The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies

Non Academic Requirements

We do not ask for specific types or number of days/weeks for work experience as it depends, to some extent, on the opportunities available to individual candidates.

Work experience and Covid-19

All UK veterinary schools are aware that the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak has affected many applicants’ opportunities to gain work experience before they apply.

We would recommend that applicants embark on their own online research into areas where they have been unable to gain practical experience to boost their knowledge and understanding of the veterinary profession.

Virtual Work Experience Course

A new online course has been developed by UK Vet Schools to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on work experience. All vet schools have collaborated on this MOOC and all agree it is valuable preparation for entry into the world of veterinary medicine.

Virtual Work Experience and Exploring the Veterinary Profession 

Those UK vet schools with recommendations or requirements for work experience have reviewed them, and details of changes for this year can be found on individual university websites, as well as the Vet Schools Council guide to admissions

At Edinburgh, we will also take any other online courses into account. You can find a list of the ones we offer below. 

Massive Open Online Courses

Work experience requirements 

We do not ask for specific types or number of days/weeks for work experience as it depends, to some extent, on the opportunities available to individual candidates. However, the broader the experience, the better, but you should not gain experience to the detriment of your academic studies. You should however gain both veterinary practice and animal work experience.

You should gain as much and as varied practical work experience as possible, which could include time spent:

  • Seeing veterinary practice, both large and small animal if possible
  • Livestock farms - dairy and lambing are particularly useful
  • Other animal establishments, such as zoos, kennels, catteries, wildlife centres, pig farms, poultry farms and stables
  • A day at an abattoir is recommended but not demanded
  • We encourage experience gained in veterinary or medical laboratories to help you appreciate the scientific basis of veterinary medicine
  • Due to Covid-19, for 2022 entry we will also consider MOOCs, online research and any planned work experience which was cancelled due to the pandemic.

Please note: the above are suggestions and ideas for work experience. This is not a checklist and achieving all these placements is not a requirement.

Applicants should provide detailed information on their practical experience (number of days/week spent and species worked with) in the appropriate section of their UCAS or VMCAS (North American graduates only) application. Candidates should be aware that the selectors can only take into account work already undertaken and not work planned. Applicants may receive an offer conditional on gaining further specified work experience.

Work Experience Summary (WES) Form - UCAS Candidates Only

All candidates applying via UCAS are required to complete and return a Work Experience Summary (WES) by 22 October. UCAS applications submitted without a WES will be considered incomplete. Further details about the WES are available below. 

Work Experience Summary Form

Non-academic achievements and interests

Your personal statement and references give us an idea of your skills, achievements and motivation, which are important factors in assessing your application.

  • Social involvement
  • School responsibilities
  • Leadership
  • Organisational abilities
  • Interests and hobbies
  • Cultural, sporting, musical, vocational and voluntary achievements