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.

Waurn Ponds Campus: Friday 14th February 2020 from 3pm - 4:30pm in room jb3.303

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

Waurn Ponds Campus: Tuesday 31st March 2020 from 11am - 12.30pm in room jb3.303

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

Waurn Ponds Campus: Tuesday 16th June 2020 from 11am - 12:30pm in room jb3.303

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

Burwood Campus: Wednesday 17th June 2020 from 11am - 12.30pm in room BC8.102

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

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. Furthermore, SOPs will not be assessed as stand-alone submissions to an Animal Ethics Committee, as they must relate directly to an application.

If you wish to create a new SOP for assessment with an Animal Ethics application, please use the Deakin University New Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) form.

Husbandry Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

Scientific Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

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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