Massachusetts Veterinary Technician Association

Continuing Education Regulations and Requirements

Veterinary Technicians are required to complete a total of twelve (12) continuing education units (CEU) per calendar year in order to maintain Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT) status through the Massachusetts Veterinary Technician Association (MVTA).  Up to one-quarter of the annual CEU requirement (3.0 CEUs) may be earned as an instructor.  Continuing Education is defined as education provided for adults outside of the formal education system, consisting of seminars, courses, lectures, or labs that bring participants up to date in a particular area of knowledge or set of skills.

Frequently Asked Questions


What is a CEU?
One CEU is equivalent to a course that last 45-60 minutes in length.  Courses between 30 and 44 minutes will be awarded 0.5 CEU.  Therefore, if a course last 90 minutes it will be awarded 1.5 CEUs.  Courses under 30 minutes will not be recognized as continuing education units by the MVTA. 

Where can I take a continuing education course?
Veterinary technicians may obtain CEUs through a variety of avenues including, but not limited to: online, journal article quizzes, private or corporate veterinary hospitals, and local, regional or national conferences.  (Please see the end of this document for further clarification.)

How do I show evidence of my attendance?
Each CEU must be accompanied by a certificate of attendance that is given to the veterinary technician in order for the course to be considered valid for CEU credit.  The CEU hours printed on the certificate is what will be honored to the veterinary technician.  For conferences with multiple course selections, a complete list of course titles attended by the participant must accompany the certificate and the credit value of each course must be indicated.

Does the speaker make a difference?
All CE must be taught by an approved instructor or lecturer.  An approved instructor is a person who provides an educational experience for people attending a lecture or lab by speaking, demonstrating or other methods of teaching and this person must be either a CVT, LVT, RVT, DVM or VMD.  Other degrees, licenses or certifications outside of the veterinary community (e.g. PhD, MD, CCRP, CPDT-KA) may be approved on an individual basis and at the discretion of the MVTA Continuing Education Committee.

What about RACE, Veterinary Medical Associations (VMAs) and AVMA approved Continuing Education?
The MVTA will recognize courses approved by state VMAs, state VTAs, the AVMA and RACE.  Credit hours will be awarded in conjunction with the administrating body, and certificates must be accompanied by appropriate documentation including course title, speaker name and credentials, and course lengths. 

Can I receive credit for courses where I am the instructor?
Yes.  The MVTA will accept up to three (3) credit hours per calendar year of continuing education courses created and presented by an individual applying for (re)certification.  This includes didactic lectures, on-line courses, lunch and learns, and journal articles.  Course title and summary, length of course and venue presented must be provided in order to be considered.  Courses will be approved on an individual basis and at the discretion of the MVTA Continuing Education Committee.  

Will non-veterinary or non-medical courses be accepted?
Yes.  The MVTA will accept up to three (3) credit hours per calendar year of continuing education courses taken outside of the field of veterinary medicine.  These topics include, but are not limited to: animal behavior, business practices and human resources.  Submissions must be accompanied appropriate documentation including instructor qualifications, course description and length of course.  Courses will be approved on an individual basis and at the discretion of the MVTA Continuing Education Committee.

Is On the Job Training considered Continuing Education?
No.  On the Job Training is typically provided to staff who work at a particular practice or institution and is specific to that work environment.  This type of education is typically performed on the floor or in an in-service type setting.  This type of continuing education is not open to the veterinary profession at large and is typically a requirement for employment and will therefore not be considered Continuing Education by the MVTA.

Are In House In-services or Lunch and Learns accepted at Continuing Education Units?
Sometimes.  If in-services are practice-specific (e.g. training on using a new piece of equipment, or how to check in a patient into the surgery department), then they are not considered CE by the MVTA CE-Subcommittee.  If the in-service provided is on more general topics that are ubiquitous throughout veterinary medicine (e.g. anesthetic monitoring or diabetes mellitus), then they will be granted CEUs by the MVTA Continuing Education Committee

Are Educational (College) credits accepted at Continuing Education Units?
No.  Any course that is offered by an educational institution (e.g. colleges, universities, high schools, trade schools, etc.) for educational credit that leads to either a degree or certificate will not be considered Continuing Education by the MVTA.

Further Clarifications:


Journal Continuing Education

A journal is published on a regular basis and is used to disseminate the results of research or reviews of interest to people working in the field of veterinary medicine. Material submitted for publication in a journal is often subject to peer review. Several journals offer CE credits for reading the article and taking a quiz.  Any certificate received for taking CE relating to a journal article will be approved for the CEU hours listed on the certificate.

Journal Article Publication
A journal is published on a regular basis and is used to disseminate the results of research or reviews of interest to people working in the field of veterinary medicine. Material submitted for publication in a journal is often subject to peer review.  Articles will be approved for 1.0 CEU each. Veterinary technicians who publish articles in journals will be approved for an annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs for articles and a copy of the article must be provided along with the CVT renewal form. 

Internet course
RACE-approved courses offered by a recognized online veterinary website (e.g. VSPN or VetMedTeam) will be accepted by the MVTA as Continuing Education.  CEUs will be awarded based on the hours awarded on the certificate provided upon completion of the course.

Internet course instructor
Instructors are awarded an annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs for RACE approved online course regardless of the number of times it was taught.  Each course is eligible for 1.0 CEU. A copy of the webpage advertising the class must accompany the CVT renewal form where it lists course description and the instructor’s name.

Lab
A lab is defined as an interactive educational experience where one or more instructors teach a small group specific skills or techniques. Labs often allow participants to work with equipment, animals, or materials used in veterinary medicine. CEU will be awarded based on the hours awarded on the certificate provided upon completion of the lab.

Lab instructor
Lab Instructors are awarded an annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs for each lab instructed regardless of the number of times it was taught.  Each lab is eligible for 1.0 CEU. A copy of the conference program highlighting the lab instructor’s name and a description of the lab that was provided to participants must accompany the CVT renewal form. Serving as a lab assistant will not be eligible for CEU credit.

Lunch and Learn or In House CE
If a work place provides educational events that are focused on clinic-specific workflows, skills or Standard Operating Procedures, the event will not be considered continuing education by the MVTA Continuing Education Committee.  If, however, the institution provides a lecture based or hands on instructional education on a topic in veterinary medicine that is ubiquitous throughout the profession, the MVTA Continuing Education Committee will award CEUs to the events.  Topics accepted will be at the discretion of the MVTA Continuing Education Committee and CEUs will be awarded based on the hours awarded on the certificate provided upon completion of the lecture or lunch and learn.

Lunch and Learn or In House CE Lecturer
Instructors are awarded an annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs for each lecture given regardless of the number of times it was provided.  Each lecture/lab will be eligible for 1.0 CEU. A copy of the program highlighting the instructor’s name and a description of the lecture that was provided to participants must accompany the CVT renewal form.  If the CE was approved through the MVTA only a certificate showing you as the instructor must be provided.

Lecture
A lecture is a didactic educational experience where an expert in the field presents material on a particular subject. Lectures are typically not interactive and do not allow participants to work with equipment, animals, or materials used in veterinary medicine.  Lectures will be approved for the    CEU hours listed on the certification. Veterinary technicians must attend a MVTA recognized meeting for it to be approved (see below definition).

Lecturer/Instructor
A person who provides an educational experience for people attending a lecture or lab by speaking, demonstrating and other methods of teaching at a nationally or locally recognized meeting or RACE approved internet course. Instructors are awarded an annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs for each lecture given regardless of the number of times it was provided.  Each lecture is eligible for 1.0 CEU. A copy of the conference program highlighting the instructor’s name and a description of the lecture that was provided to participants must accompany the CVT renewal form. If the CE was approved through the MVTA only a certificate showing you as the instructor must be provided.

MVTA Recognized Meetings
The MVTA Continuing Education Committee recognizes Continuing Education from all national conferences including, but not limited to: IVECCS, ACVIM, AVMA, AAHA, NAVC, ACVO, ACVS and the CVC.  All RACE approved meetings on the subject of veterinary medicine and VMA approved meetings will      also be recognized.  Proof of attendance is required.  In the case where the conference allows participants to complete their own attendance sheet, the sheet must be provided along with any certificates showing the maximum hours attendees could obtain.

Newsletter Article
A newsletter is a publication primarily used to provide news and information for members of a nationally recognized organization such as the VECCTOR or AVTA newsletter. These articles are not generally peer reviewed.  An in-house (in-clinic), state or local newsletter does not qualify for CEU.  Veterinary technicians who publish articles in nationally recognized newsletters will be approved for 1.0 CEUs for an article pending a copy of the article from the newsletter accompanies the CVT renewal form.  An annual maximum of 3.0 CEUs will be approved for newsletter articles. Each newsletter article is eligible for 1.0 CEU.  Newsletter articles submitted to the MVTA for use in the MVTA newsletter will be considered on a case by case basis for approval by the MVTA Continuing Education Committee.