Please note that this page reflects the opinion of the writer, and that what they "recommend" might not be the best decision for your particular situation. It is highly recommended that you also seek out other testimonies, etc. and make the most informed decision for yourself.

All hyperlinks are colored in blue.

This page is written by Nguyen Le. Last Updated on December 26, 2021.

Legal Disclaimer/Financial Disclosure:
1. I have no financial relationship or support to disclose. All organizations and products mentioned on this page are discussed based on my experiences and my discussion with other Pre-Med students. The organizations and the owners of the products did not contact or sponsor me to be promoted on this page.
2. Unless stated specifically, I do NOT have any endorsement or recommendation for any groups, companies, organizations, or products mentioned below.


It is to note that:

  • The requirements are classes that you need to finish PRIOR TO MATRICULATION. In other words, you do NOT have to finish them when you apply to schools. If you apply and get accepted, then you will need to finish the requirements BEFORE you can take classes (i.e., matriculation) at the medical school that you attend.
  • This is more or less a “universal” set of requirements. The actual requirements vary from schools to schools. For example, a school might require that you take an upper division Zoology course (i.e. ,not a part of your curriculum and normally does not show up in other schools’ lists). Unless that school is your top choice, it is UNWISE to take this one class to satisfy the requirement at this one school. It is also UNWISE to try to satisfy ALL requirements for ALL medical schools (i.e. take all of the “rare” classes). That is a lot of effort for minimal gains. More classes mean more work, which can lead to lower grades and negatively impact your chances of being admitted to a medical school.
  • Some medical schools are moving towards “recommendations” instead of “requirements.” It is still advised that you satisfy all of these “recommendations” because those are what they deem as “competencies.”
  • Spanish is NOT a requirement of California medical schools.
  • Community college classes DO COUNT towards satisfying the requirements. AP scores sometimes count, but not always.
  • One year of Biology (+ lab)
  • One year of Physics (+ lab)
  • One year of General Chemistry (+ lab)
  • One year of Organic Chemistry (+ lab)
  • One year of Mathematics and Statistics
  • One year of English and Writing - any course that is from the ENG (English) or COMP LIT (Comparative Literature) Departments or has a "W" at the end of the class name

We also recommend that you strongly consider:

  • 01 statistics course - either STATS 10 or BIOSTAT 100A
  • SOCIOL 1 (Introductory Sociology) and PSYCH 10 (Introductory Psychology)
    • Based on my experience, you will get sufficient information about the Psychology/Sociology section of the MCAT from the MCAT books. However, others have said that they find PSYCH 10 and SOCIOL 1 helpful.
    • SOCIOL 1 also can satisfy the GE Requirement for Foundations of Society and Culture - Social Analysis.
  • CHEM 153A: Biochemistry: Introduction to Structure, Enzymes, and Metabolism
    • CHEM 153A, in my opinion, is very useful to have BEFORE you start preparing for the MCAT.
    • CHEM 153L (Biochemistry Lab) is a requirement for a few medical schools, but not for many. You can take it if you want, but many students end up not needing it (I never took it).

I strongly advise AGAINST Double Majoring. For adding a minor, you should only add it if it really interests you.

The thought process is simple: more classes = more work = less time available for each class = more likely to get lower grades = lower chance to get into a medical school. Exceptions do occur, but generally speaking, this relationship holds.

Double Majoring is generally an intense endeavor. As a result, I am fairly against it.

Adding a minor is much less work - but it is still more work. As a result, you should only add it if you really want it. Otherwise, you should focus on doing well on your core classes and other activies.

With that being said, a very common minor that many South Campus students tend to add is the Biomedical Research Minor.

Try to combine them with medical school requirements/recommendations or major requirements whenever you can.

For example,

  • ENG 5W - English Requirement + Literary and Cultural Analysis
  • SOCIOL 1 - Social Analysis