The animal research community faces a shortage of surgical training opportunities along with an increasing demand for expertise in surgical techniques. One possible means of overcoming this challenge is the use of computer-based or electronic learning (e-learning) to disseminate material to a broad range of animal users. E-learning platforms can take many different forms, ranging from simple text documents that are posted online to complex virtual courses that incorporate dynamic video or audio content and in which students and instructors can interact in real time. The authors present an overview of e-learning and discuss its potential benefits as a supplement to hands-on rodent surgical training. They also discuss a few basic considerations in developing and implementing electronic courses.