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Zoology and Physiology

College of Arts and Sciences

Pre-Professional Health Care Studies at UW

(updated 3/17/2021)

Admission to medical, veterinary or other health professions is highly competitive and success depends on several criteria. While most professional schools do pay close attention to an applicant’s score on the profession’s entrance exam and their overall and science-math GPAs, these are not the only important factors. Professional schools use holistic admissions, so additional factors that admissions committees consider essential include evidence of key experiences that professional schools require or expect and the way a student handles an interview. Since admissions requirements vary, students should research the experiential and academic requirements of the schools they are thinking of attending, and we strongly suggest meeting with a pre-health or pre-vet advisor early and often in the preparatory process (see links below).

At UW, we encourage the study of subjects that expose students to the basic sciences upon which the health care professions are built, including physiology, biochemistry and anatomy. It is these subjects that allow students to do well on entrance exams such as the MCAT; to meet the expectations and requirements of veterinary, optometry, pharmacy and allied health profession schools; and to determine which profession is the correct career choice. At UW there is a pre-vet program that prepares students for a career in veterinary science (see link below).

The BS degree in Physiology is designed to meet many of a student’s pre-professional goals. Courses considered to be predictors of good MCAT/DAT/OAT scores and good preparation for the study of the health sciences are built into our program. There is no doubt that a BS degree in Physiology will provide a stimulating, interesting and relevant degree for any student considering a career in the health professions.

The courses integral to the Physiology degree (and the health professions) can be categorized as either biological or non-biological.

- Essential biological courses are General Biology (LIFE 1010), Microbiology (MICR 2021), Animal Biology (LIFE 2022), Genetics (LIFE 3050), Physiology (ZOO 3115 and ZOO 4125), Cell Biology (LIFE 3600), Cell Physiology (ZOO 4670), Clinical Biochemistry (MOLB 3610 and MOLB 4100), and Anatomy (KIN 2040 & KIN 2041).

- Essential non-biological courses include Chemistry (CHEM 1020, 1030, 2420, 2440), Physics (PHYS 1110, 1120), Calculus (MATH 2200 and/or MATH 2205) and Statistics (STAT 2050).


Additional information is available on the Physiology Major & Minor webpage and from the Pre-professional Advising Office.

Additional information about Pre-veterinary medicine can be found at the UW pre-veterinary medicine mentoring center.

Studying Life Sciences at UW

The study of life sciences is expanding at a rate that reflects the concern people have for their health, the health of the animals and plants they depend on, and the health of the environment that supports life on our planet.

There was a time when the life sciences were descriptive sciences and memorization of information was the focus of life sciences degrees. This age has passed and biologists, physiologists, wildlife management biologists, botanists, zoologists, and the larger group of life scientists including health professionals, increasingly are required to use quantitative methods to understand their subject areas.

For this reason, abilities in mathematics and in the chemical and physical sciences are important for those who work in the life sciences. All life sciences students at the University of Wyoming start their degrees by studying general biology and the pillar courses of biology (ecology, evolution, genetics) through the Life Sciences (Biology) Program. Entry into that program requires a minimum ACT score of 21 in Math (SAT+500).

Students who want to study for a life sciences degree, but who have not met this standard, should consult with the academic staff of the Department of Mathematics to find out how they can obtain the necessary skills.

For more information on life science related studies in the Department of Zoology and Physiology, please visit the webpages for the majors and minors in our departments.

Contact Us

Department of Zoology and Physiology

1000 E. University Ave

Aven Nelson, room 114

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: 307-766-4207

Fax: 307-766-5625

Email: zprequest@uwyo.edu

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
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