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NAVLE Resource Guide: Home

This guide provides resources to help DVM students as they prepare to take their NAVLE (North American Veterinary Licensing Examination)

NAVLE Basics

Passing the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE) is required in order to practice veterinary medicine in the United States and Canada.  

Plan to be at the testing site for 7.5 hours.  6.5 hours are allocated for testing time, this time is divided into 6 blocks of 65 minutes each, with 60 questions for each block. The rest of the time includes a 15 minute tutorial and 45 minutes of breaks including lunch.

More information about the NAVLE is available at and their FAQs page provides a lot of additional information beyond what is highlighted in the tabs on this guide. 

Keep current with the NAVLE by:

"The NAVLE consists of 360 multiple choice questions, administered one at a time on the computer. Sixty of the items are unscored pretest items, but the identity of these items is not apparent, and they are dispersed throughout the test. Approximately 15%-20% of the items on the NAVLE include graphic or pictorial information relevant to the item (photograph, radiograph, drawing, chart, etc.). All NAVLE items are relevant to entry level private clinical practice." (NAVLE FAQ, What kind of examination...)

According to the 2017 Veterinary Professional Practice Analysis, the following 2 categories are assessed with approximate numbers of questions. Click on the links for Species Diagnoses or Competencies to learn more about the expectations of knowledge for each of those domains: 

NAVLE Species Diagnoses

NAVLE Competencies


If you have not yet graduated, the NAVLE cannot be taken 10 months prior to your expected graduation date.  Most students take the NAVLE in the fall of their fourth year and if they need to take it again, there is an opportunity to take it in the spring of their fourth year.  

The NAVLE test fee is $720, and international fee is an additional $345.  

  • Fall applications are due by August 1 for the testing windows available in November and December. 
  • Spring applications are due by February 1 for the testing windows available in April.

State and licensing boards vary, be sure to check the State and Provincial Licensing Boards for more information

Apply to take the NAVLE

You are limited to taking the NAVLE up to 5 times. Other restrictions apply regarding how frequently you can take the NAVLE after the first 3 times. 

Yes!  If you require testing accommodations, you must request this upon applying for your test date. 

To qualify, you must have a documented disability covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).  You will need to work with Virginia Tech's Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) to pull together documentation to support your request for accommodations for the NAVLE.

You must request accommodations during the application to take the NAVLE. This includes stating if you require extra testing time, additional break time during the exam day, or if you require a personal item to be in the testing center with you during the exam day.

More information can be found when you apply to take the NAVLE.

NAVLE Prep Tools & Resources

There are a number of different study tools available to prepare for the NAVLE.  The first tab in this section provides flashcards and books available in the Vet Med Library you can borrow to help you prepare, the second has lists of free testing tools/options, and the last three tabs are products that require a subscription. 

You may also find it helpful to employ multiple study options and strategies as you prepare for your licensing examination.  

Flashcards available in the Vet Med Library - 7 day loan, located at front desk 

Books available in the Vet Med Library - 7 day loan, located at front desk 

Software available in the Vet Med Library:

A few free apps that provide testing tools: 

Dose of VetPrep 

  • This free service from VetPrep provides a NAVLE-type question sent via email every weekday with answers and explanations provided after submitting a response.
  • You will get periodic emails to purchase the full version of VetPrep. 

International Council for Veterinary Assessment (ICVA)

  • ICVA is the organization that administers the NAVLE. This site provides links to NAVLE self-assessments, competencies and diagnoses, a computer-based NAVLE tutorial, and sample questions.
  • They also offer a PDF with 30 sample questions and answer key at the end. 

NAVLE Practice Test Questions

  • This test tool includes 15 questions and is produced by Mometrix, who published the book "NAVLE Secrets Study Guide"
  • Includes a timer so you can see how long it takes you to answer questions while taking the test, and results at the end show what was answered correctly and incorrectly, along with an explanation of the correct answer. 

Parasitology Review

  • From the link above, test your knowledge of parasitology using the 5 quizzes (20 questions each). When you submit your responses, correct answers are provided in green (if answered incorrectly, your original response will be in red)  
    • Also try out their App: 
      • CAPC Parasite ID App (available at Apple & Google Play stores)
        • Includes images and information on approximately 100 veterinary internal parasites found in dogs, cats, small mammals, reptiles, and birds.

Question of the Day (from Zuku Review)

  • This free service from Zuku which offers test prep for NAVLE, VTNE, and BCSE (see the Zuku tab in this section of the guide for more information)
  • When you sign up, you have the option to get a question of the day from all three of the options. You will get contacted by them with emails about purchasing the full Zuku study program. 

Vet Candy NAVLE Prep

  • Free 12-week course offered by VetCandy, provides lessons, courses, and tests
  • Starts Aug 1st

VetPrep is a subscription-based resource that provides over 3,000 practice questions in an interactive format. 

  • Options include a 45-day, 90-day, and 180-day subscription to either VetPrep Standard or VetPrep Premium.  
  • Check out their pricing page for current deals and how to subscribe.
  • See their FAQs page for more information. 

VIN (Veterinary Information Network) offers an online course series that runs in both the spring and fall to prepare for the NAVLE. 

  • The series includes seven real-time sessions led by practitioners, the last day provides a mock exam.
  • The focus of this course is on the "top 20" diseases and conditions that practitioners often come across, along with discussions on study plans and strategies to help prepare for content not covered in these top 20 topics.  
  • This is a fee-based lecture series. Current DVM students can register for a free membership to VIN, and the student rate for this lecture series is significantly reduced from the full price.

Zuku Review is a subscription-based testing tool

  • Provides practice tests for the NAVLE, BCSE/PAVE (Basic and Clinical Sciences ExaminationProgram for the Assessment of Veterinary Education Equivalence), and VTNE (Veterinary Technician National Examination).
  • This study tool includes over 3,300 NAVLE-format questions and 1800 flashcards, plus assessment tests, videos, images, creation of a study calendar and prep planning tools, progress statistics, and other study techniques to help you prepare.  

Other Recommended Texts

The library provides access to many of the textbooks that will help you prepare for the NAVLE. 

Each of the tabs above provides a category, and within those tabs, books that are available online are listed as the first grouping on the page, and books that are available in print in the Vet Med Library are the second list.  Both lists are in alphabetical order. 

Books available Online: (click on the title link to access the ebook)

Books Available in Print: (Call number provided, Click on title to see full catalog record)

Books available Online: (click on the title link to access the ebook)

Books Available in Print: (Call number provided, Click on title to see full catalog record)

Books available Online: (click on the title link to access the ebook)

Books Available in Print: (Call number provided, Click on title to see full catalog record)

Books available Online: (click on the title link to access the ebook)

Books Available in Print: (Call number provided, Click on title to see full catalog record)

Books available Online: (click on the title link to access the ebook)

Books Available in Print: (Call number provided, Click on title to see full catalog record)

  • eClinpath
    • Created by Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, this free ebook provides 8 topics with several examples for each to examine and review. Also includes: 
      • Diagnostic challenge: Challenge yourself with classic and interesting cases we have seen at Cornell University. Search our index for old cases! As for the Atlas, this section is currently not searchable through the generic search tool.
      • Calculators: Use the links from this page or from the left hand site directory to locate calculators. 
  • Imaging Anatomy
    • From the University of Illinois, this source provides a basic atlas of normal imaging anatomy of domestic (cat, dog, horse, cow, animals and dental images for the cat and dog. 
  • Merck Veterinary Manual (MVM) App
    • Download for iOS or Android available at the link above
    • Includes thousands of topics written and updated regularly by more than 400 veterinary experts; Photos, illustrations, and videos; Clinical calculators; and numerous reference guides and hundreds of useful tables
  • Swine Disease Manual
    • Created by Iowa State University, this is often referred to as "the Merck of pigs" as it follows that format for each disease listed. The link above takes you to the index of diseases.
  • Veterinary Abbreviations & Acronyms Guide
    • Produced by the University of Illinois, this list focuses on abbreviations and acronyms commonly used in veterinary practice
  • VIN Veterinary Drug Handbook
    • Available to VIN members (free membership for students). "..i includes basic drug information such as pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, indications, contraindications, therapeutic dosages, adverse events, and drug interactions for drugs commonly used in veterinary medicine..."
    • If the link does not carry you through once logged in, use the VINdex in the upper right corner of the VIN site, select "Drug Resources" and then "VIN Veterinary Drug Handbook" from the list. 

Head, Veterinary Medicine Library and Liaison to Animal Scieces

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Kiri DeBose
Vet Med Library
245 Duck Pond Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061