Thursday, December 18, 2008

Classes to Prepare you for Veterinary School

Okay, sou you've learned about the importance on experience and grades when applying to veterinary school.

Now I’m just going to list a few classes that I have found (or heard of) that help prepare you for veterinary school. This is not a complete list of classes that is required for vet school. Please contact your perspective schools to find out what classes are required for you to be accepted to veterinary school.


Well I’m sure you already guessed this one, but it really helps in so many ways. If you have a strong understanding of the basics, then it makes learning the complicated, veterinary stuff so much easier. I guarantee you will see the fundamentals taught high school and college biology classes again in veterinary school. Learn it now, so it’s one less thing you have to stuffy for in vet school. Plus, if your school requires the Biology GRE, then obviously it is good prep work for it. In my opinion the Biology GRE is basically random questions that they pull from a Biology text book. I will have more info on the standardized tests later.


Many veterinary schools have at least 10 hours of physiology in their 1st year curriculum, so if your school offers a undergrad class that focuses on physiology I recommend you take it. Many 1st year students struggle with physiology, so any previous experience can help you. Heck I had physiology as a high school elective, and it helped me in first year veterinary school.

Meat Science:

I’m not sure how many schools offer these kinds of classes, but they are surprisingly helpful. I never took it, but friends that have tell me it has really helped with anatomy ( often the hardest class you will ever take in vet school). Particularly with transverse sections, which are pretty much what all the muscles look like when you take a slice horizontally though a leg. So really, they are just raw streaks. In meat science classes you learn these muscles that are found in various streaks, err go you are better prepared for anatomy later on. I have heard many times in the anatomy lab students saying, “I remember this from meat science class in undergrad”, while I’m struggling to keep all the muscles strait. So, learn form my mistakes and try to enroll in this class if given the chance.

Parasitology/ Entomology:

Any class in which you study parasites or arthropods is a good thing. I have a buddy that took “Ruminant Arthropods” and says it really helped in Parasitology (personally my least favorite/ worst class in vet school). The sooner you learn to identify and name parasites the better.


Could be called anything depending on where you go to school. Really any class in which you have to learn bones, organs, and muscles is great. If you have to dissect stuff, even better. Seriously, if you have to opportunity to take classes like this, no matter how hard the class is, I suggest you take it. Your hard work will pay off and make your first year of veterinary school that much less stressful.


This class can be very boring, I know, but really learning glycolysis, the Krebs cycles, and all that good stuff really helps out in physiology. For some reason I liked biochem in undergrad, so when were tested on theses subjects in vet school I did very well. Meanwhile, many other struggled.


I remember how much I hated learning about gram negative and gram positive walls. Also, plasmids, codons, RNA polymerase, and other microbiology terms. However, I saw that all again in vet school, and kicked myself for not learning it better in undergrad. So, when your in this class pay attention and study hard, it will really pay off for you later on.

Well that’s it for now, if I think of any others I will post them. To give everyone a break from all this boring, academic stuff I my next post will describe the highs, lows, and all fun that veterinary school has given me.


animal_addict94 said...

Thanks alot im just in 10th grade and i really had no idea what classes i needed to take.

Anonymous said...

What do you mean when you say many colleges have "10 hours of physiology" in their first year curriculum? I know it's more than 10 hours for the entire year. Is it 10 hours of physiology classes per week, for the first year curriculum? Someone explain

sassyredbitch said...

She meant ten credit hours. Classes are usually 3-5 credit hours per class.

Anonymous said...

Hey im in grade 9 deciding whether i could become a vet???? How should i decide???i am worried i will not meet the requirements sooo any1

Team-Jacob Girl said...

Thanks. I just turned 16 and all I want to do in life is to be a vet. I don't remember a time when I did not want to be a vet. I'm home schooled and I get to pick every class I do. This blog really helped a lot.

Anonymous said...

thanks im in 9th grade and havn't given up the fact that i will be a vet. i needed to know what classes would be more important for a college class thanks again!! :)!!! said...

Thanks, im in year 10 but we dont have a lot of the classes you listed. Im taking the new english baccaulereate which includes triple science, english, maths, german, history. Will this be enough?

Anonymous said...

What if your school doesn't have most of the electives that are listed, i mean,we have Biology, Physics and Chemistry. Do you think it would be enough?

jonp21 said... and most recent anonymous:

I am going to assume that you are both in high school. The classes a suggested are simply recommendations, not requirements. Therefore, these classes are suggested to get you prepared and college classes that you will be required to take. Vet schools do not look at which classes you took in high school. So, if these classes are not available it's ok, but if you're able to take them all the better.

Ally said...

This is so helpful! Im an undergrad majoring in biology and minoring in chemistry. Would classes like Vertebrae form and function, Mammology, and Animal Behavior help me? I wish I knew I wanted to become a vet sooner! Also, how would I be able to become a vet tech without getting? a certificate? Do you know how long it takes to become a veterinary technician in schools

jonp21 said...

Yes, I person can be a veterinary technician without certification. However, in some states your exact title and the kind of procedures you can perform vary widely.

I believe most veterinary technician programs are about 2 years.

LauraC said...

Im a tiny bit lost and i hope u can help me. I just moved from Ireland to USA last month and im trying to find out as much info as i can about the vet school.
At the moment Im volunteering at the animal hospital and i would love to become a vet tech.
I have never done biology, science, chemistry in school, and im wondering if i have to take those classes before i can get in the vet tech program ? I would really appreciate your help.

Nompumelelo said...

I am a grade 12 learner and really having the strong ambitions of becoming a veterinarian one day. I am a little bit scared,I wish to know what must I take care of in my studies in order to end up doing my desired work.

Anonymous said...

my high school offers animal science would that be a good class to take

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