How Applicants are Evaluated
The diversity of the nation’s population underscores the need to prepare future companion animal veterinarians, food animal veterinarians, public health veterinarians, veterinary researchers, educators, and scientists who are knowledgeable and sensitive to the population’s needs. The College of Veterinary Medicine seeks to admit and educate a diverse student body to enrich the students’ educational experience and prepare them to meet the veterinary needs of a multicultural society and a variety of animal species. We aim to meet the current and future needs of the profession while building on our programmatic strengths.
Student body characteristics that will enhance diversity in the school include a demonstrated commitment to underserved career paths within the veterinary profession, a wide range of racial and ethnic backgrounds, an agricultural background, leadership qualities, and a strong work, community, or public service record.
The evaluation of applicants includes a three-stage process: academic measures, nonacademic measures, and a behavioral interview. Applicants not meeting a specific score on the academic measures, as set by the Admissions Committee, are not considered further. Applicants meeting the academic requirements and subjective review criteria, as set by the Admissions Committee, are invited to campus for an interview. Final decisions are based on academic measures, nonacademic measures, and the behavioral interview.
Step 1: Academic Measures
Academic measures include GPA in required pre-veterinary classes, GPA on most recent 45 semester credits of coursework, and results of the GRE.
A. Grade Point Average - Required Pre-Veterinary Courses: Based on the completed required courses for admission at the conclusion of summer 2014. Neither fall 2014 or spring 2015 grades are used in the GPA calculations. Repeated courses are both considered if retaken within three years; only the new grade is used if it has been three or more years since the course was first taken. All math and science prerequisite courses must be recent within 10 years of the application deadline. Applicants with a GPA of 2.75 or below on required courses do not receive any points in this area.
B. Grade Point Average - Most Recent 45 Semester Credits: Based on the last 45 semester hour credits (or 60 quarter hour credits, whichever is most relevant) of graded coursework, counting back from and including summer 2014 (if enrolled that term). To calculate most recent GPA, count back 45 semester or 60 quarter credits of graded coursework, and include the entire term in which the 45th credit falls.
C. Graduate Record Exam: The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is required of all applicants to the veterinary program. The applicant’s percentile score on each section is used to calculate the number of points. No points are awarded for percentile scores of 35 or below. GRE scores must be recent within five years. Scores from the former and current exam format are considered.
Step 2: Nonacademic Measures
Nonacademic measures include knowledge of the veterinary profession and experience with animals. Personal characteristics, maturity and reliability, work experience, community involvement, extracurricular activities, and three to six personal references are also considered.
Knowledge of the veterinary profession, knowledge of and interest in animals, and professional goals: experiences with veterinarians, experience in a research setting, experiences with and responsibility for the care and management of animals, and goals in the profession.
Maturity and reliability: employment experiences and responsibilities, ability to communicate with others, experiences suggesting leadership, extracurricular activities, and the amount of time devoted to employment and other activities while enrolled in college and after.
Faculty members of the Admissions Committee evaluate the nonacademic portion of the applicant’s VMCAS application file. The subjective review score is added to the academic score, creating a new overall score. Applicants must meet the minimum overall score requirements set by the Admissions Committee to be granted an interview.
Step 3: Behavioral interview
Students meeting the minimum criteria on the academic and nonacademic sections of the evaluation are invited to the campus for a one-hour behavioral interview. Interview invitations are extended in January. The behavioral interview is intended to objectively collect and evaluate information, using a series of questions that focus on the competencies required for success in the veterinary profession. A typical question in a behavioral interview is “tell me about a time when…” This allows the applicant to illustrate knowledge, skills, and abilities by giving specific examples from past experiences.
Scores from the academic review, nonacademic review, and interview determine admission to the program. Offers of admission are typically extended in mid-February. Wait lists are also kept and utilized. Vacated seats are filled from the wait list until the first day of the term.