not replace information being provided in an Animal Ethics application but rather can be used as an accompaniment to better describe a specific task or operation. SOPs are to be reviewed in session by the Animal Ethics Committee and can be approved for up to 3 years.

PurposeSOPDate due for
review by AEC
HusbandrySOP01-2020 Rodent husbandry 22/07/2023
SOP02-2020 Zebrafish husbandry22/07/2023
SOP03-2020 Guppy husbandry22/07/2023
SOP04-2020 Fish husbandry (Warrnambool)31/07/2023
SOP10-2020 Zebra finch husbandry18/03/2023
Humane killingSOP05-2020 Rodent humane killing techniques 2/09/2023
SOP08-2020 Fish humane killing techniques8/07/2023
SOP97-2020 Avian humane killing techniques18/03/2023
Administration of substancesSOP12-2020 Rodent injection techniques22/07/2023
SOP13-2020 Rodent oral gavage22/07/2023
SOP34-2020 Infection of donor mouse or rat with malaria parasites29/04/2023
AnaesthesiaSOP14-2020 Rodent anaesthesia  2/09/2023
SOP09-2020 Bird anaesthesia19/08/2023
Sample collection SOP11-2020 Rodent blood collection techniques22/07/2023
SOP06-2020 Rodent imaging with the IVIS Lumina II Bioluminescence camera2/09/2023
SOP07-2020 Rodent tail blood smear2/09/2023
SOP32-2020 Cardiac perfusion in mice29/04/2023
SOP30-2020 Bird blood collection techniques27/05/2023
SOP21-2020 Bird buccal and cloacal swab collection19/08/2023
SOP26-2020 Zebrafish tail clip22/07/2023
SOP19-2020 Feather sampling from birds  27/05/2023
SOP18-2020 Measuring bird eggs 27/05/2023
IdentificationSOP15-2020 Rodent identification and genotyping 2/09/2023
SOP61-2020 Banding and colour banding of small to medium passerines and collecting body measurements15/04/2023
SOP62-2020 Deployment of external data-logging devices on seabirds  27/05/2023
SOP27-2020 Zebrafish Visible Implant Elastomer (VIE) tag implantation22/07/2023
SOP25-2020 PIT tag implantation19/08/2023
BreedingSOP29-2020 Zebrafish in vitro fertilization22/07/2023
CaptureSOP16-2020 Capture techniques for wild birds27/05/2023
SOP17-2020 Capture of wild birds using mist nets  27/05/2023
SOP20-2020 Capture of colony nesting seabirds using a noose-pole 27/05/2023
SOP22-2020 Pitfall trapping of reptiles, amphibians and small mammals27/05/2023
SOP23-2020 Elliot and cage trapping of mammals27/05/2023
SOP24-2020 Spotlight surveys27/05/2023
SOP28-2020 Remote camera surveys27/05/2023
NecropsySOP35-2020 Necropsy19/08/2023

If any of the following archived (expired) SOPs need to be used or a new SOP is required, the information must be transposed into the most up to date Deakin University Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) template and submitted to the Animal Ethics Office for approval by the relevant Animal Ethics Committee in session at a meeting (see 2020 meeting dates and deadlines).

Archived (expired)
SOP90-2010 Open field testSOP89-2010 Forced swim test
SOP01-2018 Muscle function testingSOP112-2010 Cerebral malaria model
SOP09-2016 Brain collection from zebra finch embryosSOP09-2012 In vitro testing of skeletal muscle contractile properties
SOP03-2015 Dosing of nestling zebra finch with corticosteroneSOP04-2016 Rosella capture in nestbox traps
SOP01-2014 Rosella blood samplingSOP39-2011 Rosella uropygial secretion sampling
SOP60-2011 Crimson rosella housing in outdoor aviariesSOP06-2016 PHA immune challenge in birds
SOP59-2011 Rosella behavioural choice testsSOP08-2012 Capture of wild birds using net guns
SOP43-2011 Catching of guppies followed by humane killing with MS-222SOP03-2014 Husbandry of fish and yabbies
SOP05-2014 Activity and boldness assays for fishSOP03-2012 Recording colour patterns of live fish 
SOP04-2014 Recording resting metabolic rate of fish and yabbiesSOP07-2014 Cane toad husbandry
SOP02-2013 Cane toad pain and distress monitoringSOP03-2013 Cane toad humane killing techniques
SOP11-2015 Husbandry of tadpoles  SOP14-2015 Catching and humane killing of tadpoles 
SOP12-2015 Tadpole metabolic rate SOP13-2015 Activity and boldness assays for tadpoles 
SOP21-2009 Active searching for reptiles and amphibiansSOP07-2016 Amputation of an anuran toe for use in skeletochronology
SOP09-2017 Fyke netting and bait trapping (aquatic environments)SOP16-2014 Protocol for general use of small trawl nets
SOP14-2014 Protocol for crab capture-baited trapsSOP02-2016 Sampling southern rock lobster with commercial fishing methods
SOP14-2012 Hook and line capture of fishSOP15-2014 Fish euthanasia via physical methods
SOP04-2017 Transport of larval aquatic GMOs between certified facilities SOP03-2017 Transport of sub adult and adult aquatic GMOs between certified facilities
SOP02-2018 Visible implant alpha tagsSOP06-2017 Koala Trapping – Capture Handling and Release
SOP01-2017 Emergency euthanasia for fur sealsSOP19-2011 Tooth extraction in fur seals and sea lions 
SOP16-2011 Blood sampling of fur sealsSOP18-2011 Milk sampling of fur seals
SOP17-2011 Capture and restraint of fur sealsSOP15-2011 Attachment of external data loggers to fur seals

Experimental design and statistics

It is requirement under Section 1.21 of the Australian Code for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes 8th Ed 2013 (the Code) that the number of animals used in a project must be the minimum necessary to achieve the proposed aim(s) and to satisfy good statistical design. Well designed and correctly analysed experiments can lead to a reduction in animal use whilst increasing the scientific validity of the results.

A well designed experiment should be:

Unbiased

When two or more treatment groups are compared, the animals in the groups should be in identical environments and be similar in every way apart from the applied treatments. Bias can be minimised by:

  • Randomisation - randomly allocating animals to the treatment groups (a physical process is needed e.g. tossing a coin, picking a number)
  • Ensuring that all subsequent treatments (including housing) are applied in a random order
  • Blinding - Ensuring that researchers analysing experimental outcomes are unaware of the treatment received (blinded) until the final statistical analysis

Adequately powered (i.e. use sufficient animals)

Powerful experiments are ones that have the maximum chance of detecting a true treatment effect. Power is achieved by:

  • Using appropriate numbers of animals (sample size)
  • Controlling inter-subject variation (e.g. using randomisation)

Sample size should be determined using a formal method such as power analysis or using the resource equation method. Although power is increased by increasing sample size, an unnecessarily large experiment will waste animals and scientific resources.

Variation is controlled by randomly allocating animals of similar genotypes, of a similar weight and age, which have had a similar environment throughout their lives. Variation due to circadian rhythms or fluctuations in the environment can often be reduced by appropriate experimental design, by using a randomised block or Latin square experiments.

Measurement error should be minimised by careful technique and good instrumentation, and blinding the researcher to treatment allocation.

A power analysis comparing two groups, for example, requires the following information:

  • The type of statistical test to be used (e.g. a t-test or a chi-squared test to compare two proportions)
  • The significance level to be used (often a 5% level)
  • The required statistical power (usually 80-90%)
  • The sidedness of the test (a 2-sided test is usual)
  • The effect size of biological interest (i.e. how much of a difference in biological or clinical effect it is necessary to detect)
  • An estimate of the standard deviation (when comparing means) this must come from a previous experiment

Have a wide range of applicability

It is often useful to find out whether similar results are obtained in males and females, in different strains, or as a result of different diets or environments.

Be simple and efficient

Experiments should not be so complicated that mistakes are made in their execution, or the statistical analysis becomes unduly complicated. Small pilot studies should be used before starting a major experiment to ensure that the experiment is logistically efficient and to give some preliminary indication of likely results.

Indicate the range of certainty

Each experiment should be statistically analysed so that the results can be used in planning future experiments. An appropriate statistical analysis should indicate the range of uncertainty in the results, or the measure of variation, usually indicated by significance levels or confidence intervals.

A biostatistician from your Faculty must be conducted prior to submission of a new Animal Ethics Application and further information on statistical design can be found at The Experimental Design Assistant.

2020 dates and deadlines

2020

MeetingApplication deadline
(Monday 3pm)
AECW-B meeting 
(Wednesday 12pm)
AECL-G meeting 
(Wednesday 10am)
1/2020 January 20205 February 202012 February 2020
2/2017 February 20204 March 202018 March 2020
3/2030 March 202015 April 202029 April 2020
4/2011 May 202027 May 202010 June 2020
5/2022 June 20208 July 202022 July 2020
6/203 August 202019 August 20202 September 2020
7/2021 September 20207 October 202021 October 2020
8/209 November 202025 November 20202 December 2020
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