Pre-Med Q&ACategory: Scheduling and ClassesPhysics Requirement
AvatarAK asked 2 months ago

So I believe most medschools require a year of physics and lab. I’ve taken Physics 135 but don’t really want to take 235. I heard that Biophys 290 (Physics 290) can count towards the 1 year of Physics, and I think I’ve seen this on someone’s exit ticket. I was just wondering if anyone’s taken 290 or has any thoughts on it. 

4 Answers
AvatarLindsay answered 2 months ago

This is Lindsay (PMH Alumni). I had BIOPHYS 290 in my exit ticket, so I was asked to respond to you question. You are correct in that BIOPHYS 290 could count as one semester of Physics, but I would check with a few medical schools before assuming this is true. Some Biophysics classes are classified as Biology according to AMCAS, and other are classified as Physics. This is because AMCAS follows the rule of if a class consists of > 50% physics it is classified as physics, and if a class consists of > 50% biology, then it would be classified as biology. From my memory, Biophysics 290 is mostly physics, but it would be safest to reach out to a few medical school you know you want to apply to. Simply email or call to ask if you can run a class by them. Have the syllabus handy too.
In my specific case, I actually had AP physics credit for Physics 239 (equivalent to Physics 240/241), so that is why I only took Physics 135 at UMICH and didn’t take Physics 235. In other words, I did not take Biophysics 290 with the intention of counting it as my second semester of physics, so I can not guarantee that Biophysics 290 will count for physics in all cases.
I hope I’m making sense, and please feel free to reply with any followup questions. The current PMH team will also be happy to help explain the AMCAS course classification rules if you’d like further guidance. 

Stay warm!
Lindsay (PMH Alumni)

AvatarArham K answered 2 months ago

Hi Lindsay, thanks for the detailed and informative response. I’ll be sure to contact a few schools. I was also curious about prior knowledge needed for Biophysics 290. Would Physics 135 be sufficient? 

AvatarOwen Doane answered 2 months ago

Hi there,
Looking at the Course Guide, it looks like Physics 1 (so 125, 135, 140, or 160) is an enforced prerequisite, so if you’ve taken Physics 135, you should be all set to take Biophys 290. As Lindsay mentioned, she had AP credit coming into the physics sequence, but the course guide looks like it suggests Physics 135 is all you’d need. Note that Math 115 (Calc 1) or its equivalent AP credit is an advisory prerequisite for the course, so not required.
Thanks for your follow-up!
Owen, PMH Co-President

AvatarAK answered 2 months ago

Thank you!    

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