Prospective Veterinary Students
The Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) curriculum is a rigorous four-year program which provides a broad-based education to all students. This prepares them to enter a variety of career opportunities within veterinary medicine. Students take 20 to 24 credit hours per term. This course load requires an average of 36 hours per week in the classroom or laboratory for students seeking to become a doctor of veterinary medicine.
The curriculum is designed as a modified “systems approach.” The first year deals primarily with structure and function of the normal animal. This year includes gross and microscopic anatomy, imaging, physiology, and other related courses. During the first semester of the second year, several principles courses are taught, such as immunology, infectious diseases, and pathology. Students then begin courses based on a body system (for example, gastrointestinal or cardiovascular systems). Each system includes appropriate pathology, diagnostic techniques, and therapeutic measures for both large and small animal diseases. Each semester also includes a case-based course related to topics currently being taught.
All students are required to take at least four hours of electives. Most take one elective course per semester beginning with the second semester. Available elective courses include:
- Disaster medicine
- Wildlife diseases
- Advanced reproductive techniques
- Diagnostic ultrasound
- Financial management
- Small oceanarium management
- Equine lameness
- Applied anatomy
Objectives of the DVM Curriculum
- The DVM curriculum shall impart pertinent, entry-level scientific knowledge in a thoughtfully structured, professional framework. This knowledge shall include:
- normal anatomy and physiology of common domestic species (such as dogs, cats, horses, and cattle),
- characteristics of healthy animals,
- pathophysiology of common diseases,
- characteristics of infectious agents and associated diseases, and
- mechanisms of action of common therapeutic agents.
- The curriculum will develop and refine foundational knowledge, technical skills, and the professional ability of students to:
- collect, recognize, and interpret relevant details within medical histories,
- perform a thorough physical exam,
- recognize and interpret physical exam findings,
- formulate a differential diagnosis and diagnostic plan,
- collect diagnostic samples,
- interpret diagnostic test findings,
- formulate a therapeutic plan,
- perform common surgical procedures including pre- and post-surgical management,
- assess the impact of implemented therapeutic plans and modify when needed,
- recognize zoonotic diseases and respond accordingly,
- develop, implement, and enforce measures of biosecurity, and
- promote the health and safety of animals, people, and the environment.
- The curriculum will develop and refine students’ ability to:
- find information,
- assess the validity and relevance of information,
- solve problems, and
- effectively communicate through written and verbal interactions.
- The curriculum will effectively instruct students in the importance of:
- ethical conduct,
- continuing education, and
- fiscal responsibility.
Surgical Training Methods
The Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine is committed to ethical, humane and validated training methods. Our surgical training experiences only employ humane training methods, such as:
- Inanimate models for pre-surgical training
- Supervised student engagements with regional spay/neuter programs
- Clinical rotations in the veterinary teaching hospital
- Preceptorships with approved practicing veterinarians
Preparing to Apply
Interested pre-high school students are encouraged to talk with their local veterinarians about volunteer or work opportunities and to develop strong academic skills in all coursework—especially math and science courses. Additional suggestions for preparation can be found at .
Focused preparation for entering veterinary school can begin as early as high school. Students should take as many science classes (e.g. biology, chemistry, physics) as possible to prepare them for college courses. In addition, hours gained working or volunteering with a veterinarian will count towards the 500 hours of veterinary experience necessary to qualify for admission.
A variety of college-level prerequisite courses must be completed before enrolling in the DVM program. These courses include biology, chemistry, physics, and humanities courses. A full list of the courses is available in our Prospective Students Brochure above on pages 8-9. Relevant AP (Advanced Placement) or IB (International Baccalaureate) credits reflected on a college transcript will be accepted in fulfillment of prerequisites. Prerequisite courses must be completed by June 15, prior to entry into the DVM program in the fall.
The minimum acceptable grade for required courses is a C-minus. If a course is repeated for a higher grade, both grades will factor into our grade point average (GPA) calculations. All coursework completed at any college or university will be used to calculate the applicant’s cumulative GPA. This includes joint enrollment credits earned in high school.
Alabama and Kentucky residents must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 on a 4.00 scale. At-large applicants (those who are not Alabama or Kentucky residents) must have a 3.00 GPA on a 4.00 scale.
Experience Working with Veterinarians
In addition to completing the required pre-veterinary courses, students are required to work with one or more veterinarians to learn about the career opportunities and responsibilities within the profession. A minimum of 500 hours of experience is necessary to qualify for admission.
“Pre-vet” is not a major but an educational track a student may select within a major. Students are strongly encouraged to enroll in an undergraduate major that is of particular interest to them. Popular majors for those admitted to the DVM program include animal science, poultry science, biology, and biochemistry, but students with such varied degrees as public relations or psychology have been admitted. Students need only complete all the prerequisite courses and obtain appropriate experience to fulfill the admissions requirements.
Three of Auburn’s colleges or schools offer majors with pre-vet tracks. Please contact the following schools/advisors for specific pre-vet curricula and advising.
College of Agriculture
College of Science and Math
School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
Dr. Jodie Kenney
Applying to the Program
All applications must be submitted through the Veterinary Medical College Application Service (VMCAS). Please pay careful attention to the application deadline as late applications will NOT be accepted by Auburn University.
Graduate Records Examination (GRE)
The GRE will not be used in the assessment of applicants to the Class of 2026 (September 2021 application submission). Please do not send GRE scores to Auburn University.
Letters of Recommendation
Three letters of recommendation are required and must be submitted through VMCAS. One must be from a veterinarian. The other two should come from an employer (may be second veterinarian but does not have to be) and from a professor or advisor who is familiar with your academic work.
Transcripts from all colleges where academic credit was earned, including joint enrollment during high school, must be submitted through VMCAS.
Application Processing Fee
An application processing fee must be submitted through AUCVM’s website. The link to pay the fee is available through the VMCAS application. Applications will not be processed until the processing fee is received.
Qualified applicants will be invited to an on-site 30-minute interview with multiple members of the Admissions Committee. The purpose of this interview is to optimize the committee’s understanding of the applicant’s communication skills, depth and breadth of experience working with veterinarians, and professional potential. In situations where an applicant is near the threshold for an interview invitation, additional consideration is given to Auburn students and members of historically underrepresented minority groups within the veterinary profession.
Evaluation of Applicants
Auburn University has a three part admission procedure which entails an objective evaluation (academic credentials), a subjective review (personal credentials & work experience with animals), and a personal interview.
Applications are evaluated based on academic record and experience. Four GPAs will be calculated: an overall GPA combining all college-level coursework completed at every institution attended; a science GPA which will include two science electives; a GPA combining organic chemistry, biochemistry, and physics; and a trend GPA over the most recent 60 credits completed. Plus and minus grades are rounded to the full letter grade (an A- is calculated as an A, a B+ as a B, etc.).
In 2019, the average cumulative GPA of admitted students was 3.62.
Completion of Prerequisites
Any prerequisite courses which are in progress or which the student plans to take in the spring following submission of their application should be listed in VMCAS. Courses must be completed before June 15th prior to entry into the DVM program in the fall.
Please contact your Kentucky pre-veterinary advisors before October 1 to document your Kentucky residency. If you have questions, please contact the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (KCPE) at 502-573-1555.
Applicants who are offered admission are required to submit the official application for admission and Auburn University application fee. Additional information will be provided at the appropriate time.
Visit the College
The Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine Open House is an annual tradition every April. We open up the college for a day of fun and education for your entire family. Self-guided tours of the college, “teddy bear surgery,” a petting zoo, raptor show and exhibits by various student organizations are only the beginning of a fun-filled day. Be sure to make time for the Prospective Student Presentation! View slides from a previous year’s Prospective Student Presentation.
Tour the College by Appointment
If prospective students and their families are unable to attend our annual Open House, guided tours led by our veterinary students are available as student class schedules allow. Tours of the Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine include the large and small animal teaching hospitals, classrooms, and labs. You will see the facilities, students at work, and sometimes animals. During your tour, please remember that certain areas are off-limits due to safety concerns.
Tours are conducted by appointment in the afternoon.
Estimated Expenses and Financial Aid
The estimated cost of attendance for a nine-month academic year is outlined below. Although modest, these budgets are seen as adequate for the typical student. However, your general spending habits will determine your actual expenses. Please be aware that the estimated cost of attendance is higher for the third academic year when a third, summer semester is required because of the continuous year of clinical training. Students attend nine semesters during the four-year program.
|Tuition & Fees||$24,910||$49,070|
|Books, Supplies, & Ins.||$3,371||$3,371|
|Room & Board||$13,950||$13,950|
Costs are based on the 2020-2021 academic year. Educational costs may increase from year to year.
The Office of Student Financial Services at Auburn University provides assistance to students who need financial aid in order to attend the university. The amount of aid granted is based on financial need and cost of attendance as determined by the university. To determine need, Auburn University uses the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) which is completed online. Students seeking assistance (including scholarships) are required to complete the FAFSA. Aid programs available to professional students are limited to student loans with varying interest rates: Health Professions, Federal unsubsidized loans, and the Grad PLUS loan for graduate and professional students.
Please contact call 334-844-2685 if you have any questions.
Alabama residents receive priority for 41 seats in each class. Auburn contracts with Kentucky for 38 seats. These students are considered to be in-state students for tuition purposes. An additional 41 non-resident students are accepted. The Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine does NOT offer admission to international students or transfer students from another College of Veterinary Medicine.
Alabama Residents: A person who is a citizen of the United States, or a resident alien, and who has resided and had habitation, home, and permanent abode in the State of Alabama for at least 12 months immediately preceding current registration is considered an Alabama Resident. In applying this regulation, “applicant” means a person applying for admission to the institution, if applicant is married or at least 19 years of age, and financially independent. Otherwise, it shall mean parent(s), or legal guardian of the student. If the parents are divorced, residence will be determined by the residency of the parent to whom the court has granted custody.
No person who moves to Alabama for the primary purpose of attending college shall be considered to have demonstrated intent to establish domicile in the State of Alabama, and will generally not be considered eligible for classification as a resident student. For additional information or to ask specific questions, contact the Auburn University Registrar’s Office at email@example.com.
Kentucky Residents: Please contact your Kentucky pre-veterinary advisors before October 1 to document your Kentucky residency. If you have questions, please contact the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (KCPE) at 502-573-1555.
Scholarship opportunities are made available annually to veterinary students after their first semester through the Office of Academic Affairs.
If you have any questions or need additional information, please call 334-844-2685 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Salaries, Employment Rates, and Educational Debt
Recent available data regarding the salaries, employment rates, and educational debt of Auburn veterinary graduates is summarized here (PDF).
Invited to Interview?
Check here periodically for up to date information about scheduling your interview, getting to Auburn University, and other important information.
Physical (GPS) Address:
Location on Campus:
Veterinary Education Center Suite 217 2nd floor
Nearby airports include:
- Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (2 hours away, Eastern Standard Time)
- Montgomery Regional Airport (1 hour away, Central Standard Time)
- Columbus Airport (1 hour away, Eastern Standard Time)
- Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport (2 hours, 15 minutes, Central Standard Time)
Recommended hotel accommodations:
(there are other options available in the area)
Tours of Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine will take place at 12:00 PM and 3:00 PM Central Standard Time on interview days.
Financial Aid seminars for the professional doctor of veterinary medicine program will take place on interview days.
Resources and Contact Information
- Academic Requirements (PDF)
- Professional Curriculum (PDF)
- Elective Course Descriptions (PDF)
- Code of Ethics (PDF)
- View our Prospective Student Brochure (PDF)
217 Veterinary Education Center
Auburn, AL 36849