My friend Lisa M Cannon told us all from a very early age that it was her dream to one day become a doctor, something which she never wavered from. In fact it was only when she left for medical school in Columbia, NY that it really dawned us all what she was about to do. We all knew that it would be hard for her but in truth we had no idea how hard it would be to get her license. And so given her experience I wanted to share with you the steps that are required in order to become a doctor, let’s take a look.
Step One – Degree
The first step is to earn yourself a college degree as this is what will get you into med school. Med schools want applicants with a varied educational background and they also look for work within the natural sciences. There is no specific major that is required by med schools but most will expect history in biology, math, physics and chemistry.
Step Two – MCAT
Once you have achieved your college degree you must take the Medical College Admissions Test which is expected by every medical school in the country. Ultimately this is a science exam which you need to pass if you have any dreams of getting into med school. You can take this up to 3 times in a year if you have difficulties.
Step Three – Medical Degree
Once you get into the medical school of your choice you will have to work extremely hard for the next 4 years in order to earn your medical degree. During your time at medical school the first 2 years will be dedicated to lab and classroom work and you will have to carry out large amounts of coursework on topics like pathology, anatomy, biochemistry and pharmacology.
Step Four – Residency
Once you have earned your medical degree you will begin residency program which will give you the chance to work directly with patients in a certain area of medicine. This on-the-job training will prove valuable to you further and you will be measured on everything that you do here. A residency can last from anywhere between 3 and 7 years depending on the area of speciality.
Step Five – License
Finally once you have completed all of the above steps it will be time to get your license to practice medicine. Assuming that you have completed your degree and passed the exams that come with your residency program, you will go in front of a board who will then decide as to whether or not you have done enough to earn your medical license.
Once you gain your license you will be able to pick a specialty if you so wish, or you can go into general medicine. The license needs to be renewed periodically which will involve a further exam.
There you have it, your steps to becoming a doctor.