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The Approved Veterinary Assistant designation is a nationally recognized designation created by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America.

Upon graduation from a NAVTA approved veterinary assistant program, a participant is eligible to sit for the Approved Veterinary Assistant examination. Veterinary assistants that successfully complete the exam receive a documenting certificate and are entitled to use the designation AVA (Approved Veterinary Assistant).

Find an Approved Training Program

In order to be eligible to take the Approved Veterinary Assistant designation examination, candidates must complete a NAVTA approved training program. With successful completion of the exam, individuals will become an Approved Veterinary Assistant (AVA) and be recognized for their accomplishment with the AVA designation.

The veterinary assistant examinations will be issued in partnership with VetMedTeam. There is a $100 fee per student to take the exam.

Take the Exam

The designation examination is through VetMedTeam, on behalf of NAVTA, and is open to all graduates of a NAVTA approved training program. In order to qualify to sit the final exam, participants must obtain a code from their assistant program, which would be used in the VetMedTeam shopping cart. An exam mentor will need to proctor the examination by observing the candidate as the exam is taken. The exam mentor may be a veterinarian, a credentialed technician, an instructor from the student’s program, or a licensed testing center.

Visit VetMedTeam for more information.

Renew Your Designation

VetMedTeam facilitates the renewal process. Any renewal questions should be directed to VetMedTeam:

VetMedTeam emails courtesy reminders to all AVA’s as their expiration date nears. Please ensure your VetMedTeam member profile is current with an active email address.

To renew your Approval status, you must complete at least ten (10) hours of Veterinary Continuing Education.

NAVTA does not permit extensions beyond the final expiration date. Individuals wishing to renew after the expiration date of their designation will be required to pay an increased fee and may be required to retake the AVA examination.

AVA Designation FAQs

Your AVA designation must be renewed every two (2) years, based on the date of successful examination completion. It is the personal responsibility of each AVA to track their expiration date.

NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistants may discover the expiration date of their Approved status by finding their state of approval and their name on the AVA Designees Search Page.

The first period of approval for a new Approved Veterinary Assistant is two years. All subsequent renewals are good for another two years. AVAs will be sent a renewal reminder 90 days and 30 days prior to the expiration date. A third email will be sent the day after the designation expires, if the AVA has not renewed prior. All designations that are not renewed within 90 days of expiration will be considered lapsed.

Please submit CE requirements at least 1 week prior to expiration date, preventing the designation from lapsing while awaiting approval. If the designation should lapse, you can no longer use the designation and cannot refer to yourself as a NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistant.

The Approved Veterinary Assistant Committee is aware of the existence of several online testing review courses and practice tests identified as review for the Approved Veterinary Assistant Exam. NAVTA has neither approved of, nor endorses, any of these courses, practice tests, and online review questions purporting to prepare the test taker for the NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistant. The NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistant Examination is a propriety product and is owned by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America. The NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistant Committee firmly believes that graduates of Approved Programs are sufficiently prepared for success on the AVA Exam with proper studying and preparation.

The Approved Veterinary Assistant Program from the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) is a proprietary product. To this end, use of the NAVTA Approved Veterinary Assistant (AVA) Logo is reserved for use ONLY by programs which have met the criteria and been officially approved by the Approved Veterinary Assistant Committee of NAVTA. Programs seeking approval or in the approval process may not use the logo until officially approved by notification. Programs using the NAVTA AVA logo prior to official approval will be asked to remove the logo from any website, documents, or advertising media, and may be subject to trademark infringement pending review by the NAVTA legal counsel.

Have questions? Contact VetMed Team.