How to Select an Undergraduate Medical School
Medical students often go on to pursue careers as physicians, surgeons, researchers and administrators in the medical profession. At the undergraduate level, medical students complete pre-med courses, which prepare them for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) and for medical school. In the American medical school system, students are usually required to earn their bachelor's degree and then attend undergraduate medical school for an additional period, in order to earn their Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree. Doctors then enter residency programs, which are considered graduate medical education. They can also enter into fellowship programs and pursue additional postgraduate specializations.
Consider the following when looking for undergraduate medical schools:
- Students choosing an undergraduate pre-medical school should make sure that the science curriculum is strong, laboratories are up-to-date and clinical or research work is available.
- Students should also evaluate schools on the basis of their graduates' success rates in getting into medical school.
- Although 'pre-med' is not generally offered as a major, students should make sure to take all the medical school prerequisites between their major requirements and elective courses.
- It is recommended that students going into undergraduate medical schooling find a college with internship and research opportunities since medical schools look for applicants with relevant life experience.
- Medical students should seek out top schools with the most modern equipment and cutting-edge research opportunities, as well as affiliations with teaching hospitals and clinics.
Medical Program Overviews
An undergraduate pre-medical school curriculum is based on the Association of American Medical Colleges' standards, although each school may add classes to their particular program. The more competitive medical schools may favor applicants who have taken advanced undergraduate science coursework. Areas to consider include physiology, genetics, anatomy, microbiology, neurobiology and immunology, among others. At the more basic level, this curriculum includes two semesters each of:
- Organic chemistry
Undergraduate Medical School Programs
'Undergraduate' here refers to students who hold a bachelor's degree, but have not yet earned their M.D. or D.O. degree. Some universities offer combined B.S./M.D. programs that can be completed in as few as six years of study. Students may also opt for a dual M.D./Ph.D. program in their preferred area of specialization. Medical school curricula take four years to complete, with the first two years consisting of science courses and the last two years being made up of clinical rotations in various areas of medicine. Programs include the study of subjects such as:
Top 10 Schools with Medical Programs
|University of Washington||4-year, Public|
|University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill||4-year, Public|
|University of California - San Fransisco||4-year, Public|
|University of Nebraska Medical Center||4-year, Public|
|Oregon Health and Science University||4-year, Public|
|University of Michigan - Ann Arbor||4-year, Public|
|University of California - Los Angeles||4-year, Public|
|University of Colorado||4-year, Public|
|University of Wisconsin - Madison||4-year, Public|
|University of Minnesota||4-year, Public|