Animal ethics

Researchers who use live non-human vertebrate and higher-order invertebrate animals for experimental or teaching purposes are bound by the Australian Code for the Care and Use of Animals for Scientific Purposes and relevant Australian State and Commonwealth legislation together with University regulations and policies. All research has additional research integrity responsibilities. Find out here about Research Integrity at La Trobe.

All research and teaching projects involving live non-human vertebrates and higher-order invertebrates must be reviewed and approved by the La Trobe University Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) before project begins. Please contact the Ethics, Integrity and Biosafety team if you are not sure if an ethics approval is required.

Please see our events page for our upcoming events.

Getting your project approved

How to apply

  1. Download and complete the following relevant documents:
  2. Please ensure all animal facilities nominated in your application are listed as La Trobe Licensed Premises (PDF 440KB).
  3. Optional – consider a LARTF Vet  and/or Animal Ethics Advisor for a pre-review of your application email or
  4. Submit by closing date to:
  5. If you have any questions please contact the Animal Ethics Team +61 3 9479 1443

Time to approval

The time to approval (business days) has largely been reduced by implementing new processes and revising the out of session review process. By providing clear and directed instructions to researchers, the AEC is able to review an increased number of matters and has deferred less application to the next meeting.

24 days30 days20 days
79 projects58 projects50 projects

Meeting closing dates

AEC Meeting Dates*

Please submit New Applications, responses and request for amendments by COB on the submission date

Submission DateMeeting Date
Monday 03 February 2020Thursday 13 February 2020 
Monday 02 March 2020Thursday 12 March 2020
Monday 06 April 2020Thursday 16 April 2020
Monday 04 May 2020Thursday 14 May 2020
Monday 01 June 2020Thursday 11 June 2020
Monday 06 July 2020Thursday 16 July 2020
Monday 03 August 2020Thursday 13 August 2020
Monday 31 August 2020Thursday 10 September 2020
Monday 28 September 2020Thursday 08 October 2020
Monday 02 November 2020Thursday 12 November 2020
Monday 30 November 2020Thursday 10 December 2020

*  Meeting dates may be subject to change without notice

Training and assessment of competency

The Training and Assessment Form is to be used where a participant in an AEC-approved project requires training in a procedure or procedures and that training is not provided by La Trobe Animal Research and Teaching Facility (LARTF) staff. The form should be completed by the person providing the training.

Download the [NEW] Training and Assessment Form [DOC 50KB]

The Competency Assessment Form is to be used for attesting to the competence of a person to perform a procedure or procedures listed on a Training and Assessment Plan that forms part of an AEC-approved project. The person providing the competency assessment will normally be the trainer named in the Training and Assessment Plan.

Download the Competency Assessment Form [PDF 1.2MB]

Where a person has been assessed as competent by another Institution or organisation to perform a procedure or procedures that will form part of an AEC-approved project at La Trobe University, a Confirmation of Competency Form can be completed and submitted with the application for review by the La Trobe University Animal Ethics Committee.

Download the AEC Confirmation of Competency Form [PDF 1MB]

The Statement of Competency to Perform Procedures Involving Animals form is to be completed by persons who have previously been recognised by the La Trobe University Animal Ethics Committee as competent to perform procedures on animals. Once competence in those procedures is confirmed by the AEC, the person will be verified as competent in the procedures on the LARTF Training and Competency Register (TRACR).

Download the AEC Statement of Competency Form [PDF 3MB]

Animal ethics committee (AEC)

Animal Ethics Committee

The Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) at La Trobe University is comprised of representatives from the University, welfare organisations and the community and serves the following licensed Scientific Procedures Premises:

The persons nominated under Section 26(2) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986, to be responsible for any procedures carried out at the above-mentioned premises, are appointed by the Head of School/organisational unit. Read the AEC terms of reference

Contact the committee

All correspondence, enquiries and submissions should be addressed to Animal Ethics at

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)

Feedback and complaints

For complaints or feedback about:

  • an approved project
  • the conduct of a researcher
  • the conduct of the Animal Ethics Committee (AEC)

please contact Dr Heidi Gaulke - Manager Ethics, Integrity and Biosafety

T: +61 3 9479 1443


Legislation, codes and guidelines

Managing post-approval requirements

Amendments to approved AEC projects

Amendments to AEC-approved projects can only be granted if the amendment is minor and there is no significant change to the direction of the study.

Amendments may include (1) a change in animal numbers, (2) change in procedures / techniques, (3) an addition / removal of investigators, or (4) an extension of the study duration (5) administrative changes. Please refer to Guidance on review and process of amendment requests (PDF 144KB) for more information.

The request to amend an approved animal ethics application can be made by the chief investigator in the form of an application to the  Animal Ethics Committee (

Applicants must complete the [NEW] AEC Request for Amendment Form [DOC 60KB] with precise details about the proposed changes to the approved application and reasoning as to why the amendment is deemed necessary.

In addition, the application must have attached an electronic copy of the most recent version of the AEC-approved project application form with the proposed amendments included and highlighted or asterisked (**) at either end of the change. Please ensure to update all the relevant attachments.

Annual and final reports

Annual reports

Chief investigators must submit a progress report by the anniversary date of an AEC project approval.

Download the [NEW] Annual Report Form [DOC 59KB]

Final reports

Chief investigators must submit a final report within three (3) months of conclusion of an AEC-approved project.

Download the [NEW] Final Report Form [DOC 61KB]

Unexpected adverse events

Investigators are required by law to provide prompt notification of any unexpected adverse events, Clause 2.4.34 of the 8th Edition of the Code. It is a requirement that the Chief Investigator notify the AEC Chair and the LARTF Senior Manager immediately and submit an Unexpected Adverse Report Form as soon as practicable to the AEC.

Download the [NEW] Unexpected Adverse Event Report Form [DOC 52KB]

FAQs and Guidelines

Coming soon


Coming soon