Medical School (Allopathic, Osteopathic, and Podiatric)

Medical School (Allopathic, Osteopathic, and Podiatric)

So You Think You Want To Go To Med School? Part 1

So You Think You Want To Go To Med School? Part 2


The basic courses required for entry into medical school are:

  • 1 year of Biology (Biol 101, 101L and Biol 252 or 474 plus lab)
  • 2 years of Chemistry (Chem 101, 102, 241*, 261, and 262 plus labs)
  • 1 year of Physics (Phys 114 and 115 or 118 and 119)
  • A few schools require 1 semester of Calculus (Math 231) Only Harvard requires two semesters.
  • Some medical schools (notably UNC) recommend Biol 202
  • *Note: The chemistry department does not offer a lab for Chemistry 261.  In order to obtain the 8 hours of organic chemistry and lab students should take Chemistry 241L.  Please be aware that Chemistry 241 is both a pre- and corequisite for Chemistry 241L and Chemistry 241L is a prerequisite for Chemistry 262L.  Medical schools know this and look for it on the transcripts of UNC students.  Without this course, you do not meet the minimum number of hours required for organic chemistry.
  • Most medical schools require AT LEAST a C in prerequisite coursework (e.g. NOT C-)

Note Regarding Requirements

The requirements provided on this page represent the BARE MINIMUM requirements of many medical (allopathic, osteopathic and podiatry) schools.  However, it is common for some schools to have additional requirements and it is therefore important that you visit the websites of those schools you are going to apply for admission to and check for any additional requirements.  Another great resource for researching medical schools is the Medical School Admission Requirements guide (MSAR).  There is a copy of this guide in the Health Professions Advising office and you can also purchase a copy.

Please take note of 2015 MCAT changes in the way that prerequisite courses will be determined. This is very important because the MCAT has changed and it will be based on meeting certain competencies Ms. Brinkley will provide more information to help students understand what courses they can take to meet the various competencies laid out by the AAMC.

College Major

There is no specific major that is required, or that is "best" to pursue. Medical schools are looking for well-educated and well-rounded individuals.


Most medical schools (allopathic, osteopathic, podiatry) require the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). The usual time to take it is in the spring semester of the Junior year. Students should prepare for this test.

Acceptance for various GPAs and MCATs can be found at:


Most medical schools accept applications through the American Medical Colleges Application Service (AMCAS). This application should be submitted in the summer before your last year in college. AMCAS applications can be downloaded from the Web.

Extracurricular Activities

Extracurriculars are a very important part of the applicant's materials. Most medical schools place emphasis on volunteer community service. Some volunteer experience in a medical setting is a must. Undergraduate research is a plus. UNC has a several very active prehealth student organizations. The Prehealth Listserv is your best resource to get plugged into these activities.

Global Service

Global Ambassadors for Patient Safety (GAPS)
"If you can't do it here, you shouldn't do it there."

Letters of Recommendation

You must get to know faculty members so that they can write letters of recommendation for you. UNC has no Premedical Committee or Advisor's Letter.

Other web sites of interest for medicine:

MD/PhD Links

Osteopathic Medicine Links

Podiatric Medicine Links