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From Undergrad to MD - Unlock Your Path to Medical School with Canada’s Premier Undergraduate Programs!

Pursuing a career in medicine requires strategic planning and informed decision-making.

In Canada, many prestigious universities offer diverse undergraduate programs tailored for aspiring medical professionals like you. From McMaster University's interdisciplinary Bachelor of Health Sciences to the dynamic Life Sciences program at the University of Toronto and the exclusive Queen's Accelerated Route to Medical School (QuARMS) pathway for Black-identified and Indigenous students, each program presents unique opportunities for students eager to pursue medical studies. 


Let's explore the program overviews and admission requirements of these renowned institutions.

No.1: McMaster’s University

To pursue a career in health sciences with a focus on preparing for medical school, McMaster University's Bachelor of Health Sciences (Honours) Program (BHSc) offers an exceptional interdisciplinary approach. The BHSc program at McMaster University integrates biological, behavioural, and population-based perspectives to provide a comprehensive understanding of health, wellness, and illness. Students benefit from exposure to various health sciences departments, including Medicine, Pathology & Molecular Medicine, Psychiatry & Behavioural Neurosciences, and Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics.

Program Overview:

●      Program Name: Health Sciences (BHSc)

●      Degree: B.H.Sc. (Honours)

●      OUAC Code: MNS

●      Target Enrolment: 240 students

●      Academic Criteria: Minimum average of 90%

●      Required Courses:

○      High School Diploma

○      Five Grade 12 academic courses including:

1.     English (English Studies 12, English 12, or English 12 First Peoples)

2.     Pre-Calculus, Calculus, or Statistics

3.     Biology (Biology 12 or Anatomy and Physiology 12)

4.     Chemistry (Chemistry 12)

5.     One non-math, non-science, non-technology Grade 12 academic course

Important Notes:

●      Make sure the non-math/non-science/non-technology course is from languages, arts, or social studies.

●      Submit first semester grades and a list of all courses for the entire year usually by February 15th.

●      Avoid applied design, skills, technologies, and faith-based courses except Economics 12.

No.2: University of Toronto

The Life Sciences undergraduate program at the University of Toronto offers students a dynamic and interdisciplinary exploration of living matter, health, medicine, and ecological balance. Through a comprehensive study of human body behaviour and the intricacies of other organisms, students gain a deep understanding of the ethical, social, and political dimensions of health sciences. The program equips students with the necessary tools to analyze and address complex challenges in the field, preparing them for a future where they can contribute meaningfully to advancing medical knowledge and preserving global well-being.

Program Overview:

●      Program Name: Life Sciences

●      Focus: Study living matter, health, medicine, and illness

●      Purpose: Understand human body behaviour and ecological balance

●      Preparation: Address ethical, social, and political questions in health sciences

●      Required Courses:

○      English

○      Calculus

●      Recommended Admission Range:

○      Mid to high 80s

●      Recommended Range for Required Courses:

○      English: Mid to high 80s

○      Calculus: Mid to high 80s

English Language Proficiency:

●      Submit proof of English proficiency if required.

●      Academic records from studies outside of Ontario may be necessary.

Ensure you meet all the admission requirements, submit your application accurately and on time, and showcase your academic abilities to enhance your chances of gaining acceptance into the University of Toronto's prestigious Life Sciences undergraduate program. This program will provide a solid foundation for your future endeavours in the medical field and beyond.

No.3: Queen’s University

For Canadian high school students aspiring to pursue a career in the health professions such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, or veterinary sciences, Queen's University offers a prestigious Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHSc) program designed to prepare students for success in these fields. The program, developed by the Faculty of Health Sciences at Queen's University, is renowned for its excellence in health education, research, and clinical trials.

Program Overview:

The BHSc program at Queen's University is ideal for students passionate about science and eager to explore new and progressive ways of learning. It is a multidisciplinary program that aligns closely with the competency framework used by medical schools and other health profession programs, emphasizing advocacy, collaboration, communication, leadership, scholarship, professionalism, and expertise in course content application.

●      Direct Entry Requirements:

○      Completed secondary school diploma or equivalent.

○      Minimum 80% grade in ENG4U or French equivalent

○      Completed 4U Biology, 4U Chemistry, and any 4U Math.

○      Additional two (2) U or M-level courses

○      Minimum cumulative average of 75%

○      Not currently enrolled in another post-secondary program

This program provides excellent preparation for students interested in pursuing a career in medicine and offers a diverse range of perspectives across the health sciences spectrum to shape future healthcare professionals.

No.4: University of Ottawa

For Canadian high school students interested in pursuing a career in the medical field, the University of Ottawa offers an interdisciplinary Honours BSc Biomedical Science program designed to provide a strong foundation in human and animal structure and function, along with in-depth knowledge in biology, chemistry, biochemistry, and mathematics. The program offers various optional courses and specializations such as Neuroscience, Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Bioanalytical Science, Medicinal Chemistry, or Biostatistics, preparing students for advanced research training or admission to professional health programs.

Program Overview:

The Biomedical Science program at the University of Ottawa focuses on human and animal anatomy, psychology, and basic sciences like biology, chemistry, and mathematics. Students can choose from a range of optional courses and specializations, setting the stage for more advanced studies or entry into health-related professional programs.

●      Prerequisites:

○      English 12 or French 12

○      Calculus 12

○      Two of the following: Biology 12, Chemistry 12, Physics 12, and one other grade 12 Mathematics or Pre-Calculus course

●      Minimum Average: Low 80s

●      Recommended High School Courses in Science:

○      Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics

●      Notes: A strong background in biology, chemistry, and physics is beneficial for success.

This program provides a solid foundation for aspiring medical professionals seeking to excel in the field of biomedical sciences and beyond.

No.5: McGill University

The Bachelor of Science Major - Biology program at McGill University offers an interdisciplinary approach that combines natural and physical sciences with a focus on biology. The Quantitative Biology option caters to students deeply interested in biology who seek a solid foundation in physical sciences applied to biological inquiries, with streams in ecology and evolutionary biology, as well as physical biology, balancing theory, and experimental components.

Program Overview:

The Bachelor of Science - Major Biology program at McGill University provides students with the opportunity to delve into interdisciplinary research merging natural and physical sciences crucial to modern biology. The program includes two streams - ecology and evolutionary biology, and physical biology - offering a blend of theoretical knowledge and practical experimentation.

●      Prerequisites:

○      Grade 12 English or French (depending on the language of instruction)

○      Grade 12 Math (precalculus or calculus)

○      Two of Grade 12 Biology, Chemistry, or Physics

●      Minimum Grade Ranges (over the last three years):

○      Biological, Biomedical, and Life Sciences Group: 95.5% - 96.5% in top 5 courses, minimum 90% in math & science courses

○      Bio-Physical-Computational Sciences Group: 97.4% - 98% in top 5 courses, 90% - 92% in math & science courses

○      Physical, Earth, Math, and Computer Sciences Group: 93.5% - 95% in top 5 courses, minimum 90% in math & science courses

This program equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in the field of biology and beyond, paving the way for future success in medical studies and related professions.

No.6: QuARMS

The Queen’s Accelerated Route to Medical School (QuARMS) at Queen’s University is an exclusive pathway designed for Black-identified and Indigenous students aiming to pursue a career in medicine. This pathway provides a unique opportunity for a diverse educational experience, direct learning from practicing physicians, community engagement, and networking opportunities.

Program Overview:

●      Pathway Exclusivity:

○      The QuARMS pathway is the only one of its kind in Canada.

○      Open exclusively to Black-identified and Indigenous students.

○      10 seats are available, reserved for Black-identified and Indigenous students.

●      Educational Experience:

○      Enjoy a diverse educational experience during the first two years of undergraduate study by taking courses from a variety of programs.

●      Learning Opportunities:

○      Gain direct learning opportunities from practicing physicians through one-on-one and group discussions, exclusive to QuARMS students.

●      Community Engagement:

○      Work with the surrounding community through volunteer opportunities to prepare for a career working with patients.

●      Networking:

○      Develop a network with peers that can support you throughout your medical school career.

●      MCAT Requirement:

○      No MCAT is required for QuARMS students when applying to the MD program at Queen's School of Medicine.

Eligibility Criteria:

To be considered for the QuARMS pathway, candidates must meet the following criteria:

●      Be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada.

●      Identify as Black African, Black Caribbean, Black North American, multi-racial with Black ancestry, and/or Indigenous ancestry.

●      Meet the academic requirements of eligible programs.

●      Be in the final year of high school (or 1st year of CEGEP for Quebec residents).


Esteemed universities like McGill, University of Toronto, Queen's, and McMaster present promising avenues for academic and professional growth. Whether delving into biology at McGill, immersing in interdisciplinary health sciences at McMaster, exploring life sciences at the University of Toronto, or embarking on an exclusive medical pathway through QuARMS at Queen's, each program equips you with the knowledge, skills, and experiences vital for success in the medical field. By understanding the admission requirements, embracing unique program features, and seizing networking opportunities, you can pave a path toward fulfilling your aspirations of becoming a future healthcare professional.


Join Our Community!

At DS Education Group, we support high school students eager to learn about scholarship opportunities and application processes for these programs and many others. If you're seeking guidance, mentorship, and a network of professionals, apply  here to join our university advising waitlist today!

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