How to Prepare for the NAVLE Veterinary Licensing Exam

The National Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (NBVME) sponsors the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE). At present, all United States and North American jurisdictions require a passing score on the NAVLE to get a veterinarian license.

Clearly, the first step in preparing for the NAVLE exam is to attend and complete a veterinary school. This will almost always be the requirement in any jurisdiction for veterinary licensing, anyway. When attending school, people have a tendency to sell back or otherwise get rid of their textbooks. This might not be such a good idea, as you may need your books to study when you get ready to take the NAVLE veterinary licensing exam.

As early as possible, you want to be familiarizing yourself with the content of the NAVLE. You can find that on the NBVME “Job Analysis” page. This is essentially the exam content outline. It is updated from time to time and is based on a 2010 job analysis of licensed veterinarians at the time of this writing in August 2011.

Use the job analysis to determine the major and minor topics on the veterinary licensing test. You will have to use other resources (such as your college textbooks in veterinary school) to learn the substantive material on the test. But the job analysis is a good outline of what you need to study and can also help you track your strong and weak areas.

Although NAVLE practice tests will not help you prepare completely, they are a good barometer for your readiness level for the licensing exam. NBVME has some free practice questions and more detailed commercial products that may be of use in familiarizing you with the format and content of the veterinary licensing exam. Go to the “Practice Versions of the NAVLE” page using the link in the Resources at the bottom of this article.

On that page, you will find two free products: a computer-based tutorial with sample NAVLE questions and a separate set of 60 free NAVLE test questions. You may also purchase a separate NAVLE practice test that has 200 questions for $50. Save some of these questions at different stages of your licensing-exam preparation so you can continually assess your readiness for the veterinary exam.


National Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners (NBVME): NAVLE Veterinary Job Analysis (Licensing Exam Outline)

NBVME: Practice Versions of the NAVLE

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