Pre-Med Q&ACategory: Scheduling and ClassesLanguage or Distribution Credit?
AvatarVivian Le asked 5 months ago

My name is Vivian and I am an incoming sophomore transfer student. I was wondering about my schedule and whether or not I should begin my language distribution with my current courseload?
My schedule for the Fall of 2020 (Total of 17 credits):

  • CHEM 210/211
  • BIOLOGY 192
  • STATS 250
  • PSYCH 250

I only need one more credit to fulfill my social sciences distribution but I also have not started my language distribution yet. I am planning on taking a placement test to test out of hopefully two semesters and go into ASIANLAN 275, but if I am unable to, I would probably like to begin ASIANLAN 135 instead (since taking ASIANLAN 275 this fall is difficult to fit around my schedule). I was wondering if it would be best to continue with PSYCH 250 or begin my language distribution?
Thank you very much for your time!

-Vivian Le 

3 Answers
AvatarElizabeth Lee answered 5 months ago

Hi Vivian, thanks for this question and welcome to the University of Michigan! It seems like you have a pretty heavy schedule this semester. From my experience, both CHEM 210/211 and STATS 250 have a large workload and require a decent amount of time outside of class. I imagine BIOLOGY 192 to be similar as well. Something to keep in mind is whether you think a language course or psychology course would better supplement your other classes. Typically, language courses require a decent amount of time from your schedule because it’s something that needs to be practiced frequently. At the same time, PSYCH 250 will require time to understand and memorize concepts. Both have their own characteristics so it’s up to you to see which fits better in your schedule.
For your social science distribution,  you will still have 5 semesters after this semester to fulfill it so you don’t have to stress too much about getting them done right away. For the language distribution, it seems a little uncertain in terms of scheduling because you haven’t taken the placement test yet. It would be wise to take into consideration when you would take the test/receive your results and whether there would be open spots in the course for you to register. A possible plan could be to keep PSYCH 250 until you receive your placement test results and decide from there what options are open to you. 
Additionally, the LSA degree requirement is to achieve 4th term proficiency in a language other than English. That means that if you start with ASIANLAN 135, you would have to take more semesters of language than if you start with ASIANLAN 275. Either is fine, but this is just something to think about in terms of advancing through distribution requirements. It would be smart to also check whether the same language course levels you are looking at now are offered in the winter semester.
I hope this information helped and feel free to reach out again if you have any more questions!
-Elizabeth, PMH advisor

AvatarVivian Le answered 5 months ago

Hello Elizabeth,
Thank you so much for your help, I really appreciate it! I actually received my placement test results a few days ago and was placed into ASIANLAN 275, however, my schedule right now does not allow me to register for the course since it conflicts with BIOLOGY 192. I think I will plan on taking it the fall of my junior year as it is only offered in the fall.
I was also wondering if there were any recommended humanities distribution courses for pre-health/pre-med track students? Since I only need one more class to complete my social sciences distribution, I would probably like to get started on my humanities courses and come back to either psychology or sociology in my junior & senior year. Please let me know.
Thank you very much again for your time!
-Vivian Le 

AvatarElizabeth Lee answered 5 months ago

Hello again Vivian! I did most of my humanities courses through the honors program so I’m a little limited on the courses I could recommend for general LSA. That being said, this isn’t really specific to pre-med but I took ASIAN 255 (I don’t think it’s offered this semester but there are probably similar courses in the department), and it was a useful class to venture onto topics I don’t normally learn about. The workload was manageable/not too stressful, and the discussions we had in class were engaging. Something I’d encourage you to do is to find a course that genuinely interests you so that you can use this opportunity to explore other areas you wouldn’t be able to with traditional pre-med courses–maybe you’ll find a subject you want to look further into. If you’re worried about getting your distribution requirements done in time, there are some courses that fulfill multiple at once. On the LSA course guide, you can check off the requirements as filters. Using this filter, you can get very specific courses/upper level courses, so just keep in mind which ones would be suitable for your level of knowledge. If you want more information on how to pick the right humanities course for you, here’s a link to a post that might help.
Thanks for this question and I hope you found this answer useful!
-Elizabeth, PMH advisor

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