What is the NAVLE?

10 June 2024

The veterinary medicine programs featured by OzTREKK are AVMA accredited, which means graduates of these programs are eligible to sit the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE) along with graduates from AVMA-accredited veterinary colleges in the United States and Canada.

If you are applying to take the NAVLE to obtain a license to practice veterinary medicine in Canada, you must contact the Canadian National Examining Board (NEB) and follow their NAVLE application procedures and requirements.

The NEB is responsible for the administration, in Canada, of a three-part veterinary licensing examination process. Completion of the exams is a requirement to be eligible to apply for license from any of the provincial veterinary licensing bodies. The NEB also participates with the Council on Education (COE) of the AVMA in a program of accreditation of colleges of veterinary medicine.

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Write the NAVLE
The NAVLE is a requirement to enter into private veterinary medical practice in North America. The NAVLE is offered throughout North America and certain overseas sites at computer testing centres operated by Prometric. The NAVLE is available during 2 testing windows per year: November–December and April.

You are strongly encouraged to wait until all clinical rotations have been completed before sitting the NAVLE. This usually means waiting until November – December as these are invaluable for providing the general clinical awareness and experience needed to pass the NAVLE.

What is on the NAVLE?
The examination consists of 360 multiple-choice questions, answered on computer at a private testing center. 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.). The 360 questions are divided by activity (e.g., data gathering and interpretation; health maintenance and problem management) and species (small animal/large animal/equine plus a small amount of public health).

  • All NAVLE items are relevant to entry-level private clinical practice.
  • There is a total of 6.5 hours test time (6 blocks of 65 minutes each).
  • A total of 45 minutes of break time can be taken during the day (including lunch).
  • The pass mark is 70%.

Because of this large number of questions and the time constraints, being successful requires a sensible exam strategy and familiarity with the format (lots of practice tests!). See International Council for Veterinary Assessment’s Preparation Resources.

When will I receive my Score Report?
Scores are made available online to you directly and to the board through which you were approved (if appropriate) approximately four to five weeks after the end of the testing window. When your score is available, you will receive an email providing you with instructions for accessing your NAVLE score report.

Once you successfully complete the NAVLE, you will be granted a Certificate of Qualification (CQ). You must complete this exam within 2 attempts, otherwise an additional Clinical Proficiency Exam (CPE) is required.

Learn more about the veterinary medicine licensing process in Canada.


If you have any questions, please contact OzTREKK’s Australian Veterinary Schools Vet Team at vet@oztrekk.com or call 1-866-698-7355 (toll free in Canada).