Development and validation of a bovine castration model and rubric

Stacy L. Anderson, Lynda Miller, Philippa Gibbons, Julie A. Hunt, Jerry Roberson, Jeffrey A. Raines, Gil Patterson, John J. Dascanio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Veterinary students require deliberate practice to reach competence in surgical bovine castration, but animal availability limits opportunities for practice. We sought to create and validate a surgical bovine castration model consisting of a molded silicone scrotum and testicles to allow students to practice this skill without the use of live animals. We sought to validate the model and associated scoring rubric for use in a veterinary clinical skills course. A convenience sample of third-year veterinary students (n = 19) who had never castrated a bovine were randomized into two groups. The traditionally trained (T) group performed castration on a live bull calf after a 50-minute instructional lecture. The model-trained (M) group received the same lecture and a 2-hour clinical skills session practicing bovine castration using the model. All students were subsequently digitally recorded while castrating a live bull calf. Performance recordings were scored by an investigator blinded to group. Survey data were collected from the students and from expert veterinarians testing the model (n = 8). Feedback from both groups was positive. The M group had higher performance scores than the T group (M group, M = 80.6; T group, M = 68.2; p =.005). Reliability of rubric scores was adequate at.74. No difference was found in surgical time (M group, M = 4.5 min;T group, M = 5.5 min; p =.12). Survey feedback indicated that experts and students considered the model useful. Model training improved students' performance scores and provided evidence for validation of the model and rubric.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)96-104
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Veterinary Medical Education
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Clinical skills training
  • Model
  • Surgical bovine castration
  • Surgical skills
  • Veterinary education
  • Veterinary simulation
  • Veterinary students


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