THE BEST PRE-MED MAJOR: Majors with the highest acceptance rates to Medical School

Hey guys! So I’m officially back from break! Before I begin, I just wanna thank the great
courses plus for sponsoring today’s video. Stick around at the end of the video and I’ll
talk more about them. So without further ado here is the video a
few days ago I filmed on the best pre-med major. Hi guys! Welcome back to my channel! There’s a question I want to finally address.I
get this question all time either on Instagram, Snapchat, the comment section here and via
e-mail as well, and the question is what is the best pre-med major? I think really the question is “what is
the best pre-med major that will increase my chances of getting into med school.” I think this is the perfect time to answer
because for most of us school is starting soon and you guys are probably starting to
think about whether or not to be pre-med or some of you are thinking about switching to
pre-med. So the short answer is, spoiler alert, you
guys are gonna hate this because I’m pretty sure you guys hear this all the time: it doesn’t
matter, pick a major that you like. But let’s explore what major has the highest
acceptance rate for med school a little further. So if you guys aren’t familiar, there are
some similarities between the application process to medical school and the application
process to undergrad in that there is a centralized service that you have to use to apply to schools. For undergrad, that’s the Common Application
and for medical school, that’s AMCAS, which is the American Medical College Application
Service. AMCAS collects your MCAT scores, GPA, letters
of recommendation and then they send it out to school to make it more convenient to the
applicant. So each year they release some data about
the applicants and matriculants and this information is available online for everyone to look at. So let’s quickly take a look at the data
for 2016. I’m gonna transfer this data to a spreadsheet
so we can kind of play around with the data and see if there is anything we can learn
from this So according to the AAMC, there were 21 thousand
who were matriculated last year. So that’s people who went through application
process, got accepted and are starting med school–or have started med school. And of this 21,000 people who got accepted,
more than half of them, about 53 percent, majored in biological sciences, so these are
majors like biology, molecular biology, cell bio, or neuroscience and behaviour, which
is what I majored in. About 4.2 percent majored in humanities, which
are majors like history, english, english literature, creative writing, or a foreign
language like Spanish. Less that 1% majored in math or statistics. About 10 % majored in Physical Sciences, so
these are majors like chemistry, physics and I’m guessing astronomy. About 10 % majored in social sciences, so
these are majors like econ, government and anthropology, and about 2.5 percent majored
in specialized health sciences so that’s majors like nursing, physical therapy, occupational
therapy and public health. So that’s a good range of majors, I think. When looking at the graph an easy assumption
to make is that the best major to pursue is something in the biological sciences since
more than half of the people who got accepted in 2016 had majors in biological sciences. That’s not necessarily true, it just means
that proportionally, more people with majors in biological sciences applied to med school. If you look the applicant data–so these are
all the people who applied, the breakdown of the majors look pretty similar to matriculant
data. What is pretty interesting is that you can
break down the acceptance rates by majors. Actually, I can make a graph of acceptance
rates by major. And when you look it at like that, the group
of people with the highest acceptance rate at 46% are the ones who majored in humanities–these
are majors, like I said before, are English Literature, History, Creative Writing, Spanish,
and the likes. They are also the group that scored the highest
in their MCAT. There are probably several reasons of why
this particular group scored higher on their MCAT. One reason I can think of at the top of my
head is that the critical analysis and reasoning skills section of MCAT, which is the most
similar to like the critical reading section of the SATs. so you’re required to read
and answer questions about complex passages, with sophisticated vocabulary and with intricate
styles. So people who majored in humanities may find
it easier because they do a lot of that in their major, like being able to approach literature
from different perspective and develop their writing skills. I don’t have any hard proof of this , but
I believe that of all the section of the MCAT the hardest one to improve on in a short period
of time is the Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills. You can’t really improve your vocabulary
and your grasp of the English Language when you’re preparing for the MCAT, I think that
just comes with years of practice and reading. Which you would have under your belt if you
were in majoring something in Humanities. The group with the second highest acceptance
rate at 44 percent are the ones who majored in Physical Sciences and these are majors
in physics, chemistry, etc. followed by people who majored in Math and Statistics at 42%. And not surprisingly, just like how people
who majored in humanities did better in Critical Analysis section, people who majored in Physical
Sciences and Math & Statistics did better in the Chemical and Physical Foundations section
of the MCAT. Another thing I find interesting is that the
average person who majored in Biological Sciences didn’t really do better in the Biological
and Biochemical Foundations section of the MCAT when compared to the other groups. If I had to make an educated guess it’s
because this group didn’t really get an “unfair” advantage, because this section
is heavily covered by the pre-med requirements, like biology, bio-chem, orgo, which everyone
is required to take. But does that mean that you should major in
humanities and physical sciences? Only you guys can decide that for yourselves. My advice is, I wouldn’t major in something
I have no interests in because regardless of the major, classes are gonna get harder
and harder as you guys get to higher level courses, so the best major to pick is something
you have a baseline of interest in so you wouldn’t mind putting in the hard work to
get a good grade. It’s so much harder to get a good grade
if you’re studying for something you have no interest in. There is so many people from different disciplines
in medicine so you don’t have to major in anything specific. Like most of you know already, medicine is
more than just sciences. So don’t be discouraged or worried if you
wanna study something major in something that’s not scientific. If anything, that could work to your advantage
when you’re getting ready to take the MCATs. There are different factors medical schools
take into account when it comes to admissions. Your undergraduate GPA and your MCAT scores
are something that is in your hands. So best major for you is whatever major you
can enjoy the most and get the best grades in. So we’ve come full circle. So that’s all I have for you today about
the best majors for med school. I love looking at numbers and trying to find
connections in them. Let me know if I missed anything or let me
know what your thoughts are as to why certain groups had a higher acceptance rates than
other. I wanna thank the great courses plus once
again for sponsoring today’s video. If you guys don’t know, The Great Courses
subscription on demand video learning service and they offer unlimited access to a huge library of 7000 video lectures on just about anything The lectures are given by top professors from Ivy Leagues and other great universities around the world and places like National Geographic, The Smithsonian and the Culinary Institute of America. They have lectures on science, math, history, literature, photography and even how to cook the course i’m watching is called medical school for everyone emergency Medicine” You guys know that I’m interested
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works you guys can check out the course and see if that’s a specialty that you would
go into. For a free one month trial, you guys can click
my link which is I will also have the link in the description
box below. Thank you guys so much for watching. I hope you guys are off to a great start in
school. And for those of you starting med school this
summer, welcome to the journey and I wish you guys the best of luck, you guys are gonna
have so much fun. Make sure to check out the
for a blog entry for this topic with all the graphs discussed in this video. Also there’s gonna be all new merchandize
for the new school year like new pens and apparel and so much more coming this fall,
so stay tuned for that! Please give this video a thumbs-up and I will
see you guys in the next video. BYE


  1. Don't major in humanities because you have to do an extra two years of school to complete the pre-requisites. These majors are completely worthless in medicine. Stick to biology, biochem, histology, nutrition….; these are very useful in medicine.

  2. Thanks for the advice, thinking of double majoring in biology and psycology….btw you're a beauty with brains sis

  3. Right, it’s not the major that gets you into med school, it’s more of the discipline that you master from your major

  4. Ma'am I have just passed my intermediate and now I am searching for some good premedical programme which covers topics and makes path easier to clear MCAT. i reside in Vancouver. Please help me

  5. This video is just going to perpetuate the idea that you should major in biology to get into medical school. A lot of students who want to get into medical school think they should major in biology. I would say that most students who major in biology want to go to medical school, but the statistics seem to show that every year only about 10k biology majors get accepted into medical school. That is a low number. There are over 100k graduates with biology degrees each year. If only 10k of them matriculate into medical school that means the rest of them are still in school or competing for low paying lab tech jobs.

  6. As far as specialized health sciences go, occupational therapy and physical therapy aren't really undergrad degrees…. Good vid though. Thanks for posting!

  7. I want to major in either bio chemistry or neuroscience I’m already taking kinesiology along with A&P in high school right now so I’m not sure which one is more beneficial to me especially when finding a job to support me through medical school.

  8. Oh wow. There's a chance for me after all. I majored in engineering maths and physics and I thought I was really at a disadvantage. I may still be as I haven't written an essay in 12 years

  9. I'm getting my 2yrs RN from a community college then go to a 4yrs college here that have a 46 credit premed and apply to med sch

  10. But in Asia people can get themselves admitted into a medical college after giving admission test right after finishing their highschool… then y do d Western world need a major…!?

  11. Is nursing good I’m doing LVN Assoicate science right now than bsn I want to take prerequisites for med school 🏫

  12. I would be looking at a major in microbiology/immunology or neuroscience. Maybe a double major if I am feeling adventurous or want a divorce (jk) 😂

    With potential minors in Bioethics, Food Science, Neuroscience and/or a couple others I don't remember off hand.

  13. Hi Dear 

    My son is doing his BSc. 3rd year in Kinesiology at the University of Waterloo. He has taken the following courses on top of his own degree requirements. 
    – First year biology lab
    – Second general chemistry 
    – English
    – Second physics course
    This semester, he is taking organic chemistry, a first year chemistry lab and a second English course. He is doing this because he thought he needed to take these courses for medical school admissions but is now very overwhelmed as they have been hurting his GPA. 

    Please advise if these additional courses are necessary for his admission. 
    I will greatly appreciate your help.

  14. Well, since all med schools require X number of credits in various sciences – you could major movement n anything as long as these courses were taken.

  15. Got a question that made me frustrated, I’m a molecular bio PhD and I’m preparing for med school,but my premed course hours cannot meet the requirements( Chinese college, course settings are totally different from that in North America). What should I do ?

  16. Thank you so much! I'm getting out of the Navy in 1 year and stopped taking course that were going towards my major in Psychology thinking that I needed something in Biology and now I see I wasted all this time! I need to enroll for classes ASAP! Thanks

  17. Ayeeee I was a foreign language major that matriculated in 2016… I think having a liberal arts degree is supposedly useful for patient interaction. With the shift towards patient-oriented care liberal arts majors are more appealing

  18. This video explained me everything so clearly. So basically you don’t have to major in Biology to do well in MCAT instead I can do my major that interest me for instance I’m good at math so I can major in math and get a really good GPA and do pretty decent in MCAT and that way there is a higher chance I can get accepted in a Med School rather then doing my major in Biology that I have no interest in and get a bad GPA and a bad MCAT score and waste my money and time. Again thanks for the Brief explanation video!

  19. My major is in family studies. I took human physiology as a sophmore in my undergad. Is that okay to get into med school or pharmacy school?

  20. Actually, majoring in Philosophy gives one the highest probability of getting into a Med School. I wonder why she didn’t even mention it.

  21. WHY would she say Med School is “fun?” It’s pure hell! Imagine taking TWO tough, upper division college semesters at 1 time!

  22. Your data are deceiving because it assumes the same number of people majoring in different areas are applying to medical school. (If 90% are biological science majors and represent 50% of accepted medical students and chemistry majors represent 1% of the applicants and 10% of the accepted medical students, then clearly majoring in chemistry is advantageous.) The truth of the matter is that those majoring in a biological science overwhelm by number all other majors. When I graduated college, for example, the entire graduating class of chemists was 7 people while over 650 biology majors graduated.
    Having spent five years on the faculty of a major medical school and watching the selection process (which may be a bit dated since this was from 30 years ago), there is a huge difference in the major you choose. Medical schools tend not to like selecting people with undergraduate degrees in a non-science major because the student, if selected, starts off at a huge disadvantage that many times cannot be overcome. Obtaining a degree in a science field accomplishes much more than you realize and not having that scientific foundation makes studying medicine far more difficult.
    By far and away the major that results in the most success is chemistry. Med students always seem to hit a brick wall when they study chemistry while chemistry majors breeze through these problems and overall seem to do much better in med school even when their undergraduate grades are substantially lower others. Some have argued that the chemistry degree requires more rigor which better prepares the student, but that opinion is not supported by any credible studies. What was known at the time is while significant numbers of students dropped out of medical school, few, if any, chemistry majors fail in the program which is why chemistry majors were always at the top of the selection list when all else was equal. What I can also tell you is that after a 35 year career, my training as a chemist resulted in me being far better prepared and I was always easily and significantly able to out perform those with a biological degree. But, then again, few seem to want to major in chemistry due to the difficulty in the program itself.

  23. OMG thank you so much, I was really struggling with the course, to apply for in the schools I wanted to apply to.

  24. Trust me major in Biology. Medical School is nearly almost all memorization. Taking a biology major will help you develop memorization techniques and study skills for med school. So biology is best

  25. For clinical experience, should I be a CNA or a phlebotomist? Can you do a video on how you got experience as a pre-med?

  26. Just asking, if I take biology and chemistry. Can I major in the arts ( art and design, dance, drama .etc.) to get into dentist school

  27. hi I want to be a sports medicine physician and I'm getting a bachelors and heath & wellness should I change my major so I can get in med school?

  28. Personally, I'm doing Electrical/Computer Engineering.

    Pain in the ass, difficult classes, but it's satisfying and fun. Too bad I only have to take one Chemistry class, though, so I have to do Med school prereqs during Summers.

  29. I’m an accounting major and everyone says it doesn’t matter what you major in but then you’ll have to do a post bacc right? I’m graduating next year but have none of my sciences.

  30. I wonder what happened to the ppl who don't get it. Do they keep trying and trying? In different universities?

  31. Hi I’m going to major in psychology to become a psychiatrist but how do i apply for the prerequisites before i apply to college? My major is psychology but yeah how do i get the prerequisite .. thank you

  32. Because Humanities majors only account for 4.2% of the applicants, however far MORE humanities majors (history, English …) are granted each year than biology majors yet account for less than 1/10 of the applicants of biology majors. Those humanities majors MUST be pretty damn good to even apply to medical school.
    Verdict : stick with biology.

  33. Best major is Biomedical Engineering. Graduates in Biomedical Engineering have a higher IQ than Biology majors.

  34. It's my last chance to study medicine and I want to know how to study Biology? Where can I apply please help me

  35. am not qualified ine neet this year so agent said me that i can do my bs prgrm from india thn after 1 year in 2020 i hav to qualify my neet thn i can go phillipInes …Is dis possible?

  36. Thank you for a helpful video. I’m considering med school, even though I just finished my undergraduate in philosophy. That said, although you say that it doesn’t particularly matter what one’s undergraduate degree is, isn’t it true that most med schools require certain undergrad prerequisites, like bio, chem, etc?

  37. So, I am a sophomore at my University and a nursing major. I’ll be applying for Nursing school in the fall to get in during the spring… Going to Medical school had been on my heart for a few months now, and I defiantly want to go to become a doctor. Should I change my major to Biology? Because my professor who actually is a doctor said I should be fine either way it goes – whether I go to nursing school or changing my major. What should I do?

  38. Guys, (especially the health, bio, or social science majors) don't make a mistake and pick a major because you think medical schools would like you better. I did this for one semester and ended up switching back to what I initially avoided (biology). I realized picking something more to impress medical school vs myself made me hate the classes required for that major and I even got a bad mark for that class. For those of you wondering, I picked Economics initially because I was thinking in a risk-averse way such as "what if I don't get into med school?", I thought to myself, "at least I will have an econ major and make money" also because I thought because I will be financially literate (take accounting 101 instead lol or you could just use google) since most doctors are financially illiterate. but don't do that because you'll end up with a degree you didn't truly want and you'll wake up to a job you'll hate going to. I did some soul searching and realize I don't want to be in a boring investment banker job no matter how much they give me.
    ***What this video should teach you instead is to not be average and to believe deep inside your heart that you'll eventually get into medical school regardless of your major. It's healthy to have doubts at first, so I'm mainly addressing the people that think they have a low chance of getting in and are doing whatever it takes to impress the adcoms. You just have to truly believe you'll get in. Just because the average biology, health, or social science major do worse on the MCAT than other majors, see this as motivation to study harder. You should be telling yourself "good thing, I'm not your average 'bio/social science/health major.'" Find other ways to stand out, ideally through your passions. I'm honestly want to help anyone, feel free to chat with me.

    TLDR: Don't let the data encourage you to major in something you aren't passionate about to impress adcoms. Instead, major in what you love, stand out differently and have confidence that you'll get into medical school with the help of extra studying to avoid being average.

  39. The best pre-med major is anything in science. Why ? Because it exposed you the most to science courses. Although you don't to major in science to get accepted. Medicine is a science based feild. Nothing better than get the most of science classes as pre-med, those concept repeated themselves for life.
    At the end if the day, major what interest you. Medical is too competitive to major in science just for med school.

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