Where Do I Start?

Preparing for Professional School

The journey to becoming a successful applicant to professional schools starts with preparation. Here you will find guidance and resources on navigating your path to professional school.

Major Exploration

All preprofessional students must pick a major in order to graduate from MSU. Pre-medical, pre-dental, and pre-optometry are NOT MAJORS but are MSU codes for students who are not sure which major they plan to pursue but want to indicate interested in a human health career after graduating from MSU.

Preprofessional students can choose ANY major that MSU offers and can research major options through MSU Academic Programs. Professional schools do not factor your major into admission decisions, so students who select a major solely or primarily because they perceive that it will enhance their chance of acceptance to professional school are not making a decision that is in their best interest.

Health Career Exploration

Preprofessional students are encouraged to explore a variety of different healthcare careers to ensure that they are pursuing a health care profession that is a good fit. We recommended utilizing Explore Health Careers as a part of your health career exploration.

Additional Preparation Resources

Preprofessional Student Timeline

General freshman-senior year guide for preparing for professional school. Be sure to talk with your preprofessional advisor to create a personalized schedule that works for you.

Preprofessional Self-Evaluation (Download)

To be a successful candidate for a health professions program and a practitioner in that field, you should periodically perform a self-assessment to help discern your strengths and weaknesses. This evaluation form is a tool to help you evaluate your current preparedness for professional school.


Information regarding the costs of the professional school application process from start to finish

Health-Related Elective Courses 

The following are health-related, non-science courses at MSU. Some may also be requirements for professional school programs or may count towards MSU university, college, or major requirements, so be sure to consult with your major advisor and your preprofessional advisor.


Summer Courses At Another Institution

Many preprofessional students choose to continue their coursework while at home during the summer breaks. If you are planning on taking summer courses at another institution, here are the steps to take in order to transfer credits back to MSU successfully.

Co-Curricular Opportunities

Information on a variety of volunteering, internship, study abroad, summer, and research opportunities.

Preprofessional Co-Curricular Activities Log (Download)

You should be keeping track of all of your co-curricular activities, such as volunteering, work, health care experiences, and research. Regularly maintaining this list will make it much easier to fill out applications later.

10 Good Reasons to Consider Gap Years

Gap years (or Glide Years) are time in between undergraduate and professional/graduate school and can assist in helping you maximize your potential to be a successful applicant to professional schools.