At Ohio State, "pre-med," "pre-dentistry", etc. are not majors. Instead, they are officially-recognized areas of academic interest, which enables us to provide you with a wide range of support. There is no preferred or "right" undergraduate major for students interested in health professions such as medicine, dentistry, or pharmacy. Rather, professional schools recommend that students select a major in which they have interest and aptitude. While degrees in the sciences are popular, other types of majors, including those in social science and humanities, are equally suitable. Other students choose to major in business, engineering, and other fields.

As an example, the Class Profile for the Ohio State University College of Medicine lists the academic backgrounds of recently admitted students.

Whatever the choice of major, students need to perform especially well while completing the required prerequisite courses specific to the professional school(s) in question. These often include the following:

  • Mathematics: up to one year through introductory calculus
  • Chemistry: up to two years, general and organic with labs
  • Physics: up to one year
  • Biology: two courses
  • Advanced biological: specific to program

In addition to strength in the natural sciences, professional schools look for candidates who have given evidence of skills in critical thinking, cogent writing, breadth of exposure to social and political issues, and an awareness of the contemporary world and its diversity.