Preparation for The Health Professions
Students preparing for careers in the health professions (medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, podiatric medicine, optometry) traditionally major in biology or chemistry. However, students may elect to major in any program provided they schedule the required science and mathematics courses to support their applications. The courses specified by the Association of American Medical Colleges for Medical School applicants are generally applicable as minimal requirements for most of the health professional schools. They are:
- General Chemistry 8 semester hours
- Organic Chemistry 8 semester hours
- Physics 8 semester hours
- Biology 8 semester hours
- Mathematics (to Calculus) 0-6 semester hours
Most professional schools will accept these as minimal preparation, but may recommend additional courses. Students should be alert to the fact that professional schools are interested in demonstration of aptitude in science and mathematics, and the courses taken must be those normally rostered by majors in these areas, not courses offered for non-major election.
In the normal application process to health professional schools, the applicant’s full undergraduate record is scrutinized. The strong liberal arts component in the La Salle curriculum will provide evidence of broad interest and rounded academic development. Evidence of leadership and active interest in associated activities will lend strong additional support to applications. Volunteer work in the particular health profession is also necessary.
Normally, the competition for placement in these programs results in high acceptance standards. Grade point averages ranging from 3.4 to 4.0 are representative of levels expected in these programs. Students are encouraged to consult with their health professions advisor concerning admissions criteria at various schools.