Helping the sick guinea pig, healing the paralyzing horse or assisting in the birth of a panda baby: Veterinarians are at the top of the list of preferred jobs for children. Girls in particular dream of helping dogs, cats and the like later on. It is therefore not surprising that veterinary medicine has been one of the most coveted subjects for years.
More than 85 percent of freshmen are female. During their studies, they learn to take care of animals from birth to death. You will learn how they help with animal births, diagnose diseases and treat them professionally. The course also deals with the professional inspection of slaughter animals and meat control. See best business schools in Alaska.
Structure and content of a degree in veterinary medicine
The study of veterinary medicine is varied in terms of content. The structure is similar to the study of human medicine: the basic course of four semesters is called pre-clinical, followed by the clinical section of a total of six semesters, two of which are practical semesters. The degree concludes with the state examination.
In the pre-clinic, the students are first taught the scientific basics. They need this to understand the later medical content. Physics, biology, chemistry and zoology are on the curriculum. See Alaska federal school codes.
After the first major exam, the so – called pre – physics, the specific content is added. For example, students learn how the bodies of animals are anatomically constructed and how the embryo and fetus develop in different animals. They also deal with forms of animal breeding. At the end of the basic course, there is the preliminary veterinary examination.
In the clinical section of the course, subjects such as surgery, internal medicine or anesthesiology are on the curriculum. Students learn how to recognize illnesses, operate injuries or put on anesthetics. They study bacteria and blood cells in the university’s own laboratories and learn everything about animal husbandry, animal hygiene and disease control in the lecture hall. Issues such as food or meat hygiene also play a role.
At most universities, students have the opportunity to specialize in certain animal species, such as small or farm animals. In the ninth and tenth semesters, they put what they have learned into practice. They work in the veterinary clinics of the universities and do internships in surrounding small animal and farm practices. An internship at a slaughterhouse is also mandatory. In the last semester, the students finally pass the state exam, which consists of extensive practical and written exams.
If you have the state examination in your pocket, you can apply for a license to practice and practice as a veterinarian. If you want to acquire the academic degree Doctor medicinae veterinariae, you can also directly follow up your doctoral thesis. In their doctoral thesis, the students specialize in a specific field of work, such as diagnostics or a specific species of animal.
In addition, there are now master’s programs in which students can specialize in a specific animal species.
Allocation of study places
In Germany, only five universities offer veterinary medicine. The rush to study places is correspondingly large. Applications are submitted through the Foundation for University Admission (formerly ZVS). She allocates 20 percent of the places according to high school grades. The average grade required for admission in 2012/2013 was between 1.2 and 1.6. The foundation allocates another 20 percent of the study places over the waiting period. The universities allocate the rest of the places themselves.
The Abitur grade is also decisive in the university’s internal selection process. Some universities also pay attention to the proportion of science subjects in the Abitur and conduct additional aptitude tests.
Personal skills for the veterinary profession
If you want to become a veterinarian, you should of course enjoy working with animals of all kinds. But the love of animals alone is not enough. An interest in scientific and medical content is required for the course. Physical treatment is also required when treating animals. When dealing with the animal owners, however, characteristics such as communication skills and empathy count.
Paths after studying veterinary medicine
The majority of practicing veterinarians work as employees or self-employed in a veterinary practice. Several veterinarians often share the practice rooms and patients. Around half of all veterinary practices specialize in the treatment of small animals, the others are farm animals or mixed practices.
Some of the veterinarians are civil servants and / or employed by veterinary authorities. For example, they control slaughter meat, monitor the use of medicines in farm animals, fight animal diseases or take care of animal welfare.
Scientific activities are also possible. Veterinarians are employed by state examination offices or animal health services, where they work in diagnostics and research. A career as a lecturer at the university is also possible. Veterinarians are also employed in industrial companies, for example pharmaceutical companies or food and feed manufacturers.
Alternative study abroad
Those who cannot get a place in Germany can choose to study abroad as an alternative. This is not only a way to avoid long waiting times, but also offers a unique opportunity to get to know another country and its culture intensively. By the way, you make international friends and improve your foreign language skills.