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Resources for staff and students involved in animal research.

New to animal research and teaching?

These links are a good place to start when considering the use of animals in research and teaching.

Minimising the harm done to animals used in science - The Three 3Rs

This site outlines the 3RS and provides points to consider so that the 3Rs can be applied at the planning stages before any direct work with animals begins

Balancing harm and benefit

This site discusses harm versus benefit of the use of animals. It looks at issues researchers and teachers should consider and what the AEC will consider when reviewing an application.

Control of animal use in science

This site discusses researchers' responsibilities toward animals, in addition to the responsibilities of the Animal Ethics Committee (AEC).

Ethical Guidelines for Australian students using animals or animal tissues for educational purposes, for use by universities and other research organisations

Using animals or their tissues in laboratory classes is a privilege which brings with it responsibilities that go well beyond the need to avoid cruelty to animals. This pamphlet gives some advice to help students and teachers meet these responsibilities and to help them gain maximum benefit from using animals in laboratory classes.

The 3Rs: Replacement, Reduction and Refinement

All researchers and teachers using animals for scientific purposes are required to consider the guiding principles of the 3 Rs: Replacement, Reduction and Refinement.


Investigators and teachers are required by the Code of Practice to consider the principle of replacement of animals with alternative models where possible.


The Code of Practice indicates that applicants are required to consider the principle of reduction to minimise the number of animals used for scientific purposes.


The Code of Practice indicates that applicants are required to consider the principle of refinement to minimise the adverse impact of the intended project on animals.

Has the research been done before?

Consideration of the 3Rs includes reviewing whether the proposed research activities have been conducted previously.

Go3R provides a semantic Internet search engine for alternative methods to animal testing and will enable researchers, supervisors and the AEC to check if the research has been done before.

For more information visit the Go3R website.

Care of animals in research and teaching

The Code of Practice indicates that researchers and teachers have personal responsibility for all matters related to the welfare of the animals they use.

Environmental enrichment

This site provides useful links to learn about improving environments or maintaining appropriate environments for animals used for research and teaching.

Housing and care of laboratory animals

Use this site's links to get some information on dos and don'ts related to animal housing, animal care and welfare.

Do you have any other useful information or websites that could assist other researchers, teachers, supervisors or AEC members? Email the Research Ethics Office and let us know.

Accidental bycatch forms

If your research or teaching activity only involves invertebrate animals, then you do not need to complete an application for ethics approval.

However, if it is likely that vertebrate animals may be caught accidentally, the bycatch forms will need to be completed and returned to the Research Ethics Office for review by the Animal Ethics Committee.

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