Pre-professional programs

If you plan to enter a professional health science program, make sure you know that program's entrance requirements. Most medical schools, including the University of Saskatchewan College of Medicine, require a completed four-year degree for entrance. Additionally, even when programs do not require a degree, most students find that a four-year degree is helpful for gaining entrance into highly competitive programs. Thus, even if you don't think you will need a degree, it makes sense to plan your program in such a way that the pre-professional requirements are satisfied while still staying on track to complete a degree in four years.

In addition to checking with professional programs about their specific entrance requirements, please contact our Faculty of Science Student Services Office (LB 238,, 306-585-4199) as they are well versed in the requirements of various qualifying programs. Information about professional program requirements can also be found in the Undergraduate Academic Calendar.

Microbiology Requirements for Pre-professional Students

This information is for students who plan to apply to one of the following four programs:

  • Veterinary Medicine (DVM) program at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan
  • Pharmacy (BSP) program of the College of Pharmacy and Nutrition at the University of Saskatchewan
  • Dentistry (DMD) program of the College of Dentistry at the University of Saskatchewan
  • Optometry (OD) program at the University of Waterloo (School of Optometry and Vision Science)

Entry into all four of these programs requires 3 credit hours of microbiology, but the courses that fulfill the microbiology requirements differ slightly between the programs:

Veterinary Medicine BIOL 222, BIOL 224, BIOL 303, BIOL 310
Pharmacy BIOL 222, BIOL 224, BIOL 303, BIOL 310
Dentistry BIOL 222, BIOL 224
Optometry BIOL 222, BIOL 224, BIOL 302, BIOL 303, BIOL 310

None of the programs will accept BIOL 223 (Microbes and Society) to fulfill the microbiology requirements, and only Optometry will accept BIOL 302 (Food Microbiology).

When planning your program, please keep in mind that BIOL 222 (Microbiology for Health Professionals) does not count as a Biology course in the Biology BSc programs; it does however count as a Science Elective. All of the other microbiology courses count as Biology courses.

Both the DVM and BSP programs at University of Saskatchewan allow students to apply for entry after completion of 60 credit hours. Due to prerequisite requirements, students will not be able to complete 300-level microbiology courses within the minimum 60 credit hours; so, if you are confident you will not be completing more than 60 credit hours at U of R, please take BIOL 222 or 224 to satisfy the DVM or BSP microbiology requirement. Keep in mind that if you end up deciding to complete a BSc, BIOL 222 will not count as a Biology course.

The OD program requires students to complete 90 credit hours before applying for entry. The extra 30 credit hours will give you time to complete 300-level microbiology courses (e.g. BIOL 310).

Physiology Requirements for Pre-professional Students

The U of S Pharmacy and Veterinary Medicine programs both require 6 credit hours of physiology in order to be eligible to apply for entry.  The standard U of R courses that fulfill these physiology requirements are: KIN 267 (Human Physiology I) and KIN 268 (Human Physiology II).  KIN 267 has a prerequisite of KIN 260 (Human Anatomy).

For those students who plan to apply for entry into Pharmacy or Veterinary Medicine after completion of 60 credit hours (four semesters at 15 credit hours per semester), the sequence for taking the KIN courses should be:
semester #2 – KIN 260
semester #3 – KIN 267
semester #4 – KIN 268

1) U of R BIOL 110 and 111 are courses designed for the Nursing program, and are not open to non-Nursing students except by permission of the Dept. Head.
2) Athabasca University BIOL 230 or 235 also satisfy the physiology requirements for U of S Pharmacy.