Information about pre med programs: Why choose OSU for a pre med degree?

March 1st, 2006

(Note: This posting is the first of a series of articles highlighting different programs at Oregon State. This post is geared towards the many questions that students and counselors have about pre med program at Oregon State. Much of the content of this post comes from the College of Science paper, “Pre Med Programs – How to Prepare for Medical School”.)

1. Variety of “pre med”? Majors
Students can apply to medical school with any major, as long as required pre med courses are completed. OSU offers the greatest variety of “pre med degrees” of any university in the state. Our pre med students choose majors in Science (Biology, Biochemistry/Biophysics, Chemistry, Microbiology, Zoology), Engineering (Bioengineering, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Health Physics), Health and Human Sciences (Exercise and Sports Science, Nutrition, Public Health), and Liberal Arts (History, Music, Psychology, Spanish, etc).

2. Research Opportunities
Research enhances a student’s medical school application, and OSU attracts more research funding than any other institution in the state. For 2005-2006, OSU faculty brought in more than $208 million. In 2004, 56 OSU students participated in the OSU Howard Hughes Medical Institute Summer Undergraduate Research Program on campus.

3. Experienced, Accessible Advisors
Access to experienced pre med advisors is extremely important. The advisors at Oregon State will be available to help students and ensure that they are on track with their pre med courses. OSU has a Pre med Committee composed of the Chief Pre med Advisor, Chere Pereira, and 13 other experienced faculty members who meet with students and help them with all aspects of the preparation and application. Ms. Pereira is the most experienced Pre med Advisor in Oregon. She has been in the position since 1987, and is also very involved with the NAAHP (National Association of Advisors for Health Professions) where she has served on the Board of Directors since 2000. She is currently a member of the NAAHP Committee on Minority Affairs, Chair of the Professional Development Committee, and has recently been appointed NAAHP Liaison to the Physician Assistant Profession. In addition, she has served as President and Program Chair for the western division of the NAAHP. Ms. Pereira has also conducted External Reviews of other Pre Med Programs.

4. Special Pre Med Courses and Pre Med Programs
During spring quarter OSU offers a helpful pre med Orientation Course which features local physicians, admissions officers, and information about coursework, majors, finances, etc.
For those applying to medical school, there is an application seminar series consisting of informational sessions and discussions about health care issues, and there is assistance offered at every step of the application process.
The Preceptorship Program matches pre med students with local physicians, so that they can learn more about the profession. In addition speakers, such as Dr. John Kitzhaber, former Oregon governor and author of the Oregon Health Plan, visit campus on a regular basis.

5. Excellent Track Record with Med School Admissions
Oregon State pre med students graduate and attend medical schools all across the country, and our students are well-regarded and well-prepared. The preparation comes from strong pre med courses, and critical thinking and communication found in our baccalaureate core classes.
Click here to be mailed information about OSU and the pre med program.

Pre med degrees/majors at OSU
As previously mentioned, there is no specific pre med degree. Students can apply to medical school with any major, including non-science areas, as long as they take the required pre med courses listed by the school to which they apply. Generally these include a year each of General Chemistry, General Biology, General Physics, and Organic Chemistry. Liberal arts requirements often include a year each of humanities, social sciences and writing. The following majors would include the required pre med courses and science sequences:
Biochemistry/Biophysics; Biology; Microbiology; Zoology

Upper division courses include Genetics, Immunology, Bacterial Molecular Genetics, Pathogenic Microbiology, Virology, Plasmid Biology, Cell and Molecular Biology, Physiology, Vertebrate and Invertebrate Biology, and Embryology. It is important to begin serious study of the liberal arts early in your program as preparation for the MCAT, which contains a Verbal Reasoning and Writing section in addition to sciences. Courses which require writing are especially useful. Broad reading is also important.

Oregon State pre med students attend medical schools across the country including Harvard, Stanford, Johns Hopkins, Oregon Health Sciences University, Yale, and many more.

14 responses to “Information about pre med programs: Why choose OSU for a pre med degree?”

  1. Angela Miller says:

    I am currently a pre-nursing student at Lane Community College. After quite a bit of thought I have decided to look into the medical field. My original goal has been nurse midwifery, but am now considering obstetrics. I am looking for information on how to get on the right track to achieving my ultimate goals. I have not had the best GPA, and would really like to make my education a top priority to get going with my future. If you have any information for me that you think may be helpful, please contact me either by email, mail, or telephone.
    Thank you,
    Angela Miller

  2. James says:

    @ Angela:

    Feel free to give us a call toll free: 1.800.291.4192 and we’ll connect you with the information you need.

  3. Sesha says:


    I am under impressionthat OSU does not have a tie up with any medical college or Hospitals. Is that ture? I was informed by one of my friends that his son is doing a pre medical program at Portland State University, which offers a 7 year combined program of premedical at PSU and Medical at OHSU and need not wrte MCAT even. Is there any such program exists? If exists do you offer such a program and what is the eligibility for it?
    Please let me know.

  4. James says:


    You would need to contact PSU directly as we don’t really know about their programs here at OSU. What I can tell is you that our pre-med students are admitted to med school at an average rate of about 75%. OSU is an excellent place to start your pre-med studies!


  5. Anna says:


    I’m a senior in high school interested in coming to OSU Honors next fall. My goal is to do pre-med at OSU. Since OSU doesn’t have a pre-med program, how would that affect me differently than going to a college with a pre-med program. Also, what is the difference between UO’s pre-med program and the options that OSU offers?


  6. Ronan says:


    I have a BA Hons in Humanities followed by a MSc in Computer Science. I was thinking about going back to school to study medicine. What courses would I need to do to get to medical school, in terms of pre-med? And can pre-med be undertaken part-time?


  7. James says:

    @ Ronan:

    I would encourage you to start by review our pre-med (General Science) curriculum through our catalog: from there, feel free to contact the Office of Admissions’ Visitor Center: They will be happy to set up an appointment with an Adviser in the College of Science who can help you figure out the logistics.


  8. Jenn says:

    Not sure if I agree but thanks for the information 🙂

  9. Maqui says:

    Now and again you find something worth reading around here, which is why I keep returning.

  10. DOROTHY says:

    Chicago is home to so many great doctors, my personal OBGYN is John Weitzner

  11. @Ronan, I know a medic working full-time, but is applying to medical school after taking part-time courses to fulfill the premed requirements. It’s definitely possible.

  12. Kailey says:

    My name is Kailey and I a 14 years, this August I will be a Freshman. A lot of my classmates think I’m crazy even to be thinking about college at this age but right now I have been trying to get on the four year waiting list for OSU’s vet school. This is what I want to do and I think that’s it’s possible to do it!

  13. James says:


    Don’t let your friends dissuade you. It’s NEVER too early to start thinking about college! We look forward to you joining the OSU community in four or so years!


  14. Jamie says:

    Hi I’m from Indonesia.I’m interested to continue my further study pre-medical in the USA at Oregon State University.Is it eligible for International Students?Must I take SAT or ACT test or it’s just an optional?

    Thx for your help

  • Recent Posts

  • Categories

  • Archives