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Schools for Aspiring Animal Health Technicians

Jan 02, 2019

Animal health technicians, also known as veterinary technicians, assist licensed veterinary doctors in the diagnosis and treatment of animals. Continue reading to see what you should keep in mind when choosing an animal health technician program, and to view some U.S. schools with animal health technician programs.

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Aspiring animal health technicians can enroll in veterinary technology programs at community colleges and technical schools.

Schools with Animal Health Technician Programs

Some animal health technician programs in the United States are offered at the institutions listed here.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2015-2016)*
Allan Hancock College Santa Maria, CA 2-year, Public Certificate In-state $1,346; Out-of-state $6,750
Colby Community College Colby, KS 2-year, Public Associate's In-state $3,300; Out-of-state $4,920
Crowder College Neosho, MS 2-year, Public Associate's In-state $3,312; Out-of-state $3,312
Eastern Florida State College Cocoa, FL 4-year, primarily associate's, Public Associate's In-state $2,496; Out-of-state $9,739
Foothill College Los Altos Hills, CA 2-year, Public Associate's In-state $1,551; Out-of-state $8,391
Gaston College Dallas, NC 2-year, Public Associate's In-state $2,562; Out-of-state $8,708
Johnson College Scranton, PA 2-year, Private not-for-profit Associate's $17,614
Miami Dade College Miami, FL 4-year, primarily associate's, Public Associate's In-state $2,834; Out-of-state $9,661
Palo Alto College San Antonio, TX 2-year, Public Associate's In-state $5,550; Out-of-state $10,740

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)

School Selection Criteria

When choosing an animal health technician program, there are several things to consider.

  • Graduation from an AVMA-accredited program qualifies students to sit for the certification examination required by all states (www.bls.gov). Students are encouraged to verify that the chosen school's curriculum covers all required topics for credentialing.
  • Clinical opportunities, such as small animal care or large animal treatment, may provide specialized training. Other clinical internships may be performed at radiology, surgical and research facilities.
  • A few schools offer distance learning opportunities with courses available online. Distance learners may need access to video recording equipment for visual documentation of assignment completion.

Certificate for Animal Health Technicians

Certificate programs may be offered to students directly out of high school or as continuing education options for current animal health technicians. Programs may be completed in 3-12 months, with classes offered each semester or once per year. Classes may be available online. Certificate programs require clinical practice or an internship.

Associate Degree for Animal Health Technicians

A 2-year associate degree program for veterinary technicians includes general education and core animal health education. Most associate degree programs require clinical experiences through affiliated veterinary clinics or animal hospitals.

A career as a veterinary technician, or animal health technician, can be pursued with a certificate or associate's degree. Veterinary technician programs must be AVMA-accredited so that students can qualify for state licensing after graduation.

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