Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) Curriculum

The LMU-CVM DVM curriculum is a full-time four academic-year or 130-week program leading to the degree of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM). The curriculum will stress the interdependence of the biological, clinical, behavioral and social sciences. Throughout the curriculum, emphasis will be placed on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of the diseases of animals. The curriculum uses live animals, clinical immersion, and collaboration with other academic programs. Practical clinical skills, including diagnostic, medical and surgical procedures, will be taught from the beginning and reinforced throughout the curriculum as part of the Clinical Skills courses. Professional skills, including personal development, communication with clients, and collaboration with other health professionals and paraprofessionals will be taught as part of the One Health initiative and the Professional Life Skills courses.

A veterinarian must be skilled in problem-solving and demonstrate expertise in diagnosis. In order to achieve this goal, LMU-CVM's curriculum will emphasize the integration of the basic and clinical sciences. The curriculum will be divided into a pre-clinical phase and a clinical phase. Within the pre-clinical phase (semester one through six), the curriculum is divided into distinct semesters to allow efficient delivery of curriculum to the dual entry cohorts. Fall of first year is composed of courses related to anatomy, physiology, and histology; while spring of first year contains courses related to immunology and microbiology. In the second year, the fall semester is dedicated to diagnostic courses including, clinical pathology, diagnostic imaging, and gross pathology. The spring semester of second year contains the foundational surgery and anesthesiology courses. The third year is taught by systems for common domestic species. System order will differ between cohorts, but all systems will be covered over the course of the year. The clinical phase takes place in the workplace as part of a distributive curriculum over the course of one calendar year starting in May. Students will complete roughly the first half of the year through core rotations and the remaining half of the year through elective rotations.  All students will complete a NAVLE preparation course prior to taking the NAVLE during the fall window.

Calculation of Credit Hours

Calculation of pre-clinical credit hours is based on the following formula: approximately fifteen lecture hours or thirty laboratory hours comprise one credit hour. Students are expected to complete a minimum of two hours per credit hour per week (e.g., a two credit course would have around four hours of out of class work per week).  Clinical year credit hours are calculated by week, where each clinical week (minimum of 30 hours) is equal to one credit hour.

Pre-Clinical Coursework Waivers

Selected basic pre-clinical science courses may be waived by prior completion of comparable coursework by the Associate Dean of Student Affairs and Admissions. The waiver policy is primarily designed for incoming students who have received a graduate degree in a field that the course they are requesting the waiver for encompasses. The course may be waived entirely or the student may be required to successfully pass a comprehensive examination covering the course material. For each course waived, a waiver petition/form must be completed, with the appropriate signatures, and filed with the Office of Student Affairs and Admissions prior to the start of the class. The signed waiver form becomes a part of the academic record at LMU-CVM and serves as a record of the student's completion of those course requirements. The student will receive credit for the course but will not receive a letter grade. The class will not be figured into the student's GPA. Students receiving a waiver will not be eligible for official class rank. The granting of a waiver will not reduce a student's tuition.

Students who are granted a waiver are strongly encouraged to use their waived course time and expertise to serve as tutors for their classmates. Clinical rotations may not be waived.

Course Descriptions & Course Catalog

A summary listing of all course descriptions and credit hours is located on the LMU-CVM Web Site at professional-program/academics/course-descriptions and is available in Degrees and Courses.

Curriculum Digest

The LMU-CVM Curriculum Digest can be accessed from the LMU-CVM medicine/professional-program/academics/curriculum- digest and is available in Degrees.

Pre-Clinical Electives

Students are eligible to enroll in Pre-Clinical semester electives so long as they are in good academic standing and are not on any form of probation.

  • There is no minimum number of elective credit hours that students must take.
  • Students may take up to 3 elective credits per semester.
  • Students who fail any course (including other electives) will not be eligible for electives in the following semester.
  • Failure of an elective will not count towards the overall number of failures during an academic year. There is no remediation for a failed elective.
  • A lottery and/or a separate merit-based application will be held for electives with maximum enrollment limitations. Students who are chosen or not chosen will be notified prior to the close of elective selections so that they may participate in other electives.
  • A student may request, from the Dean, permission to drop an elective course if less than 25% of the course has been completed. Students must complete an Elective Drop/Add Form to request this change, available in the LMU-CVM Office of Academic Affairs. No record of the dropped course will appear on their transcript.
  • Elective course grades affect the GPA and class rank only if the elective is failed. Electives with passing grades have no effect on the GPA or class rank.