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Masters Degree in Veterinary Technology: Program Overview

While there are no graduate-level programs in veterinary technology, aspiring technologists and technicians can pursue 4-year bachelor's degrees; these programs are widely available at colleges and universities across the country.

Essential Information

A Bachelor of Science in Veterinary Technology prepares graduates to assist licensed veterinarians. Prospective students should ideally enroll in programs accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Once enrolled, they complete courses in veterinary medicine terminology, pharmacology and molecular biology. They get hands-on clinical experience working with large and small animals in a variety of situations. Graduates are typically qualified for state licensure or certification.

  • Program Levels in Veterinary Technology: Bachelor of Science
  • Prerequisites: High school diploma or equivalent; previous coursework in biology, mathematics, writing and communication (high school)
  • Program Length: 4 years
  • Other Requirements: Clinical experience

Bachelor of Science in Veterinary Technology

Most veterinary technology degree programs require students to complete at least 120 hours of classroom, laboratory and clinical courses. Students take general education courses in their first year. Students also develop nursing skills for small and large animals, as well as preventative health care skills. Additional classes might include:

  • Molecular biology
  • Pharmacology and veterinary technicians
  • Nutrients and veterinary technicians
  • Veterinary hospital procedures
  • Clinical pathology for veterinarian technicians
  • Veterinary radiology

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

There were approximately 84,800 veterinary technologists and technicians employed in the U.S. in 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Nearly 92% of those individuals worked for veterinary offices, while the rest worked for places like animal shelters, zoos and kennels. Employment in the field is expected to grow 30% in the decade 2012-2022, which is much higher than the average predicted job growth rate. In 2012, veterinary technologists and technicians earned a median annual salary of $31,070.

Continuing Education Options

Each state has its own certification requirements and procedures for veterinary technologists and technicians. Most require applicants to pass a state examination proving that they have the clinical experience and educational background necessary to work competently in the field. While there are no master's degree programs in veterinary technology, graduates interested in further education may choose to enroll in a graduate program in veterinary science or veterinary medicine.

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