Programme Overview

The Jockey Club College of Veterinary Medicine and Life Sciences offers a Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine (BVM) programme, which has been jointly developed with our partner, Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM), ranked 4th in the world for veterinary education (QS World University Rankings for Veterinary Science 2021). Our BVM has been tailored for the Asian veterinary environment through its four themes (Emerging Infectious Diseases, Food Safety, Animal Welfare, Aquatic Animal Health).

Major: Veterinary Medicine
Award Title: Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine (BVM)
Mode of funding: Government Funded
Programme Code: JS1801 (JUPAS)
1801 (Non-JUPAS)
Tuition Fee: Click HERE for more information
Mode of Study: Full-time
Duration: 6 years
Credit Units: 242





The BVM is a six-year programme designed to train professionally competent veterinarians in accordance with the international accreditation standards of the Australasian Veterinary Boards Council (AVBC) and the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS). At graduation, students will have achieved the Day One Competences required for veterinarians.

In BVM Years 1 and 2 (the pre-clinical curriculum), the programme focus on biomedical and pre-clinical disciplines to equip students with the knowledge and understanding required to embark on the para-clinical and clinical curriculum taught in Years 3 to 6 of the BVM. The pre-clinical curriculum provides students with the confidence and competences needed to assess the behaviour of a range of different species and safely handle them for health assessments and clinical examinations. The four themes of the BVM, comprising Animal Welfare, Aquatic Animal Health, Emerging Infectious Diseases and Food Safety, are introduced from Day 1 of the BVM programme. The pre-clinical curriculum includes CityU's required 30 credit units (CUs) of Gateway Education and 42 CUs comprising Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine pre-requisites and core courses.

In the summer term of BVM Year 1, students enrol in two weeks of Pre-Extramural Studies (EMS) Animal Handling Skills to prepare them for the 12 weeks of Husbandry EMS, which are to be completed during non-teaching times in BVM Years 1 and 2.

In BVM Years 3 and 4, which include the para-clinical and clinical curriculum, students undertake General Pathology (3 CU), Clinical Pharmacology/ Toxicology (3 CU), two Veterinary Practice and Professional Studies courses (3 CUs each) and three 18 CU foundation courses (Animal Body, Function and Dysfunction, Host Agent and Defence), which are delivered using problem-based learning (PBL), as well as four courses with 20 CU in total in the area of Animal Health and Disease.

In BVM Years 5 and 6, students enrol in seven clinical courses, including Veterinary Practice & Professional Studies 3 (3 CU), where they progressively develop competency in clinical skills at a total of 29 CUs. Students also apply evidence-based medicine skills to conduct research in a 6 CU Research Project and complete the remaining core theme course in food safety (2 CU).

Pre-clinical and Clinical EMS (26 weeks in total) are undertaken in non-teaching periods of BVM Years 4 to 6 and provide students with the opportunity to further develop their clinical skills and experience in a vareity real-world settings including clinical practices as well as abattoirs, laboratories, or government veterinary services.

Clinical Rotations (25 weeks in total) commence in BVM Year 5 and are completed in BVM Year 6. During Clinical Rotations, students apply and practise their skills in clinical examination and diagnosis, clinical medicine, clinical pathology, therapeutics, pharmacy, anaesthesia, diagnostic imaging, surgery, clinical pathology, pathology, preventative veterinary medicine and health monitoring, and veterinary certification under the supervision of qualified veterinarians.

The six-year curriculum emphasises both clinical practice and the science that underlies it, ensuring that BVM students develop into well-rounded veterinarians omnicompetent to provide veterinary care to multiple animal species, including companion animals (cats, dogs, horses), exotics and wildlife, marine and freshwater species and livestock.

The BVM curriculum uses problem-based learning to deliver key para-clinical courses, including Animal Body, Function and Dysfunction, and Host, Agent and Defence. In these courses, students develop problem-solving skills and embrace an evidence-based veterinary medicine approach that is invaluable for a diverse array of careers in veterinary medicine, from general to specialist practice and research.

The completion of some curriculum components may require students to spend time at facilities outside of Hong Kong, including, for example, Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine, Ithaca, New York State (for animal husbandry EMS), Australia and Mainland China.

Students are required to undertake courses without intermission to fulfil the BVM degree requirements within the normative study period.

The requirements of international accreditation standards and the commitment to cover the four themes (Animal Welfare, Aquatic Animal Health, Emerging Infectious Diseases and Food Safety) mean that all students are expected to follow the same course of study below (click on a course code for more information about individual courses):

Course Code Course Title Credit Units
Year 1 
GE1401 University English 3
GE1501 Chinese Civilisation - History and Philosophy 3
GE1351 Food Production and Security 3
GE2139 Animal Welfare and Ethics 3
GE2401 English for Science 3
PHY1400 Introductory Physics for Biologists 3
CHEM1300 Principles of General Chemistry 3
VM2001 One Health 3
VM2003 Livestock Husbandry 3
VM2100 Statistics for Evidence-based Biological and Veterinary Sciences 3
VM2102 Animal Behaviour and Handling 3
  A GE course in Area 2 to prepare for professional development 3
Sub-total: 36
Year 2
BMS2202 Diversity of Life and Evolution 3
BMS2803 Biology of Cells 3
BMS2804 Veterinary Microbiology 3
BMS2805 Biochemistry for Veterinary Science 3
BMS2806 Genes, Inheritance and Genetic Disorders 3
PHY2400 Advanced Physics for Biologists 3
CHEM2007B Principles of Organic Chemistry 3
VM2103 Animal Nutrition and Welfare 3
VM2104 Introduction to Food Safety 3
VM2106 Aquaculture and Aquatic Animal Health 3
VM3004 Evidence Based Veterinary Medicine 3
GE2342 Introduction to Zoonotic Diseases 3
Sub-total: 36
Year 3
VM3012 Animal Body 18
VM3010 Veterinary Practice & Professional Studies 1 3
VM3100 Function and Dysfunction 18
VM3101 General Pathology 3
Sub-total: 42
Year 4
VM4000 Host, Agent and Defence 18
VM4001 Clinical Pharmacology/ Toxicology 3
VM4010 Veterinary Practice & Professional Studies 2 3
VM4110 Small Animal Clinical Studies I 8
VM4111 Companion Animal Surgery 6
VM4112 Anaesthesia, Analgesia and Fluid Therapy 4
VM4113 Clinical Pathology 2
Sub-total: 44
Year 5
VM3003 Food Safety and Regulation 2
VM4011 Veterinary Practice & Professional Studies 3 3
VM4103 Conservation, Zoo and Exotic Animal Diseases 3
VM4104 Transboundary Animal Diseases 2
VM4114 Small Animal Clinical Studies 2 5
VM4115 Equine Medicine and Surgery 6
VM4116 Production Animal Clinical Studies 8
VM4202 Aquatic Veterinary Medicine 2
VM4301 Clinical Rotations: Part I 5
VM4401 Research Project 6
Sub-total: 42
Year 6
VM4302 Clinical Rotations: Part II 21
VM4303 Clinical Rotations: Part III 21
Sub-total: 42
Total credit units 242


In addition, four non-credit-unit-bearing courses must be completed:

  • VM1001 Pre-EMS Animal Handling Skills (Year 1),
  • VM1002 Animal Husbandry EMS (Years 1 and 2),
  • VM1004 Pre-clinical EMS (Year 4),
  • VM1005 Clinical EMS (Years 5 and 6).

Please click HERE for the complete six-year curriculum structure (click on a course code for more information about individual courses).

Or HERE for more information about the BVM programme in general (including Intended Learning Outcomes).


The number of credit units required to complete the Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine programme is 245.

One credit unit typically represents one hour of contact time per week (e.g., lecture, tutorial, practical, field trip etc.). So, a three credit-unit course generally involves 39 hours of student contact time as a semester comprises 13 weeks. In addition, students will also be expected to undertake some self-directed learning outside of timetabled hours and during non-teaching periods. For example, this could involve reading, research in the library, working on individual or group projects, preparing coursework or presentations, and preparing for examinations. Most semesters are comprised of around 21 credit units, meaning 21 hours of contact time per week. Considering self-study time, studying for a BVM involves a similar time commitment to a full-time job. Our courses are carefully timetabled, and students are provided with strong support to achieve their learning outcomes.

The 245 credit units are distributed over a minimum of 12 semesters (i.e., six years). The maximum study period is nine years.

In addition, there are non-credit bearing curricular milestones. These are compulsory requirements that are not affiliated with particular courses but must be satisfactorily completed before a student can advance in the programme. The curricular milestones in the BVM require students to:

  • pass every course in a year (including the core courses and University Gateway Education courses as stipulated in the BVM curriculum) to progress to the next year level;
  • satisfactorily complete VM1001 Pre-EMS Animal Handling Skills prior to commencing VM1002 Animal Husbandry Extra-Mural Studies (EMS);
  • satisfactorily complete VM1002 Animal Husbandry Extra-Mural Studies (EMS) before progressing to BVM Year 3;
  • satisfactorily complete 26 weeks of Pre-Clinical and Clinical Extra-Mural Studies (EMS) (course code: VM1004 and VM1005) during the Summer Terms and/or teaching breaks prior to graduation;
  • satisfactorily complete a register of veterinary clinical skills prior to graduation;
  • satisfactorily pass Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) to be able to participate in Surgery and Anaesthesia practical training activities involving live animals and progress through the programme.

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