Skip to Content

Office of Pre-Professional Advising


Current Students

Medical School Pre-Requisites

The following information may assist you in preparing for eventual application to medical school. Take this information to your academic advisor while planning your course of study. Some choices will vary depending on your major. If you have questions, feel free to email or call the Office of Pre-Professional Advising. For a printable version of this page click here [pdf]

Two semesters of lecture and laboratory of each of the following sciences are generally required:

  • General Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • General Biology
  • General Physics
  • Some schools will not accept AP exemption in theses courses without upper level coursework in the specific areas.
  • Some schools have additional requirements.
  • Check the Medical School Admissions Requirements for each school's requirements.

A typical program of study to meet the science requirements at USC might be as follows:

Fall Year 1

  • Chemistry 111 +111L
  • Biology 101 +101 L
  • Sociology 101 or Psychology 101

Spring Year 1

  • Chemistry 112 + 112L
  • Biology 102 + 102L

Fall Year 2

  • Chemistry 333 + 331L or 333L (for chem majors)
  • Sociology 101 or Psychology 101 (both needed for MCAT preparation)

Spring Year 2

  • Chemistry 334 + 332L or 334L (for chem majors)
  • Cell + Molecular Biology 302

Fall Year 3

  • Physics 201 +201L
  • Or 211 + 211L (for chem majors only)*
  • Biochemistry BIOL 541 or BIOL 302 + BIOL 545 

Spring Year 3

  • Physics 202 +202L
  • Or 212 + 212L (chem majors only)*

Sociology, psychology and biochemistry have been added to prepare students for the 2015 MCAT.

*If you take the 211/212 series, it is important that you study the entire 201/202 series text while preparing for the MCAT.  Physics 201/202 covers more breadth of information, all of which is tested on the MCAT.  Some topics usually not covered in Physics 211/212 include thermo-dynamics, relativity, and those relating to modern physics such as x-rays and quantum theory.

The following is a list of other recommended biology courses for pre-med students.  Non-biology majors should take some upper level BIOL courses in addition to the medical school requirements listed above. BIOL 302 is highly recommended prior to taking BIOL 541.

  • Cell and Molecular Biology BIOL 302
  • Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy BIOL 415
  • Histology BIOL 530
  • Computer Science CSCE 102 or higher
  • Immunobiology BIOL 620
  • Physiology BIOL 460 *(highly recommended for MCAT)
  • Genetics BIOL 303 Developmental Biology BIOL 505
  • Bacteriology BIOL 550 Statistics STAT 201 and/or 515
  • Health Psychology PSYC 465 Medical Ethics PHIL 312
  • Medical Spanish FORL 501
  • Medical Terminology CLAS 230