For students interested in attending medical school, the process begins years prior to entrance. Competition is high, and many factors are considered in the admissions process including your academic achievement, scores on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), extracurricular and volunteer activities and the recommendations you receive from your professors. In addition, medical schools look for students who have a strong understanding of and commitment to the medical profession as well as a fundamental knowledge of self. You should therefore seek experiences as an undergraduate that will help you acquire these understandings, or to learn that another career path, perhaps in a different segment of the health professions, may be a better choice for you.
Students from many different majors successfully gain admission to graduate study in the medical and health professions. You should be aware, however, that admission to these professional schools requires the successful completion of particular undergraduate courses; details vary among the different professions and may also vary among particular schools.
The minimum courses required for admission to most medical and dental schools include the following:
- English - 2 courses
- Chemistry - 4 courses (general and organic, with laboratory)
- Biology - 2 courses (with laboratory)
- Physics - 2 courses (with laboratory)
Some medical and dental schools have additional specific requirements or strongly recommend certain coursework. Please do your research on the programs to which you are considering applying to ensure that you are taking the proper steps to gain entrance.
For more information on how to prepare for entrance to medical school, read about the Sacred Heart University Pre-Medical Advisement Program (Pre-Medical, Pre-Veterinarian, Pre-Dental, Pre-Optometry) at Pre-Health Advisement
Association of American Medical Colleges http://www.aamc.org/
American Medical Association http://www.ama-assn.org/
American Medical Student Association http://www.amsa.org/
Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry http://www.opted.org/
American Association of Dental Schools http://www.irandental.org/dental_schools.htm
American Dental Association http://www.ada.org
The Veterinary School and Program Directory http://www.veterinaryschools.com/
American Medical College Application Service http://www.aamc.org/audienceamcas.htm
Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges http://www.vmcas.org/
Associated American Dental Schools Application Service http://aadsas.adea.org/