Preparing for a career in health or medicine takes time, resources, and commitment. If you're thinking about a health-related career, contact a pre-health advisor early to determine which professional route best matches your skills and talent.
Our office will assist you in all aspects of preparation, from helping you determine your field of study to developing your credentials as a medical or health professional school applicant. We can also help you acquire clinical experience and connect you with other pre-health students.
Seeking additional advice? Schedule an appointment with us—we're here to help.
- Registering with the Office of Health Careers Advising
- Choosing A Major
At Furman, there is no Pre-Health major. As a pre-health student, you can choose any major that best fits your interests and career goals, as long as you maintain at least an A-/B+ GPA (at least 3.6 is preferable) in your science courses.
- Fulfilling Course Requirements
Course requirements for medical school can be found below. However, if you are planning to apply to another health professional school, you should review specific course requirements for each field and school. View course requirements for additional health careers.
Course Requirements (Allopathic Medical School)
If you are pursuing a degree in medicine, you must complete the following courses to prepare for the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).
2 Biology Courses
BIO 111: Foundations of Biology
BIO 221: Genetics
4 Chemistry Courses
CHM 110: Foundations of Chemistry
CHM 115: Introductory Kinetics and Thermodynamics
CHM 120: Organic Chemistry
CHM 220: Bio-Organic Chemistry
1 Biochemistry Course (One of the Following Courses)
BIO 303: Biochemistry of the Cell
CHM 460: Biochemistry
SCI 380: Metabolic Biochemistry
2 Physics Courses
PHY 111: General Physics I
PHY 112: General Physics II
2 Social Science Courses
PSY 111: General Psychology
SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology
1 Statistics Course (One of the following courses)
MTH 241: Introduction to Statistics
ECN 225: Statistics
OR major-specific course with statistics emphasis
MTH 150 (or MTH 140 and 141)
Many health and medicine schools will not accept AP credit for pre-requisite courses. However, most of these schools will allow students to supplement the requirement by taking a more advanced course in the same field that reaches beyond the pre-health requirement. If you are concerned that your AP credit will not be accepted, we recommend you rescind your AP credit and take the course at Furman unless you can supplement your credit with a more advanced course. It is your responsibility to determine a school's policy regarding AP credits. Please note that health professional schools will uphold current policies at the time of the application rather than policies in place when students began their undergraduate coursework.
- Organizing Your Schedule
Plan to take at least one science course each semester. Some semesters you will need to take two science courses.
We suggest beginning by taking either CHM-110 or BIO-111 in the fall of your first year. Students who are particularly strong in sciences can take both simultaneously.
Wait to complete your Physics requirements (PHY-111 and PHY-112) unless you choose to major in physics. Taking these courses later keeps the material fresh when preparing for the MCAT.
You must complete either MTH -150 (or MTH-140 and MTH-141) before registering for PHY-112.
Since many majors include a statistics requirement, do not take a statistics course until you have chosen your major.
Plan ahead when choosing a biochemistry course (BIO-303, CHM-460, or SCI-380) because these courses are only offered during specific semesters.
For the Psychology (PSY-111) and Sociology (SOC-101) courses, many of the registration slots are reserved for first and second year students. We suggest completing these courses within your first two years.
Plan an extensive review for the MCAT during your junior year. Prepare your courses accordingly.
- Studying Abroad
If you intend to study abroad, remember to consider your application timeline, including when you will be taking your professional exams, completing your applications, and having interviews.
Keep in mind that there are several study away programs offered during the Maymester.
- Gaining Experience
All health professional schools look for applicants who know their field on a deeper level than in a classroom setting. Observing, job shadowing, or researching at a medical clinic or facility provides students with this hands-on learning. Develop your own experience.
Though most health professional schools do not require research experience, basic science research or clinical research can improve your critical thinking skills and your ability to work with others. Find a research project that interests you by connecting with a professor or partnering with Greenville Health System.
Any health profession is built upon service. Look for areas to serve that will reflect your strengths and passions, rather than volunteering in places that you believe might only pad your application. Find volunteer opportunities with Heller Service Corps.
Working with other students on campus helps foster collaborative, communication, and leadership abilities. Join one of our student organizations.