Veterinary Medicine, like other medicine courses, is a challenging and competitive programme. The entry requirements vary based on what country/university you decide to study in. This guide gives an overview of what will be expected of you when applying to study the programme and gives an overview of various Veterinary Medicine entry requirements. 

Entry Requirements To Study Veterinary Medicine In The UK

Each university will differ on what they expect from their applicants, especially with regards to work experience. The following table is a summary of the currently available information, but it is important to check the individual university’s web pages for the most up-to-date information.

UniversityAcademic RequirementsWork Experience
Royal Veterinary College, University of LondonA-Levels: AAA (including Biology and Chemistry)

IB: 666 (including Biology and Chemistry)

GCSEs: At least 5 grade 7s at GCSE, with at least a grade 6 in English Language and Mathematics
Minimum requirements:

70 hours work experience in a veterinary practice and
70 hours in non-clinical working environment with live animals (not incl. pet ownership)

The 140 hours must be done within 18 months prior to application
University of CambridgeA-Levels: A*AA (incl. Chemistry and one of Biology, Physics or Mathematics)

IB: 40-42 points, 776 at Higher Level (incl. Chemistry and one of Biology, Physics or Mathematics)

You are required to sit an admissions test to study Veterinary Medicine at Cambridge.
Work experience is not a requirement, but a minimum of two weeks of work experience is encouraged.
University of LiverpoolA-Levels: AAA (incl. Biology plus another science subject. If Chemistry is not offered at A level, grade B at AS level is required)

IB: 36 points (incl. Grade 6 at Higher Level Biology, Grade 6 at Higher Level Chemistry, Grade 6 at Higher Level in any other subject)

GCSEs: At least five GCSEs at grade 7 including two science GCSEs (either as separate subjects or e.g. dual award science). With at least a grade 6 (B) in English (literature or language) and Mathematics.
Minimum of 15 days of animal-related work experience, including a week in a veterinary practice.
The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of EdinburghA-Levels: AAA (incl. Chemistry and Biology)

IB: 666 HL in Chemistry, Biology and one other subject. A minimum of 38 points overall.

GCSEs: Grade 4 in English.
Applicants should have work experience in veterinary practice and animal work.
University of GlasgowA-Levels: AAA (incl. Chemistry and Biology)

IB: (6, 6, 6, HL)

GCSEs: Grade 5 in English
Minimum 1 week in a veterinary practice
University of BristolA-Level: AAA (incl. Chemistry and one of Biology, Physics, Mathematics or Further Mathematics)

IB: 36 points with 18 at Higher Level, including 6 at Higher Level in Chemistry and one of Biology, Physics or Mathematics

GCSEs: grade 4 in English and Mathematics
Bristol does not have any specific work experience requirements for entry.
University of NottinghamA-level: AAB (incl. A in Biology and Chemistry)

IB: 34 points

GCSEs: Five GCSEs at grade 7 (A), including Biology and Chemistry (or dual sciences) and either Physics or Maths. GCSE grade 6 (B) in Maths and 4 (C) in English Language
Minimum of 5 weeks work experience including:

Minimum of 3 weeks of animal handling, up to 2 weeks of customer facing/ teamwork experience, up to 2 weeks of the virtual work experience course (details on website)
University of SurreyA-Levels: AAA (incl. Biology and Chemistry)

IB: 35 points (incl. HL6/ SL7 in Biology and Chemistry)

GCSEs: Five subjects at grade 7 including Chemistry and Biology (or double science). English language and Mathematics at grade 5
Work experience not required

Harper and Keele Veterinary SchoolA-Levels: AAB (grade A in Biology or Chemistry)

IB: 34 points

GCSEs: minimum of 5 GCSEs at grade 7 or above (incl. Science) and at least a grade 6 in English Language, Mathematics, Physics
Each candidate will be assessed individually.

Suggested experience to aim for:

Time spent in one or more veterinary practices, ideally covering both large and small animal work

A mixture of non-clinical placements which could include any of:

farms – cattle, sheep, pigs, poultry
dairy and lambing experiences are very useful;
stables, kennels, catterie, etc.;
veterinary or medical laboratories and pathology services

a day at an abattoir
The Aberystwyth School of Veterinary Science

A-Levels: AAA (incl. Biology and Chemistry)

IB: 666 (incl Biology and Chemistry)

GCSEs: 5 GCSEs at grade 7
A total of 70 hours (e.g. 10 full days) of work experience (paid or voluntary) in one or more veterinary practices

A total of 70 hours in one or more non-clinical working environments with live animals (excl. the home environment/family business/pet ownership), with at least 35 in large animal (excluding horse riding and horse ownership/family farm)
University of Central LancashireA-Levels: AAB or ABB, depending on the combination of subjects

GCSEs: grade 4 in Maths and English
No specific requirements

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What Are The Requirements To Study Veterinary Medicine Abroad? 

Each international veterinary course has different entry requirements/entrance exams that can change regularly, so it’s important to check the admissions page of the university website before applying so you’re aware of what’s expected of you. Below are a few examples of the entry requirements for studying Veterinary Medicine abroad.

UniversityAcademic RequirementsEnglish Language Requirements
University of Nicosia School of Veterinary Medicine (Cyprus)A Levels: ABB including Chemistry and one of either Biology, Physics or Maths, and one more subject

IB: 32 overall and a combined score of 16 at Higher Level, to include Chemistry and at least one of either Biology, Physics or Maths
6.5 overall in the IELTS (with 6.5 in writing and a minimum of 6.0 in all other elements)

Or: 79 in TOEFL iBT

Or: grade 5 in the GCSE (or B with the old grading system)
Or: a score of 5 in English in the International Baccalaureate Standard Level (SL)

Or: a score of 8 in English in the European Baccalaureate.

Students from the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada (only for English speaking provinces), Australia and New Zealand are exempt from this requirement as long as they have graduated from an English-speaking high school.
Latvia University of Life Sciences and TechnologiesAt least “Satisfactory” grade in Biology or Chemistry

Pass online biology and chemistry entrance test

Basic knowledge in Biology, Chemistry and Mathematics

Pass entrance exam
IELTS score 6.0
TOEFL score 547
TOEFL-iBT score 76
Trakia University
All foreign citizens who have a diploma for completed secondary education are eligible for studying veterinary medicineProficient in English
The University of MelbourneA levels – BCC including Mathematics, one of Biology, Chemistry and Physics, and an approved A or AS Level English subject; or Both Mathematics and Further Mathematics, and an approved A or AS Level English subject.

IB: 31 overall and a minimum grade of 4 in either Applications and interpretations HL, Analysis and approaches SL, or Analysis and approaches HL. A minimum grade of 4 in one of Biology, Chemistry or Physics at HL or SL
Unless you are from an English-speaking background or education, you need to meet the English Language requirements through IELTS, TOEFL, Pearson Test of English (academic) or Cambridge English (CAE)
The University of Sydney

Test: Completion of Altus suite’s Casper Situational Judgement Test

A levels: 3/4 subjects – 16/17 points or A*AA with required subjects in Mathematics Advanced, Biology and Chemistry

IB: 37 points overall, with required subjects in Mathematics Advanced, Biology, Chemistry and Physics to enhance your application

IELTS score – A minimum result of 7.0 overall and a minimum result of 7.0 in each band

or: TOEFL, IBT score – A minimum result of 96 overall including a minimum result of 23 in Reading, Listening and Speaking and 25 in Writing

or: Pearsons Test of English – A minimum result of 68 overall and a minimum result of 68 in each band

Which Qualifications Are Not Accepted to Study Veterinary Medicine?

Veterinary Medicine welcomes applicants from a wide range of educational backgrounds, including A-Levels, BTEC, International Baccalaureate, and T-Levels. Each student’s academic record will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Are There Any Additional Tests I Need to Pass?

You do not need to sit the UCAT to study Veterinary Medicine. Entrance exams are only applicable to students wanting to apply to Cambridge or to a university overseas.

If applying for Veterinary Medicine in Cambridge, you will need to sit the Natural Sciences Aptitude Test. Some overseas universities require you to pass an additional science-related entrance exam, but this will be detailed on their admissions page if applicable.


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What If I Don’t Meet Veterinary Medicine Entry Requirements? 

For some veterinary schools, not meeting the standard entry requirements does not mean an automatic rejection. For example, if you miss your A-Level criteria by one grade only for the Royal Veterinary College (University of London) you may still progress with your application, however, you will be at a disadvantage compared to applicants who have achieved the minimum entry requirements. 


Should you not be offered a place through UCAS, you can try to get a place through clearing on A-Level results day. While it is rare to find a place for Veterinary Medicine through clearing, it has happened in the past. Ensure that you check for vacancies on veterinary courses as early as possible on the day; if there are any available, they will be taken quickly!

Foundation Year: 

You may also study the programme by taking a foundation year, which typically has lower entry requirements and helps you build the skills required for the standard course level.

Graduate Entry:

Similarly to medicine, it is possible to study Graduate Entry Veterinary Medicine at some universities after completing a Bachelor’s degree in another discipline, even if you did not achieve the required A-level grades.

Universities with graduate programmes include the University of Edinburgh, University of Bristol, Royal Veterinary College, and many universities in the US.

These courses often require a 2:1 classification in a related bachelor’s degree such as anatomy, zoology, biomedical science, etc. This is a great option for candidates who want to study veterinary medicine but did not achieve the minimum academic requirements while at school/college.

Gap Year:

You might also decide to take a gap year and resit your exams, which can improve your chances of getting into a vet school in the next admissions cycle. Spend this time by getting the relevant work experience and polishing your portfolio to enhance your application.

For more information, look at widening access schemes into veterinary medicine.


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