University College Dublin
Veterinary Medicine Degree Programme
University College Dublin (UCD) traces its origins to the Catholic University of Ireland founded in 1854 by Cardinal John Henry Newman, author of the celebrated “The Idea of a University.” Since then, the University has played a central role in Ireland’s advancement as a dynamic and highly successful European state and has established a long and distinguished tradition of service to scholarship and the community.
UCD is the sole provider of a veterinary medicine degree programme on the island of Ireland, and enjoys a long and proud tradition in the provision of veterinary education. Students of the veterinary medicine programme benefit from the outstanding facilities of the purpose-designed UCD Veterinary Sciences Centre and UCD Veterinary Hospital on the main university campus at Belfield, Dublin (commissioned in 2002). Located on a 132 Ha site 5km south of Dublin’s City Centre, UCD is Ireland’s largest university with over 23,000 students. The veterinary facilities are state-of-the-art. As part of the UCD College of Agriculture, Food Science & Veterinary Medicine we provide the ideal environment for students and staff to work together to push back the frontiers of knowledge in veterinary research, thus advancing animal health, animal welfare, and human health.
Our programme is designed to educate you to the best international standards in veterinary medicine and to prepare you for entry to any branch of the veterinary profession. Veterinary medicine is concerned with the promotion of the health and welfare of animals of special importance to society. This involves the care of healthy and sick animals, the prevention, recognition, control and treatment of their diseases and the welfare and productivity of livestock. Veterinarians also safeguard human health through prevention and control of diseases transmitted from animals to man, through ensuring the safety of foods of animal origin, and through advancing the science and art of comparative medicine.
Veterinary graduates may work in private practice (companion animals, food animals, horses, exotics, or a mixture of these), in government service (animal health, food safety, public health), in research or in industry. Our veterinary programme is accredited by the Veterinary Council of Ireland, the American Veterinary Medical Association, and the European Association of Establishments in Veterinary Education.
US applicants through VMCAS are eligible to apply to enter this programme provided they have the prerequisites as outlined below. Further curricular details are published on our web site,
The Programme is organised into four stages. During Stage 2 students will take combined modules with students on the Veterinary Medicine programme aimed at school-leavers. In Semesters 1 and 2 of the programme students will build on their knowledge of the basic biological sciences by taking modules designed to demonstrate how this knowledge is applied in the practice of veterinary medicine, and gain a firm grounding in animal welfare, behaviour and handling. A key objective will be to ensure that students have the required knowledge, skills and competences to progress to Stage 2. As the programme progresses students will learn clinical skills and study each of the clinical sciences using a “body systems” approach. Beginning in stage 1 students are required to complete a minimum of 34 weeks of practical extra-mural experience to be completed by stage 4 according to the specifications/regulations for Extra Mural Studies (EMS) The final year of the programme consists of clinical rotations in UCD’s veterinary hospital where students have the opportunity to work alongside experienced and specialist staff clinicians, and participate in patient care and client communication. Each student has a personalized timetable ensuring that they participate in rotations in Large and Small Animal Surgeries, Diagnostic Imaging, Anesthesiology, Small and Large Animal Medicine, Emergency Medicine, Clinical Reproduction, Herd Health, Population Medicine, Diagnostic Pathology and Clinical Pathology. Assessments at the end of this clinical year are through Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) and Clinical Proficiency Examinations (CPEs). Throughout the programme students are required to participate in extra-mural studies. In the early years, this consists of gaining experience in the handling and management of farm and companion animals, and in later years, of working with veterinarians in practice (clinical extra-mural experience). Some of this experience can be undertaken in the US or elsewhere, according to student preference.
For specific application information (availability, fees and VMCAS participation), please refer to the contact information listed above. For further information on entry to the Republic of Ireland, please refer to
. Students must also be able to ensure adequate financial support for the duration of their programme.
Prerequisites for Admission
4-Year Graduate Entry Programme
Candidates who have studied and will complete a degree in an appropriate biological science may be considered for the 4- year Graduate programme in Veterinary Medicine with the award of MVB.
Required undergraduate GPA: 3.2 (on 4.0-point scale)
Course completion deadline: all required courses should be completed prior to August of the year of admission.
5-Year Undergraduate Programme MVB: Those candidates with a nonscience degree would be considered for first year entry to the 5-year MVB programme, provided they have gained high grades in the science subjects, including chemistry and biology.
Standardized examinations: none required. GRE® results will be considered if submitted.
Additional requirements and considerations
Applicants are also expected to have gained relevant work experience of handling animals. This should, where possible, include not only seeing veterinary practice, but also spending time on livestock farms and other animal establishments.
Summary of Admission Procedure
VMCAS application deadline: Tuesday, October 2, 2013 1:00 PM Eastern Time
Date offers mailed: Late January/Early February
Term begins: early September
Deposit (to hold place in class): €2,000 euros, required by early March
Deferments: Not applicable
References/evaluations (minimum 2 required-one from academic
science source and one from a veterinary surgeon)
1 page personal statement
Animal & Veterinary Experience
2011-2012 admissions summary (for entry in 2011)
Number of Applicants
Number of New Entrants
Expenses for the 2012-2013*
Annual tuition and fees
Non EU Graduate
US and Canadian residents must apply to UCD through VMCAS and a supplemental application form which is available at
Completed applications are reviewed by our admissions team. No interviews will take place. Successful applicants will receive their offers in December/January. Classes begin in early September with compulsory orientation taking place prior to the start of classes.
Up to 30 places will be available in 2013 for overseas students. We look for a GPA of 3.2 or above, and applicants should have a minimum, but preferably more, of two weeks Animal/Veterinary work experience.
All additional information required by UCD including the completed online supplemental application and supporting documentation by the 1st of November 2013.
* For up-to-date information on fees and all further information regarding admission to the University College Dublin, please visit our web site
Page Updated: March/20/2013