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Premedical Studies

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Premedical Studies

Applying to Medical School

I want to get into Medical School. Do I need to take a specific undergraduate degree to be considered for Medical School?*

There is no 'one degree' that is essential for getting into Medical School.  Rather, choose a degree that you are passionate in; chances are you will do better in a degree that you enjoy!  Also consider how your program of study would prepare you for other careers or educational paths.

Here are extracts from the websites from some of Canada's leading Medical schools:

The University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Medicine considers students from a variety of backgrounds; no preference is given to any particular degree program.

Queen's University Faculty of Medicine Frequently Asked Questions answers the following:

What courses or program do you recommend that would help me get into Queen's?

We do not recommend any particular course or degree program since no preference is given to applicants who have studied in a particular university program. Applicants are encouraged to consider all of the undergraduate programs available to them and to embark on the course of study in which they have the greatest interest and that would prepare them for an alternate career should they not gain a place in medicine.

At McMaster University’s Faculty of Medicine, there is no single background that is ideal preparation for the practice of medicine. Students with university education in any discipline are encouraged to apply. The ideal candidate will have completed a rigorous and coherent course of study, which will provide evidence of an independent, self-directed, and mature learning style. The ideal candidate will also provide evidence of outstanding non-academic qualities, including altruism, reliability, responsibility, perseverance, creativity, and leadership, through this process.

McMaster's FAQ's respond to this question:

Are some courses better to take than others? What courses should I take?"

Just as we do not require prerequisite subjects for the program, we do not favour or discount various academic programs. Many of the successful applicants do come from science backgrounds but this may be, in part, due to the fact that they apply to more than one medical school and must do the prerequisites for the others. It is in your best interest, regardless of academic program, to as least gain some exposure to the basic sciences as well as the social sciences and humanities. The aim is to develop a well-rounded education and also to prepare yourself for alternatives to medicine.

The University of Toronto's MD program FAQ answers this question:

Is there an undergraduate program of study that is most suitable for admission to the MD Program?

No. Students with university education in any discipline are encouraged to apply. Medicine requires individuals with strong backgrounds in the social sciences, humanities, physical sciences and life sciences. All programs are treated equally in the evaluation process

McGill University's Faculty of Medicine Office of Admissions state, "Although the Faculty attempts to ensure by means of the specific requirements listed that all students have an adequate preparation in science, we also encourage students from a variety of backgrounds to select medicine as a career. Prospective applicants are therefore advised to pursue courses of study, whether in the natural or social sciences or the humanities, which appeal to them and which have as their aim a broad education and intellectual training rather than merely anticipating a medical curriculum."

*Remember that each Medical School's admission criteria may vary; this document does not address all variations and is meant as a guideline. Check with the specific Medical Schools you may be interested in pursuing. Admission information and selection criteria may be subject to change so always double check with the school you plan to pursue.