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Core Studies Sample Schedules

As a new student in the Pre-Health Core Studies Program, you will be scheduled to meet with a member of the Pre-Health advising team for your first advising session to review your previous academic experiences and discuss your future goals. You and your advisor will establish a study plan tailored for you. A minimum of 12 course units (c.u.)* are required to complete the preparatory program, but most Core Studies students complete 13–16 c.u.

The following sample schedules are provided as examples to illustrate potential study plan sequences. Course availability varies each year. Regular contact with your Pre-Health advising team and referring to the course guide website will keep you up to date on course offerings and program requirements.

Which course you take first will likely depend on the semester you enter the program and your anticipated timeline for program completion. On the two-year timeline, you will most likely take physics and general chemistry and biology in the first year, followed by organic chemistry and biochemistry the second year in preparation for taking the April/May/June MCAT, DAT, or GRE. Note that fall and spring classes are rostered in the evenings and summer courses are rostered in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Below are some sample schedules to give you an idea of how courses work can be distributed.

2-Year Sample Core Schedule #1: Fall Start

Term Course Course Units (c.u.)*

Fall

PHYS General Physics 1 0101-601 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1011-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1101-601 General Chemistry Lab (lab)

0.5

 

 

 

Spring

PHYS 0102-601 General Physics 2 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1021-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1102-601 General Chemistry Lab(lab)

0.5

 

 

 

Summer

BIOL 1101-910 Intro to Biology A (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1102-920 Intro to Biology B (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

 

 

Fall

CHEM 2410-601 Organic Chemistry A (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2001-601 Essentials of Cell Biology (lecture)

1.0

 

 

 

Spring

CHEM 2420-601 Organic Chemistry B (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

 

BIOL 2801-601 Essentials of Biochemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

MCAT/DAT/GRE prep Kaplan Live Online option

 

Total

 

13-14

2-year Core Sample Schedule #2: Summer Start (pre-dental option)

Term Course Course Units (c.u.)*

Summer

BIOL 1101-910 Intro to Biology A (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1102-920 Intro to Biology B (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

 

 

Fall

PHYS General Physics 1 0101-601 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1011-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1101-601 General Chemistry Lab (lab)

0.5

 

 

 

Spring

PHYS 0102-601 General Physics 2 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1021-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1102-601 General Chemistry Lab(lab)

0.5

Optional

ANAT 5170-601 Head and Neck Human Anatomy

0.5

 

 

 

Summer

CHEM 2410-910 Organic Chemistry 1 (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2420-920 Organic Chemistry 2 (lecture)

1.0

 

 

 

Fall

BIOL 2801-601 Essentials of Biochemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2301-601 Elements of Physiology

1.0

 

 

 

Spring

DAT PREP-Kaplan Live Online option

 

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2701-601 Elements of Microbiology  

1.0

Total

 

13-15.5

2-year Core Sample Schedule #3 Summer Start (pre-vet option)

Term Course Course Units (c.u.)*

Summer

BIOL 1101-910 Intro to Biology A (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1102-920 Intro to Biology B (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

 

 

Fall

PHYS General Physics 1 0101-601 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1011-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1101-601 General Chemistry Lab (lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2301-601 Elements of Physiology

1.0

 

 

 

Spring

PHYS 0102-601 General Physics 2 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 1021-601 Intro to General Chemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 1102-601 General Chemistry Lab(lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2801-601 Elements of Molec Biol and Genetics

1.0

 

 

 

Summer

CHEM 2410-910 Organic Chemistry 1 (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2420-920 Organic Chemistry 2 (lecture)

1.0

 

 

 

Fall

BIOL 2801-601 Essentials of Biochemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Optional

BIOL 2701-601 Elements of Microbiology

1.0

 

 

 

Spring

GRE PREP-Kaplan Live Online option

 

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Total

 

13-16

2-year Core Sample Schedule #4 Summer Start

Term Course Course Units (c.u.)*

Summer

CHEM 1012-910 General Chemistry I

1.0

 

CHEM 1101-910 General Chemistry Lab I

0.5

 

CHEM 1022-920 General Chemistry 2

1.0

 

CHEM 1102-920 General Chemistry Lab 2

0.5

 

 

 

Fall

PHYS General Physics 1 0101-601 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1101-601 Intro to Biology A (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

 

 

Spring

PHYS 0102-601 General Physics 2 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1102-601 Intro to Biology B (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

 

 

Summer

CHEM 2410-910 Organic Chemistry 1 (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2420-920 Organic Chemistry 2 (lecture)

1.0

 

 

 

Fall

BIOL 2801-601 Essentials of Biochemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

 

 

 

Spring

MCAT PREP- Kaplan Live Online

 

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem (lab)

0.5

Total

 

13

  • On the two-year schedule, students typically complete the MCAT, DAT, or GRE in late April/beginning of June of the second year.
  • Please keep in mind that the recommended prep time for the MCAT and DAT exams are 300-350 hours. Ask your advisor for information on prep courses and resources.
  • Students may submit applications to the medical, dental, or veterinary medical school application cycle at the end of their second year of the program for admission to the following year’s entry term.

One-year, Core Studies sample schedule

Students seeking a one-year Core Studies program must apply for a summer start. Permission from the Program Director is also required for a one-year core student plan. Note that fall and spring classes are rostered in the evenings and summer courses are rostered in the morning, afternoon, and evening.

1-Year Core Sample Schedule, Summer Start

Term Course Course Units (c.u.)*

Summer

CHEM 1012-910 General Chemistry I

1.0

 

CHEM 1101-910 General Chemistry Lab I

0.5

 

CHEM 1022-920 General Chemistry 2

1.0

 

CHEM 1102-920 General Chemistry Lab 2

0.5

 

 

 

Fall

PHYS General Physics 1 0101-601 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1101-601 Intro to Biology A (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 2410-601 Organic Chemistry 1

1.0

 

CHEM 2451-601 Experimental Organic Chem Lab

0.5

 

 

 

Spring

PHYS 0102-601 General Physics 2 (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

BIOL 1102-601 Intro to Biology B (lab plus lecture)

1.5

 

CHEM 2420-601 Organic Chemistry 2

1.0

 

CHEM 2452-601 Experimental Organic Chem Lab

0.5

 

BIOL 2801-601 Essentials of Biochemistry (lecture)

1.0

 

MCAT/DAT/GRE PREP

 

Total

 

13

  • On the one-year timeline, students typically complete the MCAT, DAT, or GRE in late April/beginning of June following completion of coursework.
  • Please keep in mind that the recommended prep time for the MCAT and DAT exams are 300-350 hours which would occur during the spring term. Ask your Advisor for information on prep courses and resources.
  • Students may submit applications to the medical, dental, or veterinary medical school in June at the end of their spring semester for admission to the following year’s entry term.

Certificates of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies

The Pre-Health Core Studies Certificates of Academic Achievement are awarded to exceptional students in recognition of outstanding academic accomplishments during the completion of the Pre-Health Programs at the University of Pennsylvania. The certificate award will be noted on your Penn transcript. The Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies is awarded to students who complete a minimum of 12 c.u. in Pre-Health courses (1 c.u. of human anatomy is allowed) at the University of Pennsylvania with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. In addition to the required coursework, students must also earn an MCAT total score greater than or equal to the 70th percentile, DAT score of 20, or GRE percentile scores of 65 percent verbal, 65 percent quantitative, and 4.5 writing from an individual exam. Requirements for the certificate must be completed within two years of enrolling in the Pre-Health Core Studies preparatory program.

Advanced Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies

Students may earn recognition for advanced coursework with the Advanced Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies which is awarded to students who have received the Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies and have completed an additional four course units of advanced undergraduate Pre-Health coursework at the University of Pennsylvania, with a grade of B or better in each course and a cumulative GPA of 3.5. Requirements for the Advanced Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies must be completed within one year of receiving the Certificate of Academic Achievement in Pre-Health Core Studies described above. One c.u. of human anatomy may also be applied to the advanced certificate. Refer to your student handbook or speak with an academic advisor for more information on certificates.


*Academic credit is defined by the University of Pennsylvania as a course unit (c.u.). A course unit (c.u.) is a general measure of academic work over a period of time, typically a term (semester or summer). A c.u. (or a fraction of a c.u.) represents different types of academic work across different types of academic programs and is the basic unit of progress toward a degree. One c.u. is usually converted to a four-semester-hour course.

Professional school linkages

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Explore a range of interests with our student-run organizations while connecting with peers and the community.

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