Technical Standards

UF CVM actively collaborates with students to develop innovative ways to ensure accessibility and creates a respectful, accountable culture through our specialized disability support. We are committed to excellence in accessibility and encourage students with disabilities to seek accommodations.

Candidates for the D.V.M. degree must be able to adequately perform fully all essential functions in each of the following categories of skills: observation, communication, motor, intellectual, behavioral/social, and ethics/professionalism. In addition the candidate must be able to work in environments with animals and the types of environments where animals live such as barns that may contain allergens.  The college recognizes that degrees of ability vary widely among individuals and individuals with a disability are encouraged to discuss their condition with the College of Veterinary Medicine Assistant Dean of Admissions so that jointly, they may consider technological and other facilitating mechanisms necessary to train and function effectively as a veterinarian.

The UF College of Veterinary Medicine is committed to being flexible, innovative and creative in trying to accommodate the special needs of students accepted into the program to enable them to complete the course of study leading to the veterinary medical degree. However, the integrity of the curriculum must be maintained and those elements deemed essential to the education of a veterinarian must be required and completed satisfactorily as required by the faculty and expected by the public. The accommodations required by one individual cannot interfere with or be disruptive of the educational experience of the other students. 


The student  must be able to observe demonstrations and procedures in the basic and clinical sciences, including but not limited to physiologic and pharmacologic demonstrations in animals, evaluation of microbiologic cultures, and microscopic studies of microorganisms and tissues in normal and pathologic states. Students should be able to assess a patient and evaluate findings accurately, detect changes in patient behavior, physical and mental status to provide appropriate veterinary care. These skills require the use of vision, hearing, and touch or the functional equivalent.


A student must be able to communicate effectively and sensitively with colleagues and clients. Students should be able to communicate with clients and all members of the health care team, to establish effective professional relationships in order to elicit and provide information. Students should be able to communicate effectively and sensitively, both in person and in writing.


Students must have sufficient motor function to safely elicit information from patients by palpation, auscultation, percussion, and other diagnostic maneuvers and procedures. A student must be able to execute motor movements reasonably required to provide general care and emergency treatments to patients, including small and large animal species and wildlife.  Students should, after a reasonable period of time, possess the capacity to directly perform physical examinations, and preventative, diagnostic, medical, surgical, and emergency procedures. Such actions require coordination of both gross and fine muscular movements, balance, and equilibrium.

Intellectual-Conceptual, Integrative, and Quantitative Abilities

Students should be able to comprehend, retain, and apply detailed and complex information and engage in problem solving in both the pre-clinical and clinical coursework. Students are expected to possess the ability to accurately measure, calculate, reason, analyze, synthesize, and communicate information. In addition, after a reasonable amount of instruction, students should be able to comprehend spatial and three-dimensional relationships of structures, for example, the anatomical structure of an animal. Students should also be able to adapt to different learning environments and modalities.

Behavioral and Social Attributes

Students should possess the emotional health required for full utilization of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all responsibility’s attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients, and the development of mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with clients, fellow students, faculty, staff, and the entire health care team. They should be able to fully attend the curriculum, which requires active engagement in educational and clinical activities. They should display flexibility and adaptability and function in a fast-paced, changing environment with the uncertainties and stressors inherent in the clinical problems of many of their patients. Students must also be able to receive, comprehend, and act on informal and formal constructive feedback. Compassion, integrity, concern for others, interpersonal skills, professionalism, interest, motivation, punctuality, and consistent attendance are all personal qualities expected during the education process.

Ethics and Professionalism

Students should maintain and display ethical and professional behaviors commensurate with the role of a veterinarian in all their interactions with clients, patients, faculty, staff, fellow students, the entire health care team, and the public. After a reasonable period of time, students should also be able to demonstrate realistic self-assessment of knowledge and skills and engage in personal reflective practice to achieve the competencies of the program and of the profession. The student is expected to understand the legal and ethical aspects of the practice of veterinary medicine and function within the law and ethical standards of the profession.


The technical standards delineated above must be met with or without reasonable accommodation. After reviewing the technical standards, students who determine that they should require reasonable accommodation to fully engage in the program should contact the UF Disability Resource Center (DRC) to discuss their accommodation needs privately. Accommodation information, not diagnoses, is shared with appropriate administrative and teaching staff and faculty on a need-to-know basis related to the timely implementation of accommodation. Given the clinical nature of our programs, time may be needed to create and implement the accommodations. Accommodations are never retroactive; therefore, timely requests are essential and encouraged.