How to Become a Biogerontologist
1. Earn a Bachelor's Degree (4 Years)
Aspiring biogerontologists must first obtain a bachelor's degree in a scientific field of study. These areas build the knowledge and skills necessary for a strong foundation in biogerontology and will be beneficial when applying to medical programs.
Common areas of study include:
The preparation timeline below outlines the suggested courses:
|Grade Level||Example Courses|
2. Take the MCAT (Medical College Admission Test)
To be admitted into medical school, candidates must first take the MCAT, or Medical College Admission Test, a 7.5 hour, standardized, multiple choice exam used to assess the applicant's knowledge of science, reasoning, communication, and writing skills.
The MCAT is divided into four sections:
|Biological & Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems||
|Chemical & Physical Foundations of Biological Systems||
|Psychological, Social, & Biological Foundations of Behavior||
|Critical Analysis & Reasoning Skills||
You can find study materials, MCAT registration, and your test scores on the AAMC website.
3a. Earn a Master's or Doctoral Degree (2 - 8 Years)
Some schools offer biogerontology degrees at the master's and PhD levels. If you're looking to conduct your own research, however, you'll want to opt for the PhD program.
3b. Earn a Medical Degree (4 Years)
Another option is to continue on to medical school, rather than a graduate program. Doing this leaves the student open to many different paths if someone doubtful of their decision to become a biogerontologist.
A list of accredited medical education programs is available through the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME).
For more information and advice on successfully getting into medical school, you can check with the Association of American Medical Colleges.
Medical school consists of four years of studying the basics in science and participating in clinical “rotations.” These are hands-on clinical experiences in real health care settings.
In most med schools, the first two years are taken up with classroom studies before students are assigned to do rotations. The current trend, however, finds a number of medical schools exposing students to early clinical experiences that continue throughout the four-year program.
Most medical schools base their curriculum on a system-based approach that focuses on one physiological system at a time, such as the respiratory system or the nervous system.
Still others may use a case-based curriculum that teaches about the human body’s normal functioning and disease processes by assigning students to following individual patient cases from start to finish.
Still other med schools use a combination of these approaches to educate their students.The most common lines of coursework among medical schools consist of the following subjects:
|3rd, 4th, 5th||