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J Undergrad Neurosci Educ. 2016 Apr 15;14(2):A87-90. eCollection 2016.

A Quantitative Examination of Undergraduate Neuroscience Majors Applying and Matriculating to Osteopathic Medical School.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, New York Institute of Technology, College of Osteopathic Medicine, Old Westbury, NY 11743;
  • 2American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, 5550 Friendship Blvd, Chevy Chase, MD 20815;
  • 3Department of Math and Natural Sciences, Suffolk County Community College, State University of New York, Brentwood, NY 11901.


Undergraduates choose to become neuroscience majors for a number of reasons including future career goals. Faculty and administration of undergraduate neuroscience programs understand that many neuroscience majors have aspirations of applying and matriculating to medical school (Prichard, 2015); however a quantitative understanding of this particular student population remains unknown, especially in the context of the national growth in undergraduate neuroscience education (Ramos et al., 2011). In the present report, we use medical school application data to establish a novel quantitative understanding of the number of neuroscience majors that apply and matriculate to osteopathic medical school. Our data indicate that a substantial number of neuroscience majors do indeed apply and matriculate to medical school compared to other majors in the life sciences, math and physical sciences, and humanities. These data are relevant to faculty and administration of undergraduate neuroscience programs and suggest that when programmatic, curricular, and training decisions are made, they should be made in the context of the diverse motivations and professional goals of neuroscience majors including careers in medicine. Finally, our novel quantitative approach of determining student motivation and professional goals based on application/matriculation data, can complement traditional methods such as surveys and questionnaires and can be used to determine the extent to which neuroscience majors apply to other professional and graduate degree programs.


medical school; neuroscience majors; osteopathic medical school; physiology

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