About the Program
An animal health technologist (Veterinary technologist) is a valuable member of the animal health-care team who performs a large range of tasks, such as nursing care, diagnostic procedures and client interactions, to assist veterinarians in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease in animals. The program focuses on practical skills used in both small and large animal practices, including lab work, radiographs and medical and surgical nursing.
Animal care standards
All laboratories and clinical procedures involving animals at NAIT are approved by the NAIT Animal Care Committee. This committee functions under the mandate of the Canadian Council on Animal Care to ensure that animals are treated well. The Animal Care Committee is responsible for overseeing all use of animals within the institution. This includes:
- animal demos in the classroom
- any procedures that are performed on or with animals for any class/course that NAIT provides
The Animal Health Technology faculty includes 3 veterinarians and 10 Registered Veterinary Technologists with an average of 15 years of industry experience. All are registered with the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association.
Tuition & Fees (Cost per semester)
Cost Per Credit: $150
Tuition Cap: $1,883
Health & Dental: $128
Rec. & Athletics: $70
Books, Supplies & Program Fees (est.)
Semester 1: $800
Semester 2: $800
Semester 3: $1,200
Semester 4: $1,200
In order to provide large animal learning opportunities travel out of town is necessary. Students should expect to incur travel costs to these locations some of which are outside of Edmonton. Carpooling with peers is encouraged to reduce costs.
Please note: This information is provided to help you estimate your costs for student financing. Some courses may also have additional expenses. Students who take all of their courses online are exempt from U-Pass, Health & Dental, and Recreation & Athletics fees. All fees are subject to change.
- Grade 12 English
- Pure Math 30 or Math 30-1 or 30-2 or Applied Math 30
- Chemistry 30
- Biology 30
In general, successful applicants to this program have a 75% overall average.
View the English Language Proficiency Requirements for the Program: NAIT | English Language Proficiency
- Work related hours - A Verification of Work-Related Hours and Experience form (47K pdf) must accompany the application. This confirms the applicant has had at least 40 hours of meaningful animal-health work experience at a veterinary clinic. This form must be completed by a supervisor. (VMA graduates do not have to provide this).
- Immunizations - It is recommended that students have immunization against tetanus and diphtheria. Students are required to have rabies immunization prior to on campus animal labs. Rabies immunization will be arranged through NAIT, and students will receive further information on immunization requirements prior to the program start date.
- Computer Literacy - Students must have basic computer literacy, which includes word processing, spreadsheets, Internet, and email.
Student Selection Process and Criteria
Student selection is competitive and based on criteria that may include academic achievement beyond the stated minimum prerequisites. The selection process is based on:
- Phase 1 - Academic entrance requirements are reviewed by the Registrar's Office and applicants are shortlisted for interviews. Last year, applicants successful in receiving an interview had a minimum average of 71%. Applicants with prior NAIT Health Sciences credentials or who have successfully completed at least one approved Open Studies course in the School of Health and Life Sciences with a minimum of 75% may be given special consideration for the interview shortlist.
- Phase 2 - Shortlisted applicants are interviewed and ranked. Final selection is based strictly on the interview scores; academics presented in Phase 1 must be maintained. The format for Phase 2 is prerecorded online video interviews. Candidates who are successful in moving to Phase 2 will be given adequate notice of the interview requirements and instructions.
Additional Requirements and Information - Any prospective students with back, arm, shoulder, wrist or neck problems or significant health challenges should consider their options carefully before applying and are advised to consult with the Program.
Most students select a private veterinary practice for an on-the-job training position to practise skills learned in this program.
- Length: 5 weeks (212 hours)
- Salary: none
- Dates: May
- Relocation: not required
Accreditation & Industry Certification
- The Animal Health Technology program is accredited by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association.
- The program holds a Good Animal Practice Certificate through the Canadian Council on Animal Care.
- Active membership with the Alberta Association of Animal Health Technologists (AAAHT) is compulsory under the Province of Alberta’s Veterinary Act and General Regulation.
Scholarships & Bursaries
For general application and special selections, ranging from $500 to $5,000, see Scholarships & Bursaries.