Animal Science Online FAQs

Below is a list of commonly-asked questions about our programs. Click the question to view each answer.


Certificate in Animal Nutrition Program

What is the tuition? Is financial aid available?

Please visit the Online and Distance Education tuition page for information about tuition. Current estimates for total in-state tuition costs can be found on the Certificate program page.

Financial aid eligibility is determined by the Financial Aid Office. We encourage you to contact your financial aid adviser in the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid. Criteria for funding is based on academic merit, demonstrated financial need, and enrollment in multiple Distance Education courses per semester. For additional information, please visit NC State’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid web site, or call (919) 515-2421. NC State also offers a monthly payment plan.

What is the tuition? Is financial aid available?

Please visit the Online and Distance Education tuition page for information about tuition. Current estimates for total in-state tuition costs can be found on the Master’s Degree program page.

Financial aid eligibility is determined by the Financial Aid Office. We encourage you to contact your financial aid adviser in the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid. A limited amount of grant funding is also available to students enrolled in Distance Education degrees. Criteria for funding is based on academic merit, demonstrated financial need, and enrollment in multiple Distance Education courses per semester. For additional information, please visit NC State’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid web site, or call (919) 515-2421. NC State also offers a monthly payment plan.

What are the admission requirements?

A person may be admitted to the certificate program after completing the first course that will be used to fulfill the certificate requirements with a C or higher grade. Visit the Certificate program page to learn more about eligibility requirements, or our Apply page for more information on application requirements.

What are the admissions requirements?

Applicants to the DEMAS program should have a minimum 3.0 GPA and an academic background in Animal Science or a related field (biology, zoology, etc.). The graduate program includes coursework in fields of nutrition, physiology, and genetics, and students would be expected to have sufficient background in these fields.

Visit the DEMAS program page to learn more about eligibility requirements, or our Apply page for more information on application requirements.

How do I register for the Undergraduate Certificate in Animal Nutrition?

If you are currently an NC State University student, you can contact Dr. Shannon Pratt-Phillips to get you added to the program.

If you are not currently an NC State University student, you’ll need to apply as a Non-Degree Studies (NDS) student. Once you are an NDS student, you can contact Dr. Pratt-Phillips to get added to the program.

For a full set of application instructions, please visit our Apply page.

Will this certificate make me a Certified Animal Nutritionist?

No, because there is no accrediting body to make anyone a “certified animal nutritionist.” Professional veterinary nutritionists or animal nutritionists typically hold DVM, MS and/or PhD degrees, and are often Board Certified in the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, Members of the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition, Professional Animal Scientists and/or Members of the American Society of Animal Science.

The Undergraduate Certificate in Animal Nutrition will show that you have completed undergraduate coursework in areas of animal nutrition. The certificate will allow you to gain recognition for learning the basics of animal nutrition at the undergraduate level.

What kind of career can I obtain with a Master of Animal Science?

Students graduating with a DEMAS degree are well suited for a variety of positions. The program aims to expand the student’s knowledge in animal science disciplines, such as physiology, nutrition and genetics. The higher level of coursework challenges students beyond their undergraduate degree and prepares them for careers that require higher level thinking and problem solving in scientific areas.

Examples of careers held by MAS graduates include:

  • Instructors at technical colleges and community colleges
  • High school vocational agriculture teachers
  • Project director for international agriculture development project
  • Wildlife rehabilitation
  • Feed company specialist
  • Animal necropsy specialist
  • Technical specialist for the EPA
  • Compliance officer with the FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine
  • Laboratory Animal Technician
  • Zoo biologist
  • Nutrition lab specialist at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
  • Clinical research specialist
  • And many more…

Many students also complete the MAS program in preparation for veterinary or other professional school. Occasionally, a student may also obtain significant research experience during their degree and may apply for a PhD program upon completion of their MAS. For more information on the types of careers you can pursue after obtaining your MAS, please visit our Careers page.

What kind of career can I obtain with this certificate?

A student with this certificate would be more eligible for careers with an animal nutrition component. For example, individuals working in feed sales, feed manufacturing, animal management or pet stores would all benefit from earning this certificate.

What is the average time to complete the program?

Students may register for a maximum of six (6) credit hours per semester; thus, the Certificate should take between two (2) and four (4) semesters to complete.

What is the average time to complete the program?

The time it takes to complete the DEMAS degree is up to the student and how many courses they take each semester. Assuming each course taken is three (3) credit hours, a student may take 3 courses each semester (including summer) and be finished in four semesters. Students can take up to but no more than six (6) years to complete the program.

Can the program be completed entirely online? Can you complete the work on your own time, or is there a required schedule for each class?

Yes. All of the required courses are available both as online classes and as traditional face-to-face classes. However, each professor of each class may teach differently, with some having a self-paced class, and others having scheduled topics and activities. Professors may also require scheduled online meeting times. As you select your courses, you may want to contact the faculty member teaching the course to determine what the required time commitments might be.

Can the program be completed entirely online? Can you complete the work on your own time, or is there a required schedule for each class?

Yes. All of the required courses and many of the elective courses are available through distance education. However, each professor of each class may teach differently, with some having a self-paced class, and others having scheduled topics and activities. Professors may also require scheduled online meeting times. As you select your courses, you may want to contact the faculty member teaching the course to determine what the required time commitments might be.

If you do not have an animal science background, it is recommended that you take additional classes at the undergraduate level, including chemistry, biochemistry, physiology, nutrition and genetics, along with some animal science courses.

Do I need to take the GRE to enroll in the Masters of Animal Science degree program?

My GPA is a little low. What can I do to help?

If you’re GPA is too low for admission, you may consider retaking some undergraduate classes to raise your GPA.

My GPA is a little low. What can I do to help?

If your GPA is too low for admission, you may consider retaking some undergraduate classes to raise your GPA. Alternatively, you may consider taking a graduate level course (or several) from the list of the required courses in the MAS and hope to do well. Then hopefully your combined GPA (undergraduate and graduate courses) would be raised to a 3.0.

Will the Master of Animal Science help me get into veterinary school?

Earning our degree may help you get into veterinary school by demonstrating your success in postgraduate level academics, and/or if the grades earned for your coursework increase your GPA.

Do I need to select a mentor?

You will work with a mentor or graduate advisor through your program. They can help you select courses that might be of interest to you, and if you are interested in an independent study, you can discuss that with your advisor. You may visit the Animal Science graduate faculty page to determine what faculty has interests similar to yours. If you are flexible and/or unsure of your interests, the department can assign an advisor to you.


Master of Animal Science Program

What is the tuition? Is financial aid available?

Please visit the Online and Distance Education tuition page for information about tuition. Current estimates for total in-state tuition costs can be found on the Certificate program page.

Financial aid eligibility is determined by the Financial Aid Office. We encourage you to contact your financial aid adviser in the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid. Criteria for funding is based on academic merit, demonstrated financial need, and enrollment in multiple Distance Education courses per semester. For additional information, please visit NC State’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid web site, or call (919) 515-2421. NC State also offers a monthly payment plan.

What is the tuition? Is financial aid available?

Please visit the Online and Distance Education tuition page for information about tuition. Current estimates for total in-state tuition costs can be found on the Master’s Degree program page.

Financial aid eligibility is determined by the Financial Aid Office. We encourage you to contact your financial aid adviser in the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid. A limited amount of grant funding is also available to students enrolled in Distance Education degrees. Criteria for funding is based on academic merit, demonstrated financial need, and enrollment in multiple Distance Education courses per semester. For additional information, please visit NC State’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid web site, or call (919) 515-2421. NC State also offers a monthly payment plan.

What are the admission requirements?

A person may be admitted to the certificate program after completing the first course that will be used to fulfill the certificate requirements with a C or higher grade. Visit the Certificate program page to learn more about eligibility requirements, or our Apply page for more information on application requirements.

What are the admissions requirements?

Applicants to the DEMAS program should have a minimum 3.0 GPA and an academic background in Animal Science or a related field (biology, zoology, etc.). The graduate program includes coursework in fields of nutrition, physiology, and genetics, and students would be expected to have sufficient background in these fields.

Visit the DEMAS program page to learn more about eligibility requirements, or our Apply page for more information on application requirements.

How do I register for the Undergraduate Certificate in Animal Nutrition?

If you are currently an NC State University student, you can contact Dr. Shannon Pratt-Phillips to get you added to the program.

If you are not currently an NC State University student, you’ll need to apply as a Non-Degree Studies (NDS) student. Once you are an NDS student, you can contact Dr. Pratt-Phillips to get added to the program.

For a full set of application instructions, please visit our Apply page.

Will this certificate make me a Certified Animal Nutritionist?

No, because there is no accrediting body to make anyone a “certified animal nutritionist.” Professional veterinary nutritionists or animal nutritionists typically hold DVM, MS and/or PhD degrees, and are often Board Certified in the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, Members of the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition, Professional Animal Scientists and/or Members of the American Society of Animal Science.

The Undergraduate Certificate in Animal Nutrition will show that you have completed undergraduate coursework in areas of animal nutrition. The certificate will allow you to gain recognition for learning the basics of animal nutrition at the undergraduate level.

What kind of career can I obtain with a Master of Animal Science?

Students graduating with a DEMAS degree are well suited for a variety of positions. The program aims to expand the student’s knowledge in animal science disciplines, such as physiology, nutrition and genetics. The higher level of coursework challenges students beyond their undergraduate degree and prepares them for careers that require higher level thinking and problem solving in scientific areas.

Examples of careers held by MAS graduates include:

  • Instructors at technical colleges and community colleges
  • High school vocational agriculture teachers
  • Project director for international agriculture development project
  • Wildlife rehabilitation
  • Feed company specialist
  • Animal necropsy specialist
  • Technical specialist for the EPA
  • Compliance officer with the FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine
  • Laboratory Animal Technician
  • Zoo biologist
  • Nutrition lab specialist at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
  • Clinical research specialist
  • And many more…

Many students also complete the MAS program in preparation for veterinary or other professional school. Occasionally, a student may also obtain significant research experience during their degree and may apply for a PhD program upon completion of their MAS. For more information on the types of careers you can pursue after obtaining your MAS, please visit our Careers page.

What kind of career can I obtain with this certificate?

A student with this certificate would be more eligible for careers with an animal nutrition component. For example, individuals working in feed sales, feed manufacturing, animal management or pet stores would all benefit from earning this certificate.

What is the average time to complete the program?

Students may register for a maximum of six (6) credit hours per semester; thus, the Certificate should take between two (2) and four (4) semesters to complete.

What is the average time to complete the program?

The time it takes to complete the DEMAS degree is up to the student and how many courses they take each semester. Assuming each course taken is three (3) credit hours, a student may take 3 courses each semester (including summer) and be finished in four semesters. Students can take up to but no more than six (6) years to complete the program.

Can the program be completed entirely online? Can you complete the work on your own time, or is there a required schedule for each class?

Yes. All of the required courses are available both as online classes and as traditional face-to-face classes. However, each professor of each class may teach differently, with some having a self-paced class, and others having scheduled topics and activities. Professors may also require scheduled online meeting times. As you select your courses, you may want to contact the faculty member teaching the course to determine what the required time commitments might be.

Can the program be completed entirely online? Can you complete the work on your own time, or is there a required schedule for each class?

Yes. All of the required courses and many of the elective courses are available through distance education. However, each professor of each class may teach differently, with some having a self-paced class, and others having scheduled topics and activities. Professors may also require scheduled online meeting times. As you select your courses, you may want to contact the faculty member teaching the course to determine what the required time commitments might be.

If you do not have an animal science background, it is recommended that you take additional classes at the undergraduate level, including chemistry, biochemistry, physiology, nutrition and genetics, along with some animal science courses.

Do I need to take the GRE to enroll in the Masters of Animal Science degree program?

My GPA is a little low. What can I do to help?

If you’re GPA is too low for admission, you may consider retaking some undergraduate classes to raise your GPA.

My GPA is a little low. What can I do to help?

If your GPA is too low for admission, you may consider retaking some undergraduate classes to raise your GPA. Alternatively, you may consider taking a graduate level course (or several) from the list of the required courses in the MAS and hope to do well. Then hopefully your combined GPA (undergraduate and graduate courses) would be raised to a 3.0.

Will the Master of Animal Science help me get into veterinary school?

Earning our degree may help you get into veterinary school by demonstrating your success in postgraduate level academics, and/or if the grades earned for your coursework increase your GPA.

Do I need to select a mentor?

You will work with a mentor or graduate advisor through your program. They can help you select courses that might be of interest to you, and if you are interested in an independent study, you can discuss that with your advisor. You may visit the Animal Science graduate faculty page to determine what faculty has interests similar to yours. If you are flexible and/or unsure of your interests, the department can assign an advisor to you.

Next: Apply >

Ready to get started?

Upcoming Deadlines

Additional Resources

Tuition & Monthly Payment Plans

Tuition and fee information for the upcoming semester can be found on the Cashier's Office website.

NC State offers a monthly payment plan.