Pre-Health Professions


Clinical/Medical Lab Scientist

Pre-Health Overview

The Pre-Health Professional Curriculum at UWRF

The Biology major, Biomedical track, includes courses to meet the requirement for a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology, as well as prepare the student for a career in many areas of biomedical research or Graduate/Professional School.  Students must also declare a minor and meet all of the requirements for that as well.  Pre-med, pre-dent, pre-physical therapy, pre-physician assistant etc. are not majors on their own.

The choice of a minor is completely up to the student.  Because some of the health-professional schools require several courses from many departments (PT, OT etc.), an "Option B" Interdisciplinary Minor is advised, allowing students to compile a selection of classes to meet the requirements.  Medical schools in particular appreciate a student that is well-rounded and broadly educated, and although most minor in Chemistry, many others choose minors in psychology, art, history, Spanish, philosophy and more.

The health professions schools and programs are not concerned with what your major or minor is, they look solely at the classes you take.  It does not help to double major, particularly in two sciences.  They are looking for students that have a strong ability in science and are broadly educated.  They value students who have breadth in their classes.

The courses listed in the following pages are the pre-requisite courses required by most professional schools in a particular field.  Your primary advice regarding courses and preparation for future careers should be obtained from your faculty advisor.  Advisors are equipped to give suggestions as to selection and sequence of courses that will match your abilities and interests.  However, advisors will give advice, but the final responsibility for proper course selection and completion of graduation requirements rests with you.

A high GPA is important if you are to be a competitive applicant for a health professions program.  It is important to get off to a good start, and to learn/adopt good, strong study habits right away.  If you run  into trouble, there are many resources available on campus to help you, and you should seek them early on and not wait until failure of a class.  Having said that, GPA is not the only thing that professional schools consider when examining an application for admission.  The following page lists some of the other qualities, skills and experiences that you can spend your college years developing.  IT IS NOT A CHECKLIST.  That is very important to note right now!

Skills such as writing and speaking clearly, leadership experience, problem solving ability, good judgment, listening and teamwork are also critical for working in the health fields.   Volunteering shows commitment to humanity and to the community.  Shadowing is of great value in exploring a field and determining if you are suitable for a particular profession, and professional schools will look for this experience in making sure you understand that career path.

The Pre-Health Professions, the Pre-Physical Therapy, Pre-Occupational Therapy, Pre-Pharmacy students at River Falls have active clubs and welcome new members to join.  They can be found on the OrgSync Web site, or look for their bulletin boards on the 4th floor of AgSci.  These clubs can be a wealth of information and experiences.

Allied Health Sciences

Allied Health Sciences

There are many other Health Professions that afford very rewarding careers.   Most require another semester or year of training, for certification and some require a graduate (Master's Degree).  A partial list includes:

Surgical  (First) Assistant:

Various Types of Cardiovascular Specialist:

Pathologist Assistant:

Anesthesiologist Assistant:

Radiologist, Sonographer:

Nuclear Medical Technologist:


Respiratory Therapist:

Emergency Medicine Paramedic:

Public Health Specialist:

 Medical/Clinical Laboratory Scientist:



Genetic Counselor:

Histology Technician:

Respiration Therapist:

The UWRF is also working on agreements with the Mayo Clinic in other areas of Allied Health Sciences, including Nuclear Medicine Technology, Radiography, and Echocardiography.

The following web sites can also give you more information about preparing for a health career.


Biology Major/Chemistry Minor

Biology Major, Chemistry Minor


First Year at UWRF

General Biology (150 or 160)                                                    3                Bio 110   (Freshman Colloquium)                                       1General Chemistry I (Chem 120 or 121)*                               5                                General Chemistry II (Chem 122)                                        5 OR                                                                                                                       ORIntroduction to Organic Chemistry I (Chem 130)*              5                Intro to Organic Chemistry II (Chem 233)*                     5
Gen Ed (Humanities/Fine Arts)                                                 3                College Algebra and Trigonometry (Math 147)*            3

Academic Reading/Writing (Engl 100)                                    3                Gen Ed General Psychology (Psych 101)                          3

Health/Wellness (PE 108)                                                            1                Gen Ed (Humanities/Fine Arts)                                           3                                                                                                                                                    15                                                                                                                 15

Second Year at UWRF

General Zoology (Bio 230)                                                          3                Cellular/Molecular Biology (Bio 240)                                3   

Organic Chemistry I + lab (Chem 231)*                                   4                Organic Chemistry  II + lab (Chem 232)*                          4


Foundations of Inorganic Chemistry (Chem 240)*             4                Fundamentals of Communications (Coms 101)            3

Reading, Writing, and the Disciplines (Engl 200)                 3                Biostatistics (Math 231or 226)                                          3    

(Gen Ed)Social/Behavioral Sciences                                         3

Liberal Arts elective                                                                      3                Bioethics (Philosophy 220)                                                 3

                                                                                                            16                                                                                                                 16

Third Year at UWRF

Anatomy/Physiology I w/Lab (Bio341)                                 4                Anatomy/ Physiology II w/Lab (Bio 342)                     4

Foundations of Biochemistry (Chem 360)                            4                Genetics (Bio 350)                                                                                  3

General Physics 1 + lab (Physics 121)                                                      5                American Cultural Diversity                                                                3

Global Perspectives/ Multidisciplinary**                              3                Liberal Arts Elective                                                             3

                                                                                                            __               2 Phys Ed Activities (.5 cred each)                                   1

                                                                                                            16                                                                                                               14

During one summer or J-term - Lifespan Development Psychology (Psych 245) for 3 credits
* These courses are determined by placement scores and/or previous experience in math and chemistry.
**Assumes taking a class that double counts. The sequence of general education courses is flexible.

Fourth Year at PCC: Select 21-25 credits

ANAT 51204           Neuroanatomy I                       3                                  Biol 9000                 Biology Elective                       3

ANAT 51203           Gross Anatomy I                      4                                  Biol 9001                 Biology Elective                       4

ANAT 51213           Embryology                               2                                  Biol 9002                 Biology Elective                       2               

PHCH 51333            Cellular Physiology                  3                                  Biol 9003 (S)           Biology Elective                       2

                                                                                                                              Chem 9000 (S)         Chemistry Elective                  1

ANAT 52205           Gross Anatomy II                    4                                  Biol 9004                 Biology Elective                       4

ANAT 52213           Spinal Anatomy                        3                                  Biol 9005                 Biology Elective                       3

PHCH 52306            Biochemistry II                        3                                  Chem 9001 (S)         Chemistry Elective                  1

PHCH 51332            Physiology II                             3                                  Biol 9006                 Biology Elective                       3

PATH 52301            Pathology I                                 3                                  Biol 9007                 Biology Elective                       3

ANAT 61209           Organ Histology                       2                                  Biol 9008                 Biology Elective                      2               

ANAT 61208           Neuroanatomy II                      3                                  Biol 9009                 Biology Elective                     3

PATH 61421            Immunology                              2                                  Biol 9010 (S)           Biology Elective                       1

                                                                                                                              Chem 9002 (S)         Chemistry Elective                  1

PHCH 52342            Endocrinology                          2                                  Biol 9011                 Biology Elective                      2

PATH 61424            Pathology II                               3                                  Biol 9012                 Biology Elective                       3

PHCH 61346            Physiology III                           3                                  Biol 9013 (S)           Biology Elective                       2

                                                                                                                              Chem 9003 (S)         Chemistry Elective                  1


Summary of Degree Requirements                                                                                                                   
University of Wisconsin – River Falls                                                                                                                     95-99
Palmer College of Chiropractic – Davenport Campus                                                                                            21-25
Total for Bachelor Degree                                                                                                                                         120

Bachelors Degree in Biology awarded from UWRF at completion of first year at Palmer.
Doctor of Chiropractic Degree granted at completion of all required coursework




UWRF has an affiliation agreement with Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport Iowa, which requires a fairly strict sequence of courses.  This means that the student attends UWRF for 6 semesters to take specific prerequisite classes needed for entrance into chiropractic school, as well as meet the general education, liberal arts, and university requirements of UWRF.  After one year at Palmer, the credits transfer back to UWRF, and the student graduates from UWRF with a BS in Biology.  The student continues on with chiropractic training at Palmer. UWRF does not have an affiliation agreement with other schools.  The following page presents a suggested sequence of courses.

The recommended curriculum below is suggested to meet both the required and recommended pre-requisites of most Chiropractic Schools. Additional courses are needed to meet requirements for the biology degree and for graduation.


Biology 150 or 160(General Biology)
Biology 324 (Microbiology)
Biology 341 and 342 (Anatomy and Physiology I and II)
Keep in mind that additional biology courses are required for the Biology major

Chemistry 121 and 122 (General Chemistry 1 and 2)
Chem 231, 232 236, 237 (Organic Chemistry 1 and 2)
Chemistry 130 and 233 (Introduction to and Foundations of Organic Chemistry)
Chemistry 240 (Foundations of Inorganic Chemistry)
Chemistry 360  (Biochemistry) is recommended

Physics 121 (Algebra based Physics with lab) and one of the following:
Physics 122 (Second semester physics) OR  PED 354 (Biomechanics)

Math 226 (Stats) or Math 231 (Biostatistics)

Psychology 101 (General Psychology)

Social Sciences/Humanities
At least 15 credits

Additional Requirements
Speech (Coms 100) is recommended



Clinical Lab Scientist/Medical Lab Scientist

The UWRF is in the process of developing an agreement with the University of Minnesota Department of Clinical Lab Sciences for students who are interested in a career as a Clinical Lab Scientist (CLS).  This agreement will allow UWRF students to take 3 years of specific classes here, then attend CLS required classes and clinical experiences at the University of Minnesota for 15 months.  Credits will be transferred back to UWRF, and the student will at that time earn a BS from the UWRF, certification as a Clinical Lab Scientist, and be eligible to sit for the national CLS exam. Following is an example schedule with a Bio major, Chem minor.

Semester 1                                                                                                     Semester 2

General Biology (150 or 160)                                             3-4           Bio 110 (Freshman Colloquium)                                 1

General Chemistry I (Chem 120 or 121)*                     5               General Chemistry II (Chem 122)*                             5


Introduction to Organic Chemistry I (Chem 130)*   5               Intro to Organic Chemistry II (Chem 233)*            5

Gen Ed(Social/Behavioral Sciences)                             3                 PreCalc (Math 149) or Calc (Math 166)                   4

Academic Reading/Writing (Engl 100)                         3               Gen Ed (Social/Behavioral Sciences)                        3

Health/Wellness (PE 108)                                                   1               Gen Ed (Humanities/Fine Arts)                                   3

                                                                                                            __                                                                                                                   __

                                                                                                            15-16                                                                                                         16

Summer Year 1  (both online)

Bio Greek and Latin                              2

Orientation to CLS                                   2 (offered all semesters)

Semester 3                                                                                                     Semester 4

Cellular/Molecular Biology (Bio 240)                          3                 Microbiology                                                                           4  

Organic Chemistry 1 + lab (Chem 231)*                       4               Organic Chemistry 2 + lab (Chem 232)*                 4


Foundations of Inorganic Chemistry (Chem 240)*  4              

Reading, Writing, and the Disciplines (Eng 200)     3               Fundamentals of Communications (Coms 101)    3 

Gen Ed (Humanities/Fine Arts)                                         3               Biostatistics Math (Math 231)                                       3  

Cultural Diversity                                                                      3               Bioethics (Philosophy 220)                                         3

                                                                                                            16                                                                                                          13-17

Summer Year 2 or J-term year 3

Global Perspectives/ Multidisciplinary***                     

Semester 5                                                                                                     Semester 6

Biochemistry (Chem 360)                                                       4             Genetics (Bio 350)                                                            3

General Physics 1 + lab (Physics)                                       5             Liberal Arts                                                                            3

Liberal Arts Elective                                                                  3               Physics 2 +lab (if desired)                                            5

Anatomy and Physiology I                                                       4             Immunology                                                                         3    

2 Phys Ed Activities (.5 credits each)                                                 Anatomy and Physiology II                                            1                                                                                                                                                   _____                                                                                                           15                                                                                                                                                   16


Summer before entrance to CLS Program

Laboratory Method (CLS Class, UM)                                      4

Educational and Professional Issues (CLS, UM)               2 (Can count as a liberal arts class, per B. Caskey)

Nature of Disease: Pathology)(LAMP 4177)                     3

***Assumes taking a class that double counts.

Note:       -Timing of General Education/University Requirement/Liberal Arts classes is flexible.  Some double counting is possible.

                  -This course sequence contains all classes that are prerequisites for the CLS program, as well as those needed to graduate from UWRF with a Biology Major/ Chem Minor once the year at UM is completed.





Occupational Therapy

Physical Therapy

Physician Assistant

Pre-Medical (Osteopathic and Allopathic)



The curriculum below is recommended to meet the required and recommended pre-requisites of most of the schools, as well as to prepare you for the Optometry Admissions Test (OAT).  Additional courses are required to meet requirements for the biology degree and for graduation.

Biology 150 or 160(General Biology)
Biology 230 (General Zoology)
Biology 240 (Cell Biology)
Biology 324 (Microbiology)
Biology 341 and 342 (Anatomy and Physiology I and II)
Biology 350 (Genetics)
Keep in mind that additional biology courses are required for the Biology major.

Chemistry 121 and 122,(General Chemistry 1 and 2)
Chem 231, 232 236, 237 (Organic Chemistry 1 and 2)
Chemistry 130 and 233 (Introduction to and Foundations of Organic Chemistry)
Chemistry 240 (Foundations of Inorganic Chemistry)
also Chemistry 360 (Biochemistry)


Physics 121/131, (Algebra-Based/Calculus-Based Physics I and Lab)
Physics 122/132, (Algebra-Based/Calculus-Based Physics II and Lab)

The Calculus-based series in recommended.

Math through Math 166 (Calculus), a select few require a second semester of Calculus
Statistics is required, Math 226 or Math 231 (Biostatistics)

Psych 101 (Introduction to Psychology)
Coms 100 (Speech)
Sociology 100
English 100 and 200 are usually required or strongly recommended.
Writing intensive or literature classes are also required by some (Univ. of MN)
Most want to see humanities, upper level humanities, and social/behavioral sciences

Coms 216 (Intercultural Communication)

Phil 220 (Bioethics)


Shadowing is required



Biology Contact

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