DVM Professional Program Courses

DVM Professional program courses, led by the Department of Comparative, Diagnostic and Population Medicine (CDPM), cover a wide range of research areas, including microbiology and parasitology, pathology, forensic medicine, anesthesiology, integrative medicine, and zoological medicine. The course structure is arranged in phases:

  • Phase I (first-year) is designed to build a foundation in the basic sciences. Students also begin the four-semester experiential course in Supervised Patient Care and Clinical Skills in the newly built Clinical Techniques Laboratory.
  • Phase II (second-year) builds on the foundations acquired in Phase I, while introducing students to the complexities of treating and diagnosing common and unique aliments found in all species in veterinary medicine. Students explore all organ systems and their functions in Phases I and II.
  • Phase III occupies the third and fourth years of the curriculum (Semesters 5-9), and consists of advanced core and elective courses and clinical clerkships. Students begin their clinical rotations in our Small and Large Animal Hospitals the summer after completing Phase II.
PhaseTypeCourse NumberCourse TitleCreditsCourse CoordinatorDescription
IClassroomVEM 5115Veterinary Histology and Embryology1Dr. I. HawkinsVEM 5115 introduces the first-year veterinary student to the topics of cellular biology, histologic structure and function, and embryologic development. Essentials of the composition and activities of cells lead to an introduction of the basic tissue types, e.g. connective tissue, muscular (contractile) tissue, nervous (excitatory) tissue, epithelial tissue. This in turn provides the background for an understanding of the cell and tissue interactions that are formative of key events in embryologic development, and provides the background for systems-based anatomic study.
IClassroomVEM 5150Core Parasitology1Dr. H. WaldenCore Parasitology is an introduction to Parasitology. This introductory course will cover examples of various helminth parasites (trematodes, cestodes, nematodes, acanthocephalans), protozoan parasites and arthropod parasites. This course focuses on basic life cycles, general identification and diagnosis. Primary diseases caused by parasites may be discussed, but that, along with treatment, are not the main learning outcomes of this course.
IIClassroomVEM 5161General Pathology2Dr. R. OssiboffGeneral pathology focuses on basic reactions of cells and tissues to injury that underlie all disease processes and include cell injury and death, circulatory disturbances, inflammation and repair and disturbances of growth and neoplasia. In general pathology, the most important concepts and information will be outlined in the lectures with more detail presented in the required text reading. Other concepts will be introduced in problem-set questions. Laboratories will focus on examination of digitized microscopic slides and images of gross specimens to emphasize major principles and concepts and to demonstrate entities presented in lectures. Evaluation of learning performance will include two examinations. Examinations may include interpretation of gross and microscopic changes and will be proctored (Honorlock).
IIClassroomVEM 5162Systemic Pathology3Dr. L. FarinaSystemic pathology is focused on pathologic responses of organ systems to injury and the responses of organ systems in specific diseases.
IIClassroomVEM 5221Veterinary Clinical Pathology4Dr. S. BeattyThis is an introductory course designed to provide basic knowledge about veterinary clinical pathology. The major goal of this course is for students be able to understand and use clinical pathology test results to diagnose and monitor animal diseases in clinical patients. Students will develop competency in interpreting laboratory results, including complete blood cell count, clinical serum biochemistry, urinalysis, hemostatic tests, and endocrine tests. Instructions for optimal laboratory sample collection and handling will be covered along with pathophysiology relevant to laboratory result interpretation.
IIClassroomVEM 5470Veterinary Anesthesiology1Dr. B. GatsonThis one credit course spread across four weeks is designed to introduce students to the most relevant topics regarding anesthesia and analgesia in common domestic animals. We hope this this course will raise your interest level in veterinary anesthesiology and prepare you to safely perform anesthesia for both the upcoming sophomore surgery laboratories and for the clinical anesthesia clerkship. Concepts learned in the course will be built upon in future anesthesia elective courses (VEM 5472 and VEM 5473) and in the anesthesia clerkship course.
IIIClassroomVEM 5144Large Animal Applied Veterinary Microbiology1Dr. M. LongThe goal of this course is to acquire clinical competency in diagnostic medicine as it pertains to large animal infectious diseases with an emphasis on equids and bovids.
IIIClassroomVEM 5153Small Animal Parasitology1Dr. H. WaldenSmall Animal Parasitology provides students with a foundation in Small Animal Parasitology for use in clinical sciences and for diagnosis, treatment and control of parasitic infections or diseases caused by helminths (trematodes, cestodes and nematodes), arthropods and protozoan parasites that infect or infest dogs and cats. Life cycles will be used as a basis of knowledge regarding hosts, sites of infection, and determination of how and when to diagnose. Clinical cases and examples of disease, treatment and diagnosis will be pulled from the most current literature, when available.
IIIClassroomVEM 5154Large Animal Parasitology2Dr. H. WaldenLarge Animal Parasitology provides students with a foundation in parasitology and expands on the fundamentals taught in the core course. This course is focused on practical use in clinical sciences and for diagnosis, treatment (if any) and control of parasitic infections or diseases caused by helminths (trematodes, cestodes and nematodes), arthropods and protozoan parasites that infect or infest horses, cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and chickens. Life cycles will be used as a basis of knowledge regarding hosts, sites of infection, and determination of how and when to diagnose. Clinical cases and examples of disease, treatment and diagnosis will be highlighted from the most current literature, when available
IIIClassroomVEM 5164Small Animal Pathology1Dr. S. CraftThis course reviews and explores a variety of topics in small animal pathology.
IIIClassroomVEM 5165Large Animal Pathology1Dr. J. RobertsThis course focuses on the gross pathologic lesions that characterize major diseases of pigs, sheep, goats, small camelids, horses, and cattle with comparative references to large animal exotics. The gross lesions will be used to formulate disease diagnoses and differential morphologic diagnoses. Gross and microscopic pathologic changes of major diseases will be presented with discussion of differential diagnoses, pathogenesis, and methods for making definitive laboratory diagnosis as appropriate.
IIIClassroomVEM 5208Integrative Medicine1Dr. J. ShmalbergThe public’s interest in integrative medicine (the combination of conventional medicine and complementary or alternative health practices) continues to increase and includes the diverse fields of acupuncture, rehabilitation, botanical medicine, and nutrition. The course provides an evidence-based approach to these modalities to better prepare future practitioners for client questions about the field. Relevant basic medical physiology will be reviewed in the context of each modality, and the evidence and controversies for different practices explored. Students should have a clear understanding of the current information and practices surrounding these techniques by the end of the short course.
IIIClassroomVEM 5222Cytodiagnosis in Veterinary Practice1Dr. S. BeattyThis course will focus on how to obtain, stain, and evaluate high quality cytologic specimens. Students will learn to interpret microscopic findings in body fluids, organs and tissue masses, and understand the practical application of cytology as it applies to veterinary medicine.
IIIClassroomVEM 5303Small Animal Hematology1Dr. C. LanierLearn the practical application of hematology to companion animal medicine. Learn to interpret hemogram findings, evaluate blood films, bone marrow cytology, and common ancillary diagnostics as these relate to small/companion animal disease conditions.
IIIClassroomVEM 5311Avian Medicine and Surgery2Dr. D. HeardAnatomy, physiology, husbandry and aviculture, diagnosis and treatment of pet birds.
IIIClassroomVEM 5370Reptile Medicine and Surgery1Dr. J. WellehanAn introductory understanding of non-avian reptile medicine.
IIIClassroomVEM 5377Marine Mammal Medicine1Dr. M. WalshThis course covers the husbandry and medicine of selected marine mammal species including manatees, cetaceans and pinnipeds as examples of species encountered in aquariums and zoos. It is developed for veterinary students in their clinical years and is more clinically detailed in a number of medical techniques and supportive information such as anatomy and diet to give the new inexperienced clinician a basic understanding needed to enhance the problem solving thought process for these species. It incorporates additional instructors with extensive experience in the marine animal field. The goal of this course is to help the clinical student to understand the wide wealth of information in numerous disciplines that can contribute to their core competency in approaching clinical applied to marine species. Portions of the course are based on the prior involvement of students who have taken SeaVet but are enhanced with more case studies to help make it different with a higher involvement of clinical thinking and collaborative. There is no requirement for having first taken SeaVet though the anatomic and environment lectures may touch on similar perspectives to catch up newly interested students.
IIIClassroomVEM 5378SeaVet Clinical Training3Dr. M. WalshSeaVet Clinical Training is an intensive 10-day course designed to expose and teach freshman through senior veterinary medical students and interested veterinarians marine animal medicine through didactic lecture, case‐based problem‐solving, and laboratory experience and visits to established marine facilities. Provide fundamental and advanced information on marine animal medicine, husbandry and behavior to veterinary students and interested veterinarians including clinical anatomy, nutrition, diagnostic techniques, therapeutic applications, reproduction, management collaborating, lifelong learning and problem solving. The program features an educational and interactive swim session with dolphins to provide realistic exposure and hands‐on training with dolphins. It will include a visit to Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa Florida to get hands on handling experience and exposure to medical health assessment techniques, SeaWorld behind the scenes visit with the veterinary staff, a visit to Clearwater Marine Aquarium to compare facility functions at different locations with Sea turtle hands on experience and a visit to the Sea Life Aquarium in Orlando to see life support and animal care principles. A sea turtle necropsy lab is held the last day to provide hands on experience in sea turtle anatomy and disease issues in the species.
IIIClassroomVEM 5424Veterinary Forensic Pathology1Dr. A. SternThis 1 credit course will explore the field of veterinary forensic pathology and associated forensic fields such as toxicology, entomology and DNA analysis. Students will learn about the forensic postmortem examination (necropsy/autopsy), how to collect samples for DNA analysis and gain an understanding in how DNA samples are analyzed, and learn about presenting this information in a court of law.
IIIClassroomVEM 5472Small Animal Anesthesiology1Dr. L. PabloSmall Animal Anesthesiology VEM 5472 is a one-hour credit elective course, which consists of sixteen lectures. The main objectives of the course are to provide students the essential information for a safe practice of small animal anesthesia, guide the students in applying physiology and pharmacology in small animal anesthetic practice, and point out the principles behind the techniques performed in small animal anesthesia.
IIIClassroomVEM 5473Large Animal Anesthesiology1Dr. L. PabloLarge Animal Anesthesiology (VEM 5473) is a one-hour credit elective course which consists of 14 lectures. The main goal of the course is to provide students the principles and knowledge necessary for the practice of safe anesthesia in large animals. Morever, the course will help the students in solidifying their knowledge and understanding of large animal anesthesiology by relating what they experienced in the anesthesiology clerkship.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5751Anatomic Pathology Core Clerkship1Dr. L. FarinaExperience in gross necropsy, and histopathological examination. Pathology case material consists of in-patients as well as material referred from outside.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5761Core Anesthesiology Clerkship2Dr. L. PabloThe major aim of the Anesthesiology clerkship is to provide, a review of basic knowledge in anesthetic pharmacology and physiology, as well as, clinical experience to the students. The students will learn to perform preoperative evaluation of the patients, review clinical history pertinent to anesthesia, interpret laboratorial results and their impact on anesthetic pharmacokinetics and dynamics and tailor an appropriate anesthetic regime for each patient. The student is also expected to learn the parts and operation of anesthetic machines and how to assemble and test them before use. Also the student will learn how to read and interpret different monitoring parameters used in anesthetized patients. This clerkship should provide enough experience for the learner to refine the motor skills required for anesthesia clinical practice.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5821Advanced Zoological Medicine Clerkship2Dr. D. HeardClinical experience in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of pet animals, aquatic animals and exotic species.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5851Applied Pathology Elective Clerkship2Dr. L. FarinaExperience in gross necropsy and histopathological examination. Case material consists of in patients as well as material referred from outside. Requires advanced permission from the course coordinator, and the student must participate in the biopsy service.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5854Clinical Pathology Elective Clerkship1Dr. S. BeattyThis course will focus on how to obtain, process, and evaluate high quality clinical pathology specimens. Students will review and interpret hematology, serum biochemistry, and/or endocrinology cases in a clinical context as well as microscopic findings in blood, urine, other body fluids, organs and tissue masses, and learn the practical application of cytology as it applies to veterinary medicine.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5861Advanced Anesthesiology Clerkship2Dr. L. PabloThe major aim of the Anesthesiology clerkship is to provide, a review of basic
knowledge in anesthetic pharmacology and physiology, as well as, clinical
experience to the students. The students will learn to perform preoperative
evaluation of the patients, review clinical history pertinent to anesthesia,
interpret laboratorial results and their impact on anesthetic pharmacokinetics and
dynamics and tailor an appropriate anesthetic regime for each patient. The
student is also expected to learn the parts and operation of anesthetic machines
and how to assemble and test them before use. Also the student will learn how to
read and interpret different monitoring parameters used in anesthetized patients.
This clerkship should provide enough experience for the learner to refine the
motor skills required for anesthesia clinical practice.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5876Integrative Medicine Clerkship2Dr. J. ShmalbergTo learn the basic principles and applications of acupuncture and rehabilitation. To review basic anatomy and musculoskeletal parameters. To integrate rehabilitation, acupuncture, and nutrition with conventional medicine. To competently perform acupuncture and rehabilitation modalities such as LASER, therapeutic ultrasound, neuromuscular electrical nerve stimulation, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), shockwave and underwater treadmill therapy. To effectively evaluate and compare maintenance and therapeutic diets, and to apply their appropriate use to clinical cases.
IIIClinical/ClerkshipVEM 5893Microbiology, Parasitology, and Serology Clinical Clerkship1Dr. J. WellehanThe purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the diagnostic procedures performed on a daily basis in the areas of microbiology, parasitology and serology. The caseload will dictate the actual diseases that are seen clinically and therefore case based teaching will focus on determination of diagnostic protocols to be used, how each protocol is performed, troubleshooting problems in diagnostic testing, and the use of diagnostic keys and molecular procedures to identify microorganisms and parasites. Each student will get cases assigned at the beginning of the week and is expected to follow these cases to completion during their rotation
IIIClassroomVEM 5991Individualized Investigation2Dr. M. LongThis is a 2-credit elective course in which the student, having investigated a research topic to test a hypothesis under the guidance of a research advisor, will learn how to database, perform descriptive statistics, generate a manuscript and give a formal presentation to student peers. The data generated with a mentor can include bench or field research.