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Veterinary Technician Training FAQ

Got questions about veterinary technician training? Following veterinary technician FAQ would help you get answers to your vet tech questions.

What kind of degree can I earn from veterinary technician school?
Most veterinary technician schools offer two-year training programs, resulting in a certificate, diploma, or Associate of Science degree. Some institutions also offer four-year Bachelor of Science degrees. Today, the United States has more than 100 vet tech programs that are accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Of these programs, 15 offer Bachelor of Science degrees.

Are there online veterinary technician training programs?
Yes. Ashworth University offers one popular online veterinary technician program. Ashworth University provides programs for veterinary technicians and more junior veterinary assistants. Graduates of the veterinary technician program earn a certificate or Associate of Science degree.

Is financing available for vet tech school? Are scholarships offered?
Yes, most veterinary tech schools offer financial assistance to qualifying students. Financial aid is usually offered in the form of loans, grants, or scholarships.

How long do different veterinary tech programs may take to complete?

Full-time veterinary technician students, pursuing a certificate, diploma, or associate's degree, may typically complete their veterinary technician training in two years.


What courses are veterinary technician students required to take?
Prerequisites include veterinary technology, biology, microbiology, and chemistry, as well as humanities courses. Advanced courses include: hematology, radiography, surgical principles, anesthesia, comparative anatomy and physiology, animal medical techniques, and animal husbandry and diseases. Students also train in clinical and laboratory settings with live animals.

How should students prepare for their veterinary technician training?
Veterinary technician students should complete as many high school science, biology, and math classes as possible. These classes can be taken at both traditional and online high schools.

What state credentials do veterinary technicians have to earn?
All states require veterinary technicians to pass a state regulatory examination (often the National Veterinary Technician exam), which credentials individuals to work as a veterinary technician in their state. Some exams have oral, written, and practical portions. To sit for the exam (in most states), candidates must provide proof of graduation from a veterinary technician training program, accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association. Depending on the state, vet techs are credentialed as licensed veterinary technicians (LVTs), certified veterinary technicians (CVTs), or registered veterinary technicians (RVTs).

Why should veterinary technicians become credentialed?
It's the law in every state. Additionally, state licensing, certification, or registration via the NVT exam often prepares vet techs for employment in other states.

What kinds of careers will my vet tech degree prepare me for?
Most vet tech college graduates are employed in private veterinary offices, assisting veterinarians directly or performing technical tasks, such as applying anesthesia, taking tissue and blood samples, giving injections, exposing and developing x-rays, recording patient histories, and consulting with pet owners. (Vet techs do not prescribe, diagnose, or perform surgery.) In vet offices, many vet techs assume supervisory roles with experience.

Vet techs also work in animal shelters (be prepared to euthanize pets), livestock health management, biomedical research, zoo/wildlife medicine, pharmaceutical sales, military services, and more. Demand for qualified vet techs continues to grow. A 1999 survey done by the AMVA concluded that there are eight job openings available for every vet tech graduate.

Who should consider a career as a veterinary technician?
Aspiring veterinarians, who can use their vet tech experience as a stepping-stone toward a veterinarian career (after the completion of additional education, often available via traditional and online grad schools); people who love animals but do not want to become veterinarians; people looking for a second career; and mothers returning to the workforce (hours are often flexible).

 
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1 Programs in
Campus
  • Helping students prepare for careers in healthcare since 1967.
  • All health programs include an externship, clinical rotation and/or fieldwork practice, for student experience.
  • Institutional accreditation provided by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).
  • Provides programs in medical billing, massage therapy, veterinary assisting, dental assisting, and more. 
  • 10 campuses across Arizona, Idaho, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas, and Washington.
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  • Helping students prepare for careers in healthcare since 1967.
  • All health programs include an externship, clinical rotation and/or fieldwork practice, for student experience.
  • Institutional accreditation provided by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).
  • Provides programs in medical billing, massage therapy, veterinary assisting, dental assisting, and more. 
  • 10 campuses across Arizona, Idaho, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas, and Washington.
Show more [+]
  • Good for Working Adults
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
2 Programs in
Campus
  • Programmatic accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC), Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT), and the American Veterinary Association (AVMA).
  • Programs include an externship, allowing students to gain field experience.
  • Institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
  • 13 campuses located across Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Washington, with online options.
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  • Programmatic accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC), Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT), and the American Veterinary Association (AVMA).
  • Programs include an externship, allowing students to gain field experience.
  • Institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
  • 13 campuses located across Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, and Washington, with online options.
Show more [+]
  • Financial Aid
1 Programs in
Campus
  • Family-owned and operated since opening in 1977.
  • Many programs require externships, allowing students to gain real-world experience.
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1984.
  • Offers 22 accelerated, career-focused program options including business administration, medical assisting, and more.
  • 12 campuses across California, with an online division as well.
  • Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), with programmatic accreditation from several organizations, including the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
Show more [+]
  • Family-owned and operated since opening in 1977.
  • Many programs require externships, allowing students to gain real-world experience.
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1984.
  • Offers 22 accelerated, career-focused program options including business administration, medical assisting, and more.
  • 12 campuses across California, with an online division as well.
  • Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), with programmatic accreditation from several organizations, including the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).
Show more [+]
  • Financial Aid
1 Programs in
Campus
  • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
  • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
  • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
  • 3 campuses in Southern California.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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  • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
  • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
  • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
  • 3 campuses in Southern California.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
Show more [+]
  • Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits