General Course Requirements
Each year, the AAMC publishes the Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR) index, which details admissions requirements and data for every accredited medical school in the US and Canada.
Although requirements do vary from program to program, medical schools generally require the following courses:
- One year of inorganic/general chemistry with lab (CHEM 1211/L and 1212/L)
- One year of organic chemistry with lab (CHEM 2211/L and 2212/L)
- One year of biology with lab (BIOL 1107/L and 1108/L)
- One year of physics with lab (PHYS 1111/L and 1112/L or PHYS 1211/L and 1212/L)
- One semester of biochemistry (BCMB 3100 or BCMB 4010 & 4020)
- Biochemistry is increasingly being listed as a medical school admissions requirement. However, all students are highly encouraged to this course regardless as the content is heavily represented on the MCAT.
- One year of English (ENGL 1101 and ENGL 1102)
- One semester of statistics (STAT 2000 or BIOS 2010)
- Not all medical schools require statistics, but Medical College of Georgia does.
- PSYC 3990 is not deemed equivalent to statistics by the Math Department; therefore, will not satisfy the statistics requirement for Medical College of Georgia.
Additionally, some schools require courses in Calculus, Psychology, English, and the Humanities. Please be mindful of the requirements of the schools you are interested in applying to!
Suggested courses pre-MCAT can be found here.
AP Credit & Substitutions
Most schools have policies regarding advanced placement (AP) credit. Some schools restrict the use of such credit in fulfillment of pre-requisite requirements, especially for biology, chemistry and sometimes physics. In these cases, schools will often allow you to take additional upper-level courses with corresponding labs in the science areas where AP credit was received. The policies for each medical school and their admission requirements, generally, can be found in the MSAR. We also recommend that you double-check requirements on each schools individual website.
The Numbers Matter and so do Grade Trends
If you wish to enter a medical program you will need to have a strong science and overall GPA. Admissions committees also look for trends on your transcript—so all is not lost if you stumble your first semester or two, as long as you show substantial improvement each subsequent year. However, they will also notice negative trends such as consistently withdrawing from or performing poorly in hard sciences or completing them away from your home institution. While an instance or two is not a deal-breaker, a pattern of behavior will be. You must demonstrate the ability to handle difficult scientific content.
Should I major in Biology (Cell Biology, Genetics, etc.)?
Although a life science major such as Biology may offer the most practical route to completing the requirements for admission into medical school, you are not limited to only the life science majors. It is important that you choose a major that best fits your interests. As long as you show proficiency in the sciences (via pre-requisites and the MCAT) and a general pattern of challenging yourself, your major is largely unimportant to admission committees. You can find a list of all of UGA's majors, minors, and certificate programs on the Bulletin.