Veterinarian Degree Programs with Prerequisite Information

Aspiring veterinarians can get program details, such as areas of concentration, sample coursework and standard prerequisites. You can also see employment and salary information, along with continuing education possibilities.

View 14 Popular Schools »

Essential Information

To become a veterinarian, an individual must complete a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program or the equivalent and pass a national licensing examination. Specialty certification is optional. Admission to DVM programs vary slightly, but generally, a bachelor's degree and relevant coursework are required.

DVM programs typically train students through intensive classroom instruction coupled with hands-on clinical or hospital training. Programs usually are four years in length, with the first two years focused on classroom and lab study and the final two years utilizing a teaching hospital or clinical facility. Clinic and hospital training typically involves rotations through various aspects of care, such as evaluation, diagnosis and treatment, in addition to advising clients.

Through their studies, students may be able to specialize in animal types, such as domestic pets or livestock, or they might specialize in particular work environments, such as zoos or research labs. Veterinarians also might specialize in clinical subspecialties, including nutrition, dermatology, theriogenology, oncology, cardiology or surgery.

Education Prerequisites

While a bachelor's degree is not always required for admission to veterinary school, a minimum amount of college experience is. Applicants commonly choose to pursue a bachelor's degree in a field like molecular biology or zoology to satisfy admissions prerequisites, including coursework in math, the humanities, the physical sciences and biology. Some schools offer veterinary science majors with a pre-veterinarian track.

Course Topics

Programs typically include a rigorous combination of classroom and clinical work. Topics of study might include:

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Immunology
  • Parasitology and virology
  • Anesthesia and surgery
  • Diagnostic imaging
  • Bovine herd and equine medicine
  • Small and large animal medicine

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), veterinarians could see a 33% increase in employment opportunities from 2008-2018 (www.bls.gov). In 2010, the BLS reported that these professionals earned a median annual salary of $82,040.

Continuing Education and Certification Information

State licensure requirements for veterinarians vary, but graduates typically must pass the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination. Vet school graduates might continue their training through internships and residencies. Some seek board certification in a specialty, such as anesthesiology, reproductive medicine or surgery, which is granted through organizations recognized by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Show me popular schools

Related to Veterinarian Programs

  • Related
  • Recently Updated
  • Popular
Laboratory Animal Veterinarian: Job Description and Requirements

Laboratory animal veterinarians care for the live specimens used in scientific research. This may include a wide variety of...

Veterinarian (Pets): Education and Career Profile

Veterinarians who treat domestic pets are the most common type of veterinarians. Read on for information about how to pursue a...

Online Veterinarian Degree Program Information

To become a veterinarian, a student must complete a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degree program; however, these programs...

How to Become a Holistic Veterinarian: Education and Career Roadmap

Learn how to become a holistic veterinarian. Research the job description and the education and licensing requirements and find...

Clinical Veterinarian Training and Education Program Options

Popular Schools

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Copyright