hospital2.jpg (copy)

Professional Curriculum

The professional curriculum is a rigorous four-year program which provides a broad based education to all students.  This prepares them to enter a variety of career opportunities within veterinary medicine.  Students take 20-22 credit hours per term.

The curriculum is designed as a modified "systems approach".  The first year deals mainly with  structure and function of the normal animal.  This includes gross and microscopic anatomy, imaging and physiology, and other courses.   During the first semester of the second year, several principles courses are taught, such as immunology, infectious diseases and pathology.  Then students begin courses based on a body system (for example, the gastrointestinal or cardiovascular systems).    Each system includes appropriate pathology, imaging, diagnostic techniques and therapeutic measures for both large and small animal diseases.  Each semester also includes a small group (problem solving) course related to topics currently being taught.

All students are required to take at least four hours of electives.  Most take one elective course per semester beginning with the second semester.   Examples include disaster medicine, wildlife diseases, advanced reproductive techniques, diseases of pocket pets, diagnostic ultrasound, practice management, aquarium fish medicine, sports medicine and rehabilitation, equine lameness, applied anatomy, and population medicine.


First Year

Semester 1   Semester 2  
VMED 5111  Vet. Anatomy I 4 VMED 5121  Vet. Anatomy II 3
VMED 5131  Basic Microanatomy 3 VMED 5141  Organology 2
VMED 5110  Physiology I 5 VMED 5120  Physiology II 4
VMED 5130  Cell Phys/Mole Gene 2 VMED 5151  Vet. Neurosciences 5
VMED 5200  Vet. Parasitology I 3 VMED 5210  Vet. Parasitology II 2
VMED 5180  Vet. Ethology 1 VMED 5301  Physical Diagnosis I 2
VMED 5010  Veterinary Ethics 1 VMED 5150  Diagnostic Imaging 2
VMED 5012  Problem Solving I 1 VMED 5022  Problem Solving II 1

Second Year

Semester 1   Semester 2  
VMED 5220  Prin. Vet. Pathology 3 VMED 5520  Cardiovascular Syst. 2
VMED 5230  Vet. Clin. Pathology 3 VMED 5530  Respiratory Syst. 3
VMED 5240  Prin Vet Immunology 3 VMED 5910  Intro to Anesthesia 3
VMED 5250  Prin. Infectious Dis 4 VMED 5540  Alimentary Syst 5
VMED 5260  Vet. Pharmacology 3 VMED 5030  Public Health 4
VMED 5510  Hemolymphatic/ Integument Sys 4 VMED 5310  Intro to Surgery 2
VMED 5270 Cytology 1 VMED 5020 Vet Med and the Law 1
VMED 5380  Physical Diagnosis II 1 Elective 1
Elective 1    

Third Year

Semester 1   Semester 2  
VMED 5550  Urinary System 2 VMED 5340  Emerg&Critical Care 2
VMED 5560  Endocrine System 2 VMED 5370  Oncology 1
VMED 5570  Reproductive Syst. 5 VMED 5350  Vet Toxicology 3
VMED 5580  Nervous System 2 VMED 5360  Production Medicine 3
VMED 5590  Musculoskeletal Syst 3 VMED 5320  Clinical Vet Nutrition 2
VMED 5330  Multispecies Med 3 VMED 5900 Special Senses Systems 1
VMED 5311  Surgery Practicum 2 VMED 5601  Clinical Rotations see below
VMED 5262  Clin Pharmacology 1    
VMED 5032  Problem Solving III 1    
Elective 1    

Fourth Year

During the last 14 months of the curriculum, students participate in a series of required clinical rotations where they interact with patients and clients in the Veterinary Teaching Hospital.  The core rotations include:

  • Small animal internal medicine          

  • Small animal oncology                                               
  • Small animal general surgery                                     
  • Small animal orthopedic surgery                                
  • Critical care service/ emergency medicine                 
  • Dairy medicine & surgery                  
  • Community practice                           
  • Anesthesia
  • Diagnostic imaging                            
  • Diagnostic pathobiology                    
  • Equine medicine
  • Equine surgery
  • Equine critical care
  • Beef medicine & surgery
  • Food animal theriogenology

Students participate in five elective rotations, one of which may be an externship.  Externships are available at a variety of locations.  Some students go to practices specializing in specific species such as swine, cats, birds, or exotic animals.  Others use the opportunity to learn more about certain disciplines such as dentistry or ophthalmology.  Still others learn about non-traditional veterinary careers at locations such as the Center for Disease Control or the San Diego Zoo.

The final portion of the veterinary curriculum is a required preceptorship.  Most students spend this period with a veterinarian in clinical practice, but some go to zoos, research facilities or other less traditional practices.  During this time students gain supervised, hands-on experience with  day-to-day veterinary medical activities.

Auburn University | College of Veterinary Medicine | Auburn, Alabama 36849 | (334) 844-4546
Webmaster | Website Feedback | Privacy | Copyright ©