Frequently Asked Questions


All applicants are strongly advised to submit all required documents as soon as possible and prior to the given deadlines. Failure to do so will result in an applicant's removal from the applicant pool.

NOTE - It is vitally important for all applicants to understand that the application deadlines must be met.

Please remember, acceptance into any of the professional DVM programs across the country is very difficult, as there are hundreds of applicants being received for a much smaller number of available seats in the upcoming classes.


What are the minimum GPAs and GRE scores needed to make me competitive as an applicant to the DVM program?

While the minimum Required Course GPA for eligibility is a 3.00, just meeting the minimum GPA requirement will not make an applicant competitive. There is no minimum GRE score; however, applicants should be aware of the average scores from previous classes. An applicant has to be competitive on a broad scale, as there are three objective areas and two subjective areas that are evaluated during the admissions process. Interested applicants should visit the Previous Class Statistics page to get a better idea of what the class averages are that it will take to be competitive in the applicant pool. It is also strongly advised that interested applicants also read through the "Applicant Selection Procedure" page.


What are the academic requirements needed to apply to veterinary school?

A minimum of 66 semester hours is required for admission to the professional DVM program. This includes 12 semester hours of Biological Science (including Microbiology), 8 semester hours of General Chemistry, 3 semester hours of Organic Chemistry, 3 semester hours of Biochemistry, 5 semester hours of Mathematics (college algebra or higher), 6 semester hours of Physics, 6 semester hours of English Composition, 3 hours of Speech Communication, and 20 hours of Electives. Applicants must also take the General GRE exam. (See more specific course descriptions under "Course Prerequisites".)


Does it matter how long ago the required course work was taken?

The LSU SVM requires that all applicants have taken at least organic chemistry, one biology course - preferably microbiology w/lab - and one physics course within the last six years. You may choose to re-take a course to better master the subject at any point. If you re-take a course that is more than six years old, the most recent grade will be used otherwise the two grades will be averaged together when computing grade point averages.


What does the Admission Committee use as criteria in the selection of applicants admitted to the DVM program?

Academic and non-academic qualifications are considered in the selection process. Selection for admission is based on the sum of two scores: an objective score which comprises approximately 65 percent of the final calculation and a subjective score which comprises the remaining 35 percent. Please visit the "Applicant Selection Procedure" page for more information.


What is the deadline to submit my GRE scores?

All Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General Sections Verbal and Quantitative scores must be received by the LSU SVM no later than October 2nd, 2017. Inquiries concerning the GRE should be directed to the address/phone number below. You must have your scores sent directly to the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine [school code 6381 - Louisiana St U Vet Medicine; department code - 0617] and NOT any other LSU. If scores are not sent to the specific school code and department code given above, the LSU SVM Admissions Office will NOT receive your score. All GRE scores are sent electronically to the LSU SVM, and there are no exceptions to the October 2nd deadline. 

Graduate Record Examinations
P.O. Box 6000
Princeton, NJ 08541-6000
(609) 771-7670


My GRE scores are more than five years old. Do I need to retake the exam?

Yes. All GRE scores must have been taken within the past five years. If I don't do as well on the GRE as I would like, may I re-take the exam? Yes. You can take the General GRE exam as many times as you'd like. When the GRE has been taken more than once, the highest score from a single test date will be used. 


Can I take the VCAT or MCAT instead of the GRE?

No. We only accept the General GRE.


Are my chances of being admitted to the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine better if I attend LSU as an undergraduate and/or take the required science courses there?

No. The pre-veterinary requirements may be completed at LSU or at any other accredited college or university offering courses of the quality and content of those prescribed in the LSU General Catalog. No preference is given to one school over another; however the caliber of the school(s) attended may be looked at during the folder reviews.


What should I choose as an undergraduate major?

We do not give preference to one area of study over another; however we strongly encourage all applicants to pursue a degree path in the event an applicant is not accepted after numerous application attempts. The majority of our applicants pursue studies in the sciences. However, an applicant may study or possess a degree in any major provided the prerequisite courses are taken. Students who take the majority of their course work in the sciences, may be better prepared for the veterinary curriculum.


Is a bachelor's degree required to be admitted to veterinary school?

No. An applicant must have completed 66 semester hours at an accredited college prior to entering the DVM program (requirements are listed on the school web site under "Course Prerequisites"), but does not need to earn a degree in order to apply.


Do all of the requirements need to be complete before I submit an application?

No. However, we prefer that applicants have most or the required course work completed at the time of application. Required course work in the process of completion at the time of application must be complete by the end of the spring semester prior to matriculation.

(i.e., If you apply for matriculation into the fall '17 semester, all prerequisites must be completed by the end of the spring '17 semester.)


Is it advantageous to take extra science courses in addition to the required coursework?

Additional coursework is beneficial in preparation for the professional DVM program; courses such as Animal Science, Biological Science, Physical Science, and/or Business courses.


How are the Required Course GPA and Last 45 Credit Hour GPA calculated?

For the '17-'18 application cycle, fall '17 coursework will NOT count towards the Required Course GPA and Last 45 Credit Hour GPA for any applicants. Fall '17 credit hours and grades will NOT be used in either of the GPA calculations for Louisiana applicants, Arkansas applicants and Out of State applicants (includes applicants from Puerto Rico).

The LSU SVM does not use an overall cumulative GPA when computing an overall score. The Required Course GPA is computed by using all of the specific 46 required prerequisite courses (or equivalents). In addition to the specific prerequisite courses, also factored into the Required Course GPA are any other Animal Science, Physical Science or Biological Science courses that are taken and in which an "A" grade is earned. Social science, humanities, business, kinesiology, and any general education courses are NOT calculated into the Required Course GPA; however these courses (with the exception of kinesiology courses) will still be used for the Last 45 Credit Hour as seen below.

The Last 45 Credit Hour GPA is computed by using the most recent 45-60 semester hours of course work, with the exception of kinesiology courses. The entire last semester is included when calculating the Last 45 Credit Hour GPA. (If only 3 more credit hours is needed from one semester during which 18 credit hours were taken, all 18 credit hours would be factored into the Last 45 Credit Hour GPA.)

Applicants may choose to re-take a course to better master the subject at any point or to try to improve upon their Required Courses GPA or Last 45 Credit Hour GPA. If a course that is more than six years old is retaken, the most recent grade will be used in calculating the Required Course GPA, otherwise the two grades will be averaged together when computing grade point averages. (If a course is taken more than twice within the past six years, all grades/credit hours will be used.) If a course substitution is approved by the Admissions Office, the course being used as the prerequisite will be calculated into the Required Course GPA. (NOTE - Course Substitutions are on a case-by-case basis and are not guaranteed.)


Can I use Advanced Placement (AP) credit to fulfill the prerequisite courses?

Credit earned through advanced standing is acceptable, although it is not used in the computation of the grade point average. Official credit earned from the AP exam must be reflected on your undergraduate transcripts.


Can I take courses pass/fail?

Yes, however, they will not be used in the computation of grade point averages. Also, only graded courses will be used in determining the last 45-60 hour GPA.


How much veterinary experience is required?

Hands on veterinary or animal handling experience is not required but is strongly recommended. We are looking for the vision that an applicant has of how they see themselves fitting into the profession. Generally, the more experiences an applicant has and the more varied those experiences are (small animal, large animal, exotic, etc.) the better the vision of the applicant will be. 


How many letters of evaluation do I need?

A minimum of three letters of evaluation are required. One or two of the evaluations should be from veterinarians with whom you have worked and who can evaluate your potential as a veterinarian. Letters of evaluation MUST be submitted via the VMCAS application. Please carefully follow the application instructions for more details.


How do I obtain an application for admission to you DVM program?

We use the VMCAS (Veterinary Medical College Application Service) as well as a supplemental application specific for the LSU SVM. Please carefully follow the application instructions for more details.


When is the deadline to submit an application?

Please carefully read the important dates and deadlines found at "Important Dates & Deadlines".


Can I re-apply if I don't get accepted on my first application?

Yes. You are encouraged to make improvements to your application and to re-apply. You may make an appointment to discuss ways to improve your application with the Director of Admissions at (Application reviews are only available in May for the preceding application cycle.)


Do I need to submit a new application each year I apply?

Yes. All applicants must submit a current application each year they wish to be considered for admissions to the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine. This includes all official college transcripts and three letters of evaluation prepared using the current year's forms.


Am I required to have health insurance to be in the DVM program?

Yes. All students in veterinary medicine are required to have sickness and accident insurance protection either through enrollment in the Student Accident & Sickness Insurance Plan or through proof of participation in any other equal or better program. This proof will need to be presented at the time of orientation. More information regarding health insurance requirements is available in the welcoming packet sent out to all students accepted into the DVM program.