How to Become a Doctor

A doctor is a highly respected, well educated, and trained professional in the medical field. Doctors can pursue a wide variety of career paths in medicine and as such have a high earning capacity. Aside from the financial benefits, doctors also have the ability to care for sick or injured patients and help them to live longer and healthier lives.

Although becoming a doctor may seem like an ideal career choice it requires an enormous amount of dedication , time, and motivation. The decision to become a doctor often begins early in life although many older adults are choosing this field as a second or third career. If you are set on becoming a doctor you should begin to prepare early in your academic career.

During high school you will want to work hard to prepare to enter college. Excelling in college preparatory subjects such as chemistry, biology, physics, and math will provide you with a strong foundation and basis to enter your college career. It will also be important to study and prepare to take the ACT or SAT for entrance into college.

Once you have entered college you will begin preparation to obtain your bachelor's degree. During this time you will have to take a variety of courses to prepare you for the next phase of education to become a doctor. These courses include biology, physics, organic chemistry, and general chemistry. It is important to earn respectable grades in these courses because they will be reviewed upon your application to medical school.

It is also recommended that you volunteer or work in a healthcare environment while studying for your undergraduate degree. While in your last year of college you will prepare for and take the entrance exam that will gain you entrance into medical school. This exam is called the MCAT.

Taking the MCAT is just one part of applying for medical school. You will also need to write essays, a doctor resume, have letters of reference, and interview for each school that you apply. There are normally application fees for each medical school so you will want to take this into consideration.

Your overall body of work throughout college and your MCAT results will be closely scrutinized before you will be accepted into medical school. Your personal characteristics will also be a part of this evaluation. It is important to earn good grades and show good character for entrance into medical school.

Once you have entered medical school you will have at least four more years of education. You will take courses such as gross anatomy, normal and abnormal physiology, and much more. There will also be a great deal of hands-on learning that will occur through learning by doing in clinics, hospitals, and rotations of different medical specialties.

In the fourth year of medical school you will be expected to select an area of medical interest. You will go through a process called matching whereby you will ultimately choose and enter your residency program. The residency program is really looked at as the doctor in training program and normally takes between two and four years. After you complete your residency you are considered a fully trained doctor in your area of specialty. You can become board certified by taking a final test to gain complete recognition in your area of medical expertise.


Gail Esparan