ECVDI Program Essentials

NOTE: As of 2016, ECVDI Diplomates will now qualify for the ACVR Certifying Examination after passing the ACVR Preliminary Examination without the need to complete the one-year training program described below. ECVDI Diplomates must join one or more ACVR Societies to take ACVR examinations. ECVDI Diplomates need to pay Society dues only since they already receive the Journal. See the section pertaining to ECVDI Diplomates on the Join an ACVR Society page.



I. Introduction

This document describes in detail the structure and content of a one-year residency training program which will meet the expectations of the American College of Veterinary Radiology (ACVR) and to act as a guide for ECVDI Diplomates desiring qualification for the certifying portion of the ACVR examination. Participants in this program must be ECVDI Diplomates, and have successfully passed the preliminary ACVR examination.

II. Objectives

This one year training program is designed primarily to gain additional expertise and experience in Roentgen diagnosis, diagnostic ultrasound, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and diagnostic nuclear medicine in preparation for the certifying portion of the ACVR examination. ACVR Diplomates at the Training Institution are expected to support the ECVDI Diplomate’s preparation for the certifying examination by providing mock oral examinations and additional training experiences as needed.

III. Training Period

The program shall offer a minimum of one year of postdoctoral medical education in veterinary radiology. The candidate may function as a clinical instructor during the one-year training period, as long as adequate training and supervision are present.

IV. Direction and Supervision

Program Director

  • The program director, in addition to supervising and administering the training program in veterinary radiology, must also be actively involved in the training and instruction of residents.
  • The director must be an active Diplomate of the ACVR and must contribute sufficient time to the training program to ensure adequate direction.


  • The faculty must be committed to the teaching of the residents and ECVDI Diplomates, and the time and effort they devote to the educational program must be documented.
  • The faculty of the program must include at least one Diplomate of the ACVR and two each from the American College of Veterinary Pathology, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, and the American College of Veterinary Surgery.

V. Affiliation Agreement

When the resources of two or more institutions are to be utilized for the clinical education of a candidate in veterinary radiology, letters of agreement must be provided.

VI. Facilities

The program must provide adequate space, equipment, and other pertinent facilities to ensure an effective educational experience in veterinary radiology. The facility must have on-site access to modern radiographic equipment including fluoroscopy, modern B-mode ultrasound, computed tomography and MRI. Veterinary patients in the training facility(ies) must have regular on-site access to these modalities. Access to equipment to support the other core areas need not be on-site, but in those instances organized and maintained self-study modules with actual imaging studies from these modalities must be available.

VII. Clinical Resources

The program in veterinary radiology must provide a sufficient volume and variety of patients for instruction and in addition to dogs, cats, and horses, must include food and exotic animals. If caseload is low, organized teaching files in under-represented species may be substituted. The imaging caseload of the program must be greater than 7,000 imaging studies annually.

VIII. Training Content

  • The program must provide an adequate depth and breadth of clinical experience during the one year period.
  • Clinical rotations must be a directed educational process.
  • Unsupervised clinical responsibility alone does not constitute a suitable educational experience.
  • The candidate must dictate or type out timely reports from the imaging caseload.
  • The program must have sufficient infrastructure to have dictations transcribed such that reports for all imaging studies are available in typewritten or electronic form in a timely fashion (48 hours). At least one ACVR Diplomate has to be available to provide assistance and input in areas of weakness and as needed.
  • The clinical training must provide for supervised responsibility for interpretation and quality control of diagnostic studies, and must ensure that the supervised candidate performs those procedures commonly accepted in all aspects of diagnostic imaging offered by the program.
  • The program must be tailored to the needs of the individual candidate based on his/her previous residency experience.
  • There is no requirement for formal coursework during the one-year training period.
  • There is no requirement for a research project during the one-year training period.
  • Pathology is considered the basis for radiologic diagnosis, and the ECVDI Diplomate must be given the opportunity to attend pathology rounds or have access to written pathology reports generated from the imaging case load.
  • Formal preparation for the ACVR certifying examination must occur in the form of multiple mock oral examinations.

X. Educational Environment

The education in diagnostic radiology should occur in an environment that encourages the interchange of knowledge and experience among candidates and staff in the program, as well as with residents in other major clinical specialties located in those institutions participating in the program.

XII. Teaching File

A teaching file of images referable to all aspects of diagnostic imaging must be available for use by residents. This file should be indexed, coded, and currently maintained.

XIII. Conferences

Conferences and teaching rounds must be correlated and provide for progressive ECVDI Diplomate participation. These should be not only intradepartmental conferences, but should involve each major clinical department. They should be of sufficient frequency.

XIV. Literature Resources

The program shall provide a sufficient variety of journals, references, and resource materials pertinent to progressive levels of education in diagnostic radiology and associated fields, all of which should be immediately accessible for study. In addition, ECVDI Diplomates should have access to a general medical library.