When scheduling courses, keep timelines in mind. For instance, the MCAT is currently offered each year in January and March through September. Test enrollment is in November and February.  Medical schools begin accepting applications in June for admission the following academic year. Thus, you need to complete the overwhelming majority of your premed requirements by the end of your junior year in order to do well on the MCAT and apply to medical schools.

Suggested course timeline, regardless of major:

First Year


CHE 121 and 122 or CHE 161
BIO 141 and 142
ENG 101 and/or other Humanities and Social Science courses*
MAT 121

Second Year

CHE 225, 326, and 327
BIO 205 (requires CHE 225)
ENG or other Humanities and Social Science courses

Third Year

(MCAT in April, May, or June)

BIO 315 (Recommended to strengthen science preparation)
PHY 141, 142, and 263 ENG and/or other Humanities and Social Science courses

Fourth Year

Complete the requirements of your major(s)

* English and other humanities courses will strengthen your application and help you on the writing and verbal portions of the MCAT!

Also - you need a writing course your freshman year at Cornell. As medical schools require 1-2 English courses, we recommend taking your writing course in the English department.

 Advanced Placement and Advanced Standing

If you enter Cornell with AP credit, closely check the requirements of the schools of which you intend to apply. Some schools will not accept AP credit as fulfillment of the course requirements. Others will accept AP credit for calculus or chemistry only if an additional course of advanced study is taken.