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Health Pathways

The Pre-Health Professions Advising Program supports students preparing to apply for admission to medical, dental, optometry, physician assistant, and other health profession training programs at the doctoral or master’s level

Our program is open to all students and recent alumni. You’ll major in what you want and complete the required course and relevant activities for your intended profession.

Overview

Health profession schools seek students with strong preparation in the sciences and a well-rounded education in the social sciences and humanities. They expect a high-grade point average (typically 3.5 or better for medical, dental, or PA schools and slightly lower for others), excellent grades in pre-requisite coursework, and high scores on the required entrance examination (MCAT, DAT, OAT, or GRE).

Beyond the classroom, applicants must also be able to demonstrate their commitment to serve others and be very well informed about their chosen profession. We encourage you to participate in extracurricular activities, perform volunteer work, and seek experience in health-care settings, such as hospitals and clinics, community ambulance corps, research laboratories, or emergency medical services.

Choosing Your Major

Health profession training programs in medicine, dentistry, optometry, etc. do not prefer any particular major. Because admission committees seek students who are engaged and enthusiastic learners, you should choose your major based on your academic interests.

Along with your major, you will complete the required courses for admission and your general education requirements. Depending upon which major and general education courses you choose, you will find that many pre-health academic requirements overlap with your program of study.

Note that medical schools, and health profession training programs in general, look for “well rounded” applicants who have pursued breadth of study as well as depth.

Requirements

Below are some general requirements for applying to health professional programs. As you begin to identify a health care profession that interests you will learn more about specific requirements for each type of training pathway.

Academic readiness
Prerequisites should be completed before applying to programs.

Standardized tests
For students preparing for medical, dental, or optometry school, pre-requisites should be completed before taking the required entrance examination (MCAT, DAT, OAT). (Note: For pre-dental students, physics is the one exception, which is required for admission but is not on the DAT.)

Summer courses
Prerequisites should be taken during the regular semesters at URI (not summer and not online).

Minimum grades
Many health professional graduate programs require a C or better in pre-requisite courses. Successful applicants generally achieve a grade point average of 3.5 and above.

Experience in the field
In addition to strong academics and entrance exam scores, applicants to health profession training programs are expected to have shadowed practitioners, sought out other relevant experiences, and demonstrated a strong desire to serve others. Research experience is not required, but competitive applicants often participate in research.

AAMU Participating Universities 

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