Department: Pathobiology and Population Sciences

Campus: Hawkshead

Research Centres: RVC Animal Welfare Science and Ethics, Veterinary Epidemiology, Economics and Public Health

Tierney is a postdoctoral researcher on the project 'Putting equine airway inflammatory disease back on track', funded by the HBLB. The project will be conducted over 2016-2018 and will consist of a best evidence systematic literature review and follow up surveys and interviews. 

Tierney studied Animal Behaviour as a BSc and MSc. Her MSc was undertaken at the University of Exeter and included a project on olfactory enrichment for fishing cats in captivity. Tierney maintains a keen interest in behaviour and welfare.

Tierney joined the RVC in 2008 after a brief period as a receptionist at a charity veterinary clinic, where she still volunteers. Tierney worked as a Research Assistant within the LIVE (Lifelong Independent Veterinary Education) Centre under such mentors as Prof. Sarah Baillie, Prof. Stephen May and Dr Ayona Silva-Fletcher. She was able to work on a variety of projects regarding veterinary and veterinary nursing student education. Her main interest was developed in the area of interprofessional education, where members of two or more professions learn with, from and about each other. It was through this interest that Tierney undertook a PhD, supervised by Prof. David Guile (Institute of Education, University College London) and Prof. Stephen May. Her thesis was entitled: Insights from Veterinary Interprofessional Interactions: Implications for Interprofessional Education (IPE) in the Veterinary Curricula. Her award was made on 28th June 2016.

After her PhD, Tierney undertook a one year post-doc within the LIVE Centre which included working on projects regarding the impact of distance learning CPD on Sri Lankan veterinarians and the experiences of participants of the Certificate of Advanced Veterinary Practice. Tierney is now undertaking her second post-doc, a two year position within the Department of Pathobiology and Population Science (PPS), within the Veterinary Epidemiology, Economics and Public Health (VEEPH) group. She is researching equine inflammatory airway disease and the perceptions of veterinarians with regard to the disease. The project team is: Jackie Cardwell, Laurent Couëtil, Carrie Roder, Ken Smith, Martin Whiting and Claire Wylie. The project was funded by the HBLB.

Tierney’s particular interests remain as qualitative and mixed methods research, disseminating research though publications, and developing interprofessional education within the RVC’s curricula. 

Since joining the RVC, Tierney has conducted research in a number of areas alongside several different research teams. The overarching focus of the research has been veterinary education. Her main areas of research have included interprofessional education, use of haptic simulators, technology in education, and wellbeing.

A list of Tierney’s publications can be found in the ‘Selected Publications’ tab. 


  • Dixon, W.H.R., Kinnison, T., May, S.A. (online first) Understanding the primary care paradigm: An experiential learning focus of the early veterinary graduate. Veterinary Record 
  • Kinnison, T., May, S.A. 2017. Continuing Professional Development: Researching Non-Technical Competencies can support Cognitive Reappraisal and Reduced Stress in Clinicians. Veterinary Record, 181(10):266
  • Kinnison, T, Guile, D., May, S.A. 2017. Working in Professional Teams. IN Veterinary Medical Education: A Practical Guide. Eds Jennifer L. Hodgson and Jacquelyn M. Pelzer. PP 419-432
  • Kinnison, T., Whiting, M., Magner, K., Mossop, L. 2017. Evaluating #VetFinals: can Twitter help students prepare for final examinations? Medical Teacher. 39(4):436-443



  • Kinnison, T. 2016. When veterinary teams are faced with clients who can't afford to pay. Veterinary Record, 179 (23) 594-595
  • Kinnison, T., May, S.A. 2016. Evidence-Based Healthcare: The Importance of Effective Interprofessional Working for High Quality Veterinary Services, a UK Example. Veterinary Evidence, [S.l.], v. 1, n. 4, nov. 2016.
  • Kinnison, T., Guile, D., May, S.A. 2016. The Case of Veterinary Interprofessional Practice: From One Health to a World of its Own. Journal of Interprofessional Education and Practice, 4: 51-57.
  • Whiting, M., Kinnison, T., Mossop, L. 2016. Teaching Tip: Developing an intercollegiate Twitter forum to improve student exam study and digital professionalism.  Journal of Veterinary Medical Education 43(3): 282-286.



  • Kinnison, T., Guile, D., May, S.A. 2015. Veterinary team interactions, part two: the personal effect. Veterinary Record, 177: 541.
  • Kinnison, T., Guile, D., May, S.A. 2015. Errors in veterinary practice: preliminary lessons for building better veterinary teams. Veterinary Record, 177: 492.
  • Kinnison, T., May, S.A., Guile, D. 2015. Veterinary team interactions, part one: the practice effect. Veterinary Record, 177: 419.
  • May, S.A., Kinnison, T.  2015 Continuing professional development: learning leads to change in clinical practice.  Veterinary Record, 177: 13.
  • Kinnison, T., Dernat, S. 2015. The Winding Path to a PhD in Veterinary Education. Veterinary Record, 176: 8-10.



  • Kinnison, T. 2014. Working together: researching interprofessional education. Veterinary Record, 174: 24.
  • Kinnison, T., May, S.A., Guile, D. 2014. Inter-Professional Practice: From Veterinarian to the Veterinary Team. Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, 41(2):172-8.



  • Bachynsky, E.A., Dale, V.H.M., Kinnison, T., Gazzard, J., Baillie, S. 2013. A survey of the opinions of recent veterinary graduates and employers regarding early career business skills. Veterinary Record, 172(23): 604.
  • Bates, L., Crowther, E., Bell, C., Kinnison, T., Sarah Baillie. 2013. Development of the Animal Management and Husbandry Online Placement Tool. Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, 40(4): 349-354.
  • Kinnison, T., May, S.A. 2013. Veterinary career ambitions correlate with gender and past experience, with current experience influencing curricular perspectives. Veterinary Record, 172(12): 313.



  • Ogden, U., Kinnison, T., May, S.A. 2012. Attitudes to Animal Euthanasia do not Correlate with Acceptance of Human Euthanasia or Suicide. Veterinary Record, 171(7): 174.
  • Quinn, C., Kinnison, T., May, S.A. 2012. Care and justice orientations to moral decision-making in veterinary students. Veterinary Record, 171: 446-450.
  • Kinnison, T., Lumbis, R., Orpet, H., Gregory, S. and Baillie, S. 2012. How to run Talking Walls: an inter-professional education resource. The Veterinary Nurse, 3(1): 4-11.



  • Baillie, S., Kinnison, T., Forrest, N., Dale, V.H.M., Ehlers, J.P., Koch, M., Mándoki, M., Ciobotaru, E., de Groot, E., Boerboom, T.B.B., van Beukelen, P. 2011. Developing an Online Professional Network for Veterinary Education: The NOVICE Project. Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, 38(4): 395-403.
  • Kinnison, T., Orpet, H., Pullen, S., McNae, J., Bell, C., Gregory, S., Baillie, S. 2011. Development of the VN online clinical placement tool. The Veterinary Nurse, 2(8): 428-433.
  • Rhind, S.M., Baillie, S., Kinnison, T., Shaw, D.J., Bell, C.E., Mellanby, R.J., Hammond, J., Hudson, N.P.H., Whittington, R.E., Donnelly, R. 2011. The transition into veterinary practice: Opinions of recent graduates and final year students. BMC Medical Education, 11:64.
  • Kinnison, T., Lumbis, R., Orpet, H., Welsh, P., Gregory, S., Baillie, S. 2011. Piloting Interprofessional Education Interventions with Veterinary and Veterinary Nursing Students. Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, 38(3): 311-318.
  • Dale, V.H.M., Kinnison, T., Short, N., May, S., Baillie, S. 2011. Web 2.0 and the veterinary profession: current trends and future implications for lifelong learning. Veterinary Record, 169(18):467.
  • Low-Beer, N., Kinnison, T., Baillie, S., Kneebone, R., Bello, F., Higham, J. 2011. Hidden practice revealed: using task analysis and novel simulator design to evaluate the teaching of digital rectal examination. The American Journal of Surgery, 201(1): 46-53.



  • Bell, C., Baillie, S., Kinnison, T., Cavers, A. 2010. Preparing veterinary students for extramural clinical placement training: Issues identified & a possible solution. Journal of Veterinary Medical Education, 37:190-197.



  • Kinnison, T., Forrest, N.D., Frean, S.P., Baillie, S. 2009. Teaching Bovine Abdominal Anatomy: Use of a Haptic Simulator. Anatomical Sciences Education, 2(6): 280-5.

Tierney has two separate areas of teaching. The first is interprofessional education (IPE). Tierney and a group of veterinary surgeons and veterinary nurses at the RVC have been instrumental in initiating opportunities for IPE between veterinary and veterinary nursing students. This RVC IPE team believe that IPE enables students to learn about each other’s background, beliefs, reasoning and motivation, and enables them to work as a more cohesive team, which reduces potential errors caused due to, for example, interprofessional communication mistakes. For more information on Tierney’s IPE work, please click here

Tierney’s second area of teaching is with the Haptic Cow. The Haptic Cow is a virtual reality touch-technology tool for teaching rectal palpation of cows. It was developed, and validated, by Prof. Sarah Baillie. More information can be found about the Haptic Cow (and other haptic simulators) here. Tierney’s teaching involves training a group of third year veterinary students to train their peers, as a form of peer learning. The trained group also teach basic anatomy to first year veterinary students in near-peer teaching.

Tierney really enjoys teaching and has completed the Post Graduate Certificate in Veterinary Education, making her a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. 


Tierney has been a part of the Haptic team at the RVC since she joined in 2008. Alongside the Cow’s inventor, Prof. Sarah Baillie, as well as the RVC’s education liaison team and widening participation group, Tierney has been involved with several outreach activities.

This has included multiple school visits to the RVC, as well as: The Royal Society’s Summer Science Exhibition (2009), The Royal Institution’s Family Fun Day (2009), The British Library (2011), The Science Museum’s ‘Lates’ (2012) and Royal Institution CHRISTMAS LECTURE (2014).

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