Academic Preparation

Health profession schools assess applicants on a wide range of qualifications, and academics are a critical element of your preparation. Everyone who wishes to enter the health professions takes their own path, and each individual's selection and timing of courses will vary. We will work with every student to develop an academic plan that makes sense and fits the student's particular wishes, needs, and goals.

Below are some tips for starting out:

  • Explore: Pursue new areas of interest to help you select your major or minor or to generally broaden your perspective. Students entering the health professions may major in anything they choose. The ability to consider health and wellness from multiple angles is a strength, courses from the social sciences and humanities are a valuable complement to the lab science courses typically required for the clinical professions. 
  • Make a plan: Consider the courses you want and need to take, and draft an outline of your semesters at Mount Holyoke College. Discuss your plan with your academic advisor and a pre-health advisor. 
  • Create balance: Spread out challenging and time-consuming courses when possible, balancing them with courses that may be easier for you. Precisely what this balance looks like will vary from person to person. 
  • Know your “outs”: If you have planned a particularly demanding semester, think ahead about what you could adjust if you become overwhelmed. For example, dropping a course, taking something ungraded or stepping back from intense involvement in a student organization or off-campus volunteer position. 
  • Use your resources: Work with your academic advisor and pre-health advisor, and seek advice from pre-health students who are farther along in their process. Visit our list of advising and academic resources to learn about different types of support.