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Pre-professional

There are several pre-professional designations. This means that you intend to continue with your studies in one of the following areas: dentistry, medical, physician's assistant, pharmacology, and veterinary.

By designating yourself as pre-professional in your correspondence and conversations, faculty, staff, and administration will know your future intentions.

This does not mean your major is "pre-med" (for example). You are required to declare a major.

Possible pre-professional designations:

  • Pre-Dental
  • Pre-Medical
  • Pre-Physicians Assistant
  • Pre-Pharmacy
  • Pre-Veterinary
Expand or Collapse all.

Pre-Dental

Dental schools do not require a specific major. Many students find it expedient to major in either biology or chemistry and minor in the other. This is because many of the required biology and chemistry courses are prerequisites to dental school.

Prerequisite information:

In the past, the prerequisites to Texas medical and dental schools have included (but are not limited to):

  • Biology - 14 semester hours, 2 hours must be lab
  • General chemistry - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • Organic chemistry - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • Physics - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • English - 6 hours required
  • Calculus or statistics - 3 hours required (check with specific school to determine which math is required, stats class cannot be from psychology or health professions)
  • Biochemistry - 3 hours (either required or highly recommended)
  • All courses must be applicable to a science degree, no non-science major courses or health career major courses. Students must earn a grade of C or better in all prerequisite courses

We have an arrangement with the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSC) Dental School. You may apply for early entry after you have  completed 12 hours of coursework, but before you have completed 30 hours. You will apply and then interview at UTHSC. If admitted, and if you meet the requirements of the program for the next three years, you will be allowed to enter dental school a year early. Then, your first year of dental school will satisfy the requirements of your last year for your bachelor's degree at Texas State. Please see UTSHC's Website and your pre-dental advisor for more information.

Pre-dental advising:

You should speak with the pre-dent advisor to ensure that you take the appropriate coursework and will be prepared for the Dental Admission Test (usually taken during the spring of your junior year). Your pre-dental advisor can also help you create a competitive application by recommending courses, explain the process of dental school application, discuss the timing of coursework, set up practice interviews, and maintain your records to assist you in reapplying if necessary.

Your pre-dental advisors are:

Dr. Carolyn Pesthy
Department of Biology

512.245.9761
cp22@txstate.edu

Dr. Marilyn Banta
Department of Biology

512.245.3367
mb79@txstate.edu

For more information, please visit the Texas Medical & Dental Schools Application Service and the Pre-Health Advising Page.

Pre-Medical

While medical schools do not require a specific major, many students find it expedient to major in biology or chemistry and minor in the other. This is because many of the required courses are prerequisites for medical school.

Prerequisite information:

In the past, the prerequisites to Texas medical and dental schools have included (but are not limited to):

  • Biology - 14 semester hours, 2 hours must be lab
  • General chemistry - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • Organic chemistry - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • Physics - 8 hours required (6 lecture and 2 lab)
  • English - 6 hours required
  • Calculus or statistics - 3 hours required (check with specific school to determine which math is required, stats class cannot be from psychology or health professions)
  • Biochemistry - 3 hours (either required or highly recommended)
  • All courses must be applicable to a science degree, no non-science major courses or health career major courses. Students must earn a grade of C or better in all prerequisite courses

Pre-medical advising:

You should meet with a pre-medical advisor. Your pre-med advisor can help you design a competitive transcript, explain the process of medical school application, discuss the timing of coursework, set up practice interviews, and maintain your records to assist you in reapplying if necessary. You should meet with your pre-med advisor as soon as possible.

Your pre-medical advisors are:

Dr. Carolyn Pesthy
Department of Biology

512.245.9761
cp22@txstate.edu
 

Dr. Marilyn Banta
Department of Biology

512.245.3367
mb79@txstate.edu

For more information, please visit the Texas Medical & Dental Schools Application Service and the Pre-Health Advising Page.

Pre-Pharmacy

Because admission into a pharmacy school requires only completion of prerequisite coursework, there is no specific major to declare. Most pre-pharmacy students choose biochemistry or chemistry as their major and biology as their minor.

It is a personal decision whether or not you finish a four year degree prior to attending pharmacy school. However, in most cases we recommend that you complete a four year degree in case you decide not to attend pharmacy school.

Prerequisite information:

There are currently seven pharmacy schools in Texas and all have slightly different prerequisites. The seven pharmacy schools in Texas are:

  • UT - Austin
  • University of Houston
  • Texas Southern University
  • Texas Tech School of Pharmacy
  • Texas A&M University - Kingsville
  • University of the Incarnate Word
  • University of North Texas Health Science Center

The following are common prerequisites for the seven pharmacy schools in Texas (each school may require some additional coursework):

  • CHEM 1341 & 1141 (General Chemistry I lecture and lab)
  • CHEM 1342 & 1142 (General Chemistry II lecture and lab)
  • CHEM 2341 & 2141 (Organic Chemistry I lecture and lab)
  • CHEM 2342 & 2142 (Organic Chemistry II lecture and lab)
  • BIO 1330 & 1130 (Functional Biology)
  • BIO 1331 & 1131 (Organismal Biology)
  • MATH 2471 (Calculus I) or MATH 2321 (Calculus for Life Sciences I)
  • PHYS 1315 & 1115 (General Physics I) or PHYS 1430 (Mechanics)
  • ENG 1310 (College Writing I)
  • HIST 1310 (History of the US to 1877)
  • POSI 2310 (Principles of American Government)
  • SOCI 1310 (Introduction to Sociology) or PSY 1300 (Introduction to Psychology)

To review courses required by specific institutions, please view the pre-pharmacy informational sheet and checklist.

Admissions criteria:

According to an admissions administrator at one Texas pharmacy school, pharmacy school applications have two important components:

  1. Academics: PCAT score, pre-requisite GPA, GPA in advanced sciences, possible completion of BA/BS degree.
    The average GPA of accepted students varies depending on the school, but is approximately 3.60.
  2. Professional development: Are you a certified pharmacy tech? Work experience in a pharmacy setting? Types and amount of community service? Served as a teacher or tutor? Been involved in research? Direct work experience in a pharmacy setting is stressed, as it confirms pharmacy is really your career choice.

Pre-pharmacy advising:

You should meet with a pre-pharmacy advisor. Your pre-pharm advisor can help you design a competitive transcript, explain the process of pharmacy school application, discuss the timing of coursework, and more. You should meet with your pre-pharm advisor as soon as possible.

Your pre-pharmacy advisor is:

Dr. Wendi David
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
CENT 340A

512.245.2156 (Chemistry Office)
chemadvising@txstate.edu

 Use TRACS to make an appointment with Dr. David:

  1. Log onto TRACS
  2. Click "Membership" on the left menu bar
  3. Click "Joinable Sites"
  4. Search for "Chem & Biochem" (do not type "chemistry and biochemistry")
  5. Click "Join" for the "Chem & Biochem advising" site
  6. Click on "Chem & Biochem advising" site on top-horizontal menu bar
  7. Click on "Advising appointment sign-ups" on left
  8. Check the "Expand all recurring meetings" box
  9. Select the meeting that that you want
  10. Select the meeting time that you want by clicking "sign up" ("locked" appointment times are unavailable for sign up; "Join wait list" means the appointment slot is currently full)
  11. In the comment box, put your name, student ID number, and major
  12. Click "Finish"
  13. You now have an advising appointment. If you cannot attend your appointment, please cancel at least 24 hours in advance. You can check back on TRACS if you forget your appointment time.
  14. If no appointment time is available, email Dr. David at chemadvising@txstate.edu and ask for an appointment during your available times.

Pre-Veterinary

Pre-veterinary advising:

The following are the courses you must successfully complete before application to Texas A&M Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. Required courses may vary depending on the vet school you apply to:

  • BIO 1430 (or 1330 & 1130) - Functional biology
  • BIO 2400 - Microbiology
  • BIO 2450 or AG 3301 - Genetics
  • AG 3325 or 4325 - Animal Nutrition
  • CHEM 1341/1141 - General chemistry 1
  • CHEM 1342/1142 - General chemistry 2
  • CHEM 2341/2141 - Organic chemistry 1
  • CHEM 2342/1142 - Organic chemistry 2
  • CHEM 3375 or 4375 - Biochemistry
  • CHEM 4385 - Metabolism
  • MATH 3305 or AG 3352 - Statistics
  • PHYS 1315/1115 - General physics 1
  • PHYS 1325/1125 - General physics 2
  • ENG 1310 - College writing 1
  • ENG 3303 - Technical writing
  • COMM 2330 or 2338 - Fundamentals of Human Communication
  • PSY 1300 - Psychology

Please contact the faculty advisor for pre-veterinary students at:

  • 512.245.2130
  • ag@txstate.edu

For more information, please visit the Texas Medical & Dental Schools Application Service (this includes veterinary information), as well as the Texas A&M College of Verterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences.

Pre-Physician Assistant

While physician assistant programs do not require a specific major, many students find it expedient to major in biology or chemistry and minor in the other. This is because many of the required courses are prerequisites for physician assistant school.

Prerequisite information: 

The following are the courses you must successfully complete before application to UT: San Antonio's physican's assistant program. Required courses may vary depending on the school you apply to:

  • BIO 1330/1130 - Functional biology
  • BIO 1331/1131 - Organismal biology
  • BIO 2451 - Anatomy and physiology 1
  • BIO 2452 Anatomy and physiology 2
  • BIO 2400 - Microbiology
  • CHEM 1341/1141 - General chemistry 1 lecture and lab
  • CHEM 1342/1142 - General chemistry 2 lecture and lab
  • CHEM 2341/2141 - Organic chemistry 1 lecture and lab
  • CHEM 3375 - Biochemistry
  • MATH 2328 - Statistics
  • PSY 1300, PSY 3300, or PSY 3315

Admissions criteria:

The following are admissions criteria for UT - San Antonio's physician assistant program. Admissions criteria may vary depending on the school you apply to:

  • Overall GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Science GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) required 
  • Community Service hours required
  • Health care experience required (500 hours minimum)
  • Physician Assistant shadowing required (100 hours minimum)


Application covers: academic record, patient contact experience, related health care experience and research (including PA shadowing time), community service, employment history, personal statement, and more.

Pre-PA advising:

You should meet with a pre-PA advisor. Your pre-PA advisor can help you design a competitive transcript, explain the process of PA school application, counsel  you about timing and courses, set up practice interviews, and maintain your records to assist you in reapplying if necessary. You should meet with your pre-PA advisor as soon as possible.

Your pre-physician assistant advisors are:

Dr. Carolyn Pesthy
Department of Biology

  • 512.245.9761
  • cp22@txstate.edu

Dr. Marilyn Banta
Department of Biology

  • 512.245.3367
    mb79@txstate.edu

For more information on physician assistants, please visit the Pre-Health Advising Page.

For information on where a degree in science can take you, please visit the Sloan Career Cornerstone Center's Website.