*MVetPhys Veterinary Physiotherapy

We are pleased to confirm that Writtle University College and ARU (Anglia Ruskin University) are joining together. The merger will happen during the 23/24 academic year. Writtle’s full range of Higher and Further Education courses will continue to be delivered on site at the Writtle campus, enhanced by resources available at nearby ARU. If you are starting your course in September 2024, your degree will be awarded by ARU. Find out more about ARU, including our recent Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework, at

Integrated Masters Veterinary Physiotherapy

The Integrated Masters in Veterinary Physiotherapy (MVetPhys) is an innovative four year programme of study, which allows students to progress through a high quality course at undergraduate level directly into a fourth year at masters level, finishing with an MVetPhys Veterinary Physiotherapy which is the first Integrated Masters (MVetPhys) in the UK accredited by the Register of Animal Musculoskeletal Practitioners (RAMP).

Why take a 4-year integrated masters rather than a 3-year BSc?

At Graduation, you will be eligible for direct access to the Animal Health Professions' Register (AHPR), and unlike the 3-year courses, you will also have direct entry onto the Register of Animal Musculoskeletal Practitioners (RAMP). This removes the need for the extra expense and time required for further study, required by BSc graduates for registration with RAMP.

The extra hours completed in clinical rotations throughout the four-year course, enable students to be well prepared to practice with confidence from day one after graduation, increasing their capacity for early career progression.

Having a level 7 (Masters level) qualification enhances the prospects of future employment for instance if you wish to return to academia as a lecturer or undertake a PhD, as well as the many other roles requiring postgraduate study for recruitment.

The four year programme (480 credits), which students are eligible to apply for funding for the full four years of study through Student Finance, gives students a fabulous opportunity to excel in both an academic and professional setting alongside professionally qualified clinicians. In addition to direct entry to RAMP and AHPR, the Integrated Masters programme will also allow students to apply for membership of the National Association of Veterinary Physiotherapists (NAVP).

Throughout the programme professional skills will be taught by a number of our qualified staff. Our veterinary surgeons will be involved in the delivery of clinical information including anatomy and physiology, and biomechanics. Our qualified Veterinary Physiotherapists, who have had extensive equine hydrotherapy experience and canine rehabilitation, will be lecturing in rehabilitation, remedial exercise programmes and electrotherapy. Our staff who are involved in delivery of both academic and therapeutic intervention skills, have extensive experience with both equine and canine clients.

Introduction to Veterinary Physiotherapy
(30 credits)
Mammalian Anatomy and Physiology
(15 credits)
Functional Anatomy
(15 credits)
Human-Animal Interaction
(15 credits)
Saddle Fit and Farriery
(15 credits)
Ethics of Animal Use
(15 credits)
Canine and Equine Nutrition
(15 credits)
Research Methods
(15 credits)
Applied Anatomy
(15 credits)
Animal Therapeutic Techniques
(15 credits)
Rehabilitation and Performance
(15 credits)
Exercise Physiology
(15 credits)
Animal Health Science
(15 credits)
Introduction to Animal Biomechanics
(15 credits)
Working in a Multidisciplinary Team
(15 credits)
Capstone Project
(30 credits)
Massage Therapy and Remedial Exercise
(30 credits)
Animals in Motion
(15 credits)
Sports Medicine
(15 credits)
Veterinary Pathophysiology
(15 credits)
Business and Client Management
(15 credits)

UCAS Tariff Points


GCE A Levels

128 UCAS tariff points, to include one GCE A level grade C or above in a relevant science-based subject

Irish Certificate

128 UCAS tariff points, to include 4 x H2 higher, one of which in a relevant science-based subject

Scottish Highers

128 UCAS tariff points, to include 3 x B, one of which in a relevant science-based subject

International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma

Total (IB) Diploma point score of 24 or more

BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma

In relevant science- based animal-related subject

BTEC Level 3 Diploma

In relevant science- based animal-related subject
D*D* (112 + in combination with other qualifications to meet 128)

Please note:

An equivalent or higher combination of grades to that indicated above will also be accepted.


All applicants must hold a minimum of four GCSE passes at grade C/4 or above to include English, Maths and Science.

Access course

Science or Physiotherapy 45 credits at level 3 with a mix of Distinction and Merit in relevant science-based subject to meet the overall UCAS entry tariff.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL/APEL)

Information about our Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL/APEL) policy can be found on our Higher Education Regulations and Policies page.

Other course specific entry requirements

"Writtle University College encourages early disclosure of any specific learning needs, disabilities, medical and/or mental health conditions that you feel may have an effect on your studies. This allows us to discuss these with you and consider reasonable adjustments and support arrangements you may need.

The college takes its health and safety and welfare responsibilities very seriously. Veterinary Physiotherapy is a physically demanding course which will involve you working in close contact with large and unpredictable animals. Students are encouraged to declare and discuss with college staff, anything that may impact on their ability to safely and fully take part in any of the practical elements of the course."


Applications will take into consideration

  • Your academic profile
  • Your practical experience - reference letters
Practical experience

We would like to see evidence of a minimum of

  • 50 hours for equine
  • 50 hours for canine

Done under the supervision of professional providers ready to vouch for your skills. Ideally the placements are done prior to the interview (letters from the providers, on headed paper, stating the date and length of the placements, the animal handling activities undertook and the skills developed, are to be sent with your application. Alternatively, proof of competition (equine or canine), BHS qualification must be sent for evaluation.

References will be requested as part of any offer issued for the course. If the placements have not been finalised, you can have more time to do so but reference letters must be submitted before 01.07.24. All placements must have been effective before the beginning of the course Placements must be less than three years old to be taken into consideration. We are looking at practical hands-on placements, not observational ones. Applicants could consider:

  • For equine: a yard, a riding school, a sanctuary, an equine vet practice.
  • For canine: kennels, dog groomer, dog walker, dog day care, RSPCA, Dog trust, small vet practice, hydrotherapy centres.

Owning a dog or a horse does not constitute evidence of practical handling.

The acquisition of knowledge and understanding is approached through an emphasis on student-centred learning. The following list shows the variety of learning and teaching methods experienced on this course.

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Practical work
  • Formative and summative coursework
  • Case studies
  • Clinical practitioner days
  • Seminars
  • Presentations
  • Self-directed learning

This course contains a variety of assessment methods to ensure practical and academic competence. The following list shows the variety of assessment methods experienced on this course.

  • Assignments
  • Reports
  • Written examinations
  • Observed structured practical examinations
  • Observed structured clinical examinations
  • Oral presentations
  • Debates
  • Capstone Project
  • Dissertation

We frequently get asked questions about the MVetPhys Veterinary Physiotherapy course, so we have put together the following list which we hope will answer your queries .

Q. How long is the MVetPhys course?
A. The Integrated Masters programme is an innovative four year programme of study, which allows students to progress through a high quality course at undergraduate level directly into a fourth year at masters level, finishing with an MVetPhys Veterinary Physiotherapy. It gives students a fabulous opportunity to excel in both an academic and professional setting alongside professionally qualified clinicians. The Integrated Masters programme is also accredited by the Register of Animal Musculoskeletal Practitioners (RAMP), the Animal Health Professions Register (AHPR) and supported by the National Association of Veterinary Physiotherapists (NAVP).

Q. What will I study?
A. Study will involve both large and companion animals with a major focus being on horses and dogs. The first three years of the course covers both pre-clinical and clinical skills. This is complemented with practical elements that introduce palpation, a range of therapies and rehabilitation techniques alongside massage.

Q. How many days do I have to come into College?
A. This will depend on which programme you have chosen. First year study will probably require you to attend lectures and/or practical sessions on a daily basis, although generally this will not be 9am to 5pm every day, however please note this is a full-time course. Contact time is generally between 16 and 20 hours per week, with self-guided learning in addition to these hours to complete assessment work, background reading etc.

Timetables and a full induction will take place at the beginning of the semester.

Q. What if I wish to change the course I have applied for?
A. Once you are in the system and have been accepted onto one of the courses, you may change your course choice by simply informing the admissions department (email: It is possible to change your course within the first 2 weeks of starting at Writtle. This is subject to there being places available on the alternative course.

Q. Do I need specific subjects to gain entry to the degree?
A. In the perfect world, every student undertaking our MVetPhys course would have a solid background in the Sciences, and a good grasp of English and Maths. For this reason we are asking for a relevant science-based subject (Biology, Maths, Science, Chemistry, Physics...) or animal- related programme of studies (Animal science, Animal Management, Equine, Vet Nursing...). Please refer to the Entry requirements section on this page. To compensate for any weak areas, students must be prepared to do additional background reading, self-directed study and maximise on tutorial opportunities.

Q. How will I be assessed?
A. You will be assessed using a variety of methods throughout the course, including written reports, oral assessments, presentations, closed/open book exams, practical assessments, debates, seminars and many more. Clinical elements will be assessed via observed structured clinical exams and a practical competency log. Practical and clinical components must be passed. You will have three attempts. However, retake fees will apply (£80 for OSCE retake per specie in your fourth year).

Q. What are my career opportunities?
A. The industry is very diverse and there are a range of opportunities in many fields. As a science graduate you will have a plethora of transferable skills to enhance your profile in almost any area you choose. We also recommend that you gain as much industry-related work experience as possible during your holiday periods. Validating your MVetPhys will allow you to become a professional veterinary physiotherapist. The professional healthcare industry for veterinary physiotherapists is an extremely competitive place; therefore it is vitally important to stand out from the crowd when looking for employment. The Veterinary Physiotherapy course at Writtle enables our students to gain a qualification that will enhance their professional opportunities, giving them all of the necessary skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career within the industry.

Alternatively, there is the option to continue with postgraduate studies such as a Masters degree or PhD.

Q. Do I need Protective Equipment?
A. Yes, safety is our priority, so you will have to use your PPE. For more details, please click here.

Q. Can I bring my own horse?
A. Yes, we have some DIY livery available at the College yard. Please contact for further details. There is also a range of local livery yards.

Q. Are there opportunities to do extra riding?
A. Unfortunately, our college horses work throughout the week and as such there is limited availability for extra-curricular activities. There is no riding on the veterinary physiotherapy course. BHS courses are regularly run at the College and are available to students at additional cost (see Short Courses). There are also various opportunities at local yards in the area. The student Union runs equestrian team for British University and College Sports (BUCS) competitions. All students are welcome to try out for the teams and you do not need your own horse.

In order to progress on the MVETPHYS programme, you need to obtain 50% overall stage average at first attempt and pass your OSPE in your first and second year .

If not achieved, you will be integrated to the BSc Animal Therapy.

In order to progress from your third to the fourth year, you will need to achieve 55% overall stage average at first attempt.

You will only be awarded MVetPhys Veterinary Physiotherapy if all academic and clinical components are passed.

If the clinical component is not passed but the academic elements are, you will be awarded an MAnimTher Animal Therapy but will not be awarded your VP practitioner status.


* Subject to final validation approval

Veterinary Physiotherapy

Join Claire Styles and the team at Writtle University College as they teach you an introduction to veterinary physiotherapy. Whilst this Subject Spotlight is focused on the horse please do also note that the course teaches students on both horses and dogs on a 50:50 ratio.