Doctor of Medicine Programs

Trained medical doctors help people with injuries, diseases and other conditions that require medical assistance, such as childbirth. Read on to learn about the curriculum, prerequisites, and career requirements that must be met to become a doctor. Schools offering Health Science degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Will I Study for a Doctor of Medicine Degree?

To earn an M.D., you will typically spend four years in a medical school program. While schools structure their programs differently, it is common to begin your studies in lecture-based courses, learning core sciences that will inform your later work. This will include developing an understanding of the human body as well as the many illnesses and injuries that you may encounter in your career. Courses will include study of anatomy, pharmacology, microbiology and medical ethics.

Once you have established a foundation of knowledge in medicine, you will proceed from the classroom to clinical rotations. These occur in a local hospital or other medical setting and are designed to give you practical experience in a variety of areas. Due to the major hands-on components of earning an M.D., you will not find these programs offered online.

Curriculum Four year program focusing on anatomy, pharmacology, microbiology, etc., lecture-based as well as hands-on format.
Prerequisites Bachelor's degree, related courses (biology, chemistry, physics), MCAT results
Career Requirements 3-7 year residency; passing the United States Medical Licensing Exam

Are There Any Prerequisites?

You typically need a bachelor's degree in order to apply to an M.D. program. Most programs do not require a specific undergraduate field of study, though there are often stipulations regarding prerequisite courses; these can include biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry and physics. Many schools offer what are unofficially labeled as pre-med bachelor's degree programs; these are actually majors in fields such as chemistry or biology during which you intentionally take the courses required for admission into medical school.

In addition to undergraduate coursework requirements, you will also need to submit scores from the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). This exam is highly valued by medicine programs and may be a significant factor in determining your acceptance.

What Other Requirements Will I Need To Become a Doctor?

Once you have completed your Doctor of Medicine program, you will need to complete a residency, which lasts an average of 3-7 years. The National Resident Matching Program helps match you to a residency in your chosen specialty, such as pediatrics, obstetrics or internal medicine. You will get hands-on training in your chosen field while working under the close supervision of experienced doctors. You can complete your residency at the hospital or medical center affiliated with your medical school or you may complete it elsewhere. It may be possible to complete your residency where you intend to establish yourself in your field.

After completing your residency, you will need to pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE). All doctors and surgeons must pass this exam in order to practice medicine in the U.S. You will then be able to work in a hospital, physician's office, long-term care center or numerous other settings.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Grand Canyon University

    Grand Canyon University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

    • Doctoral

    Online Programs Available

  • Capella University

    Capella University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral

    Online Programs Available

  • Colorado Technical University

    Colorado Technical University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado Technical University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Yale University

    Campus Locations:

    • Connecticut: New Haven
  • West Virginia University

    Campus Locations:

    • West Virginia: Morgantown
  • Weill Cornell Medical College

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: New York
  • Washington University in St Louis

    Campus Locations:

    • Missouri: Saint Louis
  • Wake Forest University

    Campus Locations:

    • North Carolina: Winston Salem
  • Yeshiva University

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: New York
  • Upstate Medical University

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: Syracuse