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What is needed to apply to Medical School?

I am currently a college student, working towards a bachelor in Biological Sciences. I wanted to know what I should I be doing to improving my chances in getting into and being successful in medical school. #medicine #medicine-school #medicine-education #medicine-research

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Elizabeth’s Answer

As long as you complete the required courses to be considered for medical school, you can major in anything. Most students will major in biology, chemistry, or something similar so they can start getting an understanding of the field and start taking upper level biology courses but I have also seen students major in history, English, etc. so they are more well rounded or have other interests.
Typically medical schools require a year of chemistry, biology, and English plus courses in physics, organic chemistry, math, and biochemistry.
In order to be the best applicant you can be, you will want to volunteer in the field - whether it is a hospital, private practice, clinic, etc. This will allow you to understand a day-in-the-life of the professionals, determine what kind of medicine you are most interested in, and speak with the doctors about their own academic and professional journeys.

Thank you so much! Ashley U.

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Richard’s Answer

1) 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.

2) 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

Some medical schools require humanities and social/behavioral science courses.

3) Pick a date for the MCAT. Make sure you have all the necessary courses under your belt prior to this date. Plan to take a summer off to self study or attend an MCAT prep course.

Good luck in your pursuits!

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Irene’s Answer

This answer is for students in North America. Students outside of North America usually apply to a combination college and medical school program from high school and the total program is usually about 6 to 7 years, however the following reference may be helpful to you.

You don't really transfer to medical school in North America including the United States and Canada. First, you graduate from college with a bachelor's degree, usually 4 years.. During college you apply to medical school which is 4 years. Years ago you used to be able to finish 2 years of medical school and then attend medical school, but this almost never happens anymore. There are a few programs where you apply from high school and are accepted to both college and medical school and attend one after the other for 7 years. However, I think one should attend 4 years of college because you will be able to obtain a broader education including art, music, and liberal arts courses.

In order to apply for medical school, you need to take some very specific courses in college, usually at least one year of general chemistry, one year of organic chemistry, one year of physics, and one year of biology. Because those requirements are very specific, most people applying to medical school major in science such as biology or chemistry, but you can major in anything you want as long as you meet the medical school requirements. I have seen people major in engineering, art, classics and music and many others, so you are not required to major in science.

There are resources available to you at the Association of American Medical Colleges at https://students-residents.aamc.org, Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_school and at the American Medical Association at https://www.ama-assn.org/education, but I think the first reference is the best.

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Rachel’s Answer

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. Ideally, you will have some volunteer work under your belt that shows that you are committed to your community.

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Yasemin’s Answer

Hi Ashley I agree with previous answers as well! There are differences between North America and overseas education, for the U.S. in addition to what has been previously outlined with other answers, you also need to maintain clinical volunteering, shadowing a physician and also taking part in community service as well. These allow for you to be a well-rounded applicant and go beyond academics when thinking about becoming a physician. Usually there is a premed adviser in college that guides students to ensure that they are completing the correct requirements. If you are overseas I would definitely recommend to research about the programs there because there are 7 year programs after high school, that allow you to complete medical school in that duration and then do residency.

Best of luck!

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Estelle’s Answer

In the United States, you need a college degree with the premed requirements and a good MCAT/GPA. Some medical schools give preference to in-state students.