Being a doctor is about having a heart of service. Doctors give to their patients through integrity, sacrifice, and dedication. Key Points Being "pre-med" is an interest, in addition to your major. Medical schools accept a variety of majors and require particular courses. Programs Degrees Doctor of Medicine or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine After graduating from UAH, medical school training is an additional 4 years followed by specialized training in a residency. DOs and MDs use the same tools, treatments, and technologies to practice medicine. Osteopathy uses a holistic approach in working with and diagnosing patients. Learn more about being a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine. M.D./Ph.D. Degrees Students interested in becoming a medical scientist or conducting research can obtain an MD and PhD. This may mean adding 3-4 extra years of training. Various Schools in Alabama University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine (UAB) - Birmingham, AL University of South Alabama College of Medicine (USA) - Mobile, AL Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (ACOM) - Dothan, AL Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (VCOM) - Auburn, AL University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD) - Birmingham, AL Recommended Course & GPA Requirements To be a competitive applicant, a 3.5+ cumulative and science GPA is recommended. Pre-requisites of the below courses are enforced. Schools look for these classes: Hours RequiredCourse NameWhat to Take at UAH 8 hrs General Biology BYS 119 & BYS 120 8 hrs (w/lab) General Chemistry CH 121/125 & CH 123/126 8 hrs (w/lab) General Physics PH (101&102) or PH (111/114 & 112/115) 8 hrs (w/lab) Organic Chemistry Ch 331/335 & CH 332/336 6 hrs Math/Stats MA 171 & MA 281/ST 281 Courses positively adding to your application: CourseWhat to Take at UAH Social & Behavioral Sciences PY 101 & SOC 100 Physics w/Calc PH (111/114 & 112/115) Genetics BYS 219 Anatomy & Physiology I & II BYS 313 & 314 Cell & Dev. Biology BYS 300 Microbiology BYS 321/321L Biochem BYS 361 Biochemistry and social/behavioral sciences are on the MCAT 2015. The above courses support required and suggested coursework for Alabama schools. The combination of courses are guidelines, and specific requirements may differ among schools. Entrance Exam MCAT Horia Varlan The MCAT (Medical College Admissions Test) is the entrance exam required by US medical schools. A fee assistance program is available. Many schools will not accept scores more than 3 years old. Classes Needed You will want to take as many of the required courses as possible before the test. Taking upper level classes may assist in developing problem solving and critical thinking skills. Preparation The strongest way to increase a score is to take practice tests. In between each test, assessing strengths and weaknesses, focus on improving weaknesses, and re-assessing with another practice test is vital. Timing and Organization Take the exam when ready. Most students do so in the Spring semester of the year they are planning to apply to professional school. Many programs begin to fill seats as soon as their application cycle opens. Plan ahead and apply early. The New MCAT 2015 The biggest changes are: Subjects: The MCAT will now test on Biochemistry, Psychology, and Sociology. Time: A total testing time of about 7.5 hours, including lunch and breaks. The Revised MCAT exam as of 2015 will include four sections: Biological & Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems - Need Biochemistry now Chemical & Physical Foundations of Biological Systems Psychological, Social, & Biological Foundations of Behavior - Need Psychology & Sociology now Critical Analysis & Reasoning Skills - No specific coursework required, skills from passages drawn on from various disciplines Outside Class Experiences: It's More Than Just Grades Health Care Experiences What better way to make sure you want to be in healthcare than by shadowing? Gain experiences and possible references. Shadowing will go a long way in, not only making you a mature applicant, but making sure others see you as prepared. Keeping a Journal Use a journal to record thoughts on your experiences. Activities come to life with reflection. Topics to consider writing about may include: Why one chose their profession, shadowing, or volunteering. This journal may be helpful when writing your personal statement. Community Service and Volunteering Working in healthcare means having a heart of service. This means wanting to give back to the community. Find something enjoyable and go forth! Research Research experience can provide you with opportunities to work with faculty, learn skills beyond the classroom, use research methods, and engage in critical analysis. Research allows a better understanding between theory and practice using innovative and creative thinking. Getting into professional school is about desiring to be a better person and better future healthcare professional. It's a complex process and we're here to help!