Mar 30, 2023
A podiatric physician (Doctor of Podiatric Medicine, or DPM) is an independent health care provider who is qualified by training and education to prevent, diagnose and treat diseases, injuries and disorders of the foot, ankle, and related leg structures known as the lower extremity. The podiatric physician uses the full range of diagnostic, medical and surgical treatment modalities and works closely with other health professionals to treat and control disease. The podiatrist is found in urban as well as rural practice sites and may be associated with multi-specialty clinics, hospitals, nursing homes and professional sports.
In general, schools of podiatry require up to 90 semester hours of prerequisite coursework and the majority of the podiatry students have a Bachelor’s degree. The student is free pursue a to major in any area of interest. The pre-podiatry curriculum requires one year each of biology, chemistry, organic chemistry, physics and mathematics, along with coursework in English, humanities and the social sciences. A pre-podiatry student at USD should use the suggested curriculum for the pre-medicine program as a guide. The pre-podiatry curriculum offers basic required courses, but the student should contact the individual college of podiatry about requirements specific for that school. The student should consult with an advisor to help plan a course of study that complies with the requirements for admission to the school of podiatry of the student’s choice.
Admission to a College of Podiatry may require the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) or the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) general and science subjective tests. The American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine Application Service (AACPMAS) maintains a central application process for Colleges of Podiatric Medicine.
For more information about podiatric medicine contact: American Association of Podiatric Medicine (http://www.aacpm.org); Academic & Career Planning Center, 605-658-3600; Health Professions Advisors, 605-658-6334, or by visiting the following web site: http://www.usd.edu/admissions.
Health Sciences/Pre-Professional Advisor
ID Weeks Library 101A
Health Sciences Major
Julian Hall 217
Pre-Podiatry Suggested Subjects and Courses
Students who complete podiatry school will earn a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM) degree. Students interested in podiatric medicine should research the individual program/s to which they plan to apply for specific admissions requirements. Students may pursue any major of interest. For a list of podiatric programs, visit:https://aacpm.org/colleges/. Pre-Podiatry students at USD may use the following curriculum as a guide in completing podiatry prerequisites.
OTHER SUGGESTED COURSES
It is highly recommended that students also complete additional coursework in Mathematics, Cell Biology, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Physiology, Microbiology, Psychology, and Sociology. Please note that some podiatry schools may require courses in these fields as part of their pre-podiatry curriculum:
MATHEMATICS (one year - two semesters)
- MATH 114 - College Algebra (C) [SGR #5, HSDC] or higher (i.e. Pre-Calculus, Calculus) and Statistics (see below)
- MATH 123 - Calculus I (C) [SGR #5, HSDC] -recommended *MATH 115 or MATH 120 or by placement exam
and one of the following:
- STAT 281 - Introduction to Statistics (C) [SGR #5, HSDC] *MATH 104, 114, 115, 120, 121, 123, or 125
- BIOL 420 - Introduction to Biostatistics & Computational Biology (C) *BIOL 151/L + 153/L
- BIOL 420L - Introduction to Biostatistics & Computational Biology Laboratory (C) *BIOL 151/L + 153/L
- PSYC 371 - Statistics in Psychological Research (C) *PSYC 101
- BIOL 443 - Cell Biology *BIOL 151/L+ BIOL 153/L + CHEM 114/L or CHEM 116/L
*highly recommended before taking BIOC 430 Principles of Biochemistry!
- BIOL 471 - Genetics (C) *BIOL 151/L + 153/L
- BIOL 475 - Introduction to Molecular Biology *BIOL 151/L + 153/L
ANATOMY and PHYSIOLOGY
- PHGY 220 - Human Anatomy and Integrated Physiology I [SGR #6, HSDC] (Spring only) *one collegiate CHEM course
- PHGY 220L - Human Anatomy and Integrated Physiology Laboratory I [SGR #6, HSDC] (Spring only) *one collegiate CHEM course
- PHGY 230 - Human Anatomy and Integrated Physiology II [SGR #6, HSDC] (Fall only) *PHGY 220/L
- PHGY 230L - Human Anatomy and Integrated Physiology II Laboratory [SGR #6, HSDC] (Fall only) *PHGY 220/L
- PHGY 420 - Advanced Human Physiology I (Fall only) *BIOL 428, 433, or 456 + one collegiate CHEM course
- ANAT 411 - Human Gross Anatomy (Spring only) *junior class standing and a minimum 3.0 GPA
- BIOL 428 - Comparative Physiology *BIOL 151/L + BIOL 153/L + CHEM 114/L or CHEM 116/L
- MICR 420 - Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (Spring only) *BIOC 310, BIOC 430 or BIOL 475
- MICR 422 - Microbiology and Infectious Disease Laboratory (Spring only) *BIOC 310, BIOC 430 or BIOL 475
- PSYC 101 - General Psychology (C) [SGR #3, HSDC]
- SOC 100 - Introduction to Sociology (C) [SGR #3, HSDC]
- Students must take the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). The MCAT tests foundational science knowledge in combination with skills in scientific inquiry, reasoning, research, and statistics in the following general areas:
- Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems
- Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems
- Psychological, Social and Biological Foundations of Behavior
- Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills
- Podiatry schools like to see significant extracurricular activity, ideally pertaining to the healthcare field. This experience can be paid or volunteer. To establish a mentoring or shadowing relationship with a podiatrist, visit the American Podiatric Medical Association.
- While many students participate in science research, experience working with patients/people in a healthcare setting is also valued. Podiatry schools also value leadership experience. Students should choose a project or volunteer experience that truly “does something for them.” The project should pertain to personal interests yet contribute to the community. This experience should be meaningful enough to the student that they can describe in their podiatry school admissions essay and/or interview why it was inspiring and how it contributes to their interest in becoming a DPM.