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Preparing for Health Professions

As you prepare for professional school, you might find it helpful to keep a journal of your experiences and record how you feel about them. What are you learning and how will you use that information? Are you fulfilled in your courses and activities or are you feeling drained and overwhelmed?

It's important to look at your feelings as you go through the process. That way, when you do apply to programs you will be able to analyze and reflect on your experiences. Program leaders want to be sure you are committed to healthcare and will want to know what sparks that commitment. And you want to be as sure as you can that you’re making a good choice.


Chiropractic Pharmacy
Dentistry Physical Therapy
Genetic Counseling Physician Assistant
Medicine Podiatry
Nursing Public Health
Occupational Therapy Veterinary Medicine

To guide students, a pre-health course flow chart is available.

Please note: This chart only lists the commonly required courses and is not exhaustive of every course that might be required. It is intended only to guide students through the biology, chemistry, physics and math sequences. Please consult the current UC Merced Catalog for additional course information.

Campus Resources and Opportunities

Students preparing for careers in healthcare should take full advantage of UC Merced's campus resources to become more competitive as applicants.

Center for Career & Professional Advancement - The helpful staff members at the Center for Career & Professional Advancement can give you a hand in your search for an internship or volunteer experience. They also hold a number of useful workshops and fairs throughout the semester, including the Etiquette Dinner, Internship Fair, Graduate School Fair, Resume Mania! and How to Write a CV. The Career Services Center is in SSB 230 and can be reached at 209-228-7272 or

Bright Success Center - Tutoring is available in variety of subjects, including those required by professional schools. Students are encouraged to take advantage of tutoring throughout the semester; not just when the course material becomes difficult. Seeking tutoring early and often means better grades and greater understanding of course content. The Student Advising and Learning Center is in KL 222 and can be reached at 209-228-7252 or

Office of Student Life - Along with a strong academic record, students applying to health-oriented professional schools must engage in meaningful extracurricular activities that demonstrate a passion and commitment to their intended fields. The Office of Student Life can help you get connected with community involvement, campus activities, and student clubs and organizations. The Office of Student Life is in KL 184 and can be reached at 209-228-5433 or

Portraits of Success

UC Merced has sent successful applicants to a variety of professional schools. To read their biographies and get some tips for pre-health students, click on Portraits of Success.

Other Resources

If you have earned credit through Advanced Placement, you might not be able to use that credit toward the pre-health prerequisite requirements. Please check the Advanced Placement exam page for more information.

A list of frequently asked questions for students preparing for pre-health is available and should answer some basic concerns.