DN310 Veterinary Nursing (VTS2)

Curricular information is subject to change

Show/hide contentOpenClose All

The BSc in Veterinary Nursing aims to produce graduates with excellent professional skills in the field of veterinary nursing. The programme’s mission statement is to serve Ireland and the wider world by training veterinary nurses to the highest standards by developing sound knowledge, understanding and practical skills to work effectively as part of a veterinary team and within allied sectors. The curriculum is designed to provide the graduate with a sound academic foundation on which to build a career in veterinary nursing practice through the development of her/ his intellectual, creative and practical skills. The programme comprises a broad-based programme of education relating to the animal and veterinary sectors. The programme develops students’ critical, scientific, and vocational understanding of the veterinary nursing profession, thus equipping the graduate with a broad range of analytical, therapeutic, and experimental skills. Clinical training links the academic aspects to veterinary nursing practice for companion, exotic, farm, and equine species. The programme will contain the following forms of teaching: lectures,tutorials/ seminars, specialist external speakers, practical classes in & outside the laboratory, literature based research, database/ website/ computer assisted learning, case studies, work placements and creation of a portfolio of practical evidence. As students progress through the programme there will be increasing reliance on student-centred modes of learning, and emphasis placed on the development of critical thinking skills. The importance of lifelong learning to refine and enhance professional abilities is also emphasised.


1 - Demonstrate an understanding of the theoretical concepts and bodies of knowledge underpinning the subject of veterinary nursing.
2 - Demonstrate an understanding of the regulatory, legal and ethical frameworks within which veterinary professionals operate.
3 - Communicate effectively, both orally and in writing or other media, providing coherent and logical arguments in the support of decision-making.
4 - Manage professional and therapeutic relationships with the client and veterinary patient.
5 - Work effectively in the clinical care setting, both autonomously and also as a member of the healthcare team.
6 - Provide hands-on nursing care across a spectrum of animal species, including companion animals, horses and farm animals.
7 - Safely and accurately perform veterinary nursing clinical procedures, including various medical and minor (non-invasive) surgical tasks, laboratory diagnostic tests, radiographic techniques and anaesthetic monitoring.
8 - Manage the healthcare environment, equipment and materials for clinical investigations and procedures in a range of veterinary practice settings.
9 - Select and implement a range of quality assurance and risk management strategies to create and maintain a safe clinical environment.
10 - Contribute to the development of protocols to guide the provision of quality veterinary healthcare and capitalise on the potential for health improvement through the development of health education & promotion strategies.
11 - Critically analyse, interpret and report data (including research data) and appraise its value for veterinary healthcare delivery.
12 - Learn independently, and use critical self-reflection to appraise, evaluate and enhance professional practice.
Undergraduate final and penultimate stages (stage-weighted) - The award GPA is the weighted average of the grade points awarded for the final successful attempt at those modules which have been completed and passed to satisfy the credit requirements of the final and penultimate stages, where the grade points of final stage modules are weighted by a factor of 7 and those of penultimate stage modules are weighted by a factor of 3.
First & Second Year

Students receive a high-quality education through lectures, tutorials and practical classes, as well as off-site work experience. The curriculum reflects the demands on the Irish veterinary nurse in practice by incorporating teaching on small animal (including exotics), farm animal and equine nursing
During the first two years, students spend an average of 30 hours per week attending lectures, tutorials and practicals on all aspects of veterinary nursing, including:


  • Comparative Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology I & II
  • General Veterinary Nursing & Animal Handling
  • Principles of Animal Behaviour, Nutrition & Welfare
  • Veterinary Anaesthesia & Therapeutics
  • Reception & Practice Management for Veterinary Nurses
  • Surgical Nursing

    Third & Fourth Year

    During third year you undertake additional modules and embark on placements within veterinary practices that are committed to veterinary nurse training. During the final year, Veterinary Nursing rotations largely take place in the UCD Veterinary Hospital and can involve early mornings and some late-night work. Students are also expected to undertake independent study.
    A combination of end-of-semester written and practical examinations, along with continuous assessment during semesters, is used throughout the programme.
    In addition to the 50 credits of core modules in stages 1, 2 & 3 -, students must take option or elective modules amounting to 10 credits. It is recommended that students balance their credit load equally across trimesters.
  • In addition to the highly skilled role of veterinary nursing in the practice environment, strong demand exists for qualified veterinary nurses in a number of related fields:

  • Animal Nutrition
  • Pet Insurance
  • Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Practice Management
  • Animal Welfare
  • Charitable Work
  • Education

    You will also have the opportunity to pursue graduate studies, thereby actively contributing to academic and research fields both within your profession and in related sciences.
  • Stage 1

    In addition to the 50 credits of core modules, students must take option or elective modules amounting to 10 credits. It is recommended that students balance their credit load equally across trimesters.

    Stage 2

    In addition to the 50 credits of core modules, students must take option or elective modules amounting to 10 credits.



    Stage 3

    In addition to the 50 credits of core modules, students must take option or elective modules amounting to 10 credits. Option and/or electives should be taken during the spring trimester to avoid conflicting with placements in the autumn trimester.


    Module ID Module Title Trimester Credits
    Stage 1 Core Modules
         
    VNUR10280 Principles of Veterinary Nursing 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10

    VNUR10300 VN Clinical Placement S1 2 Trimester duration (Spr-Sum)

    10

    CHEM00020 Introductory Chemistry Autumn

    5

    VNUR10160 Anatomy & Physiology for Vet Nursing I Autumn

    5

    VNUR10310 Veterinary Nursing Professional Practice Autumn

    5

    VNUR10320 Understanding Infect. Diseases Autumn

    5

    VET10040 Practical Animal Husbandry Spring

    5

    VNUR20190 Anatomy & Physiology for Vet Nursing II Spring

    5

    Stage 1 Core Modules
         
    Stage 1 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    In the Spring trimester, students may choose two general elective modules or select from the modules below. Mindfulness for Health may only be selected in the Spring trimester.
         
    PHTY20260 Mindfulness for Health Autumn and Spring (separate)

    5

    GEOL10040 Earth, Environment and Society Spring

    5

    Stage 1 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    In the Spring trimester, students may choose two general elective modules or select from the modules below. Mindfulness for Health may only be selected in the Spring trimester.
         
    Stage 2 Core Modules
         
    VNUR20340 Clinical Placement S2 2 Trimester duration (Spr-Sum)

    5

    VNUR20280 Laboratory Work for Veterinary Nurses Autumn

    5

    VNUR20330 Veterinary Applied Pharmacology Autumn

    5

    VNUR20360 Veterinary Medical Nursing Autumn

    10

    VNUR20270 Diagnostic Imaging for Veterinary Nurses Spring

    5

    VNUR20320 Veterinary Surgical Nursing Spring

    10

    VNUR20350 Animal Behavior and Welfare Management Spring

    5

    VNUR30410 Anaesthesia for Vet Nurses Spring

    5

    Stage 2 Core Modules
         
    Stage 2 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Option Electives
         
    MIS10040 Web Design and Analytics Spring

    5

    Stage 2 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Option Electives
         
    Stage 3 Core Modules
         
    VNUR30580 Veterinary Nursing Professional and Clinical Skills I 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10

    VNUR30560 Clinical Placement S3 Autumn and Summer (separate)

    25

    VNUR20240 Animal Intensive Care Spring

    5

    VNUR20260 Farm Animal Nursing Spring

    5

    VNUR30530 Ethics Legislation & Critical Thinking Spring

    5

    Stage 3 Core Modules
         
    Stage 3 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Option Electives
         
    ANSC20010 Genetics and Biotechnology Spring

    5

    HRM20020 Employment Relations Spring

    5

    Stage 3 Options - A)MIN0OF:
    Option Electives
         
    Stage 4 Core Modules
         
    VNUR30330 VN Project 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10

    VNUR30590 Veterinary Nursing Professional and Clinical Skills II 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10

    VNUR30600 VN Clinical Placement S4 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    30

    VNUR30610 Applied Veterinary Nursing 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

    10


    (Google Chrome is recommended when printing this page)