Pre-Med Q&ACategory: Scheduling and ClassesMicrobiology 405 vs Biology 305
AvatarLori asked 3 years ago

I need to take an upper level biology course as a pre-med senior and I was wondering if you had thoughts on either Microbio or Genetics and applying to med school. I’ve looked through med schools I am interested in and only a handful recommend Genetics. My previous biology course work at Michigan includes: Bio 173, Physiol 201, Movesci 230 +231, and MCDB 310. Any insight would be appreciated! 

4 Answers
AvatarPre-Med Hub Staff answered 3 years ago

Hey Lori,

I can speak about 405 since I’ve taken that one! I thought it was a pretty good class since we cover a wide range of topics, including bacteriology, virology, immunology, and infectious disease. Each unit was taught by a different professor. I would say that 405 was in my experience a fairly typical biology class with non-mandatory lectures three times a week and your entire grade determined by exams which were mainly focused on memorizing slides. It’s a good option for a course if you need an upper-level biology!

If you aren’t sure yet about which upper-level course you might want to take, I’ve also heard great things about immunology and pharmacology being helpful before medical school (maybe over genetics, which isn’t as relevant).


AvatarKaran Joseph answered 3 years ago

Hi Lori, 
I am currently taking Biology 305 and can offer you some advice. To be frank, the class is quite difficult, it is taught in 2 halves with two different professors. The first half is focused on quantitative and population genetics while the second half is focused on molecular genetics. While some medical schools may recommend a genetics course, there are other options here that can still fulfill that option (PUBHLTH 311) without being overly difficult. In the end, you should choose the class that you are the most interested in, but I would have to say that Biology 305 is on the difficult side of biology classes here. 

AvatarLori answered 3 years ago

Thank you both for your answers!    Karan, do you know if Pubhlth 311 would count as an upper level biology course?    Thanks again!  Lori 

AvatarLindsay answered 3 years ago

Hi Lori,
PUBHLTH 311 should count as an upper level biology course, since it’s content is 100 genetics (biology). However, you may need to explain this is true, since public health courses aren’t normally considered science classes in AMCAS. When in doubt, you can call a few medical schools from your home state to confirm. 
Best wishes,
p.s. We have a blog coming out soon comparing the genetics classes at UofM. It might help you in making your decision about what class to take. 

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