Hi, I’ve done some googling on this, but apart from the impression that it’s probably more complicated in Germany than anywhere else[sup]1[/sup], I got nothing.
I hope there’s a factual answer, but opinions from native speakers would do in a pinch. (In other words, mods, please move to IMHO if you think that’s a better fit.)
I’m a veterinarian, and I’ve recently completed my doctoral studies[sup]2[/sup] in Germany. Over here, I can now legally call myself “Doktor”, specifically “Dr. med. vet. Fish Cheer” (short for the Latin Doctor medicinae veterinariae, which is to say “doctor of veterinary medicine”). A DVM that is automatically awarded to any vet school graduate like in North America does not exist in Germany. When you graduate from vet school, you’re simply a vet, not a “Doctor”. (It’s the same for the people doctors, by the way. There are no professional doctorates, and merely completing med school does not entitle you to use the title of “doctor”.)
Now, what title would be appropriate to use when dealing with people from the U.S. or Canada (I’m mostly thinking e-mail signatures and letterheads here)? Are there any hard and fast rules on using foreign doctorates in the U.S. or Canada?
Some examples: Am I…
Dr med vet Fish Cheer (duh; like it better without the dots, though)
Fish Cheer, Dr med vet
Fish Cheer, DVM
Fish Cheer, DVM, PhD
Dr Fish Cheer, DVM, Phd
Dr med vet Fish Cheer, DVM
… or any other combination of those? Or something else entirely?
I’ve seen things like Dr Fish Cheer, MedVet, PhD, but I’m not sure what to make of that.
Which style would be least likely to confuse people who are only familiar with North American academia?
What’s more, I got my veterinary degree from a school that’s not accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association - no German vet school is (and hardly any European one, for that matter). Do I need to add information on where I got the doctorate?
like: Fish Cheer, DVM, PhD (Berlin)
[sup]1[/sup]hardly surprising; case in point: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/03/13/AR2008031304353.html
[sup]2[/sup]see also Doctorate - Wikipedia