When considering your future in medical school, you want to consider the best pre-med programs out there. The trick is that pre-med is not an actual major offered by most universities (though some market programs as good for pre-med studies). There are many great fields you can study to prepare for medical school, but the best option is biological studies. In this article, we'll look at the top biological studies grad programs.
Best Graduate Programs for Medical School
The common pre-med programs that are marketed are called the life sciences or biological sciences. Many well-known and high-ranking biological sciences programs are in the top schools across the U.S. The following three college programs can give you the knowledge needed to continue successfully in a medical degree program.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
At MIT, first-year students of the biology programs study and work together at the same time. This allows them to form friendships and study bonds to carry through the rest of the program. The overall goal of the MIT program is research and teaching. This means that after graduation, you'll have the knowledge and skills to continue research and studying in the Doctor of Medicine (MD) program, or you can work as a secondary teacher or researcher while you attend medical school classes. You'll learn how the biological sciences can be used in leadership positions and to create innovative discoveries in healthcare. Students are also encouraged to study labs that interest them rather than what their current education would be best suited for. Some course topics you may come across during your program include:
- Drug development
- Quantitative biology
- Teaching science
- Gene expression
There are a couple of options for those interested in studying biology at the master's level at Stanford University: you can consider a Master of Science (MS) or a coterminal MS. The coterminal degree means you can work on both your undergraduate degree and the master's in biology at the same time. This works very well for those interested in advancing to medical school, because it can cut out needless time spent on the master's degree. The one catch with Stanford is that they will only accept applications from matriculated Stanford students, meaning you must have attended Stanford at some point. This is a 45-credit program. Some course topics you may find are:
- Cancer biology
- Human origins
- Hacking the genome
- Population genomics
- Evolution of disease
- Molecular genetics
- Chromatin regulation
- Neurobiology of sleep
University of California - Berkeley
Unlike the previous two schools that focused on biology, UC Berkeley has several biological science programs to choose from, including:
- Vision science
- Infectious diseases and immunity
- Metabolic biology
- Comparative biochemistry
- Molecular toxicology
- Public health
These are just some of the programs concentrating on medicine and human biology. On top of these, there are other programs dedicated to environmental science and plant biology. As you can imagine, each of these would be very beneficial to those interested in attending medical school post-graduation. Each of these programs is often broken down into their own concentrations.
Additional Best Graduate Degrees for Medical School
There are several other top ranking colleges according to the Princeton Review, Forbes, and U.S. News & World Report. Some of these for 2018 include:
- California Institute of Technology: At CalTech, students can take both the bachelor's and master's degree at the same time to prepare for medical school more quickly.
- Harvard University: Harvard's biology program includes 12 specific courses, and most of the (all but three) can be taken online.
- Johns Hopkins University: The Johns Hopkins program is geared for those who want to continue their degree with the professional medical degree. This program can also be combined with your undergraduate.
- Princeton University: Princeton's molecular biology program has 13 concentrations to choose from, including cancer, policy, evolution, genomics, and structural biology.
- University of California - San Francisco: As the second UC college in the list, you'll find a graduate program that attempts to bridge biology, management, and technology.
- Yale University: Yale's program is a doctoral program that combines the biomedical sciences and biological sciences. This works well for those who want to become a research doctor and earn an MD.
- Cornell University: Cornell offers biological science graduate degrees in several areas, including biochemistry; molecular and cell biology; biophysics; and genetics, genomics, and development.
The top colleges that have biological science graduate programs can be found all across the country. Whether you're interested in the top three of MIT, Stanford, and UC Berkeley, or you want to open your options to one of the many other universities out there, you can prepare for medical school with a solid background in technology and research.