While some students apply to medical school in the summer after their junior year, others wait for a year to apply which allows them the opportunity to spread out their coursework and to take a ‘gap year' between college and medical/professional school.
You should contact Naila Mamoon, program director, at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your timeline, goals, and specific course plan by year. Here are some general recommendations for reference.
- Take your chemistry courses as early as possible, especially if you are considering a semester abroad. If you took chemistry as a freshman or a sophomore in high school, we recommend that you begin your chemistry sequence with CHE 110, which is an excellent refresher course. If you took AP Chemistry in your junior/senior year in high school and made a 4 or 5 on your AP Chemistry exam, you may opt out of CHE 115, but this must be coordinated in consultation with the Chemistry Department.
- Plan a course load as light as possible for the spring semester when you study for the MCAT/DAT. Students ahead of normal progress may opt to take one semester of three classes during the second semester of their junior or one semester of their senior year. MCAT/DAT preparation traditionally is done during the spring semester of the junior year so this would be a good time to opt to take three courses if you are eligible.
- While that spring semester of junior year is a good time to lighten your course load, you may not take a reduced course load more than once. You also need to demonstrate to medical/dental schools that you can handle more than one challenging science course per semester.
Summer Courses/Credit Transfers
You must take 75 percent of the premedicine science prerequisite courses at Davidson in order to receive Premedical Advisory Committee endorsement. That said, if a course is not offered at Davidson, or if you wish to take a course over the summer, you may transfer credits for those courses from another institution, provided you receive pre-approval from the Registrar's Office. If you opt to take a course elsewhere, be sure to take it at an institution with a solid reputation for preprofessional training.
The program director and the Registrar's Office can advise you in choosing schools.