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Applying to Med School? What College Classes Should You Take?


Applying to Med School? What College Classes Should You Take?
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Perhaps it goes without saying that gaining admission to medical school is challenging.  With about 45,000 applicants each year and an acceptance rate of 44%, you cannot afford to slack on any entry requirements.  One very simple prerequisite for entry to med school is completing a number of science classes. These courses are nonnegotiable because they are required by the Association of American Medical Schools (AAMC), the organization that accredits medical schools. 

Prerequisites Required for Entry to Medical School
The AAMC requires the following of all applicants:

  • One year of biology (two semesters)
  • One year of physics  (two semesters)
  • One year of English (two semesters)
  • One year of organic chemistry  (two semesters)
  • One year of inorganic chemistry (two semesters)

Recommended Courses
These courses are not required but they are highly recommended and will make you competitive for admission to medical school.

  • Genetics (often required)
  • Calculus (required by many)
  • Molecular biology
  • Statistics or epidemiology
  • Psychology (upper level course)
  • Neuroscience
  • Ethics
  • Writing

These recommended courses illustrate the basic educational themes that med schools look for in applicants:  the capacity for science, logical thinking, good communication skills, and high ethical standards.  You don’t need to be a premed major to complete these courses and meet the prerequisites for medical school, but make no mistake that a premed major certainly helps.

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