Qualified and competent?

The law requires that those involved in experiments on animals must be qualified and competent. Qualification is about having the right diplomas and certificates (that are recognized in the Netherlands), competence has to do with having the right, demonstrable experience and competences.

Regarding qualification, there are extensive education requirements, depending on the role you will fulfill in a research project. More information can be found on the website of the 3Rs Center Utrecht Life Sciences (Dutch).

At the moment, competence requirements are under revision. Regulations about how to acquire and identify the right competences are being set. In the meantime our Animal Welfare Officers can advise you on this.

Principal Investigator

The researcher who bears the final responsibility for the animal experiment and submits the application:

Study Director

The researcher who performs the animal experiment:

  • Has a Master’s degree in the relevant field of study and a certificate for the legally required Course on Laboratory Animal Science ór a diploma from a recognised educational programme (MBO-4, HBO, biotechnique or zoological analyst).
  • Is registered with the Animal Welfare Body.
  • Continues to educate him/herself with courses, conferences, skills training.
  • Is demonstrably competent in the use of laboratory animals.
  • Needs to register as researcher animal experiments.

Research analyst / biotechnician

The research analyst involved in the animal experiments:

  • Has a diploma from a recognised educational programme (MBO-4, HBO, biotechnique or zoological analyst) with an animal experiments certificate (MBO-3).
  • Is registered with the Animal Welfare Body.
  • Continues to educate him/herself with courses, conferences, skills training.
  • Is demonstrably competent in the use of laboratory animals.
  • Needs to register according to Article 13f2 Wod.

Animal caretaker

The animal caretaker that works with laboratory animals:

  • Has a recognised MBO level 3 animal caretaker diploma.
  • Is registered with the Animal Welfare Body.
  • Continues to educate him/herself with courses, conferences, skills training.
  • Is demonstrably competent in the use of laboratory animals.
  • Needs to register according to Article 13f2 Wod.

Other Co-Worker

Special rules apply for temporary guest staff, students, interns and medical specialists who participate in experiments on animals. For example, they may only work with laboratory animals while under the supervision of an authorised individual.