Do I have to wait until I submit my application before I have transcripts or other documents sent?
It is a very good idea to have documents sent in as soon as possible to meet deadlines.
How should I send my transcripts?
Official transcripts must be sent to VMCAS by September 15th. More information can be found at www.aavmc.org.
If some of my courses transferred to my home college and appear on their transcript, do I still need to have transcripts sent from all the colleges?
YES! You should send official transcripts from all the colleges you attended to VMCAS. This includes college credits you received in high school.
Veterinary Medical Application Service (VMCAS) questions
Are all my supporting documents that are not going through VMCAS (Residency Form for NYS residents, TOEFL for international applicants) due September 15th?
Yes, all supporting documents are due by September 15th whether going to VMCAS or coming to Cornell.
When is the VMCAS application available?
The VMCAS application is typically available in late January with Supplemental applications embedded in the VMCAS available mid-May.
How do I get to the VMCAS application?
The link to the VMCAS application is located here.
When is the VMCAS application due?
September 15th. The VMCAS application (including the completed embedded Cornell Supplemental section), all electronic letters of evaluation (eLors) (minimum of three), and all official college transcripts are due at this time.
Letters of Evaluation
What if I don't have a letter for an experience?
We don't require a letter of evaluation for all experiences. We do require at least one letter from a veterinarian and encourage applicants to have additional letters from those they consider their most significant experiences.
Who should write the letter from my college?
For the academic evaluation, you can ask your advisor or a faculty member who you have taken classes from. Whomever you choose should be able to provide the Admissions Committee with information about your academic abilities in college.
What is the Admissions Committee looking for in a letter of evaluation?
Those writing your letters should review our Guidelines for Evaluators, which provides useful insight for your application.
When are evaluations due?
September 15th. Letters will not be accepted by VCMAS after this date. It is a very good idea to keep checking with your evaluators to make sure they are aware of the deadline and meet this timetable.
Animal/Veterinary/Biomedical Research Experience
How far back can I go with these experiences?
You are welcome to list any experiences you would like considered in the application process.
GRES and MCATS
GRE's and MCAT's- NOT REQUIRED
Beginning with the application cycle Fall 2020 and all future application cycles, the GRE's and MCAT's are no longer required in the admissions process.
If I speak another language, should I take the TOEFL?
The TOEFL (Test of English for a Foreign Language) is required if English is not your first language and your education is taught in a language other than English. You will also be required to take the GRE's.
How would I request the review of one of my courses that appears to meet a prerequisite course description, but the title is different?
You can complete a prerequisite course substitution form to request a specific course be reviewed to determine if it meets our requirements. It is best to include a course syllabus, but in some cases the course description will work. Also, a faculty member writing a letter indicating the specifics of the course that meet the requirement is also acceptable.
Will a prerequisite substitution form be reviewed after the September 15th deadline?
Yes, prerequisite substitution forms will be reviewed after the deadline. However, because that is a busy time of year for Admissions, the response time could be delayed. For a time-sensitive response, it is best to get your request in prior to the September 15th deadline.
If I get a C minus in a prerequisite course, should I take it again?
A C minus meets our prerequisite requirement. You may want to take a higher level course in the same subject area to show your ability to grasp more difficult and new information. However, if you feel that you did not grasp the information in the course and retaking it will provide you with a better understanding of the content, then you may want to take it again. It is always wise to consult your advisors at your college to make sure this is allowed and that it will not compromise any received financial aid.
If I get a D or lower in a prerequisite course, should I retake the course?
Yes, you will want to retake any of the prerequisite courses where you received less than a C minus. If the course was an introductory course and you take an upper level course in the same subject area with lab and appropriate credits, then this could be used for the requirement. For example, if you received a D in general biology II, you could take an upper level course, like Genetics with a lab and receive a grade of C minus or better, this course could be used for half of the general biology requirement.
What should I do if I took AP biology and did not have to take general biology I and II at my college?
If you were granted credit for general biology I and II through Advanced Placement or another assessment then we would look for you to take a year of upper level biology with labs for minimally 6 semester credits (for example, anatomy and physiology I and II with labs; cell biology and genetics with labs; etc.).
What if I was waived out of English with advanced placement or another assessment?
We require 2 semesters of English Composition or writing-concentrated courses. If you did not have to take these courses, you will want to look at your college catalog to make sure you fulfill the requirement with other courses. We will take a course that is designated 'writing intensive' or if the syllabus indicated 50% or more of the final grade was based on written work. The other half of the requirement also needs to be accomplished prior to enrolling.
Can I apply lacking a prerequisite course?
Yes, you can apply lacking up to 12 semester credits of prerequisite courses pending completion by the end of the Spring term prior to enrolling.
When do I have to have the prerequisite courses completed?
We will need final transcripts with all outstanding prerequisite courses completed by the end of the Spring term prior to enrolling. The summer before enrolling is not an option for additional course work. The deadline for final transcripts for the Class of 2025 is June 15, 2021. Final transcripts should be sent to Cornell's DVM Admissions Office.
What if one of my courses lacks a lab? Also- Online LABS
Labs are required for all science prerequisite courses except Organic Chemistry, the Advanced Life Sciences course, and Biochemistry, although labs are recommended. If your college offers the lecture, but not the lab, you may want to either see if a faculty member would do an independent lab for that course or take the lab (or lab and course) at another college or university.
ONLINE LABS during the Covid pandemic
Most colleges and universities moved their courses to online instruction due to the Covid-19 pandemic in the middle of the Spring 2020 semester. Because of this unavoidable change we will accept online labs for this semester. This will continue on a case by case basis for the Summer 2020 and Fall 2020 terms. If your instruction offers an in-class lab you should take that option. However, if your college or university is completely online with no other option we will accept an online lab (for those prerequisite courses that require a lab). Please complete a Prerequisite Substitution Form with documentation the lab will only be offered online.
What if my biochemistry is only for 3 semester credits and the requirement if 4 semester credits?
There are colleges that teach biochemistry for 3 semester credits instead of 4. If this is the case at your college you can do one of three things:
- Take biochemistry II if offered;
- Take a biochemistry lab if offered;
- Take a 4-credit biochemistry course at another college or university;
- If your organic chemistry combined credits is more than our minimum required (3), then you can use 1 credit toward the biochemistry lacking credit (and only 1 credit). Many colleges teach organic chemistry for 4 semester credits for each section.
If I am under the quarter system and meet the quarter credit requirement with just 2 quarters, do I still need to take the third quarter?
Yes, you need to meet all the requirements listed for your course. For example, for general chemistry you will need a FULL year, minimally 9 quarter credits, AND labs. The full year (or three quarters) provides all the content that a student in the two semester course would take. So, the important thing to remember when meeting these prerequisite course requirements is to fulfill all the criteria listed. These courses are selected to prepare you for the veterinary medical curriculum.
Other Document Questions
When should I have my official college transcripts sent to VMCAS?
All official transcripts should be received by VMCAS by the September 15th deadline.
Should I collect my transcripts and send them in?
You should have each individual college or university where you took courses send your transcript directly to VMCAS. VMCAS will not accept transcripts that are sent by the student or a third party. VMCAS instructions will indicate how transcripts are to be sent. Visit www.aavmc.org for details.
When should I send in the Residency Form if I live in NY?
During the regular application cycle this form is due by the September 15th deadline. The Residency Form should be submitted electronically from your Cornell Tracking Page if applying in a regular application cycle; for all other application processes (Transfer, Early Acceptance, and Cornell Accelerated Program) the form can be printed from our web site, completed and emailed, faxed, or mailed to the Admissions Office at Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine (do not send this form to VMCAS).
Who should I give the Dean's Certification to complete?
Please give the Dean's Certification to your Dean of Students or Dean of Student Affairs to complete.
When should I submit the Dean's Certification?
We recommend you submit it during the application process. It is ultimately required of all admitted and alternates, March 15, 2021 for the Class of 2025. However, if it is submitted during the application process, there is one less piece of paperwork to complete if admitted or an alternate. The Dean's Certification should be submitted directly to the Admissions Office at the College of Veterinary Medicine (do not send it to VMCAS).
Are students encouraged to reapply?
Yes, students are encouraged to reapply. When decisions are made at the end of the application cycle, students who are not made an offer of admission are encouraged to make a post-applicant counseling appointment. In this appointment they will be counseled on ways to strengthen their application.
International Applicant Questions
Who should take the Test of English for a Foreign Language (TOEFL)?
Students whose native language is not English and their education is taught in a language other than English should take the TOEFL.
Is there a required TOEFL score?
We require a score of 600 or higher on a paper-based test; 100 or higher on an Internet-based test; and 250 on the Computer-based test. Information about the TOEFL and to register for the test can be found at the Educational Testing Service (ETS).
Do I need to have my study abroad courses sent through an international credential service?
If you are in a study abroad program through your home college you do not need to have your transcripts sent to an outside organization to be converted. However, if you took a prerequisite course while studying abroad and it was transferred back to your institution without a grade you would want to have that course grade and credit converted.
Other course work taken abroad will need to have a conversion report completed. VMCAS asks students to have a WES Report completed and electronically sent to their office no later than September 15th.
As an international student, if I take the TOEFL, do I still need to take the GRE's?
GRE's or MCAT's are not required to apply to Cornell.
Will my CEGEP Diploma Courses (Quebec) count toward prerequisite courses?
CEGEP (diploma) courses can count toward entry level prerequisite courses, but the credits and grades will not be included in the GPA's (cumulative, prerequisite, or science).
Is there funding for International Students?
We don't have funding for international Students. Once an international student is admitted and deposited into the DVM degree program they will need complete a "Certification of Finances" form showing documentation of the ability to pay all four years. Then a student visa can be processed. International students are billed by semester like all students.
Early Acceptance Program
Who can apply for the Early Acceptance Program abd when is the application available?
Students who are finishing their second year of college, earning 60 semester credits may apply. They must also have all but 12 credits of prerequisite course work completed. There is additional academic criteria students will want to review.
The Early Application is available March 1st each year with a deadline of June 1st. Students are notified of their status by the second week of July.
When is the Transfer Application Due?
The two deadlines for transfer applications are June 1st and October 1st.