Veterinary Technology Distance Learning

The Veterinary Technology Distance Learning program is a science based veterinary nursing program offering an Associate of Applied Science degree. The Veterinary Technology Distance Learning (VTDL) program at Purdue University is designed to allow a student to gain the knowledge, information, and skills necessary to practice as a veterinary technician.

A new plan of study will go into effect in the fall of 2017.   Students may still move through the program at their own pace, but now have the flexibility to take more classes per semester, allowing a student to potentially complete the Associate Degree curriculum in as little as three years.

There are eighteen clinical mentorships which must be completed at a veterinary health care facility. Clinical Mentorships constitute the hands-on clinical portion of the degree.    More information is at

Top Campus The Purdue Veterinary Technology Program has been fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association's Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA) since 2002

Fully accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association since 2002

Typically, most students who complete the VTDL...

  • are already employed with a veterinarian
  • enjoy their job working with a veterinarian and plan to continue working with them
  • are willing to make a long-term commitment to develop the skills and acquire the extensive knowledge required to be a Veterinary Technician

Distance Learning students must...

  • maintain self-motivation and self-discipline
  • set own pace for learning
  • manage time effectively
  • be a self-learner/discoverer
  • set aside time for studying

Study time formula:

  • study time is considered the time spent after initial retrieval of information
  • 1 credit hour = minimum of 3 study hours per week (some content may require more hours of study time)
  • most VTDL students report spending 4 - 6 study hours per credit hour per week

Admission Requirements and Procedures

  • High school graduation or equivalent (high school transcript required) If you have a high school equivalency, we need both equivalency score report and the previous high school transcript.
  • Minimum high school subject matter prerequisites (deficiencies may be made up with college-level courses, one 100-level or higher college course counts as two high school semesters)
  • Applicants must be 18 years of age prior to entering clinical courses
  • SAT or ACT scores The requirement for test scores is waived if the applicant has 24 graded hours in college or is 23 or older.
  • Admission Deadlines
    • Fall:  July 1
    • Spring:  November 1
    • Summer: April 1

Click to apply for admission

Program Information

Program Curriculum and Fees


The pre-Fall 2017 curriculum for VTDL contains 35 didactic courses and 17 clinical mentorships.

The VTDL program is set up for students to take as a part-time program. It is very difficult to take the necessary credit hours to qualify as a full-time credit load.

Starting in Fall Semester, 2017, the plan of study will include 27 didactic courses and 18 clinical mentorships. 

Financial Aid

Financial aid eligibility is limited.

Current Fees

For current fees, click here.

Proctor Information

A proctor is the person who insures exam security. Every student must have a proctor OR utilize RPNow for exams. The VTDL communicates with the proctor the necessary information for the student to complete course exams.

  • Proctor must be a licensed veterinarian, a credentialed veterinary technician (RVT, LVT, CVT), or a practicing teacher in a school, college, or university
  • Proctor may not be a spouse or relative
  • Proctor must have high speed internet connection available
  • If you choose to use RPNow:

Transferring Credits

The pre-Fall 2017 program requires 70 credit hours for graduation. Of these 70 credit hours, 62 are specific veterinary technology classes. The 8 that can be transferred in include: 3 hours of freshman English composition, 2 hours of elective credits and 3 hours of an introductory Animal Agriculture course.  

Starting in Fall Semester, 2017, students can transfer in up to five credits for a 3-credit English Compostion class and a 2-credit free elective. Introductory Animal Agriculture is no longer required.  Note that English Composition is not offered online at Purdue University. 

Completing the Program

Because historically many VTDL students maintain their employment status and have family responsibilities, these students took an average of 4-5 years to complete the program as part-time students. Starting in Fall Semester, 2017 with the curriculum change, the program may be completed in as little as three years of continuous enrollment.

While this may seem to be a long time, it is the same effort that the on-campus students log in their intensive program. On-campus students are in class, labs, and rotations from 7:30 AM until 4:30 PM five days a week. DL students are typically unable to make that kind of time commitment because of their life/job situation, and thus it is important for DL students to remember that they are going to need to take this curriculum at a slower pace to prevent significant disruption of their other obligations and responsibilities, and to prevent their inability to meet the academic load.

Students NOT Residing in the United States

It is essential that students learn techniques that are considered state of the art of veterinary medicine. All veterinary facilities must meet the requirements for Clinical Mentorship facilities. See information above about the Clinical Mentorship Experience.

Click here to view Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine, 625 Harrison Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907, (765) 494-7607

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