The CoAC is governed by a set of rules which facilitate our ability to respond to members needs and offer quality education and resources.
Article I – Title, Incorporation, Location
Section 1 – Members of the College shall be graduates of a veterinary school or college, or chiropractic school or college, who meet the requirements established in the Articles of Incorporation and by Laws.
a) It is anticipated that species-specific tracking will develop in the curricula for training in animal chiropractic. At that time, certification will need to reflect the specialized level of training. Therefore, Members of the College who are certified using species-specific testing will be designated as either ‘Member of the College of Animal Chiropractors – Small Animal’, ‘Member of the College of Animal Chiropractors – Large Animal’, or ‘Member of the College of Animal Chiropractors – Mixed Practice’.
Section 2 – The College shall meet annually at such a time and place as designated at the preceding meeting or otherwise by the Board of Directors.
Section 3 – A quorum at the Annual Business Meeting shall consist of the Charter and Active Members present at the Annual Business Meeting.
Section 4 – The fiscal year shall begin on January 1.
a) The annual dues of each active or charter member shall be payable on January 1 of each year.
b) Changes in the dues amount shall be determined by an affirmative majority vote by eligible voting members using a mail ballot.
Section 5 – Excluding any special rules of order the College may adopt, all business meetings of the College and the Board of Directors shall be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order. The general order of business at all annual meetings of the College shall include approval of the minutes of the previous meeting, announcement of election results, treasurer’s report, president’s report and such other business which may be transacted at that time.
Section 6 – Terminology
a) Animal chiropractic may also be referred to, and used synonymously, as veterinary spinal manipulative therapy or “VSMT”.
b) The by Laws of the College will use the term animal chiropractic.
Article II: Board of directors
Section 1 – The Board of Directors shall be the governing body of the College and shall consider all the business and policies pertaining to the affairs of the College. The Board of Directors shall consist of at least nine members. Five members of the Board of Directors with voting privileges shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of any business, which may come before the Board.
a) The Board, or its designated Committees, shall receive all applications, conduct examinations, and make recommendations for membership in the College.
b) The Board shall consider and act upon charges against members for alleged violations of the Constitution and Bylaws of the College or charges of unprofessional conduct and shall have the authority to take disciplinary actions against members including reprimand, censure, suspension, or expulsion of a member for grievous offenses.
c) It shall appoint standing Committees, select the time and place of meetings, and determine the fees for examinations, registrations, and other fees.
a. A meeting of the Board of Directors shall be held at the time and place designated for the Annual Business Meeting of the College.
b. Special meetings may be called at any time by the President and or at the written request of not less than three members of the Board. Not less than 7 days’ notice of the time and place of any special meeting shall be given to each Director at the address that appears on the books of the College. Notice may be delivered by e-mail, phone, fax, or postal service.
d) It shall direct the management of funds held by the College.
Section 2 – In the event an elected officer or board member is unable to complete his/her term of office, the Board of Directors shall, by majority vote, appoint a member to serve as an interim director or officer until a general election may be held for that position.
a) The President shall instruct the Nominating Committee, through its Chair, to recommend a replacement candidate from the membership.
b) The candidates must meet the qualifications for the office as described in the Constitution and Bylaws of the College and shall consent to consideration for the open position.
c) The name(s) of the proposed candidate(s) shall be submitted to the Board of Directors within 30 days after the Nominating Committee has received its charge.
d) The proposed name(s) shall be approved by the Board of Directors by majority vote.
e) The membership will be notified of the vacancy and the new appointment by e-mail, fax, or via the College website.
Article III – Officers
Section 1 – President – He/she shall be a charter member or have been a member in good standing for at least one year preceding his/her election.The duties of the President shall be:
a) To be the chief executive officer of the CoAC.
b) To preside at annual and special meetings of the CoAC, preserve order, and regulate debates.
c) To oversee procedures and coordinate activities of the committees.
d) To see that the Bylaws and rules of the College are enforced.
e) To see that proper balloting and election procedures are conducted and announce results of elections
f) Appoint committees as needed and not already provided for
g) To perform all other duties that may be prescribed from time to time by the Board of Directors.
h) Until such time as a College Administrator is hired by the College, the president shall be responsible to:
a. Act as general manager of the College
b. Act as custodian of the records of the College (including membership records)
c. Conduct all correspondence of the College
d. Disburse money from the general fund to meet current College expenses, within the budget approved by the Board of Directors or at the direction of the Treasurer, maintain all receipts, invoices, and associated records for a period of not less than five years
e. Receive minutes of meetings of the Board of Directors from the Secretary and post them on the members website
f. Execute documents requiring the signatures of College Officers
Section 2 – Vice President- He/she shall be a charter member or have been a member in good standing for at least one year preceding his/her election.The Vice President shall:
a) Preside at annual and special meetings of the College in the absence of the President.
b) Assume the office of President in the event that the President is incapable of performing those duties or that the office is vacated.
c) Act as liaison with other organizations.
d) Perform all other duties that may be prescribed from time to time by the Board of Directors.
e) Review the College’s Constitution and bylaws and propose changes to the Board.
f) Monitor status of strategic plan and report on the plan at each Board meeting.
g) Conduct an annual review of the procedures of the College.
h) Perform all other duties that may be prescribed from time to time by the Board of Directors.
Section 3 – College Secretary -The College shall annually elect a College Secretary for the purposes of executing corporate forms and/or documents and recording minutes of meetings of the Board of Directors. The secretary shall be the Parliamentarian during meetings of the Board. He/she shall be a charter member or have been a member in good standing for at least one year preceding his/her appointment and shall be eligible to succeed himself / herself in office.
Section 4 – Treasurer- The College Treasurer shall be the custodian of all the monies and financial records of the College. The treasurer shall hold office for one, three-year term and shall be eligible to succeed himself / herself in office. He/she shall be a charter member or have been a member in good standing for at least one year preceding his/her election.
The Treasurer shall:
a) Supervise the keeping of accurate accounts in a permanent ledger of all receipts and disbursements and shall cause such ledgers, books of account
and checkbooks to be examined by a certified public accountant for inspection and audit or review annually or more often when requested by a
majority of the members of the Board.
b) Annually give a statement of the College’s receipts and disbursements, and at such times as the Board of Directors may require.
c) Be empowered to disburse funds of the College
d) Report to the Board of Directors the names of all members in arrears.
e) To invest reserve funds in accordance with policy established by the Board of Directors.
f) Perform all other duties that may be prescribed from time to time by the Board of Directors.
Section 5 – Immediate Past President – The duties of the Immediate Past President shall be:
a) To assist the incoming President in transition into that office.
b) To serve as chairperson of the Nominating Committee.
c) To perform all other duties that may be prescribed from time to time by the Board of Directors.
Section 6 – Administrative Staff: The Board of Directors may appoint a College Administrator, and other administrative staff as may be required to fulfill the mission of the College. The College Administrator shall:
a) Act as general manager of The College.
b) At the direction of the Board of Directors, employ such additional staff as may be necessary.
c) Act as custodian of the records of the College, including membership records
d) Conduct all correspondence of the College. This will include, among others:
a. Notifying the membership and Board of all meetings.
b. Providing minutes of board meetings on members requests.
c. Providing financial reviews/audits on members requests.
d. Updating the College website with current information for members.
e. Facilitate communication between the Board and the membership of the College.
e) Disburse money from the general fund to meet current College expenses, within the budget approved by the Board of Directors or at the direction of the Treasurer, and maintain all receipts, invoices, and associated records for a period of not less than five years.
f) Receive minutes of meetings of the Board of Directors from the Secretary and post them on the members website .
g) Be responsible for the implementation of professional and public relations as directed by the Board or its committees.
h) Execute documents requiring the signatures of College Officers.
Article IV – Committees
Section 1– The Board of Directors shall establish the Standing Committees, the number of members needed, the members’ duration of service, the chair, and the objective(s) for each committee. As needs arise with growth of the College, new committees may be required and shall be established by majority vote of the Board of Directors. The Committee shall develop a detailed protocol or revise the existing protocol at least once every two years. New protocols and revised protocols must be approved by the Board of Directors. At least one Director shall be assigned to each Committee as a liaison.
Section 2 – The Standing Committees shall be:
a) Credentialing Committee
a. This committee will be tasked with obtaining membership in nationally recognized associations and or credentialing bodies as set forth and stated in the mission and objectives of the college.
b. The committee will be responsible for maintaining compliance with all regulations and insuring future renewals of accreditation status.
b) Examination and Certification Committee
a. In order to assure the highest level of professional competence, improve professional acceptance of the specialty of animal chiropractic, increase public confidence, and insure the welfare and safety of animal patients, the committee shall develop a national standard written and practical examination.
i. The committee shall create a written certification examination that will effectively assess students knowledge of and competency in the various aspects of Animal Chiropractic or Spinal Manipulative Therapy.
1. The examination will consist of at least 150 multiple choice questions.
a. The initial test will be for Mixed Practice certification.
b. Additional tests for Small Animal and Large Animal will be developed as the need arises, when tracking curricula are implemented at the College-approved schools.
2. Questions will be derived from those submitted by CoAC approved schools and from the list of required texts currently in use by the approved schools. It shall cover the following topics:
b. Anatomy (osseous and muscular)
c. Gait analysis
d. Adjusting techniques
e. Clinical cases
f. Saddle fit ( for equine and mixed practice certification)
g. Zoonotic diseases
ii. The committee shall create a standard practical examination form to be used for evaluating adjusting techniques for the small animal, large animal, and mixed animal certification corresponding to Article VII Section 2 a).
1. College standards for proper adjustment techniques will be provided to each school.
2. In the case of a conflict in technique between College standards and an individual program, or the proposed modification of standard techniques, the committee shall evaluate the claims and present recommendations to the Board.
3. Based on the merits of the claims, the Board may adopt changes to the standard practical techniques.
b. In order to insure uniform standards in animal chiropractic adjustment techniques, the CoAC shall provide instructor/examiner certification for those instructors who perform the practical examinations at each approved school.
i. Instructors currently performing practical examinations at the approved schools, at the time of inception of the College, will be granted status as certified examiners for the College.
1. Examiner certification will be valid for three years, after which re-certification will be required.
ii. Each instructor wishing to be considered for approval by the committee shall be required to demonstrate their knowledge and competence to the committee by successfully completing
1. The standard written and practical examination.
2. An oral evaluation presented by the committee.
iii. Instructor re-certification shall be renewed every three years
c. This committee shall consist of a chairperson appointed by the Board, the President, Vice-President, a representative from each of the schools that have requested approval/certification by the CoAC, and two other volunteers from the Active or Charter membership.
c) Nominating Committee
a. Shall be chaired by the Immediate Past President. However, during the first year of the College, the President will chair the committee.
b. Other committee members will be chosen by the President
d) Annual Meeting Committee
e) Public Relations Committee
f) Finance Committee
a. The Finance Committee shall be chaired by the Treasurer, and shall have a minimum of two other members appointed by the President.
b. The Finance Committee shall be responsible for developing an annual budget for approval by the Board.
c. The Board will decide how often there should be an official audit of the financial soundness of the college. Said information should also be published on the college website and made available to members in good standing when requested.
g) Advanced Certification Committee for Animal Chiropractic Neurology.
Section 3 – Educational Standards Committee
a) This committee shall develop the educational standards for which animal chiropractic training programs shall attain in order to be approved by the College and their graduates eligible for membership in the College
b) In order to accurately reflect the current state of knowledge and curricula, the committee will seek involvement of representatives from each of the previously approved animal chiropractic training programs.
c) An educational standards committee will be formed and standards developed within the first 18 months after formation of the College. Thereafter, new committee members will be assembled every 5 years to review and update the standards to reflect on-going changes in knowledge and curricula.
[toggle title=”Article V – Nomination and Election of Officers and Directors
Section 1 – As outlined in Article VII, Section 3 of the Constitution, election of officers and directors will occur by e-mail or mail ballot. Ballots with all nominations listed will be sent to the voting membership at least 60 days prior to the Annual Business Meeting. A space in each category shall appear on the ballot for write-in candidates. Voting members will have 30 days from the date the ballot is sent to them to return their valid ballots. The nominee receiving the most valid votes will be elected to the position and installed in the office at the Annual Business Meeting. The membership will be notified at the Annual Business Meeting and by e-mail or mail of the election result. In the event of a tie for the most votes, a second mail ballot election between the tying nominees will be held. The officer will be installed at the time the election results are validated.
Section 2 – The Nominating Committee will submit a proposed slate of candidates to the Board of Directors for approval.
a) Each year, at least 90 days prior to the Annual Business Meeting, the Nominating Committee, will provide via the College website and notification via e-mail, a list of open board positions and College Officer positions for which nominations and volunteers are needed. The membership shall have 30 days to submit names of nominees, or may volunteer to be placed on the College ballot.
b) The final slate of nominees shall contain no more than the four names, to include the name of the nominating committee’s recommendation, and of up to three designates receiving the highest number of recommendations for nomination from the membership.
c) The College Administrator shall notify the successful nominees. Their acceptance shall be necessary for inclusion on the election ballot.
d) The Committee shall then prepare the slate of nominees for officers and Directors based on members responses and the committee recommendations.
Section 3 – Nomination ballots shall be distributed to the voting members of the College no later than 60 days prior to the date of the annual business meeting. Members will have 30 days to postmark or e-mail their return ballots
a) The College Administrator shall verify the validity of all ballots and count the votes within 10 days of the termination of voting.
b) The College Administrator shall notify the Board of Directors of the vote results as soon as the count is completed.
c) The membership will be notified of the vote results by e-mail or mail from the College’s office and at the Annual Business Meeting.
d) The candidates with the highest number of votes for each office shall be declared as duly elected.
e) Ballots will be held and the Board shall verify the election results at the Annual Business Meeting.
Section 4 – The term of office for the President shall be one year. A one year term as Past-President shall commence when the term as President concludes.
Section 5 – The term of office for the Vice President shall be one year. Once elected, the Vice President automatically assumes the office of President and Immediate Past President in subsequent years at the time of elections.
Section 6– The term of office for the Treasurer shall be three years and shall be eligible for re-election.
Section 7 – The term of office for Directors shall be three years. A Director may assume executive office during this term after a serving a minimum of one year of the 3 year term. A director shall be eligible for re-election.
Section 8– Only Charter members, or Active members of the College who are currently serving or have completed a term on the Board of Directors, are eligible to hold office.
Section 9 – The elected officers of the College shall take office at the beginning of the fiscal year following the election which they were elected.
Section 10 – If elected officers would like to renew their term, they should be allowed to do so as approved by a majority of the board and affirmed by a vote of the membership
Article VI – Members
Section 1 – All Active and Charter members must:
a) Have a satisfactory moral and ethical standing as a professional veterinarian or chiropractor.
b) Be either:
a. A graduate of a veterinary college accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association, or meet all requirements for licensure of foreign veterinary graduates as defined by the American Veterinary Medical Association, or be legally qualified to practice veterinary medicine in a state, province, territory or country he/she is practicing. Or,
b. A graduate of a chiropractic college accredited by the Council on Chiropractic Education, or meet all requirements for licensure of foreign chiropractic graduates as defined by the Council on Chiropractic Education or be legally qualified to practice chiropractic medicine in a state, province, territory or possession of the United States, Canada or the country he/ she is practicing. Or,
c. An international applicant licensed to practice veterinary medicine, or chiropractic, providing current Visa or Passport information, professional diploma, and evidence of valid governmental licensure for the country in which the applicant is currently practicing.
c) Have successfully completed an CoAC recognized / approved veterinary spinal manipulative therapy or animal chiropractic course with a minimum of 210hrs of post-graduate education and clinical experience in the science and practice of animal chiropractic.
Section 2 – Charter membership was based on the following additional criteria and is intended to encourage membership for instructors at CoAC approved animal chiropractic programs:
a) At least one year experience in animal chiropractic with no less than 25 percent of professional time devoted to the practice of animal chiropractic.
b) By teaching, research, or practice had contributed significantly to the development of animal chiropractic.
c) Significant advanced training in animal chiropractic and related neurology
d) Demonstrated competence in teaching, research, or practice of animal chiropractic to which was devoted most of the individual’s professional time.
e) Individuals not previously designated by the board as charter members may make application to the board before January 1, 2014
f) Applicants will have a letter of recommendation from the director of the program at which they are an instructor
1. Individual basic program directors will designate those considered “core” or “full-time” instructors for their programs. This is done in good faith with all programs, trusting that all the programs strive to maintain professional standards.
g) Directors or instructors from CE-type programs will be evaluated individually, with the understanding that if the CoAC recognizes their CE program as being “approved CE” for maintaining CoAC membership requirements, then the CoAC recognizes that they are speaking with some level of credibility.
The board then will vote on whether to confer charter member status at their next meeting.
a. Application shall consist of a letter to the board requesting status as a charter member with description of their current practice, experience, teaching or research activities, commitment to continuing education, etc.
b. A CV or resume must be included for the boards consideration.
Section 3 – Active Members shall meet the following criteria for membership in good standing:
a) Have successfully passed the certifying examination of the College. The examination, composed of written, practical, and case-based questions, will test knowledge of all phases of animal chiropractic as well as competence in the selected area of large animal or small animal specialization.
a. The standard written and practical examination will be given to graduating students at their respective CoAC-approved schools. At the discretion of each school, these standard examinations may be utilized as the final competency examination for graduation requirement from the school.
b) CoAC certification will be available through December 31, 2013 to qualified applicants who have previously graduated from CoAC approved animal chiropractic training programs, under the following conditions:
a. Have maintained a professional veterinary or chiropractic license in good standing within their State or Province
1. The applicant will provide a copy of his/her current license to practice veterinary medicine or chiropractic medicine.
2. The applicant will submit a letter stating that he/she has not been subject to license suspension or other disciplinary action by their respective professional licensing board.
b. Provide documentation of successful completion of an ACCAC approved animal chiropractic training program
1. At the inception of the College, animal chiropractic teaching programs recognized by the College as providing thorough and competent training include: Options for Animals, Parker College, Healing Oasis Wellness Center, Veterinary Chiropractic Learning Centre (Canada), Backbone Academy (Germany) and Academia Internacional de Quiropráctica Animal (Spain and Latin America).
2. Other approved programs may be added to this list based on application for approval and meeting educational standards for the College.
c. Successful completion of the standard written examination which may be completed on-line or in-person at any of the College approved schools when the examination is given.
1. For those who graduated more than 7-8 yrs ago, or for those failing to successfully complete the examination, it is recommended to either attend a comprehensive review session (on-line or in-person), or audit the final module at any of the approved schools. Either of these options will provide the applicant with the latest advances in the art and science of animal chiropractic and adjusting techniques.
d. Beginning January 1, 2014, successful completion of both the written and practical examinations will be required for certification and inclusion in the College.
c) Be current with annual dues. The Board of Directors shall establish dues for each category of membership and may grant reductions or waivers from dues under special circumstances. The College Administrator shall mail dues notices to each member thirty (30) days prior to renewal date. Dues in arrears more than six months shall cause forfeiture of membership in good standing.
Section 4 – Disciplinary action or loss of membership
a) Members may be subject to disciplinary action, including but not limited to reprimand, censure, suspension, or expulsion from the College for circumstances including conviction of a felony related to practice of veterinary medicine or chiropractic medicine, gross negligence as determined by a state licensing body, violation of the Constitution and Bylaws of the College, un-professional conduct, false advertisement, suspension of state or provincial licensure, and fraud or misrepresentation in professional matters.
b) Revocation of Membership requires a confirmatory two-thirds vote of the Board of Directors. However, no member shall be deprived of membership without first being granted an appeal of the decision to the Board of Directors.
a. Members that have come under review and the Board has recommended disciplinary action against, shall have 14 (fourteen) working days to answer a letter of inquiry by the board and a hearing shall be granted within 3 months, if the member requests such. Failure to answer the letter of inquiry or appear before the Board of Directors for the hearing of the case at the time and place appointed by said Board will cause forfeiture of the right to appeal.
Section 5 – Re-instated membership ± Any member that has had the membership revoked could be re-instated once all conditions set forth by the board (with a 2/3 vote of confidence) and re-application for membership have been completed.
Section 6 – Members, and candidates for membership, may appeal adverse decisions by submitting a written petition for reconsideration only on the grounds that the determination:
a) Disregarded the established criteria
b) Failed to follow the stated procedures
c) Failed to consider relevant information and documentation presented.
Section 7 – Honorary Members may be selected by the Board as persons of unusual eminence in the veterinary or chiropractic profession. Honorary members are to be nominated based on their work in promoting the art and science of the Veterinary Spinal Manipulative Therapy or Animal Chiropractic professions at a state or national level. Being an honorary member is a tribute to the recipient, which also gives them the ability to help voice opinion on topics that are important to the college and the profession. However, they shall not be required to pay dues nor shall they be privileged to vote or hold office.
Section 8 – Members with Charter or Active status shall have voting privileges.
Article VII – Examination Procedures
Section1 – At the request of the program director of each school, the standard written examination shall be sent by the Examination and Certification Committee Chairman via overnight delivery.
a) At the scheduled time for the examination, the program director or certified instructor/examiner will sign the affidavit that the envelope containing the tests was not tampered with prior to opening.
b) The envelope will be opened by the examiner and the tests distributed to the students.
c) There will be a 150 minute time limit for completion of the written examination.
d) At the conclusion of the testing period, all examination forms will be collected and placed in a sealed envelope/package and the program director or certified instructor/examiner will sign the affidavit that all testing materials have been included for return.
e) All examinations and answer sheets will be returned to the Examination and Certification Committee in the supplied overnight shipping container and shall be received by the committee chairman within 2 business days of the exam.
f) Scores for the written examination will be sent to College Secretary and schoolts he program director within three weeks of the date of the examination.
Section 2 – The practical examination will be administered by a certified instructor/examiner utilizing the standard practical examination form provided by the College.
a) The practical examination will consist of demonstration of 14 correct techniques for adjustment of the following in the horse and 16 correct techniques for adjustment in the dog:
a. Occiput; atlas superiority; atlas rotation; mid cervical; lower cervical; cranial/mid thoracic; caudal thoracic; lumbar; pelvis; sacrum; TMJ; extremities (3 in horse, 5 in dog)
b) There will be 45 minutes allowed for the completion of the practical examination
c) The student may ask to have the listing repeated
d) At the conclusion of the practical examination of each applicant, the standard form must be signed by the certified instructor/examiner administering the examination.
e) If the school administering the final exam chooses to utilize the College practical examination as their final practical examination, photocopies of the examination forms will made for the schools records to score the school and students.
a. The school may choose to include additional techniques as part of their final examination.
b. Additional time will be allowed for these
f) If the practical examination is taken strictly for admission into the College, the certified instructor/examiner will report the score to the student and forward the examination form to the committee chairman.
Section 3 – Students who successfully complete the written and practical examinations with final scores of not less than 76% for each portion, shall be eligible for membership in the CoAC and to receive the CoAC certification of competency in Animal Chiropractic.
Article VIII – Amendments
Section 1 – These By Laws may be amended by mail or by e-mail ballot. Proposed amendments must be submitted in writing to the College Secretary for appropriate review by the Board of Directors. Proposed amendments shall be distributed to the entire membership with a recommendation by the Board. A two-thirds affirmative vote for the proposed amendment by the eligible voting members returning valid mail ballots is required for its approval.
Section 2 – Ballots shall be sent from the College’s office to the membership for a vote. If voting on the proposed amendment is done by postal mail, the membership shall have 45 days from the date the ballots are mailed to return their sealed ballots to the College’s office. If the voting is done via e-mail, the membership shall have 15 days from the date of the original e-mail to respond. The College’s office will verify the validity of all ballots and count the votes within 10 days of the termination of voting. The College’s office will notify the Board of Directors of the vote results as soon as the count is completed. The membership will be notified of the vote results by mail, telephone, or e-mail from the College’s office, on the web site and at the Annual Business Meeting.
Copyright; College of Animal Chiropractors
Revised – February, 4th 2011