To be pre-med means a student is following an educational path of study to prepare for success in medical school (or other post-graduate health profession), earn a medical degree, and embark on a medical career.
Pre-med courses lay the foundation for that med school success. Students devote hours mastering chemistry, biology, math, physics, and biochemistry. They can enroll in these subjects either as part of an undergraduate courses or through post-baccalaureate programs that prepare participants for careers not only in medicine, but in dentistry, veterinary medicine, and many other health professions.
At most universities, the pre-med curriculum is not a major in itself. Any undergraduate can enroll in pre-med courses. And premed students are free to major in any of the degree programs offered by their university, whether it is music, foreign service, philosophy, or beyond.
In fact, many medical school admissions committees encourage premed students to look beyond chemistry degrees and pursue majors that ignite their intellectual passion. All while keeping an eye on medical school requirements. Having a diverse interest and still meeting the basic prerequisites for medical school makes for a well-rounded, interesting candidate.
When students consider what premed courses to take, care should be given to meet the medical school requirements set by the Association of American Medical Colleges. And foremost in all premed students’ mind should be two of the major determining factors to medical school admission – a high undergrad grade point average and impressive MCAT scores.