PrerequisitesMedical School applicants need to have completed a number of prerequisite courses at an accredited U.S. or Canadian college or university. No particular degree program or institution is given preference over another. Rigor of coursework and competitiveness of the undergraduate institution, however, are taken into consideration.

Once you’ve reviewed the required courses below, be sure to familiarize yourself with the medical student selection criteria.

Required courses

Biology with lab

  • Biological sciences coursework with emphasis on general principles, cell biology, and/or physiology
  • 1 semester or 1 quarter 

Chemistry with lab

  • General or organic chemistry
  • 1 semester or 1 quarter 

Life sciences (additional courses)

  • Biology, genetics, zoology, botany, parasitology, biochemistry, chemistry (general or organic, but must be in addition to the general or organic chemistry listed above), physics, etc. At least 2 must be upper-level courses
  • 4 semesters or 4 quarters 

Humanities or social sciences

  • Humanities or social sciences upper-level course, with an intensive writing requirement; courses include but are not limited to Anthropology, Criminal Justice, Communications, Economics, English, Ethics, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, Theology, Women's and Gender Studies. 
  • 1 semester or 1 quarter 

Recommended courses

  • Biochemistry
  • Ethics
  • Genetics
  • Psychology
  • Statistics
  • Foreign language
  • Independent learning courses
  • Seminar-type courses involving small group discussions
  • Social and behavioral sciences and humanities 

The prerequisite courses we require are intended to prepare you for the curriculum at the University of Minnesota Medical School. These prerequisites may or may not meet the requirements of your undergraduate program expectations for graduation. Furthermore, you will find that some prerequisite coursework will support your preparation efforts for the MCAT, but this list is not exhaustive.

Visit the AAMC website for more information about MCAT preparation, and speak to your college advisor for additional information.

Other guidelines

  • A bachelor's degree and all prerequisite courses must be earned by July 1 of the year of matriculation, however exceptions can be made based on personal course schedules
  • Requirements cannot be fulfilled with College Level Examination Program (CLEP) credits
  • Requirements cannot be fulfilled by AP credits. If you received AP credit for courses such as general chemistry or biology, you’ll still need 1 semester of chemistry and biology with labs. This can be an advanced chemistry, organic chemistry, or any advanced biology course. Do not retake coursework for which you already received AP credit
  • Upper-level courses are typically those with a course number that begins with a 3 (300 or 3000) or higher
  • Writing intensive courses are ones in which writing is an integral part of the course. Typically, you're required to complete at least one, 10 page paper

Note we will accept some of the above prerequisites from an accredited community college. We encourage you to take most upper division science courses at an accredited four-year college or university in the US or Canada. If you require further guidance on taking courses at a community college please give us a call at 612-625-7977 or send us an e-mail