Students pursuing a career in medicine, whether allopathic (M.D.) or osteopathic (D.O.), should take special care to prepare.  While every medical school requires the completion of a four-year degree from an accredited institution, the premedical coursework requirements vary from school to school. Every medical school has unique requirements which may include coursework, laboratory, volunteer, and healthcare experiences. Each school determines their own list of required and recommended premedical coursework; some require successful completion of specific classes while others have progressed to competency-based admissions and some accept AP, online, and community college courses while others do not. Students are encouraged to review curriculum outlines for years 1 and 2 of the professional programs to which they intend to apply and are encouraged to enroll in coursework that provides foundational knowledge to support their success when planning electives to complete their academic plan. 

Pre-Professional Advising: Many students at UMKC are interested in career paths in healthcare. For students who plan to enter professional schools after finishing their undergraduate degree, we offer a variety of workshops, seminars, and pre-professional advising. Students are encouraged to select a major that matches their interests and provides the foundation necessary for success in their professional curriculum.

Students interested in preparing for a career in medicine or other healthcare areas are encouraged to connect with a Pre-Professional Advisor early and often.  Pre-professional programs can be found in RooGroups. Students with a declared plan of Pre-Medicine will find the Pre-Professional Health Advisor in their Success Network under “Your Connections” in UMKC Connect and can schedule appointments there.  All other students can contact Roo Advising at 816-235-1148 or for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Common Required Courses:

Common requirements for most medical schools include the courses listed below. UMKC Courses that will universally fulfill the requirements are listed along with alternative options.  It is the student's responsibility to ensure that any alternative options selected are acceptable for satisfaction of the requirements for the schools to which they intend to apply.

One Year of Biology:
General Biology I
and General Biology I Laboratory
General Biology II
and General Biology II Laboratory
Alternative courses may include (NOTE: most schools require biology courses to be completed with a lab):
BIOLOGY 202Cell Biology3
BIOLOGY 206Genetics3
BIOLOGY 218Introductory Anatomy3
NURSE/HLSC 120Anatomy & Physiology I4
NURSE/HLSC 160Anatomy and Physiology II4
One Year of English:
Introduction to Academic Prose
and English II: Intermediate Academic Prose
Alternative courses may include:
English Composition I3
Any Writing Intensive (WI) Course3
Two Years of Chemistry (through Organic Chemistry):
NOTE: Most schools require chemistry courses to be completed with a lab.
CHEM 211
General Chemistry I
and Experimental General Chemistry I
General Chemistry II
and Experimental General Chemistry II
Take one of the following groups:
CHEM 320
Elementary Organic Chemistry
and Experimental Organic Chemistry
CHEM 321
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
Organic Chemistry II
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory II
One Year of Physics:
General Physics I
and General Physics II
Physics For Scientists and Engineers I
and Physics For Scientists and Engineers II

Common Recommended Courses:

Students are encouraged to engage in academic or laboratory research opportunities as part of their preparation for medical school and related professions.  Early exposure to scientific inquiry demonstrates interest and involvement in the creation of knowledge, improves critical thinking, and assists with writing and communication skills.  Visit Undergraduate Research @ UMKC for more information.

The following courses are commonly recommended to students to ensure they have foundational knowledge in subjects that comprise curriculum in the first two years of the professional medical curriculum.

BIOLOGY 202Cell Biology3
BIOLOGY 206Genetics3
BIOLOGY 218Introductory Anatomy3
BIOLOGY 306From Bench to Bedside: Translational Research3
BIOLOGY 313Microbiology3
BIOLOGY 316Principles of Physiology3
BIOLOGY 319Global Health: New and Emerging Infectious Diseases3
BIOLOGY 328Histology3
BIOLOGY 409Developmental Biology3
BIOLOGY 435Immunology3
BIOLOGY 441Biochemistry3
HLSC/NURSE 120Anatomy & Physiology I4
HLSC 125Medical Terminology1
HLSC/NURSE 160Anatomy and Physiology II4
HLSC 410Epidemiology3
Social Sciences
ANTHRO 103Introduction To Cultural Anthropology3
HLSC 252Human Growth and Development3
HLSC 300Diversity in Health3
HLSC 404Introduction to Social Justice1
PBHL 158Public Health Principles3
PBHL 335Historical and Contemporary Issues in Public Health3
PBHL 358Environmental Public Health3
PSYCH 210General Psychology3
PSYCH 222Child Psychology3
PSYCH 433Psychological Perspectives on Mental Health3
ART-HIST 110Introduction to the History of Art: Pyramids to Picasso3
COMM-ST 277Interpersonal Communication3
COMM-ST 344Organizational Communication3
ENGLISH 304WIProfessional and Technical Writing3
PHILOS 210Introduction to Philosophy3
PHILOS 221Contemporary Moral Issues3
PHILOS 321Ethics3

Students can utilize PlanMyDegree to plan common admission course requirements

Students can learn more about preparing for a career in medicine, including lists of U.S. and Canadian medical schools and their requirements through the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) for allopathic programs and the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) for osteopathic programs. 



In addition to specific admission requirements, most medical schools require students to take either the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) as a requirement for admission. Students can find more information about these exams, including subject components, scoring, and resources for preparation using the links below.  Components of the MCAT may include subjects not included in required coursework for admission, including biochemistry, statistics, psychology and sociology. Students planning to take the MCAT are encouraged to complete coursework in the subject components to ensure they have a foundational understanding of the material for successful completion of the exam. Students preparing for the MCAT should consider applying for the Medical Scholars program.


Medical Scholars (STAHR):


Students applying for professional schools of medicine do so through a centralized application service.  Three such services are utilized for schools in the U.S. and Canada; the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS), the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine Application Service (AACOMAS), and for students applying to allopathic  medical school in the state of Texas, the Texas Medical and Dental School Application Service (TMDSAS). Students can learn more about the centralized application services including requirements for personal statements, letters of evaluation, timelines and fee assistance programs through the links below.




Students interested in applying to the Doctor of Medicine (MD), Physician Assistant (PA) or  Anesthesiologist Assistant (MSA) program through the UMKC School of Medicine are encourage to visit their website to plan a visit, tour, and review programs and services including the early and guaranteed admission Medical Scholars, PA Scholars, and MSA Scholars Programs.

UMKC School of Medicine: