Preparing for Medical School

Where Do I Begin?

Premedical Education

During their undergraduate years, medical students complete a broad and academically rigorous undergraduate education that prepares them for the intellectual challenges of medical school. In order to be accepted into medical school, students must complete a bachelor's degree that includes premedical coursework as well as courses in science, social sciences, and the humanities.

Bachelor's Degree

You must have a bachelor's degree to enter the University of Utah School of Medicine. Applicants must complete their schooling from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or Canada prior to matriculation to medical school. Accepted students will be required to provide transcripts for each college attended. The degree must be posted prior to matriculation.

Undergraduate Majors

The University of Utah School of Medicine does not recommend or require any specific undergraduate academic major. We recommend that students choose a major field for which they have enthusiasm and interest.

Required Premedical Coursework

Premedical courses must be taken for a passing grade from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or Canada prior to matriculation to medical school.

Courses in mathematics, statistics, physiology, anatomy, biochemistry, human behavior, research methods and computer literacy are recommended, but are not required.

Applicants should seek out courses that will help develop skills in independent thinking and decision-making. Physicians need to be able to read and understand scientific literature. They must also communicate effectively and possess skills to express their thoughts and ideas. Computer literacy has become an essential skill. Courses that demand active involvement and activities such as research and independent study projects will foster these attributes. It is important to develop and demonstrate a commitment to lifelong learning.

Applicants should contact the premedical advisor at their institution for assistance in planning the specific course work that meets our requirements, expectations, and criteria.

Chemistry
Two years that should include both a general chemistry series including all applicable laboratories (incorporating both quantitative and qualitative analysis) and an organic chemistry series that includes all applicable laboratories. Advanced Placement credit earned with a score of four or five satisfies one semester of this requirement. Applicants must complete the applicable laboratories.

Physics
One year with all applicable laboratories

Writing/Speech
One year of courses that emphasize written and/or verbal communication

Biology
Two courses - one course must be in cellular biology or biochemistry

Social Science
One course (history, economics, anthropology, psychology, etc.)

Humanities
One course (art, music, drama, literature, etc.)

Note: One course may not be used to fulfill two course requirements.

Continuing Education During the Year Prior to Application

Medical school is an intense and demanding academic experience. Students who have been away from the educational environment for a significant period of time often struggle to keep pace with those who have not interrupted their studies. For this reason, we strongly encourage applicants to be actively involved in learning pursuits during the year prior to application and during the period between application and matriculation, even if they have already completed all of the required premedical course work.

Read about the application and review process.

View the requirements for application.

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