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Animal Sciences, General


Programs in general animal sciences teach people the biology and production of agricultural animal products.

Animal sciences programs include topics such as:


In animal sciences programs, students may be able to specialize in:

In some programs, students can concentrate on a specific breed of animal or an aspect of animal agriculture such as dairy cattle or poultry animals.


Many community colleges and technical schools offer certificate and associate degree programs in animal sciences. A certificate program usually takes a year of full-time study. An associate degree program at a community college usually takes two years of full-time study to complete. An associate degree prepares students to work as technicians.

Many colleges and universities offer bachelor's degree programs in animal sciences. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Some universities offer graduate degrees in animal sciences. A master's degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree. Doctoral (PhD) degree programs usually require two or more years of study beyond the master's degree.

See schools that offer this program.

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Program Admission

You can prepare for this program by taking courses in high school that prepare you for college. This typically includes four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Some schools require you to apply separately to the college or department of agriculture. This is in addition to your general college application.

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, good test scores, and experience with animals.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

This program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

Most of your course work will include both hands-on and laboratory time where you work with live animals.

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate programs in animal science typically include:

Things to Know

Animal scientists need at least four years of college. Animal science technicians usually need two years of college with an emphasis on science and math. For both, you will need lab courses and direct experience with animals. A degree in animal science gives you many career options. You can work in livestock production, raising beef cattle and swine. Or you can work in sales and marketing for an agribusiness or food company.

A bachelor's degree in animal science is considered good preparation for veterinary medicine school. It is also a good background for further graduate study in animal science, agriculture, and other animal science fields.

Different programs offer different specializations. For example, some programs offer course work and laboratory experience with marine animals. Others allow you to work with laboratory animals such as rabbits and mice. However, most programs offer concentrations in cattle, swine, equine, and poultry animal science.

For information about farm occupations, opportunities, and 4-H activities, contact your local county extension service office.


East Side Area

Washington State University - Pullman

King-Snohomish Area

Everett Community College