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Veterinary Technology Diploma

Veterinary Technology Student

If you love caring for animals and their people, the Veterinary Technology Diploma program is for you!

As part of this 16-month accelerated program, you will become proficient in handling, treating and caring for cats, dogs, horses, sheep and cattle, at the new Animal Health Education Center and Smart Farm. You will learn about diagnostic laboratory procedures, animal disease, anatomy and physiology, surgery and anesthesia, diagnostic imaging, dentistry and client communication. You will also learn alongside Veterinary Medical Receptionist and Veterinary Technical Assistant students.

Work-Integrated Learning

As part of the Veterinary Technology program, you will complete a six-week industry practicum, working directly with industry professionals. 


Upon graduation from the Veterinary Technology Diploma you are eligible to write the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) and a provincial licencing exam to become an Registered Veterinary Technologist (RVT). You will be taught a Canadian Veterinary Medical Association accredited curriculum.

Program Intake

Three intakes per year: Winter (February/March start), Summer (July start), Fall (October start).

Please Note: Summer 2025 intake is suspended at this time. 

Applications Open:

  • Summer Intake: First Wednesday (9 a.m.) in October

  • Fall Intake: First Wednesday (9 a.m.) in December

  • Winter Intake: First Wednesday (9 a.m.) in March

Method of Delivery

Blended. The program will begin with two online courses which will be completed prior to arrival on campus. Upon completion of the online courses, students will be on campus for three back-to-back four-month semesters, delivered over 12 months. Students complete this program with a six-week industry practicum. View Delivery Chart


Upon successful completion of this program, graduates will receive a diploma in Veterinary Technology.

Program Details

    • 65% or better in English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2
    • 65% or better in Math 30-1 or 30-2
    • 65% or better in Biology 30
    • 65% or better in Chemistry 30
    • Meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement
    • Complete 40 hours of job shadowing and/or employment and must submit a Job Shadowing/Employment Verification Form signed by your employer, verifying the hours have been completed. PLEASE NOTE: Your application will remain "pending" until the Verification Form has been completed and submitted.

    Competitive Admission Program: Applicants offered admission typically have an overall average in the required courses of 80% or higher.

    Verification of Job Shadowing/Employment: The Verification Form must be signed by the Veterinarian, RVT, or person who most closely supervised the applicant in the location where the job shadowing and/or employment hours were gained. This form may only be signed and submitted after the minimum of 40 hours of job shadowing and/or employment hours have been completed.

    Job Shadowing/Employment Verification Form

    Academic Upgrading and High School Applicants: It will be necessary to provide proof of enrolment in any required 30-level courses not yet completed (ie. a timetable, list of courses signed by the counsellor/principal or letter from the institution or staff/instructor) AND a final mark of 65% or better in the corresponding 20-level courses.

    Alternate Admission: Prospective applicants who do not meet the academic requirements for the Veterinary Technology Diploma program are eligible for alternate admission consideration to the program if:

    • they have a 50% or higher in the four academic requirements for the Veterinary Technology  Diploma program (English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2, Math 30-1 or 30-2, Biology 30 and Chemistry 30); AND
    • successfully complete the Veterinary Medical Receptionist Certificate program with a 3.5 GPA or higher

    Directed Field Study Required: 6 week practicum in the industry to be completed at the end of the program (can be completed at a location of the student’s choosing).

    Transfer Options: Olds College of Agriculture & Technology has developed agreements with other educational institutions to allow for transition to Olds College, or to another institution to continue your education. Articulations & Agreements

    Out of Province Applicants: Please refer to the Provincial Equivalency Chart for course equivalencies.

    International Applicants: Olds College welcomes applications from International Applicants and those who have completed their high school education outside of Canada. Please note, it is still necessary to meet all of the noted admission requirements, including English Language Proficiency.

  • Please refer to the current Fee Schedule for complete details.

    Tuition, Fees & Payments

    Scholarships & Student Awards

    Olds College of Agriculture & Technology offers over 450 awards, valued at $500,000+ in scholarships, bursaries and prizes. Thanks to our industry partners, alumni, and friends of Olds College we are fortunate to offer a generous student awards program to students.

    For additional information on scholarships, bursaries and prizes at Olds College, visit Scholarships & Awards.

    Entrance Awards Available!

    Entrance awards range from $250 - $1,500 for students applying for the upcoming academic year and have paid the tuition deposit by the deadline.

    Awards are selected randomly from those that have applied and qualify based on the criteria.
    Award will be applied as a tuition credit to the student's account after the add/drop course deadline, confirming full-time attendance. Not all that apply will receive an entrance award.

    Student Funding

    For information on how to apply for government student loans, financial aid or for help with financial planning, visit our Student Funding page.

  • For course descriptions and requisites, view the Academic Calendar.

    Academic Calendar: Veterinary Technology

    Term 1
    • Completed the following:
      • COM1020 - Workplace Communication
      • AHT1050 - Introduction to the Veterinary Profession
    Term 2
    • Completed the following:
      • AHT1040 - Animal Behaviour and Handling
      • AHT1080 - Animal Nutrition and Terminology
      • AHT1110 - Animal Wellness
      • AHT1140 - Veterinary Practice: The Team Connection
      • AHT1160 - Veterinary Elective Equipment and Procedures
      • AHT1170 - Introductory Pharmacy and Preventative Care
    Term 3
    • Completed the following:
      • AHT1150 - Hospital Procedures
      • AHT1210 - Investigating the Cardiovascular and Respiratory Systems
      • AHT1220 - Investigating the Urinary, Reproductive and Endocrine Systems
      • AHT1230 - Investigating the Digestive and Integumentary Systems
      • AHT1240 - Investigating the Musculoskeletal, Neurological and Sensory Systems
      • AHT1130 - Anesthesia and Analgesia
    Term 4
    • Completed the following:
      • AHT2150 - Small Animal Surgery, Dentistry and Anesthesia
      • AHT2140 - Large Animal Procedures
      • AHT2120 - Small Animal Clinical Procedures
      • AHT2110 - Clinical Skills
      • AHT2850 - Professional Skills Development
    Term 5
    • Completed the following:
      • AHT2950 - Industry Directed Field Study
  • Olds College has a solid reputation working with employers in the industry! This directly translates into jobs for our graduates. Opportunities include, but are not limited to:

    • Veterinary clinics
    • Diagnostic/Research laboratories
    • Livestock operations
    • Industry/sales
    • Wildlife rehabilitation centres
    • Zoos
    • Educational programs

    Visit ALIS to find Occupational Profiles with current wages, industry trends and more!

    ALIS Occupational Profiles

  • Immunizations

    Admitted students should be aware of occupational programs where potential for exposure to animals with disease/infection is high. Please read more about program specific Immunization Information.

    Program Dates

    Find out when your term start and end dates are, so that you know when you are expected to be in attendance. For more information, please review the Program Dates & Fee Schedule.

    Class Registration

    You will be registered into your classes automatically. This will happen approximately 1 month prior to the start-date for your program. You will be notified once you have been timetabled into your courses. You will be able to see your class schedule in your My Olds College account. If you need to make any changes to your class registration, please contact the Office of the Registrar.

    Technology Recommendation

    It is required that you come to Olds College with the following technology:

    Students will use a variety of memory-intensive, Windows-only programs extensively in lectures and labs. A PC laptop running the latest version of the Microsoft Windows operating system (as of December 2020, Microsoft Windows 10. Mac and Chrome OS are not suitable. Minimum of 8GB RAM and 250GB (512 Gb recommended) available disk storage space is mandatory for this program. Laptops should have sufficient battery life to operate in the field for up to 2 hours.

    As part of your student accounts, all students have access to Office 365 for the duration of their time with Olds College. To access this you just need to follow these steps:

    • Go to
    • Enter your Olds College email address and password
    • Once logged in, there is a button on the right that says “Install Office Apps”
    This will give you access to the full Office suite on your computer.

    Materials & Supplies

    The following items are required to be purchased prior to the start of your program:

    • Coveralls (long sleeve/washable/no Carharts or TuffDuck brands)
    • Minimum of two sets of scrubs (can be any color or pattern)
    • Rubber boots (we recommend a regular pair and an insulated pair)
    • Indoor shoes to be worn in hospital areas
    • Soft leather gloves to be worn during large animal labs (optional)

    The following items can be purchased from the Olds College Campus Store:

    • Stethoscope
    • Penlight
    • Thermometer
    • One wrap around coat (blue)

    Information on required textbooks and any further supplies will be provided as you attend each class. All books and supplies will be available during the first few weeks of classes in the College Campus Store.

    Other Important Information:

    • Dress Code: You are required to adhere to a dress code that includes wearing scrubs and wraps in the hospital areas and laboratories, coveralls on the farm, and no revealing, torn, or dirty clothes worn during classes.
    • Time Requirements: As this programs involves learning with animals, you will be actively involved in the animal care throughout the program. This requires you to perform duties in the evenings and on weekends and holidays. You will be involved in the chores and day to day care of the animals that are required for the program. Students are scheduled to complete animal care rotations including weekends.
    • Physical Program Requirements: The program is physically demanding and students must be in good health and be physically capable of performing the program requirements. This includes week long rotations in teams (including weekends) caring for our cats, dogs, exotics, horses, and cattle. Examples include lifting up to 25 lb dogs onto examination tables, jogging beside haltered horses, moving quickly in cattle and sheep pens and being able to scale a fence, walking medium to large size dogs in all weather conditions, and looking into a microscope for 1-3 hour labs.
    • Immunization Requirements: This program requires specific immunization requirements. Learn More

    Student Membership

    Special requirements for students registered in this program within the Province of Alberta now require that all students have an active student membership with the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association (ABVMA) under the Province of Alberta’s Veterinary Act and General Regulation. 

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Program at a Glance

Length: 16 months

Delivery Method: Blended

Program Intake: Three intakes per year

Applications Open: October, December, March

Program Status: Open

Students in our Veterinary Technology Diploma and Veterinary Medical Receptionist Certificate programs are seeking hosts to complete their industry practicums.

If you're interested in providing this valuable opportunity, please use the form below to confirm your practicum student's name and timeline. Don't miss out on the chance to support and mentor the next generation of animal health professionals!

Host a Student Confirm a Student