The Program

The Pre-Medicine program offers foundational courses in modern science related to the Medical field. It prepares students for medical school and graduate training in other health professions.

The program will be offered Both in English and in Spanish. For those students from Latin America who do not have the required proficiency in English, some first-year courses will be offered in Spanish, along with intensive ESL and Professional English courses. By the beginning of year 2, all courses will be offered only in English.

The Pre-Medicine program offers courses in the following areas of study that are required for most modern allopathic, osteopathic, and chiropractic medical schools. These academic areas are generally included in the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).

  • Physics: Study of matter, energy, space, and time, and their interrelationships with one another.
  • General chemistry: Study of elements and their compounds, except those containing carbon.
  • Organic chemistry: Study of carbon-containing compounds.
  • Biochemistry: Study of basic chemical structures and chemical transformations that take place in living systems.
  • Biology: Study of living organisms, molecular and cell biology, and human anatomy and physiology.
NoteUNICAL’s general education courses offer necessary writing skills and math proficiency to prepare students to take these courses in the pre-medicine program. Graduating from the Pre-Medicine program fully prepares students to enter any MD program in the United States, provided that they receive a passing grade in the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)

Some medical schools and health care training programs may require additional coursework that is not required by the major. It is recommended that students consult with the admissions office of the school they are planning to attend after graduation to determine if they need to take additional classes.

To graduate with a BS in Pre-Medicine , students must successfully complete all requirements for the bachelor’s degree. (Please refer to “Degree Requirements” below) As part of the requirements for the BS in Pre-Medicine, all students must complete 56 credits of coursework as follows:

  • Principles of Biology
  • Cell and Molecular Biology I
  • Cell and Molecular Biology II
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology I
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology II
  • General Chemistry I
  • General Chemistry II
  • General Chemistry III
  • Organic Chemistry I
  • Organic Chemistry II
  • Organic Chemistry III
  • Principles of Biochemistry
  • Classical Mechanics, Thermodynamics, and Solids
  • Rotational Motion, Fluid Dynamics, and Optics
  • Acoustics, Electricity, Magnetism, and Nuclear Physics
NoteStudents may fulfill all or some of their requirements for general chemistry, biology, organic chemistry, biochemistry, and physics by having completed equivalent undergraduate coursework at an accredited university and earned a grade of “B-” or higher. Undergraduate degree students can apply transfer credits to cover the general education requirements, electives, and up to half the coursework in the major (43 credits) for a maximum of 70 total credits.

Additional Requirement: Completion of Major Senior Project

Degree Requirements

Graduation requirements vary from year to year. Please refer to the official UNICAL catalog for requirements for other academic years.

Recommended Courses

  • Advanced Topics in Molecular and Cell Biology
  • Fundamentals of Chemistry
  • Calculus 1
  • Calculus 2
  • Next Generation Web Design
  • Principles of Business Success
  • Business Communication Skills
  • Career Strategies
  • Introduction to Modern Psychology
  • CCTS: Examining Health Care Systems in the Light of Cultural Bias
  • Biostatistics
  • Research Methods
  • MCAT Preparation
  • Internship
  • Practicum
  • Living Systems

Program Learning Outcomes

For each specified subject area, graduates will be able to:

Biology
  • Understand the basic concepts of living systems on the molecular, cellular, organismal, and population levels.
  • Understand basic and advanced concepts in molecular and cell biology, including:
    • Bioenergetics, enzymes, and metabolism.
    • Structure and function of the plasma membrane.
    • Cytoskeleton and cell motility.
    • Interactions between cells and their environment.
    • Cellular reproduction.
    • Cell signaling and signal transduction.
    • The nature of the gene and the genome.
    • DNA replication and repair.
    • Gene expression.
    • Molecular biology of immune response and cancer.
  • Understand the techniques that connect biology concepts to applied areas in medicine, agriculture, heredity, and industry.
  • Demonstrate skill in using laboratory instruments and molecular cellular models to understand:
    • The structure and function of microbes, plant cells, and animal cells; with emphasis on use of microscopes, spectrophotometers, and instruments related to photosynthesis, respiration, and transpiration.
    • Techniques in molecular and cell biology; with emphasis on gel electrophoresis, microscopes, and instruments related to DNA hybridization, enomics, and proteomics.
  • Perform and clearly document the results of laboratory experiments.
General Chemistry
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the composition of matter which includes atomic structure, electronic structure of atoms, ions, and molecules, as well as orbital theories and chemical bonds.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the properties of matter which includes gas laws, intermolecular forces in solids and liquids along with the relationship of these forces to melting point, boiling point, solubility, acidity, basicity, buffer action, and colligative properties.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the transformation of matter, which includes thermochemistry, thermodynamics, chemical equilibrium and the factors that determine the direction and extent of chemical reactions, as well as knowledge of chemical kinetics, catalysis and the factors that determine the speed of reactions.
  • Perform and clearly document the results of laboratory experiments.
Organic Chemistry
  • Recognize the importance of functional groups and learning the specifics in structure-property relationships with the traditional organization of organic chemistry into families.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of nomenclature, functional groups, reactions, and preparations of more than a dozen of the important families of organic compounds.
  • Demonstrate skill in writing mechanisms of the chemical reactions proposed for many of the interconversions of functional groups.
  • Perform and clearly document the results of laboratory experiments.
Biochemistry
  • Understand the basic principles of biochemistry and be able to communicate these principles clearly by solving problems.
  • Perform and clearly document the results of laboratory experiments.
Physics
  • Understand the basic principles of physics and be able to communicate these principles clearly by solving problems, using algebra and applying the principles of physics.
  • Perform and clearly document the results of laboratory experiments.
Workplace Readiness
  • Understand and value the role and responsibilities of a health care practitioner to the client and to society in the context of an integrated health care system.
  • Demonstrate the qualities of a responsible health care professional, including compassion, teamwork, and responsibility in the context of internship experiences.

Program Assessment Measures

  • Final Essay Exam: The essay will include questions to research biochemical pathways of modern medical treatments of cardiovascular disease, and another major disease.
  • Internship Evaluation Form: Completed by on-site internship supervisors to evaluate competencies in compassion, personal responsibility, diligence, and teamwork.
  • Standardized Tests for Chemistry, Physics, and Biology: Currently, students take a standardized exam from the American Society of Chemistry to evaluate level of accomplishment. Physics and biology faculty have structured comprehensive exams and are researching standardized exams that may be appropriate.