At a Glance


Student Community


MCAT 2015

Core Curriculum

Upper Division Electives

Academic Schedule


Academic Support

University Services



Cost of Program

Application Deadlines


Alumni Placements

Review Course

Chemistry Self Test

    University of Southern California
    Dornsife College of Letters, Arts & Sciences
    ATTN: Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program
    3620 South Vermont Avenue, KAP 358
    Los Angeles, CA 90089-2520
    Tel: (213) 821-2354

Core Curriculum

What our students say: These classes are not simply about memorizing facts and concepts, they are about learning the process of science - how you approach problems and how you test hypotheses, and how you get the desired results. Many times in classes, we discuss how experiments are carried out and analyzed, and this same methodology is what physicians must use in accurately diagnosing patients.

--Brian Alessi, PPP 2007


The Core Curriculum is our students' introduction to the science of medicine. These classes provide a solid scientific foundation for future studies. Although students may start at an accelerated place if they have previously taken a limited number of these courses, it is expected that once a student joins the program, all of the remaining core classes will be completed solely at USC.

Design of the Curriculum

The Core Curriculum is a series of nine or ten courses that are required for medical school admission and the MCAT exam. These are the standard undergraduate premedical courses which provide a required thorough understanding of the basic life sciences. The courses cover the disciplines of Chemistry, Biology, Biochemistry and Physics. Each discipline is covered in sequence and all except one includes a laboratory component.


  • BISC 120: Organismal Biology and Evolution
  • BISC 220: Cell Biology and Physiology
  • CHEM 350: The Molecular Principles of Biochemistry
  • BISC 312: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
  • CHEM 105A: General Chemistry I
  • CHEM 105B: General Chemistry II
  • CHEM 322A: Organic Chemistry I
  • CHEM 322B: Organic Chemistry II
  • PHYS 135A: Physics for the Life Sciences I
  • PHYS 135B: Physics for the Life Sciences II

Core Curriculum Upper Division Electives Sample Academic Schedule