Degrees and Programs
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Physicians serve a broad range of functions within the field of medicine; diagnosing disease, prescribing treatment, supervising patient care and participating in the improved delivery of health. As an alternative to direct patient care, physicians often branch off into other arenas of medicine, such as basic and applied research, teaching or administration.
Professional medical education consists of four years of graduate level study. Typically, the first two years of medical school are comprised of classroom instruction and laboratory work; the second two years consist of clinical rotations. Following graduation from medical school, students may elect to continue their training by doing a one year internship and/or a one-to-three year residency. The residency option is required in order to specialize in medicine.
Upon application to medical school, a student's overall academic achievement will be evaluated together with results of the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). While medical schools do not require that students pursue a specific major at the undergraduate level, applicants are generally expected to have a foundation in biology, chemistry, and physics. At UAF the courses which satisfy this are: chemistry (CHEM 103X and 104X or 105X and 106X), organic chemistry (CHEM 321 and 322), anatomy and physiology (BIOL 211X and 212X), biology (BIOL 105X and 106X), and physics (PHYS 103X and 104X). In addition, medical schools recommend students have a background in the social sciences and humanities. While medical schools will consider applicants who have completed three years of undergraduate work, most entering medical students have completed a bachelor's degree.
Students who are considering medicine as a career choice should contact the Dean of the College of Science, Engineering and Mathematics or the Academic Advising Center to be assigned an academic advisor. Program advisement, exploration of professional schools and licensing requirements, and financial planning are available to meet the needs of students in fulfilling their career aspirations.