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Becoming a Doctor :: Education, Training and Costs

It’s easy to say that you want to be a doctor. But the process of becoming one is lengthy, expensive and extremely challenging. Once you’ve learned about the different types of doctors, and picked the field that interests you most, you can look into the specific training and education you’ll need.

While we can’t cover every type of doctor in this article, we'll give you a general idea of what you can expect from education, training and costs.


Education

High School: The road to becoming a doctor begins with high school. Take 4 full years of biology, [kwlink1743]chemistry[/kwlink], physics and math (including calculus). These are important prerequisites for getting into college, so make sure you get good grades. Also, experience is invaluable. Volunteer at your local hospital or doctor’s office in order to get your required volunteer hours.


College: Post-secondary is a whole new ballgame. You’re looking at 3 to 4 years of college in which you must earn a bachelor’s degree. Study biology, English and chemistry, and make sure that your grade point average stays above 3.5.


Medical School: Next you’ll have to score well on the MCAT (Medical College Admission Test) before applying to medical school. Med school lasts about 4 years. But the learning doesn't stop there.


Training

After you complete medical school, you’ll begin your residency (or internship) which lasts upwards of 2 years. Here you’ll focus on a specialty and work with patients, but not as a full-fledged doctor (similar to the characters on Grey’s Anatomy). After your residency, you can get a licence and open your own practice.


Costs

Becoming a doctor is not cheap. Depending on your location and specialty, medical school alone can cost between $50,000 and $150,000, and that’s only tuition. Textbooks, housing, meals, equipment and fees are added expenses.


Related Stories:

  • Becoming a Doctor: Specialties and Salaries
  • Becoming a Nurse
  • Becoming a Life Coach
  • Check Out More Cool Jobs!
  • 5 Comments

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    What Keeps the Doctor Away?

    • A scary mask.
    • An apple a day.
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    • A note from your mom.

    Dear Dish-It In The Forums

    drowning
    "SatanslilDemon" wrote: Ok so I have a dilemma. I really, and I mean really like this guy. He's considerate of my mental wellbeing and health, plus he's really funny and sweet. He's respectful, loyal, and his hugs are the best ever(he's like a foot and 4 inches taller than me). the dilemma is, he'stwentyandI'mfifteenturningsixteensoon.... I'm not gonna even ask about dating him until i'm sixteen but I've called him in total anxiety attack crying my eyes out and he calmed me down and made me laugh, and I invited him to come see a choir performance so he spent the day with me... My mom ships us... but I'm a little worried because of the age difference  and experience difference and just, I don't want to miss the chance of being with him because of it. ​  any advice??? It's really nice that your mother supports it, that always helps!! I'm glad that your family enjoys his company as well. Being 16 while he's 20 is alright. It's a slight odd age gap. But, I think as long as you both are ready, it's alright. Make sure you're mature and safe with your choices though. Personally, I think you should wait until you're closer to at least, 17. But, as long as you two are smart about what you're doing, it should be alright when it come around to it.
    reply 3 days
    fitta
    "Shygirl15" wrote:I really like this boy in my second period class but i dont know how to tell him because he knows that im transgender do whatever makes you feel comfortable or just wing it and tell him and if he tells you something because you're trans forget about him! He doesn't deserve you. But it's totally okay if you want to play it safe and not go up to him. You do you. :3 
    reply 3 days
    fitta
    "SatanslilDemon" wrote: Ok so I have a dilemma. I really, and I mean really like this guy. He's considerate of my mental wellbeing and health, plus he's really funny and sweet. He's respectful, loyal, and his hugs are the best ever(he's like a foot and 4 inches taller than me). the dilemma is, he'stwentyandI'mfifteenturningsixteensoon.... I'm not gonna even ask about dating him until i'm sixteen but I've called him in total anxiety attack crying my eyes out and he calmed me down and made me laugh, and I invited him to come see a choir performance so he spent the day with me... My mom ships us... but I'm a little worried because of the age difference  and experience difference and just, I don't want to miss the chance of being with him because of it. ​  any advice??? i suggest you wait i mean you are going to be 16 that's way too young to be dating someone who is 4/5 years older than you,no? You can still talk to him when it comes to your anxiety attacks and all of that because I have those too every night so I know how it feels, but maybe you should wait. But at the end of the day it's your decision I'm just here to give advice 
    reply 3 days
    SatanslilDemon
    Ok so I have a dilemma. I really, and I mean really like this guy. He's considerate of my mental wellbeing and health, plus he's really funny and sweet. He's respectful, loyal, and his hugs are the best ever(he's like a foot and 4 inches taller than me). the dilemma is, he'stwentyandI'mfifteenturningsixteensoon.... I'm not gonna even ask about dating him until i'm sixteen but I've called him in total anxiety attack crying my eyes out and he calmed me down and made me laugh, and I invited him to come see a choir performance so he spent the day with me... My mom ships us... but I'm a little worried because of the age difference  and experience difference and just, I don't want to miss the chance of being with him because of it. ​  any advice???
    reply 3 days
    SmartSunnyShadow
    I feel like that too. My best friend will always hang out with her 'new friends' that I have a really bad opinion about. My friend will treat me rudely all the time and sometimes make fun of me with her friends. But, when I needed her the most in my life, she was there for me, and I told her how I felt. She says that she just wants to hang out with more people and apologized, people can be a little teasy at times.  Also, after seeing each other for a long time, people make new friends and start hanging out with them more, it doesn't mean that she doesn't like you.  This may be different for you, but just tell her about it, she will have to know you feelings at one point.  Hope I helped you. 
    reply 3 days