Animal Ethics: Training

Provider business unit: Research Ethics Team »
As of April 2021, the ANZCCART ComPass training has replaced the Animal Ethics Seminar – see below for details of how the new training program will be implemented.

Training is essential in ensuring high levels of animal welfare are maintained in both the biomedical and wildlife fields. Anyone working with animals at ANU must complete training before commencing work with animals.

Primary Investigators are responsible for providing the AEEC with details on the training and experience of all staff and students working with animals under their approved protocols.


Compulsory animal ethics training

Updated June 2022

All ANU personnel who will be working with animals, including students, animal facility staff and researchers conducting observation-only wildlife studies, must complete Animal Ethics training prior starting any work with animals.

Investigators are required to indicate the course completed (ANML03/40 or ComPass) and completion date when adding investigators to new protocols (via ARIES) and existing protocols (via the New Investigator form). 

New ANU staff, students and animal care personnel

New ANU investigators and animal care personnel must complete Animal Ethics training the ANZCCART ComPass Animal Ethics Training prior starting any work with animals.

After completing ComPass, you must also complete a refresher training session at least every 5 years.

Existing ANU staff, students and animal care personnel

The ANZCCART ComPass Animal Ethics Training replaces the Biomedical and Wildlife Animal Ethics Seminars (ANML03, ANML40). 

Staff and Students who completed the Animal Ethics Seminar ANML03/40 must complete the ComPass course when their 5 year refresher training is due.

External Co-Investigators

While not mandatory, the ANU encourages all external co-investigators to complete the ComPass course prior to working with animals on ANU protocols.

Completing the ComPass Course

This is an online course divided into 7 modules and a final quiz. Completion can be self-paced over several sessions; it takes on average 3-4 hours to complete the entire course.

  1. Go to the ANZCCART website and complete the course in your browser. Please note that you only need to complete “Phase 1” training (7 modules and the quiz). After completing the course, you will receive a certificate of completion.
  2. Upload your certificate to your HORUS training record. Use the date on the certificate as “Effective Date” and enter “Animal Ethics” in the Licence field.
    • For students who do not have access to HORUS, their supervisor will need to keep a copy of the completion certificate on file.

After completing ComPass, you must also complete a refresher training session at least every 5 years.

Primary Investigators and student supervisors

Updated June 2022

To compliment the online training and to give ANU context, an on campus (or virtual) training session is available for Primary Investigators and supervisors of students working with animals. This  session can be booked with with a member of Veterinary Services Team by emailing

This session will cover the expectations of supervisors working with students in animal based research, an introduction to the ethics process at ANU, a brief tour of the resources available via the ANU website and an opportunity to meet the staff working in the Research Services Division who support your animal ethics and animal welfare management.

Please contact with any questions.

Specific training programs


Updated Sep 2020

Both biomedical and wildlife researchers must complete the below training prior to undertaking anaesthesia without supervision. We recommend all training be completed within 6 months, with practical training and assessment to be done in your own laboratory environment as per your approved ethics protocol.

  1. Complete four NC3Rs online theory modules (EU20, EU21-1, EU21-2, EU21-3)
  2. Complete APF course “Introduction to Anaesthesia” (ANML22)
  3. Further practical training under the supervision of trained competent individuals
  4. Competency assessment by one of the ANU veterinarians

For more information, see the Anaesthesia Training material at Animal Ethics policies, procedures and guidelines.

Biomedical training programs

Depending on the nature of your work with animals, you may be required to complete some of the following training programs. Talk to your supervisor if you're not sure which requirements apply to you.


The Tasmanian Veterinary Surgeon’s Regulation 2012 requires that a responsible veterinary surgeon must assess the competency of any individual undertaking microchipping in animals annually. ANU Vet Services can provide this assessment –  please contact them for details. For further information please see the ANU Microchipping Training and Competency Assessment Framework.

Bird and bat banding

The AEEC requires investigators conducting studies that involve the capture and banding of bats or birds to complete appropriate training and hold the correct banding authority as required by the Australian Bird and Bat Banding Scheme (ABBBS). For further information on training and levels of authority contact the appropriate ABBBS regional organiser.

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