A common misconception among the pre-med community is that students must major in a science-related field such as biology or chemistry. While you can certainly major in biology or chemistry, you are not limited to these options. In fact, pre-meds can major in almost anything. Med schools will not hold it against students if they decide to major in economics, history, English, psychology, etc. As long as your pre-med requirements are met which include one year of general chemistry with lab, organic chemistry with lab, biology with lab, physics with lab, calculus, and English, you can choose to study any subject. This is a good incentive to study what you enjoy while also staying on track to apply to medical school.
Choosing a major can be a difficult and complex process. Coming into college, you might not have any idea about what you want to major in or you might know exactly what you want to do but then switch majors later on. This is actually a much more common occurrence than you might think. Your path to med school may not be perfect and there may even be instances where you consider changing your course of study. Pursuing your own interests and adjusting your education to fit your needs best is important and you should not be discouraged from doing so. Admissions committees place more importance on your GPA and MCAT score than your major. This means that having a solid foundation and getting good grades in your required pre-med courses will have much more impact in determining your qualifications as a fit pre-med applicant than what major you choose to pursue.
When choosing between science and non-science majors, there are pros and cons to each which might be helpful to consider if you’re feeling unsure about declaring a major. Science majors usually have course schedules that align better with the basic pre-med requirements. In other words, the classes you need to get a degree are usually the same as the ones you need to apply to medical school which means you’ll likely have to take less classes. This may vary depending on the institution you attend but it applies to most colleges. On the other hand, a non-science major might mean having to take more classes, however, it would help you stand out as a more well-rounded and unique applicant. In either scenario, you would ideally be pursuing a major that you’re passionate about and that is primarily what should matter the most.
Different majors open up different opportunities but ultimately, they will lead you down the same path to medical school. As long as you complete the basic requirements in order to apply to medical school, you can tailor your experience to fit what you want most out of your undergraduate education. The main takeaway here is that there isn’t an ideal major for a pre-med student. No matter what major you decide on and what path you take, you have an equal opportunity to accomplish your goal of going to medical school.