Animal lovers who want to train for veterinary assistant careers need to find a school that provides the quality education necessary to become certified and land a job after graduation. In order to help prospective vet assistants, find an online training program that meets their needs, we have created a list of the best schools around the country. After thoroughly evaluating programs, we found the following online veterinary assistant schools below offer the best educational value to students. All of these schools have been approved by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America.
How to Find Quality Online Veterinary Assistant Schools
All students are different in terms of their career goals and needs, so it’s important to find a veterinary assistant program that will help them achieve their specific professional aspirations. In order to achieve their goals, there are certain qualities that all students should consider when evaluating schools, including the following:
Inside Look at Attending Vet Assistant School Online
People who are interested in enrolling in a vet assistant program may be concerned about how online schools will truly teach them everything they need to know, since there are certain skills that require hands-on practice. These programs are effective because there are some concepts that vet assistant students can be taught online, like animal physiology and anatomy. In addition, these programs require that students participate in externships, which gives them the chance to get the clinical training they need.
How long does a veterinary assistant program take to complete?
The exact time it takes to complete a veterinary assistant program depends on the specific school that students enroll in. However, people can generally expect to finish their studies in about a year and a half.
What are some common courses and program requirements?
The curriculum of a veterinary assistant program is carefully crafted to give students the theoretical knowledge they should have to work in the field, which is augmented by the hands-on training required to graduate. The goal of the coursework is to prepare students to earn their certification and to that end, programs may require that they complete the following classes.
How Much Does Online Vet Assistant School Cost?
The cost of tuition and fees for a vet assistant program varies among schools. The following provides a glimpse at what some programs charge.
|1||1. U.S. Career Institute, Veterinary Assistant Certificate||$589|
|2||2. Blackstone Career Institute, Veterinary Assistant Certificate||$1,214|
|3||3. Ashworth College, Veterinary Assisting Diploma||$699|
For more information on how to pay for vet assistant school, check out EduMed’s financial aid guide.
Steps to Earn Your Vet Assistant Certification Online
Finding the right veterinary assistant school is only the first of several steps to entering the field. The following outlines the path that people must take to earn the Approved Veterinary Assistant (AVA) certification.
Step #1 – Enroll in vet assistant program approved by NAVTA
Enrolling in a program approved by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) ensures that students are prepared for the challenges of a vet assisting career and can meet the expectations employers have of them.
Step #2 – Complete standard online coursework
Online courses in vet assistant programs lay the foundation students need to be successful in their careers. From communicating with pet owners and other staff to cleaning examination rooms to restraining animals, people in these programs gain a variety of skills so they can keep up with the daily rigors of the job.
Step #3 – Complete on-site externship
Externships are the part of vet assistant programs that reinforce the coursework students completed. Under the supervision of current veterinary professionals, students are able to put their knowledge to the test with real patients and hone their skills.
Step #4 – Sign up for and pass the AVA exam
After completing their clinical work, people must pass the AVA examination. This 100-question exam, which is developed by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America and administered on the VetMedTeam website, takes 150 minutes to complete.
Step #5 – Renew certification every two years
To ensure that AVA professionals keep their skills and knowledge current, they are required to renew their certification after two years. In order to do this, vet assistants complete ten continuing education credits and pay a $10 fee.
Salary Outlook and Career Growth for Veterinary Assistants
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that vet assistant positions will grow by 19 percent between 2016 and 2026. This means that in the coming years, there will be 16,300 new jobs created for these professionals, driven by the fact that there has been an overall increase in pet-related spending among consumers.
People who enter this field can expect to make a median income of $27,540 per year, according to BLS. In addition, the top earners in these positions make above $38,890 annually, while the lowest 10 percent of workers make under $19,950.
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
Resources for Further Research
Future vet assistants get intensive training when they enroll in a program, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t take advantage of additional information that will help them deepen their understanding of the field. The following are five resources that veterinary assistant students can use to enhance their classroom instruction.
This video from Carrington College provides a look at the daily work of a vet assistant.
This page provides information on the Approved Veterinary Assistant certification that is required to obtain employment after students complete their training programs.
The NAVTA represents the interests of veterinary assistants and technicians, providing resources such as industry journals, access to continuing education courses, and advice on coping with job-related stress. In addition, the organization offers scholarships for those studying to enter the field, as well as discounts for insurance and resources professionals use.
This publication keeps professionals in the veterinary field abreast of the latest industry news, such as new products, trends, and practice advances. It also includes information about the treatment of small animals like cats and dogs, larger animals like horses and cows, and less common pets, including ducks and rabbits.