Which Undergraduate Degrees Best Prepare Students for Medical School?

Undergraduate Degrees That Prepare for Medical SchoolFor many students, planning for medical school starts early and requires selecting one of the best undergraduate degrees for medical school early on. Most students simply believe that the sooner they start thinking like a medical school student and an aspiring physician, the more qualified they will be for medical school admission, certification, and eventual practice in the field. There is some data to back this up, but it’s worth noting that many medical students actually are accepted to medical school and graduate successfully without an undergraduate course in biology or a related field. For those who want to be best prepared, it’s worth considering the full array of undergraduate degrees that will be most useful in both medical and academic capacities.

The Sciences: A Natural Choice for Future Medical Students

Most students who are looking to graduate from an undergraduate program and head to medical school are convinced that they need to pursue coursework in the sciences in order to stand a fighting chance at acceptance to a prestigious program. In studies done throughout the education industry; ¬†however, it’s worth noting that only 51 percent of those admitted to medical school came from a science-related undergraduate major. Though this does not account for all admitted applicants, it does still account for both a majority of those admitted as well as a plurality among the various majors pursued by successful medical school students. The most common majors of those applying for medical school are:

– Biology
– Anatomy
– Microbiology
– Biochemical engineering
– Marine biology
– Chemistry
– Physics
– Natural sciences
– Veterinary science
– Pharmacology
– Kinesiology

These scientific majors remain the most popular option among a slim majority of student,s largely because the medical profession itself is so science-minded, according to an article from US News and World Report. Furthermore, the skills required of students in a biology-related or anatomy-related major actually become quite useful when reviewing medical symptoms, treatments and the common causes of disease. However, there are other majors that also play into the skills required of successful medical students.

Related Source: Guide to Choosing the Right College Degree

Other Options: A Look at More Unique Medical School Majors

It’s safe to say that a student who studied political science during college might not have the best background for medical school. While it is possible for them to go to medical school, political science majors tend to have no ambition to attend medical school and so this isn’t a problem. Outside of the sciences, what can a student major in so that they’re prepared for at least some part of a medical education?

The answer is varied, and it largely hinges on the skills required of today’s aspiring physicians. Among the most popular majors for non-science applicants admitted to a medical program:

– Mathematics
– Engineering
– Health sciences
– Public health
– Statistics

These fields represent areas that are just as significant to medical diagnosis and treatment as a biological background. Mathematics is a key area of emphasis in medical school, while the fields of engineering and public health give students the logical thought process needed to proceed through diagnosing and treating symptoms of today’s most pressing diseases and disorders. Health sciences occupations are similarly related and exceedingly useful in classroom applications.

Students Should Resist Feeling Confined to Science-Related Degrees

Though the most common undergraduate major in advance of medical school might be biology, it’s certainly not the only way to prepare for this rigorous undertaking. The best undergraduate degrees for medical school can range from science to math, statistics to engineering, as long as they prepare students for how to think like an aspiring physician.