MF9490 – Course in Laboratory Animal Handling

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course meets the demands for legislations and skills given in "Animal Welfare Act (LOV-2009-06-19-97)" and "Regulations on the use of animals in experiments (FOR-2015-06-18-761)" for persons which will use and handle experimental laboratory animals. Students learn how to plan and perform ethical animal experiments. The course qualifies for animal testing in accordance with Articles 23 and 24 of the EU Directive 2010/63/EU. The course follows a suggested common EU education structure provided in Education and training framework .

The theoretical part of the course provides training in mice, rats, rabbits and pigs.

Learning outcome

The course gives an introduction to the relevant legal paragraphs, the physiology of pain, anestesia/analgesia, attitudes towards animal research, alternatives to animal research, and housing of laboratory animals. Furthermore it will be taught how to plan and standardize experiments, handling of animals generally, and how to apply for ethics permission to perform experiments. The course will contain a introduction to the use of model organisms with a focous on mice, rats, rabbits and pig, choice of mammals as research animlals, and the use of genetically engineered animals


The course has been replaced by MF9495T og MF9495P.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

MBV3050 Human Physiology for those who do not have a medical background. Human physiology at the lever of the 3. Semester.

Recommended previous knowledge

MBV3050 Human Physiology for those who do not have a medical background.

Suggested literature (one of the below):

- Handbook of Laboratory Animal Science, Essential Principles and Practices, Vol. 1, Third Edition.

Jann Hau and and Steven J. Schapiro.

- Handbook of Laboratory animal management and welfare (Blackwell Science), Wolfensohn and Lloyd (eds)


The teaching will consist of:

  • Four full days with lecturing.
  • One half day with group tasks, followed by mandatory test.
  • Home assignment (exam).

It is important to read the book on animal handling prior to the course.

25 hours of instruction in practical training:

After theoretical training, the course participant must have 25 hours of instruction in practical training in the use of experimental animals. Practical demonstrations and animal handling under supervision must be organized by the course participant at own institution. Supervisor(s) must certify that training has taken place before the students can access their respective animal department. Documentation on practical training is a prerequisite for obtaining a passed course certificate.


The students must pass an electronic test the last day of the course and deliver a satisfactory home assignment. The home assignment is to fill in an application form similar to the form submitted to Mattilsynet. It may be beneficial for students to work together two by two, but all students must deliver individual exams. The experiments to be described should be either a MSc or a PhD project, if that is relevant, or an example-study. The course organizers may help to identify a mammalian research experiment. Six hours are set aside for exam. Grading: Pass/fail.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a pass/fail scale. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






The course has been replaced by MF9495T og MF9495P.

Teaching language