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Veterinary Specialty Boards Reading Lists, Washington State University

Compiled reading lists designed to assist veterinary residents with preparation for the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Recognized Specialty Veterinary Organizations (RSVOs) examinations.

ACVPM - Preventive Medicine

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

"The Environmental Health and Toxicology Section includes nine topic areas, with an equal number of questions from each topic area in the multiple choice section of the exam.  Applied knowledge of toxicology is incorporated into many of the topic areas.  The Toxicology section is more specific to the principles of toxicology and toxic substances in general.  Each topic area and suggested reference materials for each are listed [within]."

The Environmental Health and Toxicology section includes nine subcategories:

  1. Air 

  2. Land/soil 

  3. Water 

  4. Waste 

  5. Emergency Preparedness and Response

  6. Occupational Health

  7. Vectors

  8. Radiation

  9. Toxicology

An equal number of questions will be drawn from each subcategory in the multiple choice section of the exam.The Toxicology subcategory draws upon the principles of toxicology and toxic substances in general. Applied knowledge of toxicology is incorporated into many of the subcategories areas. 

Primary References

Supplementary References

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

The Epidemiology and Biostatistics section of the multiple choice exam includes questions that are drawn from 10 subcategories:

  1. Data distributions
  2. Diagnostic tests
  3. Measures of disease occurrence and measures of effect
  4. Analytical study designs and measures of association
  5. Biostatistics
  6. Outbreak investigation
  7. Causality
  8. Basic epidemiology concepts
  9. Economics
  10. Surveillance and sampling designs.

Epidemiology is the basic science with tools to support decision making processes in veterinary public health and preventive medicine. It deals with the investigation of diseases, production losses, and health issues in animal and human populations. Essential activities within epidemiology encompass the broad areas of study design, data collection, analysis, and interpretation. Biostatistical methods and techniques are relied upon to objectively determine which factors are associated with specific outcomes.

Preventive medicine professionals and other practitioners dealing with this topic must be able to integrate and synthesize information obtained from epidemiological findings with their knowledge from other basic and clinical sciences to design effective disease control and health maintenance programs. This includes the ability to plan surveillance or research activities and to evaluate the results.

General Epidemiology study objectives include:

  • Describe different types of study designs, when they are used, and the advantages and disadvantages of each
  • Interpret properties of diagnostic tests
  • Calculate common measures of disease occurrence
  • Use epidemiologic methods to identify risk factors
  • List and describe the steps in an outbreak investigation
  • Describe guidelines for evaluating causality in epidemiologic studies
  • Describe different routes of disease transmission and sources of infection
  • Describe common disease control and prevention strategies
  • Explain how bias and confounding influence the results of epidemiologic studies • Describe methods for prevention and control of confounding
  • Interpret epidemiologic literature

Biostatistics -- The ACVPM General Exam will require biostatistical knowledge that is essential for a diplomate to operate within the preventive veterinary medicine fields. Basic biostatistics and the statistics used in epidemiologic studies and investigations will be the foci.

General biostatistics books will provide the underlying knowledge required but should be supplemented with an analytic epidemiology text. General Biostatistical study objectives include:

  • Describe common probability distributions
  • Describe data using measures of central tendency and dispersion • Name common statistical tests for different data types and study designs
  • Interpret results of statistical hypothesis tests
  • Interpret regression coefficients and confidence intervals
  • Differentiate between the two types of hypothesis testing errors
  • Describe the elements involved in sample size estimation
  • Determine appropriate statistical methods for epidemiologic studies
  • Interpret common multivariable statistical models used in epidemiologic research

Primary References

Supplementary References

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

Food science in the ‘Farm to Fork” spectrum is essential for a diplomate to operate within the preventive veterinary medicine fields. The Food Safety section includes nine subcategories:

  1. Agents and sources of foodborne illness (including microbiological, virology, chemical, toxicological, and radiological)
  2. Preharvest
  3. Postharvest and Processing
  4. Detection methods and analytics
  5. Food Defense
  6. Food Security (as it relates to Food Safety)
  7. Product safety and consumer exposures
  8. Outbreaks, epidemiology and surveillance
  9. Policy and regulation guidance, controls, and compliance
  10. Current Topics (e.g. biotechnology, nanotechnology, antimicrobial resistance, global health).

Primary References

-Review food science basics in a food science text and current focus areas and hot topics in journals such as the Journal of Food Protection and above cited references. No specific text is required. 

-Review basics on foodborne outbreak investigations and calculations in an appropriate food science or epidemiology textbook. No specific text is required. 

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

The Infectious Diseases section includes eight subcategories:

  1. Immunology and Pathogenesis
  2. Transmission
  3. Pharmaceuticals
  4. Biologics
  5. Diagnostics and Chemicals
  6. Bacterial, Viral, Rickettsial, Parasitic, TSE, and Mycotic Agents
  7. Foreign Animal Diseases
  8. Genera

Primary References

Reference website for bovine brucellosis

Bovine tuberculosis regulatory information

International disease standards

Manual of diagnostic tests and vaccines for terrestrial animals

Aquatic animal health code

NASPHV compendia and recommendations

Merck Veterinary Manual

ISU Veterinary Diagnostic and production animal medicine-disease

American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) Knowledge base

American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) Hot issues

Veterinary accreditation training modules on foreign animal diseases, role of agencies, aquatic animal diseases, antibiotics, etc.

Center for Disease Control (CDC)

Supplementary References

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

The Public Health Administration and Education section includes nine subcategories: Risk Assessment; Communications (including Risk Communication); Governmental Function; Governmental Organization; Laws, Policies and Plans; Leadership; Prevention; Surveillance/Monitoring; and Evaluation.

General Public Health Administration and Education study objectives include:

  • Describe governmental functions (regulatory/rule-making and enforcement, policies, responsibilities, information/data collection and management) that directly impact public health.
  • Understand the organizational structure and define the major federal agencies and departments with functions and responsibilities that pertain to public health.
  • Describe governmental interactions and relationships (local, state, federal) pertaining to public health, including the relationship, responsibilities, and distinctions between environmental services, wildlife services, agriculture and public health.
  • Understand the ten essential public health services.
  • Describe the three levels of prevention (primary, secondary, tertiary).
  • Describe the benefits of a multidisciplinary team of public health professionals working at the local level.
  • Define necessary steps to develop and implement public health plans.
  • Define the responsibilities and integrated relationships of public health with partners in public health preparedness/bioterrorism preparedness, and the veterinary practitioner in emergency management/public health preparedness. Describe the benefits of a multidisciplinary team of public health professionals working at the local level.
  • Define steps to conduct a risk assessment.
  • Understand basics of risk communication and message mapping. Understand the public health communication interactions with diverse sectors of the public-at-large, the media, and government officials.

Primary References

Websites

Supplementary References

This is only a convenience copy of the ACVPM reading list to help find copies of reading materials in local libraries.  It does not replace the official ACVPM reading list. Candidates are responsible for ensuring they use the latest ACVPM reading list.

This guide contains the list of books and journals recommended as study materials for the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine (ACVPM) examination.

Residents are responsible for ensuring they are using the correct edition of a book for their exam.

Please ask your librarian, mentor, or specialty board examination committee if questions arise.

"[This] list of study references is NOT a definitive, exhaustive list for preparing for the ACVPM examinations. A listed reference may be applicable to more than one category. Use this list as a guide, in as much as it represents a compromise between brevity and completeness. You are encouraged to read as much additional material as possible. Reading the current scientific and professional literature (e.g. JAVMA, MMWR, Lancet, NEJM, Science, Journal of Food Protection, etc.) is also necessary to properly prepare for the examinations."

Source: American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine Study References.

This resource updated: 1/05/2018

Source reading list reviewed: 1/05/2018

Source reading list updated by specialty board: 8/2017

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