How to apply for veterinary medicine (BVMS)

Undergraduate study

Thinking about applying to study veterinary medicine at the University of Central Lancashire? We have put together some guidance to help you with your application.

We recognise and value the importance and positive impacts of diversity within our Veterinary Medicine & Surgery (BVMS) programme, the wider university, and beyond.

Our BVMS programme welcomes applications from all students. Students who come from different backgrounds and life experiences have a range of perspectives. This enhances the educational experience for everyone.

This page covers everything you need to know when applying for our BVMS programme, including:

Contextual admissions for BVMS

Widening participation is at the core of our mission. We firmly believe in helping people to seize every opportunity to flourish in education. We offer a reduced entry tariff for those whose life experiences may have resulted in academic challenges.

View our contextual admissions policy

Before you apply

Think clearly about why you want to study veterinary medicine and write a list of your reasons – it would be good to get these across in your application.

Where do you want to study? Whichever university you apply to, make sure you visit, talk to the students and have a good look around the campus and city. Five years is a long time.

Things to think about

  • Other choices

    You won’t be judged for your other uni applications. It doesn’t matter if you also apply for a non-veterinary degree, as long as you can show a strong case for applying to veterinary medicine.
  • Taking a gap year

    If you want to take a gap year then do so. You could further familiarise yourself with the various roles of veterinary surgeons. Or you could develop your personal and professional attributes.
  • Your background

    University selectors are not influenced by whether your parents are veterinary surgeons, or what type of school you come from. It is you they are interested in.
  • Be positive

    Be positive about what you have to offer. If you get an interview, then be confident and relax. It’s your opportunity to show us why you would make a great vet. If you have any questions then don’t be shy to ask.

How to apply for BVMS

UK applications are submitted via UCAS

UK veterinary school applications are expected to be submitted by October the year before entry. If you’re applying for September 2024, you will need to submit your application by 16 October 2023 at 6.00pm.

International applications can be submitted via UCAS or directly via our online application form

We accept direct international applications throughout the year. However, you should apply early so that we can process your application in good time.

There are several stages to the admissions process:

  1. The first step is the assessment of your initial application against both academic and non-academic set criteria. Please make sure your application form is as comprehensive as possible.

    If you are a home student your application must be submitted via UCAS.

    A personal reflective statement is required as part of your application. The personal statement is a key element of the admissions process. We have provided guidance on how to write this in line with our set criteria. Please see the personal statement section of this webpage.

    If you are not submitting via UCAS, you should also ensure that you include all supporting information for your application. This includes:

    • Personal statement
    • Reference

    If you are applying as an international applicant you'll need to send these via email to the International Admissions Team.

  2. All applications are first read by our Admissions Team to ensure that you meet the minimum academic requirements. If you meet these, your application will get an academic score and passed to our selection panel. If you do not meet these your application will be rejected at this initial stage. You may wish to consider applying for our Foundation Entry programme.

    The selection panel will look at your personal statement and the reference from your school/college. Please do not send in extra information or portfolios of work unless we contact you to request it. In the interests of fairness to all candidates, we will only assess what is included in your direct or UCAS application form.

    If you produce a strong personal statement, using the guidance on this page, you are more likely to get an interview. If you have a very low evaluation for any aspect of your application, you are unlikely to get an interview.

    Your reference will be scored by specific criteria outlined on this page. You should ensure that the person who will complete your reference is able to see this. Please see the reference section lower down on this page. Both you and your referee should address each aspect outlined in the guidance. Referees should be aware that we expect to see more than a record of academic achievement. Your references should show your strengths in the areas listed in the guidance. This is much more valuable than simple “school report” style references.

  3. If you get invited for interview you'll need to take part in Multiple Mini Interviews (MMI). You will not get an offer without an interview. These are normally held at our Preston Campus between December and April.

    Once all interviews are completed you are ranked according to performance. Your individual station and overall scores will be assessed. You will then be ranked according to score. Offers are made to the top-ranking applicants until the required number of places has been filled.

    A small number of applicants who perform exceptionally well at interview may be made an early offer.

  4. If you're successful at interview you'll need to undergo occupational health screening. This is part of the enrolment process. The screening process ensures we understand your needs so we can support you throughout the course. This is inclusive of a wide range of disabilities.

    Please be reassured that alongside our duties under the Equality Act 2010, we are committed to making veterinary education accessible. We will do our best to make reasonable adjustments and provide necessary support to address any fitness to practise issue.

Personal statement for BVMS

You should approach your personal statement in the same way as a job application. You should use it to provide evidence that you have the qualities required to be a trainee veterinary surgeon. Instead of telling us what you think you're good at, provide examples of things you've done that show what you're good at. Also, tell us what you’ve learned from your experiences and achievements. 

Your personal statement should cover the following:

Reference for BVMS 

In your reference we want to know what the writer of the reference thinks about you as a whole person. We want to know more than your academic achievements and potential.

Your reference is likely to be written by your head teacher, college principal, head of year or form tutor.

The areas in which we need information from your referee are below: 

Interviews for BVMS

We will assess your application, including your personal statement and academic reference. If you're successful, you'll be invited for an interview. This will be a Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) and is usually between December and April.

Further information for BVMS

You are only able to make one further consecutive application to the programme.

We reserve the right to reject applications that are incomplete. Any application submitted without a completed reference will be automatically rejected.

BVMS Foundation Entry

Advice for BVMS Foundation Entry applications

If you don't meet the BVMS requirements, you could think about our BVMS Foundation Entry. It's for people with different qualifications or skills who want to enter veterinary work. That's why we give special attention to applications from those with a non-traditional education. We offer a reduced entry tariff for those whose life experiences may have resulted in academic challenges. 

Visit our contextual admissions page

Alternative courses

Veterinary Medicine & Surgery (Foundation Entry), BVMS

Would you like to become a vet but don't have a science background? Open up the possibility of an exciting veterinary career with our gateway to Veterinary Medicine.

Bioveterinary Sciences, BSc (Hons)

Delivered over just two years, our BSc (Hons) Bioveterinary Sciences accelerated programme provides a unique opportunity for you to gain a scientific degree, enhanced with clinical and research applications.

Bioveterinary Sciences (Foundation Entry), BSc (Hons)

Our Foundation programme in Veterinary Sciences is a ‘gateway’ course, giving you the opportunity to progress to our BSc (Hons) programmes and opening up the possibility of an exciting veterinary-related career.

Contact our Admissions Team

If you have any questions or worries, feel free to get in touch with us.