What is the best major for Medical School?
I hear a lot of people choose majors other than pre-med/biology based majors even though they plan to take the MCAT and go to medical school. I am currently thinking about being a biochemistry major or entering the engineering department and am wondering whether that will have a significant impact on my MCAT score and getting into medical school.
#premed #engineering #medical-practice #medicine
The most diverse major for undergraduate Pre-Med studies is Public Health. However, there is not any one major that is the best. It depends on what you want to pursue in the medical field. For example, I am in Pre-Med at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI. My major is Public Health and my minor is Neuroscience. I want to become a neurosurgeon. At Wayne State University you can choose a bachelor's in Public Health, Biology or Psychology. Any of these degrees will prepare you for Med School. I recommend talking to the Pre-Med academic advisor first at the school you plan on attending. After you pass the MCAT and get accepted to Medical School, is when you will choose your main focus and direction. Such as being a surgeon, pediatrician, nutritional specialist, doctor of medicine in biochemistry and many more paths to choose from. First get a feeling for what you want to get your Medical Doctorates in and then make sure the medical school you want to attend offers that specialty Doctorates that you want to pursue. All Med schools have different offerings. I hope this helps. Good luck in classes and your studies. You'll do great!
Daniel R. recommends the following next steps:
There is no "one right major." Start by reading this article: https://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/02/the-changing-face-of-medical-school-admissions/
It used to be the edict: study sciences and do well on your MCATs. That rule, while still true for a lot of schools, is slowly starting to change. More and more medical schools are looking for the "well rounded" physician.
My advice would be, find a major in something you are passionate about - no matter the field of study. Much easier to get good grades in something you care about. Along with this, do you pre-med course requirements. This way, if you realize one day that medicine isn't for you then you have something else to pursue. If you read between the lines there - I am advising against the colleges/universities that offer pre-med majors. What if you start with that but then don't end up going into medicine?
If you stick with the medicine idea through out college and have finished your pre-med requirements then, take classes in anything from human anatomy, biochemistry, immunology, pharmacology (especially pharmacokinetics) and microbiology - as a way to get a jump start on what you will be studying in the first two years of medical school.
I was a chemistry major, and after my pre-med requirements did computer science and music production classes. In hindsight probably should have focused on getting the above mentioned "jump start" instead! But, it worked out in the end!
Also, excercise! Its a marathon, but it eventually comes to an end and you want to be mentally and physically healthy after you have it all done!
Pick a major that interests you so you don't mind devoting a majority of your hours to studying. You will need to get good grades in college in order to apply for medical school. At the medical school I attended, the average GPA is reported to be 3.85, so even one or two B's can hurt your chances of acceptance.
Aside from this, any major is acceptable as long as you complete the prerequisite courses.
Typical medical school prerequisites include:
Biology: Lecture – 4 semesters; Lab – 1 semester
General Chemistry: Lecture – 2 semesters; Lab – 1 semester
Organic Chemistry: Lecture – 2 semesters; Lab – 1 semester
Biochemistry: Lecture – 1 semester
General Physics: Lecture – 2 semesters; Lab – 1 semester
Math: Statistics – 1 semester
English: Rhetoric (Composition) and Literature – 2 semesters
I chose to major in biochemistry because there was overlap with the premed requirements and I wanted to complete my degree in 3 years.
I think what you're REALLY asking is what major gives you the best chance of getting into medical school. The short answer to that question is: there is no "best" major. I'm not just speaking from experience of having gone to medical school but also been a student representative on the admissions committee.
To get into medical school, you need to have a college GPA and MCAT score in the top 1-2% of your peers. Without those 2 critical elements, your application won't be considered seriously. Medical schools don't really care what your major is as long as you've taken all of the pre-requisites (i.e. biology, chemistry, physics, biochemistry, etc.), thus the reliance on the MCAT score, and demonstrate that you can handle the workload in medical school, thus the importance of the college GPA.
In my own case, I majored in econ in college. I found the subject to be fascinating and shied away from traditional life sciences majors because college to me was a chance to try new things. The downside, of course, was that the requirements of being pre-med and an econ major left little room for me to take electives such as undergraduate research, studying abroad for a year, etc.. I got into med sch on the first try because I had almost all As in college and I studied my butt off for the MCAT.
Raymond recommends the following next steps:
It would be to your advantage to major in any of the life sciences,for example, biology, organic chemistry, et al. However,many schools offer a major in 'pre-med.'
You would want to take classes in anatomy & physiology, chemistry, biology and advanced mathematics.
Talk to the advisers at your school and find out what they have to offer. There are many different routes to take to get into medical school. I suggest you explore every avenue.
Becoming a biochemistry major will positively impact your mcat scores and as you move forward in your medical career. Biochemistry which includes microbiology have a significant impact on your fundamental knowledge during your career in medicine. This will definitely put you in a better position down the line.