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Pre-med post-baccalaureate student FAQ

Pre-med post-baccalaureate student FAQ

What support services will be available to post-bacc pre-med students?

Post-bacc students should work closely with their major advisor as well as the pre-med committee coordinator ( They can participate in activities, internships, etc. Students must have at least one year of full time courses (minimum 45 credits of pre-requisite courses) at OSU with a minimum 3.2 GPA in order to be eligible for a committee letter. Please note that the average GPA for successful post-bacc students at OSU has been 3.8. Post-bacc students must complete their core pre-requisite science classes with labs in person.

My grades from my first degree are not very good. Is this the right program for me?

No, you should look at other programs where you will get more assistance and have access to intensive learning strategies. You may benefit from a special certificate or master's program (see the AAMC's post-bacc resource). Please note that it is especially difficult for a student with a low GPA from their first degree to be competitive, even with excellent post-bacc grades. The OSU program works best for career changers with at least a 3.0 GPA from the first degree (and a 3.0 average in any previous science and math courses).

How will my previous credits transfer to OSU?

Once you apply for admission to Oregon State, your prior credits will be evaluated by the OSU Admissions Department. Once they have done so, then an advisor will be better able to go over that information with you. You can also refer to the transfer articulation page to learn more about how outside credits may transfer to OSU.

What courses will I be taking and can I take my courses online?

We offer pre-requisite courses you would need to apply to medical school, including a year-long series of each of these subjects: general biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, and physics (all with labs). Additionally, students may take math, statistics, psychology, sociology, and some upper level science courses like biochemistry and genetics. The non-science courses and the non-lab sciences (like biochemistry and genetics) can be taken online, but the lab sciences must be taken in person.

What about international students?

In general, it is very difficult for international students to gain admission to a US medical school. Of the few schools which accept international students, many require proof of ability to pay for the entire program. International students have ~2% acceptance rate to medical school; therefore, it is especially competitive for them to gain admission. The OSU post-bacc program will not be a good fit for most international students.

For more information, check out the AAMC's website.

Where have previous students been admitted?

Our post-bacc students have entered the program with good grades from their first degree and then worked really hard. They have been successful in gaining admission to schools such as OHSU, Cornell, UCLA, Yale, U of WI, Creighton, etc.

Note that the expectation for this group of students is higher because they are older, more motivated, and have already earned a degree, so it is essential that students set themselves up for success in order to earn mostly A's. They expect that you are going to make good decisions, and there is no "wiggle room" like there is for freshmen!

How long does it take?

Most students seeking to complete prerequisites (not a major) will typically need two full years and then apply during their third summer. Students entering the program with limited health care experience will definitely need the full two years of preparation. For a student with excellent grades from their first degree, chemistry and math credit, and good health care experience, a shorter timeline may be possible in some cases.

It is essential to take the necessary courses in order, and it cannot be rushed since it's important to learn the material and earn A's.