How To Do Things in AMS (with screenshots)

Get the Animal Certificate | Check out to edit when greyed out | Changing settings for homepage displays | How to create an amendment | Adding animal numbers to the new shared housing table | How to see the FACC comments |


How to get the protocol's Animal Certificate (approval). A new one is issued for every year that an Animal Use Protocol is approved. 

Log into AMS. Select the AUP option to get to the protocols. Find the protocol from the list on this page (default is 'Protocols in Use').

The certificates are attached to the Protocol File in AMS, represented by the paperclip icon:

If you have protocol management rights to that protocol (your name listed in the Protocol Editor section of the protocol), you can right-click the paperclip icon with your mouse. Select ‘Edit attachment’:

A popup window will appear. It will have all the protocol approval letters as well as a copy of the last Darwin protocol version on the day it was shut down. If you click on the file name of the animal certificate, it will download to your computer:

Check the bottom of your browser screen or your Download folder to find, open and save it.


Check out to edit when greyed out   

When completing a new protocol or editing a protocol you 'Duplicated' from another one, you can edit as soon as it opens the first time. However, once the workflow has changed once (such as submitting to the FACC or you saved & left the browser to return later), the text is now greyed out and you cannot make changes. It is the same when the FACC sends the protocol back to the PI for changes. To make changes, you need to select 'Check-out' from the 'Action' button at the top. Once the changes are done, please do not forget to select 'Save and Check-in' before leaving the protocol or submitting. 


This measure is to ensure no accidental changes by researchers, FACC members and administrators. Also, it helps to prevent the frequent workflow issues that we had with the previous software. It is the equivalent of checking out a book at the library. When you check it out, nobody else can make changes at the same time. When checking it back in, another authorized person can do edits. 

If you leave a protocol without checking it in, it stays unavailable to others. You can see this by finding the icon of a tiny page with a small arrow in the narrow column on the left of the 'Document Title' column. If the arrow is green, it means it is you that left it checked out. If the arrow is red, it means someone else left it checked out. 


If you do not already have the column called 'Checked-out by'', you can make it display for you from now on by clicking the icon of a gear and pencil on the upper right corner of the table. There will be a popup window. You would probably need to scroll down and then you can find the item 'Checked-out by' and check its box, then click the Save button.


To check the protocol or amendment or Annual Review back in so it's not blocked to the other users (such as the FACC Coordinator), mouse right-click the checkout icon and select 'Check-in document":



Changing settings for homepage displays

Every user can adjust the column width as well as hide or display some columns for most tables. Once the settings are changed, they will remain for the next sessions for that user only when using the same browser and computer. It is done by clicking the icon button on the top right of the table that looks like a gear and pencil:



A popup window will appear and permit you to select which columns to show, which to hide and how wide you want it. You should scroll down to see all that is available to you. Don't forget to click the Save button. 


How to create an amendment

When you are in the AUP main page, make sure the filter is set for 'In Use' (this is the default when you log in). This will show you the list of your protocols lower down.



An amendment is created by clicking on the Protocol File that you want to amend to expand that file into its documents. Mouse right-clicking the Protocol Document (indented row) and selecting the option of ‘Amendment’.

Once clicked, a new row will appear and the word ‘Amendment’ will be in the column called ‘Document Status’.


Click that amendment to open it. Make all the changes needed in the protocol. Once finished, select ‘For Signature’ under the ‘Workflow’ button at the top. If you are the PI, then select ‘Signature’ under the ‘Workflow’ button at the top, type your password and click the ‘OK’ button. It will then be submitted to the FACC.


Adding animal numbers to the new shared housing table

On July 19, the new shared housing feature was applied in Phase 2. If you handle the protocol (either the PI is amending or renewing or the FACC Coordinator is trying to send to others via the Workflow for protocol in progress), you will get an error message about the number of animals not matching. This is normal.

Phase 2 added a new table in the bottom of the protocol tab 'Number of animals'. It has a list of the different sites in which you can have your animals. By default, your home site is checked but there are no numbers assigned to any of the sites post July 19. Someone needs to type in the numbers into the table, per species, per site and the grand total of those numbers must match what is in the table of animal calculation at the top of the 'Number of animals' protocol tab. No need to change the numbers under the Category of Invasiveness protocol section because the grand totals remain the same.

An extra row may appear and this would happen if animals were uploaded from Darwin as having been used. The number of animals typed into the new table must have the number 'Utilized' deducted.

If only using animal facilities under the PI's site, only add the number of animals per species in to the home site's row *but* deduct the number displayed in the 'Utilized (external system)'. The grand total per species must match what's in the table of animal calculation at the top of the page.


For example:

If the protocol has 53 rats requested in the number calculation table at the top:

And the shared housing table in the bottom has 8 rats said to have been ‘Utilized’ and you are not using any animal facilities outside your home site:

Then, you must ‘Checkout’ the protocol from the ‘Action’ button at the top to be able to edit, type ‘45’ under Rats in the home site row (here the home site is the MNI). 45 is the grand total number of 53 rats minus the 8 rats already used = 45. You now would have:

If you are using animal facilities in other sites, check the box for that site and put the number of animals to be used there. The home site should only have the number of animals to be used there. The grand total in this new table must match the grand total in the Total table of calculation numbers per species. 


Acronym for the different sites:

DOUG = Douglas Mental Health University Institute

JGH = Lady Davis Institute of the SMDB Jewish General Hospital

MCGL = McGill University

MNI = The Neuro (Montreal Neurological Institute)

MUHC = Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre

SHRN = Shriners Hospitals for Children


How to see the FACC comments

When the FACC has finished reviewing a protocol, Annual Review or amendment, it is returned to the researcher with comments. The status of that application changes to 'For PI Revision (sent by the FACC)'. The PI must now revise and submit back. To do so:


1- Log into AMS, search for your protocol. Once found, click on the protocol file to expand into the different documents. Often, there is the pending amendment or annual review as the fist indented row and then the current approved version of the protocol as the 2nd indented row. Open the protocol document that has the status of 'For PI Revision (sent by the FACC)' by clicking on it (it should be the first row):


2 - Click the button 'Review' at the top of the screen:


3- Click on the word 'All' to see the entire list of comments:



4- Click on a row to see the FACC comment -  Do this for every row:



5- The comment applies to the protocol tab (section) mentioned in the 'Subject'. 


6- Answer the question, add the information and/or make the corrections directly into the protocol in the appropriate sections. For this, you need to select the option of 'Checkout' under the 'Action' button at the top first:


7- Then do the edits by clicking on the applicable protocol tab (Species, Number of Animals or Study Segment...) and typing or deleting where necessary.


8- Once finished, select the option 'Save and Check-In' from the 'Action' button at the top:


8- Then select the option of 'For signature' under the 'Workflow' button at the top. If your are the PI, you must also select the option 'Signature' from the 'Workflow' button at the top to put your password and it will submit back to the FACC.



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