Certification Levels

Holding Multiple Certifications

The SRA certification may be held in conjunction with either the SRT or SRS certification. However, the SRS and SRT certifications cannot be held simultaneously since the SRS certification builds on knowledge required for the SRT level, and therefore supersedes it. It is not necessary to obtain the SRT certificate prior to sitting for the SRS exam.

Get Certified

Important Tips!

  1. If you have questions, email the Certification Committee.
  2. Before submitting payment, review the complete application package for the certification level you wish to complete.
  3. Ensure you will be able to meet all of the specific requirements listed in the application package.
  4. Plan ahead!  Completing all the requirements listed for SRA, SRT and SRS typically takes 1 year.
  5. Successful completion of each certification level involves two components.
    1. A complete application package is received, reviewed by our committee and deemed acceptable (ie. meets the requirements listed). Case logs may be combined and do not have to be uploaded separately.
    2. The candidate sits and passes the certification exam.
  6. The ASR Certifications Committee will only review applications uploaded to the ASR mydocs account if payment has been received.
  7. Ensure your complete application package is uploaded no later than April 15th of the year you intend to take the exam.
  8. Applicants will receive notification the first week of July confirming acceptance to take the exam, or, a request for additional information.  If more information is required, you will be contacted within 1 – 2 weeks.  After this is provided, you will either be accepted or rejected to sit the exam.
  9. If the reason for rejection is “insufficient cases”, you will be given the opportunity to defer to the following year.
  10. Start studying as soon as possible!  A list of references can be found Resources Section.

Candidates should include all of the cases they perform in their log in order to accurately outline their relevant experience. The log reinforces the importance of monitoring outcomes as a life-long responsibility of surgeons and anesthetists performing aseptic survival surgery. It is the responsibility of the candidates’ organization to review the log and attest to its accuracy.

The cases reflected in the log must occur over a 12 month period, with no more than three years transpiring between the oldest case and the date of application. In certain cases, exceptions may be made at the discretion of the Certification Committee and the Academy’s President.

View CEU Requirements

Certification Resources

The lists of references below have the ISBN listed at the end of each listing. The ISBN or ASIN can be used to locate the reference at a bookstore or for searching on an online web site such as Amazon, iowastatepress.com or in a library. When studying always use the latest editions of the references that are available. Please keep in mind that you should seek other references if you cannot determine or find answers to topics that you are studying for the exam.

These references are used to gather information to create questions for the exams, and, not all of the contents of a reference are used. Please use these references to understand the concepts of topics for the exam and not memorize or study the references in full. The best types of study guides are things that you do everyday in your work environment and the knowledge that you learn from the experience of others.

List to subject to change without notice.

  1. 2000 Report of the AVMA Panel on Euthanasia; JAVMA 218: No. 5, 2001
  1. Research Animal Anesthesia, Analgesia, and Surgery; Smith, A.; Swindle, M., Scientist Center for Animal Welfare, 1994, ISBN 081381829X
  1. Fundamental Techniques in Surgery; 2nd edition; Knecht, C.D.; Allen, A.R.; Williams, D.J.; Johnson, J.H.; W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia, 1981, ISBN 0721613927
  1. Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians; McCurnin, D.M.; W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia, 1994, ISBN 0721606121
  1. Veterinary Anesthesia; Lumb, W.V.; Jones, E.W.; Lea & Febiger, Philadelphia, 1997, ISBN 0683082388
  1. Small Animal Surgery, An Atlas of Operative Techniques; Wingfield, W.; W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia, 1979, ISBN 0721694632
  1. Small Animal Anesthesia; Warren, R.G.; the C.V. Mosby Co., 1983, ISBN 0801653983
  1. Veterinary Endosurgery; Freeman, L.J.; Mosby, Inc., St. Louis, 1999. Part I, Principles of Endosurgery, pp1-102, ISBN 0815133219
  1. Ethicon Wound Closure Manual (1994), ASIN B000AXQFG0
  2. Veterinary Anesthesia & Analgesia Support Group

  See the chart for an overview of Question Distribution.

SRA Sample Questions:

1.) A correct statement regarding doxapram hydrochloride (Dopram-V) is that it is a:

  1. Local anesthetic.
  2. Narcotic antagonist.
  3. Cardiac depressant.
  4. Respiratory stimulant.

2.) Animals which receive barbiturate anesthesia while in a state of alkalosis will require a:

  1. A longer induction period
  2. A shorter induction period
  3. No change in the induction period

3.) One of the following is not an advantage of a non-breathing system?

  1. Economical
  2. Soda Lime not required
  3. Nitrous oxide can be used safely
  4. Dry, cold gases are delivered to the patient.

4.) Cardiac output is calculated by:

  1. CO x SVR
  2. HR x CO
  3. HR x SV
  4. PCV x Hb

5.) When monitoring blood pressure the heart response during systolic is:

  1. Relaxation of the heart
  2. Contraction of the heart
  3. Arrhythmia of the heart

6.) Increasing the kV for a radiograph will:

  1. Decrease the penetrating ability of the x-ray photons
  2. Have no effect on the radiograph
  3. Increase the penetrating ability of the x-ray photons
  4. Produce a whiter image with high contrast.

7.) You are going to anesthetize a 125 lb. pig and want to pre-op the pig with the following:

  • 1.5% atropine at 0.02 mg/lb IM
  • 10% ketamine at 5 mg/lb IM
  • Innovar Vet at 1ml/30 lbs IM

How many mgs of each drug are you going to give the pig?

  1. Atropine – 4.5, Ketamine – 450, and Innovar Vet 2.99
  2. Atropine – 6.5, Ketamine – 130, and Innovar Vet 9.00
  3. Atropine – 2.5, Ketamine – 625, and Innovar Vet 4.16
  4. Atropine – 3.25, Ketamine – 750, and Innovar Vet 4.30

ANSWERS: 1-D, 2-A, 3-D, 4-C, 5-B, 6-C, 7-C

  See the chart for an overview of Question Distribution.

SRT Sample Questions:

1.) When performing a cannulation surgery on a rat or mouse, aseptic technique is not necessary?

  1. True
  2. False

2.) List the largest to smallest in suture size?

  1. 7-0, 2-0, 1, 2
  2. 1,0,2-0,7-0
  3. 3,2,1,0
  4. B & C
  5. None of the Above

3.) Why are intra-peritoneal injections given in the lower left quadrant of the abdomen in the rat?

  1. Accessibility
  2. Cecum is located in the left quadrant
  3. Cecum is located in the right quadrant
  4. Intravenous injection are too rapidly absorbed

4.) What type of needle is best used for closing skin (choose the one used on dense tissue)?

  1. Cutting needle
  2. Round bodied
  3. Reverse cutting
  4. Taper cut

5.) The gallbladder of the rat is relatively larger than that of the mouse?

  1. True
  2. False

6.) Cardiac output is computed by multiplying:

  1. Minute volume times heart rate
  2. Residual volume times left ventricular pressure
  3. Systolic pressure times heart rate
  4. Stroke volume times heart rate

7.) What agency is responsible for enforcement of regulations relative to surgery that are found in the Animal Welfare Act?

  1. NIH (National Institutes of Health)
  2. USDA (United States Department of Agriculture)
  3. FDA (Food and Drug Administration)
  4. IACUC (Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee)

ANSWERS: 1-B, 2-D, 3-C, 4-A, 5-B, 6-D, 7-B

  See the chart for an overview of Question Distribution.

SRS Sample Questions:

1.) Which of the following suture is non-absorbable?

  1. Surgical gut
  2. Polyglycolic acid (dexon)
  3. Polyglactin (vicryl)
  4. Polypropelene

2.) Which of the following mechanisms is preferred for abdominal viscera retraction?

  1. Moistened laparotomy pads
  2. Allis tissue retractors
  3. Weitlaner retractors
  4. Balfour retractors

3.) At a surgical level of general anesthesia with spontaneous ventilation the tidal volume of the lung is usually

__________ compared with pre-anesthetic levels.

  1. Not affected
  2. Decreased
  3. Increased by 10%
  4. Increased by 50%

4.) The anatomical term describing the hip joint is the:

  1. Femoropatellar joint
  2. Acetabulum
  3. Coxofemoral joint
  4. Atlanto-occipital joint

5.) In shock, blood loss leads to acidosis.

  1. True
  2. False

6.) Minimally invasive surgery along with intra-abdominal insufflations tend to (choose the answer that is 100% correct):

  1. Improve post-operative recovery, decrease ileus, increase venous return
  2. Improve post-operative recovery, increase ileus, increase venous return
  3. Improve post-operative recovery, decrease ileus, decrease venous return
  4. None of the above

ANSWERS: 1-D, 2-A, 3-B, 4-C, 5-A, 6-D

Each of the following files are PowerPoint 97-2003 Presentation files (.ppt). Download times will vary depending on Internet connection speeds and the size of the file being downloaded. Several of the following files are large and will require longer download periods.

Q: When should my application be submitted by?
A: April 15th

Q: When will I be notified of my acceptance/ exclusion?
A: A certification letter will be mailed by July 1st.

Q: Where can I take the exam?
A: Currently, the exam is offered only at the yearly meeting of the Academy, which is held in different cities in September or October of each year; the site will be known at least one or two years in advance. Contact the Academy’s office or Certification Committee for information for the location in a given year.

Q: What do I do if I’m excluded?
A: Contact us; the review may be extended for applications that are not initially accepted but may be with further clarification from the applicant.

Q: Should I only review the study guide and not bother with the reading list?
A: Like the reading list, the study guide is another reference and should not be memorized or used by itself.

Q: How do I submit my documentation to take each test?
A: Packets are now submitted electronically by uploading the completed application, caselogs and narratives appropriate to the applicable certification exam to https://www3.mydocsonline.com/cupload.aspx?id=ASRftp; payment of the $200 non-refundable application fee must be made before application will be accepted.

Q: I have met the minimum number of cases in my case log but it only spans 7 months. Is that acceptable?
A: No. Case logs must span at least one year to demonstrate the length of experience of the applicant. The one year minimum also allows the applicant to show proficiency in their procedures.

Q: What is the fee for taking each exam?
A: There is a $200 application fee each time the candidate applies to take a new certification exam. There is no fee to retake a failed exam if it is taken the year after the candidate did not pass.

Q: How many questions are on the test?
A: 200 Total:
150 Multiple choice and True/False
50 Questions on re-printed pictures/figures

Q: What is a passing score?
A: You must obtain a score of 68% in order to pass your exam.

Q: How long do I have to take the test?
A: 4 hours are allocated.

Q: I can’t sit for the first year’s exam; can I sit for the second year?
A: Yes, but you must contact the committee as soon as you know you won’t be able to take the exam to receive a deferment. You may be asked to submit an updated log depending on the dates of your original cases, and you will need to submit an application the following year (no additional fee).

Q: I can’t sit for the first year’s exam or the second year exam; can I sit for the third year’s exam?
A: Yes, but you must contact the committee as soon as you know you won’t be able to take the exam to receive a deferment. You will then need to submit an updated two (2) year case log, two (2) updated narratives applicable to your exam, and your original application (no additional fee).

Q: Can I be excluded from taking the exam?
A: Yes, the committee will contact you with the reason.

Q: Will I be required to be a member in good standing with the Academy to maintain my certification(s)?
A: Yes, this will be an annual requirement.

Q: How many Continuing Education Credits (CEU) do I need to keep my certification?
A: Minimum of 15 CEUs per 24-month period.

Q: Is the Annual Meeting of the Academy of Surgical Research the only place I can earn CEUs?
A: No, relevant surgical lectures at other meetings is acceptable; speaking or presenting, conducting labs or participating in them, publishing papers or aiding in publishing papers or auto-tutorials are acceptable ways of earning CEUs.

Q: Who do I contact for questions pertaining to an exam?
A: Academy of Surgical Research
15490 101st Ave N #100
Maple Grove, MN 55369
(763) 235-6464

OR…

Email the Certification Committee

ASR Certification Study Guide PDF

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