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Premedical-Professions Advising Home > Medicine - Curriculum
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Medicine - Curriculum

Choose any major - but do well!

Medical schools do not require or recommend a prescribed pre-professional academic program of study. Pre-professional students may major in any discipline in any of the nine schools or colleges at the University, or in an interdisciplinary major or contract major. The choice of major should be dictated by the student's individual interests rather than some prescribed academic plan for medical school. Students who have entered medical schools have received degrees in such diverse areas as engineering, music, literature, computer science, math and economics as well as the more common majors in biology, chemistry/biology, and chemistry. It is critical that your performance in each class is of exceptional quality. The typically successful applicants to medical schools maintain a GPA of ~3.5.

It is important, however, for the pre-professional student to take certain prescribed science and math courses. An aptitude for sciences is considered absolutely essential for successfully completing a medical-school program. Grades obtained in these courses are scrutinized carefully by medical admission committees. Nevertheless, health professional schools encourage a baccalaureate education that encompasses broad study in the social sciences and humanities as well as in the natural sciences. Medical school admission committees understand and appreciate the value of a broadly based education in the liberal arts and sciences and know that for those that go to medical schools, the undergraduate experience may be the last opportunity to study in the humanities and social sciences in any formal way.


Year I
Chemistry CH 110-111 College Chemistry 8 credits
Mathematics M 144-145 Calculus* 8 credits
Biology BIO 122-123 Biological Science or BIO 212-213 8 credits
Premed Studies PPS 100*** 1 credit

Year II
Chemistry CH 230-231 Organic Chemistry 8 credits
Physics PHY 120-121 Introductory Physics or Phy 112-(113 or 114) College Physics** 8 credits
Premed Studies PPS 200*** 1 credit

Year II
Premed Studies PPS 300*** 1 credit

*Calculus is not required by all medical-professions programs.
**Chemistry majors take Phy 112 and Phy 114. Students majoring in non-science disciplines can enroll in physics in their junior year.
***While PPS courses are not required, these courses are extremely valuable in assisting in the application process!

Advice from the Premedical Professions Advisory Committee

Consider Alternative Careers!
Since there are far more applicants to medical schools than there are positions in the first year classes, one must be realistic. Many qualified, aspiring premedical students do not gain admission to medical school, therefore, all premedical students should consider alternative career goals from the beginning.

Keep in contact with your advisors!
Whatever your choice of major:
  • Be sure your departmental advisor knows of your plans.
  • Consult with a member of the Premedical Professions Advisory Committee.
  • Plan your curriculum to include the additional science courses shown in the Calendar in this section of the website.

Consider extracurricular activities!
Demonstrate, by example, that you are a humanistic person concerned for others:
  • Volunteer in a hospital, clinic, or hospice.
  • Be involved in some medically-related foundation e.g., Diabetes Foundation.
  • Lead a fund-raising campaign for a foundation, or a medically-related cause.

Consider summer internships!
A summer internship can strengthen your application to medically-related graduate programs and add much to your education:
  • The Career Center has a listing of internship experiences available to students.
  • You can develop an internship during the summer near your home or at a locale that you would like to visit.

Read! Read! Read!
Reading speed and comprehension may be one of the most critical factors in your effort to achieve your career goals. The vocabulary on the admission tests is at the college level, while most text books are at the highschool level. Therefore, consider reading regularly a journal such as Science, Nature, Atlantic Monthly, or the Smithsonian.

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