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why do medical students have to have a bachelor of something before entering medical school.

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I'm Irene my major #biology and pre medics.
I want to become a doctor. The process of medical education is still confusing and I want to get involved in different activities that will draw me near to my goal and dream #doctor #medicine

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6 answers

Dr Ezat Luba’s Answer

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great question Irene. the US is really the only country where we do an undergraduate degree before going on to a more professional degree. I went to vet school in the UK and I am so grateful for my undergraduate education! I do not know how I would be able to be 18, having to deal with being away from home, buying my own food and sorting my bills, AND completing a very difficult and competitive degree. college prepared me for all that. I was not distracted with parties or panicking over who's going to pay the electric bill this month. A lot of the younger students dropped out in our first and second year because there was too much pressure.
also, in other countries most students decide when they're like ten how they will track their future and start to take courses specific to that sort of degree. "Liberal Arts" is very American and I wish I had taken more lit and polysci when I was an undergrad. with the current hs curriculum in the US there is no way you will be prepared for Medical School without the premed stuff in college.
I know a bunch of people who chose a profession and then like 5 or ten years later decided they wanted to go to med school. they needed to take about two years of pre-requisites to be eligible for medical school.

Anyway, enjoy it!! ! No rush! you'll be stuck in your profession forever lol. undergrad is when you get to learn anything about everything. that won't ever happen again.
Thank you. I feel like this is the time for me to learn time management Irene M.
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Richard’s Answer

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In the US, to apply to medical school, you need a bachelor's degree. Any 4-year university should suffice.

Pick a major that interests you. 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
Thank you. What is the difference between calculus and statistics Irene M.
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Jeremy’s Answer

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That is a great question considering other countries do not require a bachelor's degree before entering medical school. As a current medical student, I would take the time in college to explore career opportunities and activities with an open mind. While you may be interested in medicine now, your views may change as you enroll in different courses and participate in different extracurriculars. Take part in those activities with an open interest - you never know how your opinion may change after any given experience.

For the medical school path specifically, I would focus on learning how you learn (corny, I know). However, medical school will inundate you with information every day, every week, and every month. Take the time now to observe whether you learn better by looking at a graph or picture, listening to someone explain a concept, or by acting it out yourself. For myself, I have learned that flashcards and repeating information frequently helps me to best keep it in my head.

Lastly, college is a great time to be involved in all sorts of medical-related activities. Volunteer at a free clinic, shadow some physicians or work as an EMT. There really are endless options for being involved in the field. Not only will this confirm or deny your interest in medicine, but it might help you focus on what type of medical specialty you are most interested in for a career. The application process is competitive and it gets more competitive every year. Not only does college give you the time and the resources to participate in these activities, but it also demonstrates to admission committees that you have a genuine interest and have put in the time to prepare yourself for the rigors of medical school and the lifestyle of the career.
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Rachel’s Answer

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In order to apply for medical school, you will have to complete college with a bachelor’s degree as well as all of the Pre-med requirements (1 year biology, 1 year inorganic chemistry, 1 year organic chemistry + labs, physics, calculus, and biochemistry). GPA should probably be 3.5 or better (preferably >3.8). You will also have to score well on the MCAT. Once accepted to medical school, as long as you pass your classes and perform reasonably well during your four years of medical training, you can apply for a residency.
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Jabari’s Answer

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As others have said, in the US, professional degrees (like medicine) require an undergraduate degree. All things considered, a undergraduate liberal arts education will prove to be valuable, in the long-term, but if you're concerned about maximizing the number of hours you spend in undergrad preparing for your career in medicine, consider an undergraduate degree with a pre-med concentration.
Thank you. It is so helpful Irene M.
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Corey’s Answer

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In the US, medical school confers a professional degree and generally requires an undergraduate degree as a prerequisite. In other countries, medicine is a technical degree obtained directly after living high school. Both lead to the same training based on an apprenticeship following the degree (residency in US). Ideally, the premed course prepare you to successfully learn a tremendous amount of information in med school.
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