What's the first step???

Hello. I am a 31 year old mother of 3, who eagerly wants to go to medical school. This has been my dream for 20 years, but for various reasons it never happened. I don’t want to live the rest of my life wishing I were a doctor and regretting that I never went for it. I have a BA in Art History and a masters in Early Childhood/Elementary Ed. I don’t have any science classes, but I do have a few math classes. My question is, where do I begin? I live in Connecticut. What classes do I need to apply to medical school? How do I find out which colleges in the area offer the pre-med classes I need? Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!

Welcome mpolacek! Do you have any ideas of which medical schools you want to apply to? Are you interested in MD or DO? Take some time to continue to research your options. When you’re ready, you may want to go to the various school websites and take note of what their specific prerequisite classes are. Pull your unofficial transcript and see what you already have versus what you need and your cumulative GPA. It will let you know where you stand in terms of competitiveness right now.

I’ve been told that it’s never too early to start thinking of the MCAT and reviewing what is on it so you know what you need in terms of maths, physics, etc. in order to score well on it.

I’m new to the process so my advice may be kind of vague but I hope I’ve been able to help on some level. Enjoy the journey, 20 years in the making!


A good first step would probably be to track down the premed advisor at the nearest university and have a long chat with him/her.

The “core” classes are

1 year of General Chemistry;

1 year of Organic Chemistry;

1 year of Biology; and

1 year of Physics.

(plus associated labs for each)

They aren’t necessarily going to be listed as being premed classes, but a premed advisor can steer you towards the right courses.

If you can find a copy of the MSAR, it breaks down what each allopathic school requires. Some schools, for example UC Denver, require additional courses in math and English.

Good luck!



My suggestions:

Almost every med school requires:

1 year gen chem

1 year organic chem

1 year physics

1 year bio

ALL of those with labs.

The MCAT requires the same knowledge, incidentally.

Next question most often asked is, CC or university.


Last, most ask, can one take physics, gen chem, math, and bio in first semester back (rushing through the process) and almost everyone says,


Think marathon, or climbing Mount Everest, one step at a time.

Hope that helps!

I definitely agree with JKP, don’t rush the classes to get through. Better to take 2 sciences classes and there respective labs and do well, than to take 3 science and struggle all the way through. It’s also not going to take any less time taking 2 sciences per semester, because you’ll still have to go for 4 semesters to get the prereqs done.

From what I have read, Many med schools want to see these 4 classes completed before applying. You can use the glide year, to pick up some advanced science classes…biochem, genetics, etc.

  • Krisss17 Said:
use the glide year, to pick up some advanced science classes...biochem, genetics, etc.

Great point. Personally, I would not take the glide year off - I would add to the credentials already submitted to the med school and those courses which will help give some base level knowledge as Kris17 has suggested.