Pre-Health Professions Program

The Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Pre-Medical/Pre-Health Studies at HPU

This certificate program is designed to assist students with post-baccalaureate degrees in preparing for a new career in a medical or health profession.  The program assists students by guiding them through the necessary science and prerequisite courses for medical / health school as well as preparing them for qualifying examinations (MCAT, DAT, OAT, GRE, etc.).

Unique to HPU
There is currently no other post-baccalaureate certificate in pre-medical / pre-health studies program available in Hawaii. Hawaii Pacific University is proud to offer this certificate program to students.

Program Goals
The aim of the Pre-Medical / Pre-Health Certificate Program is to guide participants through the entire preparation and application process for medical / health professional school in order to render them successful competitive applicants.  This program is intended for students that have already earned a BA/BS/BFA degree and wish to apply to allopathic medicine, osteopathic medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, optometry, naturopathic medicine, physical therapy or veterinary medicine schools.  Guided supervision is provided by the Pre-Health Professions Specialist and the Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee.

The projected time for completing the program is two years.  Students with a high level of science preparation may be able to complete the program in one year (completing a minimum of 24 credits at Hawaii Pacific University.)

Certificate Requirements
Certificates will be awarded to those students who achieve a total GPA of 3.2 or over and have successfully completed 56 program credits.  Transfer credits are accepted.  A minimum of 24 credits must be earned at Hawaii Pacific University.

Program Benefits

  • Hawaii Pacific University emphasizes small class sizes which will allows program students individualized assistance as needed.
  • Participants will be allowed to take additional, non-program course work as electives.
  • The certificate program fees are lower than those charged by most other formal post-baccalaureate programs.
  • Discussion sessions will be available to enhance learning.
  • Upper division BIOL or CHEM courses are available for advanced program students.
  • Students who have sufficient mathematics skills may substitute MATH courses with electives. 

Additional Program Highlights

  • Discounts for off-campus or on-line standardized test preparation (with a commercial vendor). 
  • Optional membership in Alpha Epsilon Delta (AED), a national honor society for pre-health professionals offering graduate school scholarships.
  • Health Science Activities:
    • Individualized scientific research projects with faculty sponsors
    • Internships / practicum with practicing health care professionals
  • Individualized advisement by the HPU Science Academic Advisors and the Pre-Health Professions Specialist, who is a member of the National Association of Advisors in the Health Professions (NAAHP).
  • A letter of recommendation on behalf of the University from the Pre-Health Professions Advisory Committee is available for qualifying students (GPA of 3.2 in the program). Guaranteed spaces in classes and laboratories.
  • Free tutoring in the Health Science Library. 
  • Optional membership in the Pre-Health student club. 

Entrance Requirements

a. Total GPA minimum of 2.5 for the baccalaureate degree OR a GPA of 2.5 or above in the most recent 60 semester credits of course work (official transcripts are required from all colleges / universities).

b. A non-refundable application fee of $50.00.
c.  Admittance essay addressing the student’s desire to pursue a career in the health professions.

d. Two letters of reference (with at least one of them from a faculty member).

f. TOEFL and IELTS thresholds (for International or non-English Speaking Students)

NOTE:  Applications are received and reviewed on a continual basis.  However, priority review will be given to applications received prior to April 1 for the coming academic year. 

For more info on applying, please contact HPU's admission department at

For information on the program, please contact HPU's Pre-Health Professions Specialist Allison Bachlet at

Program of Study & Post- Baccalaureate Certificate Requirements
This certificate program requires 56 program credits. The projected time for completing the program is two years and a certificate will be awarded to those students who achieve a total GPA of 3.2 or over and have successfully completed 56 program credits (of which at least 24 are taken at HPU after earning the bachelor's degree).

REQUIRED COURSES (45 semester credits):

BIOL 2050/51 General Biology I Series

BIOL 2052/53 General Biology II Series

CHEM 2050/51 General Chemistry I Series

CHEM 2052/53 General Chemistry II Series

CHEM 3030/31 Organic Chemistry I Series

CHEM 3032/33 Organic Chemistry II Series

MATH 2214 Calculus I

MATH 2215 Calculus II

PHYS 2050/51 General Physics I Series

PHYS 2052/53 General Physics II Series

PMED 3900 Pre-Health Professions Seminar

PMED 3950 Pre-Health Professions Practicum

ELECTIVE COURSES (11 semester credits):

(Choose from among these courses to reach a total of 56 credits for the certificate.)

ANTH 3200 Medical Anthropology

BIOL 2170 Ethnobotany

BIOL 3020 Plant Biology

BIOL 3034/35 Human Physiology Series

BIOL 3036 Human Anatomy

BIOL 3040 General Microbiology

BIOL 3050 Genetics

BIOL 3090 Biometry

BIOL 4020 Cancer Biology

BIOL 4030/31 Cell and Molecular Biology Series

CHEM 3020 Chemical Thermodynamics and Kinetics

CHEM 4030/31 Biochemistry I Series

CHEM 4032/33 Biochemistry II Series

CHEM 3040/41 Quantitative Analysis Series

COM 2640 Argumentation and Debate

SOC 3100 Methods of Inquiry

PMED 4950 Pre-Health Professions Practicum

(advanced MATH courses may be substituted)

Minimum GPA Requirements
A student must achieve a GPA of at least 3.20 in the 56 credits in order to receive the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Pre-Medical / Pre-Health Studies. If students have HPU or approved transfer credit for courses they may be applied to meet the certificate requirements.  However, students must take at least 24 credits at HPU that are specific to the certificate and must attain a GPA of 3.20.   ALL required courses must be passed with a grade of B or better.  Required courses for which the student receives a grade of C or below may be retaken in order to be eligible to receive the certificate. 

Receiving the Certificate
To receive the Certificate, students must file a Petition for the Certificate with the Academic Dean in the semester when completing the final requirements for the certificate.  The certificate will be awarded to the student upon the successful completion of all requirements and payment of the certificate graduation fee. 

Program Curriculum
The following is an example schedule:


General Biology I Series

BIOL 2050 / 2051

5 credits

General Chemistry I Series

CHEM 2051 / 2051

4 credits

Calculus I

MATH 2214

3 credits

Pre-Health Professions Seminar

PMED 3900

2 credits



14 Total Credits


General Biology II Series

BIOL 2052 / 2053

5 credits

General Chemistry II Series

CHEM 2052 / 2053

4 credits

Calculus II

MATH 2215

3 credits

Pre-Health Professions Practicum

PMED 3950

1 credits



13 Total Credits


Pre-Health Practicum

PMED 3950

1 credit



3 credits



4 Total Credits

Scientific Research Project
Qualifying Examination (MCAT / PCAT / GRE ETC) Preparation and Test


Organic Chemistry I Series

CHEM 3030/3031

4 credits

General Physics I Series

PHYS 2050/2051

5 credits

Pre-Health Professions Practicum

PMED 3950

1 credit



3 credits



13 Total Credits

Qualifying Examination (MCAT / PCAT / GRE ETC) Preparation and Test