Coursework for medical school

While science majors are certainly more common, medical schools stress their interest in well-rounded students with broad-based undergraduate backgrounds. In fact, regardless of your major, your undergraduate transcript is a vital part of the admissions decision. If you are a science major, one approach is to broaden your education by considering at least some social science and humanities electives.

If you are not majoring in a science, your work in both science and non-science courses will be evaluated. However, with fewer courses on which to judge your science ability, your grades in the core science subjects will take on greater importance. So consider taking at least some additional science courses, such as biochemistry, cell biology, or genetics. Bottom line? Choose a major in a subject in which you are really interested. You will do better and have a more enjoyable time throughout college.

According to a recent survey of medical schools, knowledge of health care issues and commitment to health care were among the top five variables considered very important to student selection the other four were med school interview ratings, GPA, MCAT scores , and letters of recommendation. You should consider being active in health care activities as much as possible as a premed student.

If nothing else, these experiences will help you articulate in your personal statement and interviews why you want to pursue a career in medicine. Your pre-med advisor is instrumental in helping you decide if medical school is right for you and assessing your chances for admission.

In addition, he or she will be particularly helpful in guiding you to the schools whose curricula and student profiles best match your qualifications and interests. Finally, your pre-med advisor will have specific data about medical school requirements, how students from your school fared in the admissions process, and where students with similar academic backgrounds and MCAT scores were accepted.

Prerequisite Courses

In many undergraduate institutions, the pre-med office handles the letters of recommendation. In some cases, they simply relay the letters to the medical schools. Yet in other cases, the pre-med advisor—or committee—writes a letter to the admissions offices on your behalf. So be very mindful to have the full support of your premedical office if such a resource is available to you. Medical school admissions committees select applicants who have demonstrated intelligence, maturity, integrity, and a dedication to the ideal of service to society.

One way they assess your nonacademic qualities is to look at how you have lived your life prior to completing your medical school application. To this end, you have an opportunity to submit a description of up to fifteen activities, club memberships, leadership roles, honors, awards, and jobs within the AMCAS Primary Application. Furthermore, many committees will ask you to submit a more comprehensive list of the extracurricular activities with which you have been involved. While not all admissions committees consider them in the application process, many value the nature and depth of your extracurricular activities as significant factors in your admissibility to medical school.

Of all the activities you could be involved in, the one that is most likely to be considered essential by a medical school admissions committee is direct-patient-care clinical work. Start by calling hospitals or health centers in your community.


Ask to speak with a representative from the volunteer services office. These individuals will be able to direct you to the specific departments, offices or other individuals who work with people in the management of chronic illnesses, the prevention of diseases, or advocacy for victims of abuse and domestic violence. Pick an organization whose focus interests you and go for it.

Remember that you may be asked to make a commitment of up to one year, but in return you will be a real member of the team.

Getting into Medical School -- Medical School & Residency

In general, the only time research experience is an absolute must is if you are planning to apply to M. If this is the case, then it is important that you have documented experience that validates your interest and potential in the research field. One of the most important roles that a physician plays is that of a teacher as he or she imparts information to patients and teaches them to play a more active role in their own health care.

The diversity of teaching experiences of medical school applicants during their undergraduate years is very broad.

Such experience might include teaching swimming or a musical instrument to children, or becoming a teaching assistant in a lower division class in which you did exceptionally well. Each medical school determines its own course requirements for admission. Accepting that course requirements vary somewhat, the following plan if taken in its entirety would meet the admission requirements for all of the TMDSAS participating medical schools. To learn more about which courses are counted towards the pre-requisites, please review our course definitions.

Want to earn better grades?

Can I be accepted to medical school without an undergraduate degree? Baccalaureate degrees are highly desirable.

However, exceptionally mature students without a degree, who have outstanding academic records, superior performance on the respective admissions test and highly desirable personal qualifications may be considered for admission. If your institution follows a sequence different from above, which potentially causes a deficiency, provide a statement or information from your university registrar or advisor, and this information will be included with your application to the schools.

THE BEST PRE-MED MAJOR: Majors with the highest acceptance rates to Medical School

Do I have to take all of the coursework listed to be eligible for admission? It is possible to meet the course requirements at some of the Texas medical schools without having taken all of the above courses. However, students are strongly encouraged to take a pre-medical course plan that has a broad appeal. Do I have to complete all of the prescribed coursework before submitting my application? All required coursework must be completed before OR by the time of enrollment into the medical school.

Will my graduate coursework count towards the education requirements for medical school? Graduate coursework does not satisfy the hour requirement OR the required coursework.