Steps to Becoming a Medical Doctor in the United States of America

Dear Apprentice Doctor,

The steps to becoming a doctor is different from country to country.  Contact the university in your country to find out the steps you need to take.

Below is a short summary of the steps to follow to become a doctor (Applicable in the U.S.A.).

Academically you need to focus your attention on attaining an approved 4-year pre-medical science qualification (step 2):

  1. Get a GED or a high school diploma
  2. You MUST finish a 4-year college or university, complying with medical school premed requirements
  3. In your final year at college/university, you will have to do the MCAT test (Medical School Admission test)
  4. Apply to medical school. I would suggest that you make use of ‘AMCAS’.

Which subject should you major in?

For the purpose of admission to medical school, a wide range of majors are allowed – so, please check with the college of your choice if the degree you are intending to follow qualifies as a pre-medical degree.

As a general rule, medical schools are not concerned about whether you major in sciences or not. For example Biochemistry majors, Philosophy majors and Economics majors generally do well.

But medical schools do require that you take certain pre-medical classes as an undergraduate.

The “pre-med” classes required by virtually all schools in the US are as follows:

In addition, many schools require a certain number of credits in non-science classes. Pre-med requirements play a very important role in admissions for several reasons.

  1. Pre-med requirements make the bulk of the science classes you will take in college and determine your Science Grade Point Average (GPA), which is one of the determinants of your chances of admission.
  2. You will need to get recommendations for medical schools from professors who taught pre-med classes.
  3. Pre-med requirements cover most of the material you need to know for the MCAT. The better you know the stuff covered in these premed classes – the better off you’ll be when the time comes for you to take your MCAT.
  4. Schools ask you explicitly to list premed requirements along with your grades on their secondary applications, which means they bear a lot of weight.


Information about MCAT (Medical School Admission Test)

MCAT, along with your grade point average (GPA), is a critical factor that will influence your success in gaining admission to a medical school.

MCAT consists of FOUR Sections:

Verbal Reasoning:

This section consists of passages followed by multiple-choice questions. Usually there are nine passages, each half a page long with questions pertaining to the passage following it. The total number of questions in this section is 65, which comes down to about 7 questions per passage on average.

The Sciences:

All questions in both the Biological and Physical sciences sections are multiple-choice. Some questions are factual questions that stand on their own. Other questions test your ability to discern the scientific issues related to a problem. You are given a passage that describes some biological or chemical concept or problem and it is followed by questions.

Biological Sciences

Many questions are not of the type you’ve seen on your exams. They require problem-solving and integration of more than one concept. You can only learn to solve them by practicing:
Do sample exams!

This section consists of two sub-sections:

  1. Organic Chemistry
    The emphasis here is definitely on applied organic chemistry. You will be tested on your skills and understanding to do actual experiments such as purifications, isolations, etc.
    Knowing facts is not enough here; you need to learn to integrate them.
  2. Biology
    Covers all the topics you can imagine. Hormones and genetics are important. It is helpful to take a class in human physiology in order to prepare for this one or at least read a human physiology book on your own.

The Physical Sciences section also consists of two sub-sections

  1. Physics
  2. Chemistry

Get more information on AMCAS

The American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) is a non-profit, centralized application processing service for applicants to the first-year entering classes at participating U.S. medical schools.


Prepare financially


Your future studies will be expensive – 4 years Pre-Med and 4 years Medical School all adds up to a lot of money! Consider the following:

Becoming a Medical Specialist

To specialize in a specific branch of medicine e.g. anesthesiology, you will have to add another 3-8 years of Internship and residency (average 4 years). During these years you will receive income in the form of a salary from the hospital you are rendering medical services at.

Some comments about medical schools

One of the most competitive areas of education is medical school. Providing attendees with the qualifications and degree that allow graduates to practice medicine in the United States, medical schools are extremely challenging institutions.

Like all areas of schooling, Medical Schools offer many different program types and styles. Teaching style, class size, course relevance, are just some of the many aspects that are different from school to school.

The cost of different Medical School programs also varies. If you are interested in attending a Medical School you will be required to have completed specific course work in your undergraduate field of study.

Applications to Medical School usually involve paying an application fee and then possibly being interviewed. Medical School programs require a large commitment of time and if you are interested in attending, you should thoroughly research the programs you are interested in.

Finding the program that best fits you can be the difference between success and failure in attempting to gain a Medical School degree.

It sounds intimidating, but many others have already gone where you’re on your way too, and they made it just fine.

So can you!

All the best until the next letter,


Dr. Anton

Dr. Anton Scheepers, BChD, MDent, FFD(SA), MFOS, President of The Apprentice Corporation


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Dr. Anton Scheepers Your Apprentice Doctor Mentor, Dr. Anton
Dr-Anton-Scheepers BChD, MDent, FFD(SA), MFOS, President of The Apprentice Corporation

Filed under: Article Clinical Skills, Blog

Do You have a question? Would like to share your thoughts?

Older comments

Roopin Pal said:2014-01-04 14:08:26I m going to america permanently so what should I do there to become a doctor with a good income.


Roopin Pal said:2014-01-04 14:10:13I m 15 yrs old


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2014-01-05 13:13:21Well just follow the steps as described in this article - and work hard - the competition is fierce!

foroogh said:2014-01-02 01:23:59Dear doctor. I am architechture .i want to be a doctor of medicine .is it possible?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2014-01-02 10:20:33Yes see:

Christina said:2013-12-28 06:14:02Hello doctor! I have a similar question to Michael's. I'm currently studying in the Philippines for my premed and might go to med proper here. Do you think it's okay for me to do this? Will I still be recognized as a doctor in the States?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-12-28 12:22:50Yes - complete your medical degree and then do your USMLE. Get more info here:‎

lee said:2013-12-26 17:33:54doc my father in law has just moved here from belize ha has been practicing doctor in belize for over 20 years with his formal education in cuba, what is it going to take for him to be a doctor here thanks lee


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-12-28 12:14:56The Apprentice Doctor focuses on assisting high school students towards a fulfilling career in medicine – thus your question is beyond the scope of our activities. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Best wishes for success to your father in law!

Michael said:2013-12-24 08:13:00Hello Dr Anton! Thank you for sharing all these invaluable information with us! I am an international student from Greece. Now my question is what are the chances of an international student are in order to get admitted in college and medical school. Would you suggest me to go in a Med School here in Greece and then go in US for residency or post-graduate? Any help appreciated


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-12-24 08:19:07Complete your studies in Greece - then you can do the USMLE - and practice in the USA - it is better that way round believe me...

Ahmed Aly said:2013-12-19 18:41:59I need to know what should be my avrage to be a dotctor and what does it takes to be a good doctor.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-12-20 13:16:24GPA preferably 4 or above 4. It takes a lot of dedication hard work and compassion!

Abdullahi said:2013-12-09 17:48:20Doctor Anton Thanks for Asisting us

Tash said:2013-12-04 08:27:52Hi Dr. Scheepers. I have a few questions. 1.) The 4 years undergraduate studies you do in university are you saying that if i major in economics or some other business subject i can still go to medical school ? 2.) The pre-med classes you are required to take are they available at the university itself or would you have to go outside of school and find somewhere that keeps these classes ? 3.) If i do major in biology and chemistry at university, are those good subjects to major in to get accepted to medical school ? 4.) If you study to become a medical doctor in Jamaica for instance, and afterwards you migrate to the USA, will you be able to work as a doctor in the hospitals in the USA ?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-12-05 05:18:141. Yes - as long as you do the Med school prerequisite classes/labs 2. Most universities offer these classes "in-house". 3. Any major will do - but Biology and Biochemistry are very good choices! 4. It is do-able but complicated - contact the following organizations that will be able to assist with specific advice on how to move to the USA: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May I wish you the best with your future.

Oscar Villalobos said:2013-11-27 17:14:06Good morning, I love working with patients but my concern was to go straight and get a Ph.D. instead of having to work as a nurse, and what steps did you took to become a doctor, I am in college finishing my basics and have no idea what to do, head to UTEP or Texas Tech would love an advice from you, I live in Texas thank you so much and have a wonderful day. Looking forward to receive a message.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-28 14:04:32Hi Oscar I am mainly active in the high school arena - but I have a good friend Don Osborne who is a premed coach. Feel welcome to contact him for advice - he is very knowledgeable! dono[at] Best wishes for the future. Oh yes... to become an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon one needs to get a residency at an appropriate dental school - but they only consider students with a double qualification - thus a dental and medical degree.

Luvin said:2013-11-26 21:34:40Can I get my four years college degree I'm criminal justice and then go to medical school ?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-27 16:30:36Yes you can - as long as you do the Med School prerequisite courseS and then the MCAT...

Anu said:2013-11-25 02:45:46Can I do med school in US when I am studing Maths, Human Biology, Chemistry and Psychology AS in England? :)


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-25 14:07:35If you have an USA equivalent of a Bachelors degree and have done the MCAT with a good score - and have a med school in mind that accepts foreign qualified students and have the necessary funds - the answer is "yes".

Ronny bhatt said:2013-11-22 10:16:57Sir i m a student of class 12 in india and i m willing to Do my mbbs in usa plz suggest me abetter path so i can accomplish my desire


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-23 00:32:02Hi Ronny The perception is that it is fairly easy for an international student to go and study medicine in the USA. Reality is quite different. Most countries including the USA funds the education of doctors from the tax money paid by the residents of the country. It follows that most medical schools reserve places for national (USA) students and thus residents of the USA. Out of about 125 medical schools in the USA - just about half a dozen of them will consider international students – and only the best of the best. Studying in the USA is very expensive for international students – and getting a scholarship is virtually impossible as scholarships are also almost exclusively reserved for national USA students. One can buy your way into some private medical schools if finances is unlimited. Please note I did not say it is impossible to study medicine in the USA as an international student – just very very difficult!

shaden said:2013-11-17 19:06:42hi Dr.anton i am still applying for college to take my bachelor degree and i am a little confused because i feel that it is a long way to become a doctor and i wish to be a emergency doctor does it have another path to take or it is the same path and about the step of medical specialist can i cancel this step and work in a emergency hospital. thank you


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-18 13:28:48Your options are limited: Shotcut - become an EMT or Paramedic Emergency Physician: 11 years - you get paid during the last 3 or 4 years. Trauma surgeon - 13-14 years last 5-6 years residency - you get paid.

taaby said:2013-11-16 22:58:02I am currently doing my 10 standard in india....and i have H4 visa cuz my dad lives in very keen to do my MBBS in usa what should i do?? Should i go to usa after my 10th or 12 standard.......??


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-17 15:42:45Go after Grade 12 - then a B-degree with all the med school prerequisites...

Son Huynh said:2013-11-06 22:39:23I'm a doctor in viet nam , I came to us 4 years ago, now I wan't to get back my job like a ultrasound doctor. What should I do now? Can you help me find out which way save my time to become a doctor in us


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-11-07 15:45:29The Apprentice Doctor is for high school students aspiring towards beceming medical professionals. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with specific advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Laura said:2013-10-29 15:40:30Wouldn't I have to repeat internship and residency, if I did that? Because that would be awful... That would add quite a lot years to my education... And would I be able to become a qualified doctor because I won't have to do college if I go to school in Europe? Thank you, by the way.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-30 14:05:36There is a whole list of advantages and disadvantages of each route - I think it is best to talk to students in similar situations - so why not pose the question to the SDN ( )? Just to make the point again - USA med schools are primarily focused on accommodating USA students - and only a hand full of medical schools will consider foreign applications - most will not even look at foreign applications at all.

Laura said:2013-10-28 15:49:21I am a Dutch grammar schoolstudent, we don't really have high school in the way that America has it, but is it possible to become a medstudent in America after I finish grammar school? I know I probably have to go to college and stuff but can I become a doctor in America, even though I'm not from America or Canada?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-29 14:40:25It is possible - but very complicated and expensive - better to do medicine in Europe and then Board exams and register in USA as a foreign qualified doctor.

Robert kang said:2013-10-19 08:14:15Hi. Dr. Anton. I am trying to help my daughter. My daughter is attending loyola university and preparing a medical school. She is freshman. She just finished a first exam and get a good score. Everything is A+. A counselor told her to participate a Research Assist and Intern program is very important activity. My question is, I want to know where to get, how and when to get. As I am an immigrant people, I really do not have any relationship with a doctor or someone to help to get. Honestly, I really upset to myself because I can not help her by side way. She told me that when she was in high school several friends was able to get an intern position because their parents or relatives are working at the organization. I asked one of my doctor but she tried help but is helpless. Thank you for the nice article and hope to get an answer.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-19 11:07:16I will see what I can do - but I need to have details on the specifics - like the location/university...

Snigdha said:2013-10-19 04:47:58I am doing my MBBS from a govt. medical college in Bangladesh.So,now i want to know that if i want to do my higher studies and practice in USA,what are the options i can get or what are the procedures i have to complete? And sir,how much financial help i can get and how?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-19 11:05:57The Apprentice Doctor has the mission of assisting high school students towards a career in medicine. For more information on your question - may I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with specific advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Lima Ahmedzai said:2013-10-19 00:20:41Well thank you so much for this information, I just recently finish my high school and going to apply to University of British Columbia, in canada, and want to apply for medical school of America. My question is this that what should I do? do they will accept my science degree? and do we have an interview after Mcat?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-19 04:02:31As a rule it is easier to go the USA route form Canada compared to other parts of the world. In short you will have to select and apply for a degree at an American University (one that offers the med school/MCAT prerequisites). If accepted you will require a USA student's VISA and you are basically on your way. If you do your degree in US (any major) it will be accepted with the understanding that you did the med school prereq's. Virtually all medical schools will require an interview before giving the final acceptance letter.

Kim said:2013-10-17 17:51:02Thank you for all that info. It was very informative.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-10-18 13:37:44You are most welcome!

anandita said:2013-10-14 02:31:40I am finishing my last year of high and will give sat this year. can u suggest some good premed colleges ?

akshit said:2013-09-19 09:40:38I have just completed my M.D from india ... sir i need to know that can i practice in u.s.a after completing my masters in medicine from W.H.O recognised university ????


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-19 09:57:39A lot depends on the specifics - so rather get into contact with the following organizations. They will be able to assist with much better information and advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

parth patel said:2013-09-19 07:36:44hello Dr. Anton i have one question! i am Master in microbiology in india and want to do my medicine in it possible or not? and is it is possible then what to do? please do the needful parth


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-19 09:59:17It is possible. The main restraint will be financial. For more information may I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with specific advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Sarah said:2013-09-18 03:56:31Hi doctor Anton! I'm Currently a dental student in Nigeria. I want to be a Medical doctor and I need to know if I still have to do a pre-med course in the states before writing the MCATs


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-18 12:57:42Yes indeed - you need to do a 4 year premed degree with all the med school prerequisites. You may get some credit for some of the courses that you may have done as a dental student.

abbasi said:2013-09-15 05:22:12i had finished my pre-medical (faculty of science) in pakistan, so how i can apply for the medicine doctor.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-18 13:05:15Are you referring to studying medicine in the USA or Pakistan?

Tashalia Bailey said:2013-09-14 21:31:27Dear Anton Scheepers, I am currently a student desiring to persu my career as a medical practitioner. This year is my last year is secondary school and I am not sure where I must go after completing my secondary education study. Where can i go after completing my secondary education and what are the degrees I must persue to become a legal medical practitioner?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-18 13:04:15Where do you live - in which country? I need this information to answer your question.

David said:2013-09-12 19:24:38Hey Dr. Anton, I'm in the beginning of my senior year of high school, and colleges are starting to open up admissions. I plan on applying to UF, and I will most likely get in. I'm trying to decide between just a Pre-professional Biology degree, or a biomedical engineering degree. My end career result would be to be a surgeon. I'm not sure what type of surgery, but I have 9 years or so to decide that. So, I guess my questions are 1) Which degree would benefit me more for application to med school(pre-professional biology OR biomedical engineering)? 2) Would the medical school at UF do me well, or should I look at out of state colleges? If you don't know, UF has their own hospital (UF Health, formerly Shands), I'm trying to find out if that means that UF's medical school grads have a better chance at getting a residency than do other med school grads. Thanks, David


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-13 15:10:36Hi David - I personally would gravitate to the Pre-prof Biology degree. There a such a lot of factors to consider that I simply wont be able to answer your question her in the available space - but my friend Don Osborne is a premedical couch and will be able to give you much clearer guidance - contact him via the following website: Best wishes for success with your future!

kenzy said:2013-09-07 04:09:09hi Doc. I what exactly do general surgeons do. and what are the major subjects that should be studied.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-09 14:28:08See:

Manpreet Kaur said:2013-09-04 16:25:49Hi Dr. Anton, I have a masters degree in Microbiology from India. I had Physics, chemistry and Microbiology in my Undergrad. Should I give both GRE and MCAT?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-06 14:59:02I would do both - but you may argue the advice to some extent.

Laura Mercado said:2013-09-04 14:10:48Hello Dr.Anton, I'm in my last year of highschool and I want to become a cardiologist. I would like to know how many years total it's going to take me and what undergrad school in california you would recomend to me for my 4 years of pre-med. Thank you so much for the informative article you have been a great help.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-06 14:55:13Too many factors influence your choice of university - including location, finances, academic rating, premed requirements etc - thus you will have to research on your side. PREMED+MED+CARDIOLOGY RES(Int med and cardiology) = 4+4+3+3=14 years

aditi mehta said:2013-09-04 04:29:34hello dr, i'm from india and currently doing MBBS. If i wisg to do my further studies in US ,do i have to start with premed courses? thanks


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-06 14:51:08Yes - in most cases you will have to do the premed degree - with a bit of luck - you may get a year off for your current studies.

edward said:2013-09-03 08:56:44Hi dr anton, I have a in biochemitry and about to take both mcat and gre since i graduated eigth years ago do you think i have a chance.bcos medcine is dream come true for me


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-03 10:36:28You have the advantage of added maturity - but brush up on the Med School prereq's - to ensure you get a good MCAT score. All of the best!

Doctor Wannabe said:2013-09-01 04:30:00Hello Dr. Anton, How long will it take me to become an Ob-Gyne specializing in In-Vitro Fertilization? It's really me dream.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-09-01 12:03:274+4+4+2 years = 14 years (Premed+med+residency+super-specialization)

Kay Le said:2013-08-30 14:54:43Hello Dr. Anton, I was a doctor in Vietnam. I graduated Medical University in 2000. After that, I had worked for Pfizer and Merck Company for 10 year as a sale manager for 10 years. I came to the U.S. in 2011. Now, I want to become a doctor in the U.S. Please let me know what should I do. I really appreciate your help . Kay


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-30 15:05:46The Apprentice Doctor focuses on assisting high school students towards a fulfilling career in medicine – thus your question is beyond the scope of our activities. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as May we wish you good fortune with your future!

Christine said:2013-08-28 08:41:41Hello, Dr. Anton, I found your article and it is very helpful. At this point I am on the threshold of my freshman year in college and am currently signing up for my general courses before moving in any specific direction towards a major. I am very interested in becoming a doctor, though the people around me suggest taking a cheaper route (i.e. nursing or PA) However, I wanted to ask your advice about pursuing Med school. Do you think it would be worthwhile to be a doctor if I want to practice medicine in poor areas oversees, or would a nursing/ PA degree be sufficient? Thank you so much for your advice, it is very helpful! Sincerely, Christine


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-28 13:36:03Christine Go for plan A (your personal dream). Close the doors on the other plans! Dr Anton

Nadia Sarfraz said:2013-08-24 15:50:47Dear Dr Scheepers, I have read your article and have an idea of what education in the USA is like now.My education system at the moment is a British system which complies of an o level certificate, which you could carry on to get an A level certificate. I do wish to change over to the USA educational system as I would like to pursue further education there. I am an O level student at the moment and I have been told about the possibility that I may join a college and since I am in advanced classes I will get credit. I am extremely confused on what is besy for my career plan, which is I hope to become a surgeon! So what's do you believe? do I join a college or university ? bearing in mind I have my o level certificate. Please reply as soon as possible. lastly I'd like to thank you for your insightful article. Regards. Miss.Sarfraz


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-25 03:05:25I am no expert on the UK educational system but the information that I have is that leading US and Canadian universities require Cambridge International AS and A Levels, but some US and Canadian colleges and universities will accept learners with five Cambridge O Levels at grade C or above. At this point you will have to apply to a USA university for your 4 year premed degree (premed requirements to be done in the 4 years) - the choice is vast and will depend on where you want to stay in the US. Then MCAT and apply to med school - use MCAS, and the your 5 year general surgery residency - apply for surgical residency in your 4th year in med school. The Student Doctor Network forums will be very valuable to fill in the details! Hope it helps! Dr Anton P.S. You need a lot more these days for your application to med school - and need to build a respectable resume at this point in time. We can assist with a respectable accredited premed course:

Tim said:2013-08-24 09:59:10What would it cost on the whole for all of these..4 years premed + 4 years med + 5 years residency..Just want to know how much money should a common man (DAD) plan for all this 13 years.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-24 11:00:37Up to graduation - after 8 years - about $120 000-$250 000 (public versus private med school). A resident gets paid about $50 000 a year.

JJ said:2013-08-23 18:03:23I am applying to St James of Medicine in the Caribbeans. Is this a legit school or a scam?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-24 06:50:26It is a legitimate school. On completion of the 4 years med school one needs to get a USA residency - and this is the bottle-neck. Students sometimes have to apply to numerous med schools for residency posts - and be prepared to wait.

Jay said:2013-08-20 17:32:06HELLO DR. Can one exercise in the medical field, as a physician after completing the 4 years in a medical school?, i.e without doing Residency. thanks


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-21 16:06:59No - unfortunately one needs the years of residency to be able to become board certified and to practice as a licensed practitioner.

Jamet said:2013-08-20 17:21:44Hi doc, i am a student in Cameroon, soon to obtain a Bachelor in Biomedical Sciences, Can this bachelor can be used to gain entrance into a medical school in the US? if yes, how many more years do i have to spend in order to become a Radiologist? thanks.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-21 16:13:40If your current university has reciprocity agreements with a USA university the "yes" - but you will need all the premed requirements needed by USA med schools. Another 4 years med degree and I believe 5 - 6 years of residency.

rhea said:2013-08-20 07:34:21Hi,Doc ! I'm interested to become a doctor ,if i will get the course bachelor of medical laboratory ,is it required? Because i want to become a medicine Doctor :))


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-20 14:03:33No. Medical technology is a separate career - and not required for becoming a doctor. In medical school students will do plenty of chemical pathology and microbiology - covering a fair amount of knowledge required in this area.

Mortada Benyahmed said:2013-08-17 21:02:10hi Dr Anton i want to ask U how long will it take from me to have Phd ? I`m now applying for Cornell pre med program in Qatar with excellent grade or what do U suggest for me? lets say I want to be a surgeon how long will it take? and thanks a lot doctor


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-18 08:04:44From a USA perspective - 4 years premed + 4 years med + 5 years residency for general surgery (possibly more if you go for a cardiothoracic surgery) = 13 (minimum). If you would like to pursue a PHD you will have to stay in the academic/research environment and do the necessary study /research/publishing and dissertations. I would guess another 3-4 years for PHD. If this is what you are setting as a goal - go for it with all you have!

bella said:2013-08-17 11:01:16can i study biology as premed in canada and take the mcat in usa and continue in usa?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-18 07:56:23You can - with the understanding that the university in Canada has an accreditation agreement in place with US universities with med schools (check before starting). It will be easier to do all in the US though. You will have to ensure that the MCAT prereq's has been covered in the biology degree: “Freshman” chemistry along with the appropriate laboratory courses Organic chemistry along with laboratory courses Biology along with laboratory courses Physics along with laboratory courses English Calculus including advanced math classes and statistics.

Umesh CHandra Halder said:2013-08-12 08:36:52Hello Dr. Scheepers, I am Umesh from India. I am a PhD in Biological Sciences but I intended to be a good doctor specifically a good surgeon and I want to be a doctor in US. What will I do ? Please suggest. Thank you,


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-12 13:45:52May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with much better information and advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Ridham soni said:2013-08-09 02:15:40I will complete 11th this parents are in US..i think i will go for further study to US..after reaching there what i do...plz help me!!


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-10 00:58:40Apply to a reputable university and complete your 4 year premed degree - with all the premed prerequisites. Do as many things to boost your resume to med school as you can - from now up to the point of applying to attend med school in your final year. We can assist with a nice premed distance learning course: Trust it helps!

daniel said:2013-08-08 01:56:23hello doc, good day . i am Daniel from India i have finished my med school in Philippines holding MD degree i am in interested in psychiatry department as master and post graduation in united states of american , what is the process ? how to do it? kindly give an advice sir thank you


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-08 15:49:45May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with much better information and advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Scott said:2013-08-06 01:38:34Doctor, I am very interested in becoming a doctor. I received my bachelors in business admin several years ago. So from what I understand from your article I would have to just take a few science, physics type classes then I would be able to apply for med school? Also how much vollenteer work are med school looking for?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-06 15:50:20A somewhat qualified "yes" depending on the specifics of your degree - you will have to do all the prereq course/classes to write your MCAT - ans score well. It is not so much what medical schools are looking for - but rather distinguishing yourself from other applicants with lists of volunteering, charities, research projects etc.

Anand said:2013-08-04 01:40:20Hello sir, I have done 10+2 and want to become general surgeon in USA.Can you please tell me the whole procedure to become doctor and to complete this course it will take how many years.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-04 14:46:04Well, the become a doctor part is in here - see the following post for becoming a surgeon - 12-13 years from high school to being a surgeon would be the number of years required. Become a surgeon:

fifi said:2013-08-02 03:32:12hi doc, I am a student taking a two year pre-med program at a certain college in Houston,Texas. after here which college/university do you advise me to go to so that i may finish my remaining two-year pre-med course so that i may apply to a medical school?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-02 15:03:17I must be honest - I am somewhat ignorant regarding good premed university programs in your area - we will have to do a bit of research - if I find something I will let you know.

Daniel said:2013-08-02 01:51:07The aamc says that if you are an MBBS student then you can directly apply for the MCAT... so if I score well then would I be accepted to enroll in an MD program in the US without finishing MBBS...


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-02 14:59:18Sorry - I am really not sure - I think you should post a thread on the Student Doctor Network Forums - someone will know the answer.

Siobhan said:2013-08-02 01:46:23Doctor I am doing biomedical engineering at a British university and wish to go to med school in New York after getting my undergraduate degree. I have a green card but have lived abroad for most of my life. Just wondering if US med schools will take me.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-02 14:57:02Did you do the prerequisite courses for the MCAT if yes an td you take the MCAT and score well, then the chances are reasonably good. Do you have a list of other achievements, research, charity, volunteering at hospitals etc - all this counts a lot with US Med Schools' selection committees.

garima rana said:2013-08-01 12:42:24hi doc I will complete 12th this year. I want to become government doctor in usa .but I live in india then which college and degree should I prefer in india ,so that I can easily become doctor in usa


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-02 14:53:00You have study your medical degree at an Indian medical school and then write your USMLE - but may I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with much better information and advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

Anish said:2013-08-01 05:18:10Hi doc Little bit confused. I'm a student from the uk and looking to apply to America this year. I'm unsure about course selection. If you want a specific major do you write this down on your application form straight away for the university? Also, must you also state these prerequisite classes you want to do at the same time or after you enrol?? Thanks


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-01 10:10:26Yes - you have to indicate the major you intend registering for - and please ensure that they offer the prereq's!

Ellen said:2013-08-01 01:43:15I am an international student currently studying undergrad pre-med program in US university (Year 3 biochem student in University of Washington, Seattle campus). I have interest to continue my med path to pharmacy. I saw many school,including my university require Green Card as a must for med program (pharmacy). I want to ask, what states and universities don't require Green Card for pharmacy? I would be highly appreciated if you can help me.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-08-01 10:08:55I really don't know if it is a federal ruling or not - have you posted a thread on the SDN (student doctor network) website forums?

Herry Sidhwani said:2013-07-31 10:09:57hello sir, I am from India and I am willing to get into a medschool in the US, acadmics is not a pronlem but is it necessary to an undergraduate degree... also if once I finish the four years of med school will I become a surgical resident right away...


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-31 14:30:05Yes a premdical degree with prerequisite classes for the MCAT is required. Four years med school usually followed by a year of general internship - if you apply for a surgical residency and gets accepted - then you can go on with surgery.

Jonathan said:2013-07-29 20:34:54Hey doc I'm homeschooled and I want to become a doctor. Will I make it to medical school? How do I get through all of the years of school to become a doctor?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-30 14:32:31You need to start early and do all the right things - have you considered our Distance learning Premedical course - with medical kit included? See:

Jonathan said:2013-07-29 15:35:01Hey doc, I'm 18 years old and I'm homeschooled and I want to become a doctor. Will I make into college and medical school if I'm homeschooled?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-30 14:30:07Jonathan Being homeschooled may be a great advantage - generally speaking most students fail because of non-academic issues - like having a poor value system (abuse of alcohol, drugs etc.) Mat homeschooled students have an excellent value system - and I trust your academics are up to standard - with maths, chemistry, physical science and biology... So the short answer is YES you can do it! Dr Anton

Shahriar said:2013-07-28 11:56:24Hi, I am a GP with MRCGP working in the UK. How can I continue my work in the USA. Thanks


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-28 14:34:43The Apprentice Doctor assists high school students regarding a career choice. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) may be of assistance. May we wish you the best with your future.

MIKE BUSH said:2013-07-21 23:12:53Hi,i am a 47yr old man that have been in and out of the hospita over 30 times and i have found my self looking at the doctors that take care of me and i have said to my self i can do a much much better job.but i need the paper work(MCAT) to show that i am the best and i can be the best doctor in the WORLD. Mike BUSH...


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-22 14:04:42Knock on the door of the old-premeds organization

T.M.T.A said:2013-07-20 13:05:39Hey doc I'm Zemen from Ethiopia, I'm studying applied biology in one of the universities here. I'v taken almost all the subjects you referred here. In my child times I always dreamed to be a medical doctor to specialize in surgeon. I would love to die for my dream and helping peoples. So what can you tell me? Thanks.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-22 14:07:01Pursue your dreams!

Neil said:2013-07-19 18:27:56hello doc, i have got admission in associate degree for 2 years in a college in the America and the college says that, this is the first two years of premed, and after that they suggested to do a two year bachelor program in science to complete premed is this true..? please help me out..By the way am from India


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-22 14:10:02With the limited information - it could very well be true.

kunal said:2013-07-13 04:47:39how to become a MD speciallist in india and what is the payment ?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-14 12:34:11You apply for medical school to become a doctor - then you apply for the specific specialist registrar post - and do the required years and exams, then register with the medical board in India. Pay is usually good - depending on the specific specialization.

Sahil said:2013-07-12 17:23:04I'm going to 11th grade this year. I aspire to become an MD in the States. Could you please assist me with the AP and Honors courses I should take for 11th and 12th grade? I'm moving into the States this year. I got my 10th results recently. 10/10 CGPA.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-14 12:30:26Apologies - this in one area which I haven't done too much research in - but I will one of these days and write a good article on it. The guidance teacher at your school should have the best information. But of course you we offer a very nice premed course with credits: Best wishes for your future! Dr Anton

shabs said:2013-07-11 01:56:23Hello Dr. Anton Scheepers, I have completed M.B.B.S and M.D (pathology) from India. I relocated to U.S california on H4 visa. Could you please suggest me any options to perceive short-term(2-3 years max) certificate programs which i can take-up. Thanks a lot in advance,


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-11 07:34:36Your question is beyond the scope of the Apprentice Doctor's activities. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) May we wish you good fortune with your future!

Shiwani Swamy said:2013-07-10 21:31:38hello doctor i am a student from india and i am in 12th standard and want to become a doctor, i want to get my bachelor degree in india and wish to complete my post graduation in america(as it is a matter of prestige and is valued a lot across the globe to get your pg done from the us).but sir, i have no idea what all are requirements for foreign students to get an admission in american universities/collages.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-11 07:41:11My friend and colleague Don Osborne deals with these types of issues - contact him via his website: Lots of information on the SDN forums as well - from students who has successfully traveled the road before you... See Student Doctor Network (SDN)

Daniel said:2013-07-08 00:12:58Hello Mr. Anton, I hope you are doing great. I am writing you because I want to become a doctor and specialize in plastic surgery in peds and I was wondering how long it will take. I am starting premed this fall. Thanks for your help, have a nice day!


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-10 21:23:41Four years pemed and four years med plus residency in surgery and plastic surgery - sub-specializing in pediatric plastic surgery - may vary, but I will add another 5 or 6 years - so it looks like 14 years all goes well...

ashutosh mani narayan said:2013-07-07 20:43:12Sir, I have compleded bachelor of pharmacy degree from India and now I want to be a doctor in u.s. or want to practice as clinical pharmacist in u.s. plz tell me what should I do.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-07 21:14:17May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) May we wish you good fortune with your future!

okoye speencer ikenna said:2013-07-07 10:52:55I will love to become a medical doctor in the united states but my fear is that I don't like calculations and some aspect of sciences vry much but not withstanding I am ready to proove everybody wrong that I will be able to do it,please doc what is ur advice for me becuase I get sleepless nights over this issue and I hope the united state embassy in my country issues me visa from there I can start pursuing my childhood dreams...I keep hoping wishes we're sad


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-07 21:09:54You will have to put rational plan and action steps to your dreams (write it down in detail) - otherwise it is really pointless.

okoye speencer ikenna said:2013-07-07 10:40:49I want to become a doctor in the united states eventhough I v had so much interest in scinces,but I am vry positive I would want to take that bull by the horn and pursue a. Medical career.I don't know how possible it is....worried

Priya C. Sharma said:2013-07-06 17:53:06Dear Dr. Anton Scheepers, I have completed my masters in organic chemistry from India. I want to become a doctor in the USA. What should I do next and how many years will it take for me to get a medical degree?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-06 18:47:57You will have to register for a pemedical degree in the USA - the university may offer credits for your previous studies - then do the MCAT and apply for med school. Or do your medical degree in India - and then go through the process and entrance exams to register in the USA - ensure that your degree in India will be recognized - May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) May we wish you good fortune with your future!

leah said:2013-07-03 20:32:52Hi I'm from south africa but I would like to go to medical school in the USA to get into medical school. Would a bachelor degree in biology fit the criteria?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-05 21:53:14Generally speaking the USA system is quite different - a South African degree in biology does not include all the USA premedical requirements for writing the MCAT (Medical Colleges Admissions Test) applying to attend a USA med School. Best to do a premed degree at a USA university.

Darya Webdew said:2013-06-30 15:47:35Dear Doctor! My name is Darya. I am from Belarus, but now I am living in the US in Philly. In my country I studied in the Belorussian State Medical University. I finished only 3 years and after that came to the US. I want to continue my medical education in this country and want to become a doctor. I learned all pre-med subject such as anatomy, physiology, biology, non-organic and organic chemistry, physics, histology, pathology, Latin and others. I did evaluation of my medical education from WES and I have 111.5 credits and GPA 3.05 Can you give me advice what should I do at first with my documents? Thank you for your help. With best regards Darya Webdew.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-02 19:48:20Hi - you need specialized attention and advice - as there are a lot of variables to consider - please contact Don Osborne for Inquarta: Contact Info: Telephone: (714) 248-6550 You can email me at dono[at] He will assist with pleasure. All of the best!

soham said:2013-06-30 13:01:58hi sir am soham n am from india and am doctor in india but am coming to usa and want to do my practies in us also . which exam i have to give in usa


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-07-02 19:44:02The Apprentice Doctor focuses on assisting high school students towards a fulfilling career in medicine – thus your question is beyond the scope of our activities. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) May we wish you good fortune with your future!

Mahri said:2013-06-23 16:24:45Hello, everyone! I'm a business major student in Houston. The article is incredible useful, and I am almost sure I want to go for medical science, so I am thinking to transfer. My questions would be, should I continue my major since I will be graduating in 2 years, or should i completely change and start over. Just don't think I can make it to medical school with BA..Appreciate every help!


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-23 18:31:46Mahri, One can major in any subject with the understanding that you do the premed prerequisite subjects plus lab as required by the majority of medical schools. I do have a friend Don Osborne who will be able to give you a much better answer and advice - will forward your question to him - look out on your incoming emails for his answer... Best wishes for a great future!

Maria said:2013-06-22 07:54:52Hello Doctor, My name is Maria, living in Minnesota. I am a high school student pursing the dream of becoming a doctor. Seeing the information you have given in becoming a doctor, I am feeling nervous. I really like the feeling of helping others, but I feel like science is not my strongest in school. I'm great in biology and chemistry, but I don't do well in physics. I am in advance math so I would think physics would be easy. In my case, math and science do not go hand in hand. What should I do? Does becoming a doctor really what they say-Hard?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-22 21:41:28The honest answer is yes- it is competitive and hard- but definitely do-able. Maths and science are important.

SK said:2013-06-18 04:36:50Hi. I am an engineer by profession with a masters degree as well. I want to change my profession and become a doctor here in the United States. I did my bachelor of engineering from India and MS from USA. How can I proceed to enter a medical college?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-18 19:25:15I have found the OldPremeds group to be very helpful with practical advice and resources - contact them via their website: Best of luck!

from Bulgaria said:2013-06-17 12:36:40Hello, Doctor! I have recently began my adventure as a medical student in my home country. Some day I want to work as a doctor in the United States when I graduate here, in Bulgaria. Most of my friends tell me that it is very difficult for me to go to the USA and be a doctor but I want to pursue my dream! So I am asking you if you could tell me what do I have to do to obtain a diploma and be able to work in USA?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-17 13:43:50The Apprentice Doctor focuses on assisting high school students towards a fulfilling career in medicine - thus your question is beyond the scope of our activities. May I refer you to the following organizations that will be able to assist with advice: and as well as Also use the massive database of the SDN (Student Doctor Network) May we wish you good fortune with your future!

Amrit Kaur said:2013-06-15 03:22:05I am in pursuit of becoming a doctor, but I wasn't sure what to do. In my college, I do have pre-med program but, I didn't know what to do after that. Should I take with an advisor about medical colleges or after 4 years of college.?


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-15 18:08:23Afer the 4 year premed degree you have to do your MCAT and then apply to attend a medial school. Yes - talk to a career advisor for more detail - see:

VietNam said:2013-06-07 14:27:02Dear Dr. Anton Scheepers, I'm Vietnamese. Now I'm learning medicine in Viet Nam, but I really want to become a doctor in the USA. What do you think about my dream? What do I have to do so that I can practice medicine in the USA but still study in Viet Nam? Thank you, Viet Nam.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-06-07 21:02:19The Apprentice Doctor assists high school student interested in a career in medicine - and we don't deal with this type of inquiry. Try

vinod said:2013-05-31 15:37:02Hi my name is vinod,i wanted to become a doctor in america but i had financial problems you know i hade more confidence and optimism to become a docter i made my decision and strongly determinded when i was 6. So could you please help me i really need your assist and your support.

koleayo oluwaseun said:2013-05-15 23:40:34Iam in a pursuit of becoming a doctor,but i believe in God Almighty for my dream job which is doctor.


Dr Anton Scheepers said:2013-05-18 18:19:15Keep on pursuing your dream with tenaciousness and persistence!

Mariajose Cantillano said:2013-05-01 04:10:21I am in a pursuit of becoming a doctor, not sure just yet what to major in, but I do what to do just about everything. My dream is to become a doctor. With the help of God first I hope I can achieve this dream and become who I've always wanted to become. Good luck to all those who are on their way to becoming a doctor. Make sure you never give up and study, study, study! God Bless You All .

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