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How Applicants are Evaluated

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. Prospective students may apply to SDSU, UMN CVM, or both programs, through the Veterinary Medical College Application Service (VMCAS). The UMN CVM will initiate the application evaluation by completing an academic review. Eligible applicants will then be forwarded to SDSU, who will independently conduct the remainder of the review using evaluation criteria similar to the UMN CVM.

Please note that changes to how we evaluate applicants may be made up until the first day on which the application cycle opens. The opening date is typically mid-January for admission to the fall term of the following year. Please check this page often for updates. Information on the next cycle opening date can be found at https://www.aavmc.org/becoming-a-veterinarian/how-to-apply/ 

A Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The nation’s growing demographic diversity and the increasing impact of globalization underscores the need to prepare future companion animal veterinarians, food animal veterinarians, public health veterinarians, and veterinary researchers, educators, and scientists with the knowledge, skill, and cultural sensitivity to productively engage this complex emerging environment. The Professional Program in 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. We aim to satisfy the current and future needs of the profession while building on our programmatic strengths.

The Professional Program in Veterinary Medicine shall provide equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

Student body characteristics that will enhance diversity in the school include a demonstrated commitment to historically underserved communities, a record of community or public service, first-generation college students, disability, or LGBTQ communities, and representing a variety of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Step 1: Academic Measures

Academic measures include GPA in required pre-veterinary classes, GPA on most recent 45 semester credits of coursework, and overall GPA. 

A. Grade Point Average - Required Pre-Veterinary Courses

Based on the completed required courses for admission at the conclusion of summer 2021. Neither fall 2021 nor spring 2022 grades are used in the GPA calculations.  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 2016 (if enrolled that term). To calculate the most recent GPA, count back 45 semester or 60 quarter credits of graded coursework, and include the entire term in which the 45th/60th credit falls. Applicants with a GPA of 2.75 or below on required courses do not receive any points in this area.

C. Grade Point Average - Overall Cumulative GPA

Overall cumulative GPA includes all graded course work taken at the college level. This includes classes taken at every school attended, including community colleges, both public and private four-year colleges and universities, and graduate and professional coursework. Applicants with a GPA of 2.75 or below on required courses do not receive any points in this area.

Please note that the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is no longer considered in the application evaluation process.

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.

Final Decisions

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.