The best Vet Tech online degrees can be found here, with GetEducated.com!
Become a veterinarian technician through an online veterinary science degree program, and pursue a career with a high rate of growth, a high salary, and fulfilling day-to-day objectives. If you are a veterinary assistant seeking career advancement, your prior experience in a vet’s office will be useful to this degree pathway.
The job growth for today’s vet tech is projected at 16% between 2019 and 2029, much faster than the average rate of growth for all occupations across the country. The profession requires only a specialized associate degree to build the skills to perform much more complex tasks in caring for animals, and then a state-administered licensure exam.
If you’ve chosen to become a vet tech but are still looking for the right program, one that is flexible, provides the knowledge you seek and the credentials you need, check out the article below to find the top seven online vet schools!
What is an Online Veterinary Science Degree?
Programs that teach how to become a vet tech provide challenging courses and practical, clinical experience requirements. There will be science, mathematics, and general education courses in any program that you choose.
Veterinary technicians perform a wide range of complex procedures including:
- Collecting specimens and performing laboratory procedures
- Preparing for and assisting in surgery
- Administering anesthesia
- Performing diagnostic imaging and educating clients
All these technical and medical procedures require training, both in the science behind the work and in the hands-on care of animals. Vet tech programs are meant to be rigorous and challenging to produce capable, competent veterinary technicians for an in-demand profession.
Online animal science associate degree programs are either “Associate of Science” or “Associate of Applied Science” degrees, depending on what a school offers. With a high school transcript or a GED, students can begin applications. Some programs will require students to take the general education portions of the program before beginning a specialized curriculum. General education requirements will include writing, humanities, mathematics, science, and social sciences. Many programs also include coursework in communications, since this profession requires communication skills with colleagues and clients.
The specialized portion of any online veterinary science degree will include an animal-focused curriculum and hands-on skills development under the mentorship of a veterinarian or licensed vet tech. The vast majority of these practices deal primarily with small animals, though some programs require practical work with farm and food animals too. Some programs also have exotic/laboratory animal clinicals.
Associate degree programs typically take two years of full-time study, but online veterinary classes can vary in length. If you are working, you may want to study part-time, and some programs even require you to go slower through the coursework. While much of these programs are offered asynchronously, some online veterinary science degrees will require on-site attendance to lectures and discussions. Plan to work outside of class time on each course each week, especially with the challenging courses provided to earn this professional degree.
Licensure for Vet Techs
To be licensed as a veterinary technician, you must check with your state for requirements. In most cases, you are required to pass a national exam, the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE), that is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards. Educational programs are often accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), through their Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA). Online animal science associate’s degree programs that are accredited by this board are checked for educational and institutional quality, so you can be assured of a good program if it is approved. Once a graduate passes the exam and fulfills any other state requirements, they can apply for licensure in their state.
The Best Vet Tech Schools Online
Get ready for the first step towards a career as a veterinary technician by checking out the different programs available for this growing profession online. Consider the emphasis of the program you want, in addition to cost and schedule.
1. Penn Foster College – Associate of Science in Veterinary Technician
- Low tuition price below $100 per credit hour; Penn Foster College also offers payment plans with no interest.
- Award-winning faculty and a strong vet tech student community
- Interactive coursework
- Clinical externships can be completed with one of the national veterinary hospital partners
- Courses include live webinars and asynchronous course elements and are mobile-friendly
- Up to 75% of credits toward the degree may transfer from other institutions
- Can be completed in four semesters
- Prepares students to take the VTNE
2. San Juan College – Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology
- Accredited by the AVMA
- Multiple start dates—fall, spring or summer
- Specialized vet tech courses last 12 weeks each
- 100% asynchronous online program designed for working professionals
- Hands-on labs designed to be performed at a veterinary clinic in student’s area
- Students work with both a companion animal site and a Food and Farm Animal site
- Fast-track labs for large animal skills on-site in Waco, Texas or another off-campus clinical instruction site
- One to four courses per semester
- Full-time students can complete the program in two years and then sit for the VTNE or similar state exams
- Open to international students
- Prior relevant work experience or college credit may be transfer credits or allow students to test out of some courses
3. Purdue University – Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology
- Part-time program that can be completed in three to five years
- “Veterinary nursing program” is a term that accurately represents the rigorous science-based curriculum and job duties of this profession
- Students may already work in veterinary practice
- Students are responsible for securing their own mentorship sites
- Online veterinary science degree graduates have a 90% pass rate on the VTNE
- Open to international students
- All students pay the same tuition rate regardless of residence
- Hands-on skills practiced with a mentor in the student’s area; Purdue holds on-campus workshops for students seeking large animal experience
4. St. Petersburg College – Associate of Science in Veterinary Technology
- Accredited by the AVMA and the American Animal Hospital Association
- Training includes radiology, nursing, dentistry, anesthesia, surgical preparation, and clinical laboratory tests
- Students must complete 18 or 22 credits of the general education requirements and have worked or volunteered at least 40 hours in an animal hospital before applying to the online animal science associate’s degree
- Coursework is completely online; students complete the clinical practicum with a mentor in their area
- Most learning is asynchronous
- Students must spend at least 20 hours per week in a veterinary clinic
- Florida residents pay less than a third of the tuition charged out-of-state students; there is the possibility to combine on-campus and online learning to fit the schedule needs of area students
5. Colby Community College – Associate of Applied Science in Veterinary Technology
- The convenience of distance learning can be combined with weekend on-campus mentorships for specialized subjects
- All coursework can be completed online asynchronously with practicums in student’s residential area
- On-campus weekend mentorships for large animals, laboratory/exotic animals, and microbiology
- Online students required to work with veterinary hospitals in their area to cover hands-on skills
- Can be completed in three years part-time or two years full-time
- Tuition is very affordable, especially for Kansas residents, but tuition for out-of-state and international students is also very low
- Courses are offered three semesters per year, though not all courses are offered every semester
6. Barton County Community College – Associate of Science in Veterinary Medicine
- Cost per credit hour is very low for all students regardless of residency
- Transfer credits are allowed but must be verified by transcript
- The online animal science associate’s degree program is a total of 64 credit hours and begins with a number of general education requirements, including foundation studies, humanities, social and natural sciences, and mathematics
- Required courses for the Veterinary Medicine emphasis are chemistry, physics, and zoology; there are elective options in anatomy and physiology, statistics, and organic chemistry
- Flexible scheduling allows for shorter or longer course terms, from four-week intersession courses up to sixteen-week full semester classes
- Free online tutoring is available through this military-friendly school
- Practicum requirements, field work, internships, and clinical experiences
7. Allen County Community College – Associate of Science in Pre-Veterinary Medicine
- Tuition well under $100 per credit hour
- Credit for prior learning or military experience is available after completing 12 credit hours of work
- The recommended sequence of courses allows students to complete the program in as little as four semesters
- Specialty courses for the veterinary technician program include animal science and industry, fundamentals of animal nutrition, and agricultural economics
- Transfer agreements with public universities in Kansas for further education
- Open to international students and out-of-state students with the same incredibly low tuition costs
- Writing center for individual tutoring, math tutors, access to the online library, and technical assistance
Start Contacting Online Vet Tech Schools Today
Earning an online veterinary science degree is what it takes to enter the vet tech profession with the experience, tools and knowledge to succeed. By finding the program that best fits your career goals as well as your budget, residency restrictions and schedule, your veterinary education can be one of the most rewarding experiences you take on. By checking out GetEducated’s one-stop-shop for finding the top online veterinary classes to meet your needs, you’ve already taken the first step towards your new veterinary career.
To learn more about the steps it takes to become a vet tech, or any other veterinary science position, check out this other GetEducated article!