What undergraduate courses should I take to prepare for medical school?
You may major in any subject you choose, but you must complete the prerequisite courses listed below prior to enrollment.
Note: Students applying to the Three Year Primary Care Tract (PCT) must complete all required prerequisites courses by the first week of July before the start of their program.
Required premedical coursework:
- Biology: One year
- General Chemistry: One year that consists of a general chemistry series including laboratory work incorporating quantitative and qualitative analysis
- Biochemistry: One semester/quarter course in biochemistry
- Organic Chemistry: One year of an organic chemistry series that includes one year of a lab experience or equivalent
- Physics: One year with a laboratory experience
Additional recommended premedical coursework:
- Anatomy: One semester/quarter course in anatomy
- Writing/Speech: Courses that emphasize written and verbal communication. Applicants are required to demonstrate spoken, auditory, reading and writing proficiency in the English language.
- Social Sciences: Courses such as psychology, sociology, anthropology and economics
- Humanities: Courses in art, music, drama, literature and languages
- Diversity: Courses that focus on the culture, history and/or current circumstances of diverse populations
- Ethics: Courses that address questions and issues related to morality and moral behavior that may include meta-ethics, normative ethics, applied ethics, moral psychology and descriptive ethics
What GPA do I need for admission to the OSU College of Medicine?
Grades are considered in the context of difficulty and rigor of the applicant’s major. Your GPA will be compared to the average GPA of students accepted into the most recent class. The academic profile of recent successful candidates to Ohio State’s College of Medicine includes a 3.72 GPA.
However, it should be stressed that the GPA is only one factor in the admissions decision and is taken into consideration along with many other factors.
What test do I need to take before applying to medical school?
The Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) is required and must be taken within three years of your application.
Who should write my letters of recommendation?
Academic Letters: You should submit two letters from professors in any courses who have taught you and assigned a grade for credit in the course; at least one should be a science course. A premedical committee composite letter satisfies this requirement.
Personal/Professional Experience Letters: We strongly recommended that you provide additional letters from individuals outside of the classroom setting, such as supervisors, managers or those you’ve worked with in the community, a volunteer service and/or a clinical or research setting.
The letters of recommendation are received only through the American Medical College Application Service’s (AMCAS) letter service. For more information about this process, visit https://students-residents.aamc.org/applying-medical-school/faq/amcas-faq/.
How to improve your medical school application?
Clinical Experience: As a medical school candidate, you are expected to spend enough time in a clinical setting to understand the challenges and demands of the lifestyle you will encounter as a physician. Experience with patient exposure may be gained through volunteerism or work at hospitals, emergency rooms, homeless clinics and extended-care facilities.
Community/Volunteer Service: The medical profession is strongly oriented to serving the community. You should demonstrate a commitment to the community by involving yourself in service and volunteer activities.
Research: We consider participation in research activities to be an important part of the preparation for medical school. As a future physician, you will depend on medical literature to remain current in your field. Research experience may be in any discipline and performed at any site. You should be able to describe your projects, the questions being asked in the research and your role in the conduct of the research. Research performed as part of a course requirement or a senior thesis project is acceptable.
Leadership: Dedication, determination, decision-making, communication skills, teamwork and a willingness to contribute to the welfare of others are characteristics of effective leaders. Leadership experience can be gained in a variety of ways, including participation in work, church, community or school organizations.
Extracurricular activities: We want to know how applicants deal with the demands of their lives outside the classroom. Your ability to juggle these challenges is a strong indicator of how well you will handle responsibilities, stress and the demands of medical school.