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Pursuing a career in medicine is a goal that requires years of preparation. Many aspiring medical professionals may begin their journey in high school. But real work happens during college. Enrolling in a pre-med major isn’t enough. As soon as you step foot in a university, your choices of courses will affect your chances of entering medical school.
As early as now, list down the college courses relevant to your future career other than biology. Most medical schools have similar prerequisites. You can refer to your dream school’s requirements. You could also read this article to ease your efforts. Here’s a rundown of the pre-med courses your university might be offering. Grab a slot in these classes as soon as you can.
General And Organic Chemistry
Chemistry is a required subject for anyone hoping to have a medical career. It’s the study of the reactions, compositions, and structure of matter, which is crucial in medicine and pharmacy. To enter medical school, you must complete at least two chemistry semesters.
While taking general chemistry might be easier, evaluating organic chemistry classes could lead to stories of students failing or dropping out indefinitely. These circumstances shouldn’t discourage you. Every course is challenging if you see it as such. By working smart and pushing through, you’ll learn perseverance. It’s an essential trait to have as a future medical professional.
Biochemistry is another course under the chemistry umbrella. But this time, it deals with the chemical substances and processes in living organisms like humans.
Almost 60 medical schools require, if not recommend, incoming students to have completed at least one semester of it, including lab work. Taking this course during your undergrad years is best since it becomes more complex in medical school.
Anatomy And Physiology
A medical practitioner’s job is to care for people and ensure their health. So, they need to understand the parts and functions of human bodies to perform their tasks well. Many colleges offer classes in anatomy or physiology, which future med school students should take.
Like biochemistry and most science subjects, anatomy lessons are extra challenging in medical school. Hence, don’t hesitate to enroll in the course while pursuing your pre-med major. It pays to learn the concepts early.
Human illnesses often stem from harmful bacteria and viruses, which future doctors learn in microbiology classes. Before you participate in in-depth discussions on this subject, lay down a foundation on it while finishing your bachelor’s. Early exposure to microbiology or immunology concepts will be a great head start once you enter medical school.
It’s important to note that not all medical schools require microbiology as a prerequisite course. So, research how many microbiology course credits your dream school needs for its applicants.
Nearly every medical school indicates physics as a prerequisite course. Medicine is a field that needs a fundamental knowledge of mathematics and sciences. So, you may not have the choice to skip physics classes in your undergrad years.
A deep understanding of physics is necessary to become a medical physicist. People with this career oversee technological development for healthcare. They work alongside doctors and nurses to ensure patients are safe during treatments such as radiation therapy. It’s a noble yet arduous occupation. If you want to practice radiology to detect multiple sclerosis and other conditions, you must complete physics courses in pre-med.
Math is another required course for medical school applicants. Medical practitioners must be analytical and logical; mathematics classes help improve those skills.
Some schools require general math, calculus, trigonometry, and statistics credits. If math is your weakest subject, you must do extra work to get good grades. You might also have to complete a year’s worth of mathematics courses to enter medical school.
Some medical schools don’t require genetics as a prerequisite course, while others may accept it as an alternative to microbiology or physiology. So, if you can’t take classes on those two subjects, you can consider taking genetics instead.
Genetics is vital to medicine because many medical conditions are often hereditary. You need to understand how it works to treat patients while avoiding possible inherited side effects. You must also learn about genetic disorders, especially if you plan to become a clinical geneticist or a genetic counselor.
Reading and writing lessons might sound unnecessary for future doctors. But communicating clearly with your patients is part of being a medical practitioner. An ordinary person won’t know what certain terms mean. So, you need to learn the best way to communicate with people to help them effectively.
Most medical schools won’t accept applicants who’ve not completed at least two semesters of English courses. Medicine entails record-keeping and providing written prescriptions, which require writing skills. Medical researchers must also have excellent reading comprehension to translate their findings into journals. Improvements in medicine and medical practices can’t happen without doctors who are great writers.
The humanities include subjects many pre-med students don’t consider necessary for their careers. However, people aren’t soulless beings. Patients would likely interact with a doctor who understands what it’s like to be human and has more to discuss besides medicine.
Aside from English, the humanities teach future doctors to become more effective communicators. Courses in this field also improve the critical thinking and reasoning skills applicants need for their Medical College Admission Test.
Behavioral Or Social Sciences
Aside from studying the technical aspects of medicine, a potential medical practitioner should understand behavioral and socio-cultural issues. These two concepts can also influence physical health. So, to become an excellent healthcare provider, you must have a foundation in psychology and sociology.
Consider behavioral or social sciences classes if you can’t enroll in humanities courses. Some medical schools will accept credits from those subjects. They’re worthwhile lessons since they can teach empathy, which all doctors need. An empathic medical practitioner may provide better physical or mental health treatment for their patients.
Before entering medical school, you must take prerequisite courses for the registrar to accept your application. Many of these classes are available in most colleges and universities. With that in mind, research your dream school’s course requirements and enroll in them as early as possible.
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