Best Colleges with Animal Studies Programs: List of Top Schools

Learn about animal studies degree programs at the top schools for studying this field. Find out about research facilities and rankings that make these schools stand out.

School Overviews

Degree programs in animal studies, also called animal sciences, involve several disciplines, such as animal biology, animal breeding, anatomy, nutrition and physiology. Animal studies programs often allow students to concentrate in specific areas, such as agribusiness, equine studies or pre-veterinary studies. The top schools for animal studies programs are Cornell University, which is a highly-ranked Ivy League university, and the University of California - Davis, which is a large state university. Both schools offer undergraduate and graduate programs in animal sciences.

1. Cornell University in Ithaca, New York

School Highlight: The facilities at Cornell's College of Agricultural and Life Sciences include a ruminant center, a beef unit and dairy unit.

Cornell University (CU) was ranked #15 among national universities in 2015, and its veterinary program was ranked #2 in the same year, according to U.S. News & World Report. Animal sciences programs are offered through Cornell's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, which offers a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science, Master of Science in Animal Science, a Master of Professional Studies in Agriculture and Life Sciences (a non-thesis degree), a Ph.D. in Animal Science and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. Students in the bachelor's program can create their own specialties in dairy, animal biology or farm management, among others.

2. University of California - Davis

School Highlight: Undergraduate animal science students at UC Davis have numerous opportunities to study abroad, including summer programs in Europe, Thailand and Japan, and education abroad programs in Australia, New Zealand, Scotland and South Africa.

The University of California at Davis (UC Davis) was ranked #38 among national universities and #1 for its veterinary medicine program in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report. This school offers a B.S. in Animal Science program with many concentration options, including animal behavior, genetics, conservation, reproduction and wildlife management. Classes include molecular biology, animal breeding and livestock judging. The M.S. in Animal Biology is an interdisciplinary degree program, including the study of animal behavior, genetics, nutrition, physiology and ecology. Research in the Ph.D. in Animal Biology program is solution-oriented and focuses on the disciplines of physiology, genetics, ecology, behavior and nutrition.

Top Animal Studies Programs

College/University Name Distinction Location
Iowa State University Animal science department has nine teaching farms, including beef, sheep and swine farms Ames, IA
Kansas State University Animal Sciences and Industry Department manages about 6,500 acres of land for animal research Manhattan, KS
North Carolina State University at Raleigh Animal science clubs include a Collegiate Horseman's Association and Rodeo Club Raleigh, NC
Pennsylvania State University Research facilities include poultry, swine and deer research centers University Park, PA
Purdue University Mentorship program for animal sciences students West Lafayette, IN
University of Florida Offers undergraduate specializations in animal biology, equine studies and food animals Gainesville, FL
University of Georgia Animal sciences students can study abroad in Toulouse, France Athens, GA
University of Maryland - College Park On-campus farm includes horses, lambs and other animals used for teaching College Park, MD
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities Up to 15 animal science scholarships are awarded annually Minneapolis, MN

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