Author: Anuhya Banerjee
What is the best major to take in order to get into medical school? Trick question. But, if you ask the majority of the population they might give a resounding response to major in biology or chemistry.
Reality check: You do NOT need to be a biology or chemistry major for the pre-med track! In 2019, 53,371 individuals applied to U.S. medical schools and approximately 30,693 majored in the biological sciences. The remaining applicants majored in Humanities, Math/Stats, Physical Sciences, Social Sciences, Specialized Health Sciences and others.
Majoring in the biological sciences can be tempting for many prospective physicians because it is the basis for many of the principles that you will continue to learn in medical school and beyond. Though, according to the AAMC there is no advantage in a biology major compared to other pre-med majors taken with solid GPAs and MCAT scores. Explore the AAMC link to discover how other majors compare in the 2019-2020 medical school applicants.
No matter what you major in, you should think about if it is a major that you enjoy or can create new opportunities from. Medical school admissions remain competitive with a push for clinical experience that will prepare students for the remaining years of education on top of residency and possibly fellowship. If you do choose a non-science major, you may need to take summer classes or apply for Postbaccalaureate Premedical Programs (Post-Bacc) to fulfill pre-med requirements. In medical school, most information is new according to Kaptest.com, so there will subsequently be a “level playing field”.
The main point is that medical schools do not make it a requirement to major in biology, but instead they want to see a diversified education and student profile. However, there is a whole set of prerequisites that are needed along with the MCAT, and extracurriculars which ultimately do make a difference in your application. Visit our article "So You Want to Go to Med School?" to learn more about the medical school requirements.