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College Catalog Fall 2012 - Spring 2013

Veterinary Science Technology AAS - Required Clinical Program: Core Curriculum

The Required Clinical Program below is the core curriculum for ALL Veterinary Science Technology A.A.S. degree programs.  Each concentration requires additional courses, which are shown in the curriculum on that concentration's page.

The Instructional Program

Licensed veterinary technicians (LVTs) are employed by veterinarians in small-, large-, and mixed-animal practices. The LVT's role is comparable to that of the registered nurse and other medical technicians in human medicine. Their professional duties may include, but are not limited to surgical and medical nursing, laboratory testing, and radiographic procedures under the supervision of licensed veterinarians and other LVTs. Graduates may also practice in veterinary and technical colleges, zoos, public health services, government, military service, private industry, and other animal-science related fields.

Delhi's Veterinary Science Technology program, established in 1961, was the first of its type in the United States. Since its inception, it has developed into a dynamic, nationally-recognized program fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). The program is designed to meet existing demands for technical personnel in the veterinary and biomedical fields. Extensive laboratory facilities, versatile faculty and staff, and hands-on experiences with companion, laboratory, farm, and other animals are major assets of the program. A required practicum (work experience in a veterinary practice, animal- research facility, or other approved animal facility) also enhances each student's skills and employment potential. The program is designed to be completed in two years, but the curriculum may be modified based on the academic preparedness or desires of the applicant.

Students receive an Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree upon successful completion of the curriculum and are eligible to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE). This examination is used by New York and most other states as the official licensure examination for veterinary technicians.

The Veterinary Science Technology program focuses on clinical assisting procedures, performance of laboratory testing techniques, and an understanding and appreciation of the concepts and practices employed in veterinary-practice and biomedical-research settings. The humane care and treatment of animal patients are stressed, as are the importance of compassion, veterinary medical ethics, effective interpersonal relations, and the psychology of dealing with patients and clients.

Lecture and laboratory instruction is presented by veterinarians and veterinary technicians who bring a broad range of experiences and expertise to the program. The laboratories are staffed to allow students to receive individual attention and maximum exposure to different veterinary-practice philosophies. Traditional classroom sequences are supplemented with additional learning experiences, which include: assignments in the College's animal facilities, guest lectures, computer-assisted learning projects, laboratory instruction, and field trips.

An active student chapter of the New York State Association of Veterinary Technicians (NYSAVT)/North American Veterinary Technicians Association (NAVTA) provides students with additional educational and social opportunities both on and off the Delhi campus.

Career Options

Students who complete the Laboratory Animal Option have additional career opportunities available to LVTs as laboratory-animal technicians (LATs) employed by the pharmaceutical industry; by medical, dental, and veterinary colleges; or by diagnostic and testing laboratories.  Under the direction of veterinarians or research scientists, LATs may have responsibility for animal health and husbandry, investigative procedures, pharmaceutical testing, and administrative and related duties. With additional professional experience, graduates who complete advanced laboratory-animal courses are eligible to take the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) certification examination.  To learn more about the Laboratory Animal Option, see the Laboratory Animal Option section of this catalog.

The Business Advisement Option offers LVT’s who complete additional professional experience and course work, the opportunity to be employed as veterinary-practice managers or laboratory-animal facilities managers.  Graduates who complete the Business Option may choose to transfer into the Veterinary Technology Management B.B.A. degree program, and may be eligible to take certification examinations offered by the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association or the Laboratory Animal Management Association.  To learn more about the Business Advisement Option, or the Veterinary Technology Management B.B.A. degree program, see the respective sections in this catalog.


Advancement Requirements

Only grades of C or higher for each required course taken at Delhi are considered passing grades for students in the program. A grade of C- or lower is not a passing grade. Individual courses may have standards that exceed this minimum passing grade requirement.

Satisfactory completion of prerequisite courses is required to enroll in subsequent courses, as stated in program course descriptions.

Students must maintain a 2.0 or higher grade point average and complete all courses in sequence in order to graduate from the Veterinary Science Technology program. The program is designed to be completed in four semesters; however, students lacking prerequisites or who are on probation may need additional semesters to satisfy degree requirements.

Only students in the Veterinary Science Technology program may take VETS 140 or higher-numbered courses.

Transfer Options

SUNY Delhi has transfer agreements with Cornell University and other colleges that students may wish to consider for further educational experiences. These agreements allow students who plan to continue on to four-year bachelor degree programs the option of taking additional courses designed to facilitate transfer to those upper-division colleges.  Transfer to most four-year programs requires a minimum grade point average of B (3.0 on a 4-point scale).

Students who enroll in the Delhi/Cornell Connection transfer option need to be highly motivated and have a strong interest in veterinary science. Students with excellent high school science/mathematics backgrounds who are capable of carrying a heavy load are most likely to succeed.

The additional courses required of Delhi/Cornell Connection students include additional biology and chemistry, and mathematics at the pre-calculus level or higher (a higher level of mathematics than is traditionally required for the A.A.S. degree). Successful graduates earn an A.A.S. degree in Veterinary Science Technology and have a strong foundation needed for success in four-year programs.  To learn more about the Delhi/Cornell Connection, see the Cornell Connection/Transfer Option section of this catalog.

Admissions Requirements

To be eligible for consideration, an applicant must meet all of the academic requirements below.


Additionally, because of the volume of scientific literature required in most Veterinary Science courses, the student should have above-average reading and writing skills.

Any applicant whose high school record is deficient in any of the above requirements or who has a high school average below 78% may be required to complete at least one semester of pre-coursework, thus requiring five or more semesters to graduate from the Veterinary Science program.

A successful applicant to the Delhi/Cornell Connection Option must be a graduate of an accredited secondary school, or have an equivalent education, with an unweighted high school average of at least 85% (or B+). The student must have completed the following courses with a minimum unweighted grade of 85% (or B+): 4 units of English, 4 units of social studies, 2 units of math (Algebra and Geometry and Algebra II/Trigonometry or equivalent), and 1 unit each of biology and chemistry. Where appropriate, courses must be NYS Regents or equivalent. SAT and ACT scores are also taken into consideration for the Delhi/Cornell Connection Option.

Transfer Students

Students transferring into the program from another college or from another department within SUNY Delhi need a C+ or better overall average (2.5 or higher on a 4-point scale), a C or better in Liberal Arts and Science courses, and a C+ or better in all Veterinary Science courses.

A maximum of one-half of the total Veterinary Science Technology credit hours may be transferred to Delhi from other AVMA-accredited Veterinary Technology programs, whether on-site or distance learning. A maximum of thirty (30) credit hours for any and all courses may be transferred from other colleges.

Courses to be transferred from another college are evaluated on an individual basis for content and compatibility with SUNY Delhi courses. Prospective students will be required to provide supporting material to demonstrate equivalency to Delhi courses to the satisfaction of the Delhi faculty. The College reserves the right to test transfer applicants to demonstrate compatibility of courses and knowledge.

All Students:


REQUIRED CLINICAL PROGRAM CORE CURRICULUM - This core curriculum is included in all of the Veterinary Science Technology A.A.S. Degree Programs.

SUNY Curriculum Code: 0521

SUNY General Education Requirements: Students who intend to receive A.A., A.S., or baccalaureate degrees must satisfy SUNY and campus General Education (GE) requirements to graduate. Students should be aware that GE requirements may vary by academic program. Consult with your academic advisor. For general information, see the "General Education" section of this catalog.

A.A.S. and A.O.S. degree students may not be required to fulfill General Education (GE) requirements; however, any student who may wish to transfer should complete as many GE courses as possible. Consult with your academic advisor.

Technical Standards:  In addition to academic requirements, all applicants must also be able to meet the minimum Technical Standards for the program, with or without reasonable accommodation.

Academic Requirements:

Minimum Total Credit Hours = 66

Major Courses Required - 43 credit hours

Course No. Course                                                    Cr. Hrs.
VETS 115 Medical Mathematics for Veterinary Technicians  1
VETS 120 Introduction to Veterinary Science  2
VETS 131 Small Animal Care and Nursing 3
VETS 132 Large Animal Care Lecture 1
VETS 133 Large Animal Care Laboratory 1
VETS 140 Animal Anatomy and Physiology 
VETS 160 Introduction to Research Animal Techniques   3
VETS 171 Parasitology 3
VETS 180 Clinical Physiology 2
VETS 198 Preparation for Veterinary Technology Preceptorship  1
VETS 203 Veterinary Technology Preceptorship (summer session)  1
VETS 204 Animal Care II 1
VETS 205 Clinical Laboratory Techniques (Lecture) 3
VETS 210 Clinical Laboratory Techniques Laboratory 2
VETS 230 Farm Animal Nursing (Lecture)  2
VETS 235 Farm Animal Nursing Laboratory 1
VETS 238 Surgical Nursing and Anesthesia (Lecture) 3
VETS 239 Surgical Nursing and Anesthesia Laboratory 1
VETS 245 Diagnostic Imaging 2
VETS 250 Veterinary Clinical Management 3
VETS 255 Veterinary Medical Nursing 3

General Education/Liberal Arts Courses Required - 20 credit hours 

Course No. Course Cr. Hrs.
BIOL 230 General Microbiology
CHEM 120 Introductory Chemistry I by advisement 1   
  OR  4
CHEM 180 General Chemistry I by advisement 1   
COMM 100 Public Speaking 3
ENGL ___ Freshman Composition or Advanced Composition2 3
MATH ___ Mathematics by advisement1 3-4
  Humanities/Social Science Elective by advisement 1 3

Restricted Elective by Advisement 1 -  3 credit hours


1 Specific courses are by advisement for each concentration (see concentration pages); mathematics is by placement according to competency.

2 English is by placement according to competency.


Student Learning Outcomes

A graduate of the Veterinary Science Technology A.A.S. program should be able to do the following:

  1. Successfully complete the Veterinary Technician National Exam.
  2. Demonstrate skills and knowledge of domestic animals, including: normal values for temperature, pulse, and respiration; conduct a thorough and accurate physical examination, including the proper use of the stethoscope; restrain animals for physical examination and veterinary techniques.
  3. Perform animal nursing and critical care for all common domestic animals, including: restraint, administering medications, diagnostic sampling for laboratory evaluation, maintaining fluid therapy, applying and removing bandages and splints, and applying established emergency protocols.
  4. Assist with animal surgery, including: knowledge of routine procedures and operating-room equipment; prepare the patient, veterinary personnel, and equipment for sterile surgical procedures; function effectively as a surgical assistant to the veterinary surgeon during surgical procedures.
  5. Induce, stabilize, monitor, and maintain anesthesia under supervision of the veterinarian; recognize and report anesthetic emergencies; apply resuscitation techniques and CPR.
  6. Assist with diagnostic imaging, including: radiography and ultrasound; expose, develop, and evaluate radiographs to provide diagnostic images for veterinary interpretation and diagnosis; and properly clean and maintain diagnostic imaging equipment.
  7. Perform common laboratory procedures, including: hematological examinations, blood chemistries, urinalysis, parasitic examinations, cytological procedures, microbiological procedures, and necropsy.
  8. Provide competent assistance with office procedures: telephone contacts, making appointments, admitting and discharging patients, maintaining medical and financial records, and establishing and maintaining a clean and orderly veterinary facility.
  9. Communicate with the public, clients, and colleagues through both verbal and written communication skills, including effective listening.
  10. Design and deliver grief-management assistance to clients and colleagues.
  11. Demonstrate knowledge of the common medicines used in veterinary medicine, including: types and groups of drugs; labeling and packaging of dispensed drugs; using weights and measures correctly; calculating dosages; safely storing, handling, and disposing of controlled substances, biologics, therapeutic agents, and hazardous wastes.
  12. Differentiate between normal and abnormal patient responses to medication.
  13. Understand basic knowledge of animal health, common diseases, and disease processes for all common domestic animals.
  14. Demonstrate skills and knowledge associated with the use of common laboratory animals, including basic principles of animal research; local, state, and federal animal-welfare regulations.
  15. Demonstrate skills and knowledge associated with cleaning, sanitizing, and sterilizing equipment and facilities, including knowledge of products, equipment, procedures, and techniques routinely used in reducing, eliminating, or preventing contamination of the animal-care institutions.

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Last Updated: 3/20/13