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Pre-Professional Studies

Important: See the Academic Advising and Learning office for pre-professional studies information. These requirements change often, and you are responsible to check them yourself. Within this online catalog, any information about pre-professional programs cannot be considered authoritative.


Please Note: Pre-Professional programs are NOT Bachelor Degrees or Certificates. The Pre-Professional coursework is designed to provide your courses which apply towards the pre-requisites of a given program but you will not be awarded any degree from Western Oregon University based upon this coursework.


Please refer all questions regarding any Pre-Professional program to the listed advisors below. WOU does not post the Pre-Professional requirements into their catalog due to the ever changing nature of program requirements. WOU is not affiliated with these programs, thus has no control over their requirements.

Pre-Professional Studies in the Health Sciences



Prepares students for entry into professional programs in many of the health sciences. Students will develop skills, gain knowledge, and complete pre-requisite coursework for admission into a professional program of their choosing. Students may also use these courses toward the requirements for a Bachelors of Art or a Bachelors of Science degree. All pre-professional health science students are assigned to specific advisors.


Learning outcomes:


  1. Develop deductive reasoning, analytical, and problem solving skills related to their professional goals.
  2. Learn broad concepts from many different disciplines for entry into their profession of choice.
  3. Acquire a liberal arts education while pursuing a professional education.


WOU currently offers Health Sciences pre-professional studies in the following areas:


One- to two-year programs




Pre-dental hygiene


Admission to nursing and pre-dental hygiene programs is highly competitive. In general, admission depends on grades, a written personal statement, professional experience, and the completion of specific coursework and/or proficiency exams. Although specific admissions requirements vary somewhat from program to program, all minimally require biology (including a year of human anatomy and physiology), psychology, sociology, writing, and math. More information about preparatory material is available from the fol­lowing program advisors:


Pre-Nursing: Academic Advising and Learning Center 503-838-8428


Pre-dental hygiene: Dr. Sarah Boomer 503-838-8209,



Three- to four-year programs




Pre-medicine (Allopathic, Osteopathic, Chiropractic, Podatric, Optometric)


Pre-clinical lab science


Pre-occupational therapy




Pre-physician assistant


Pre-physical therapy


Pre-veterinary medicine


Admission to the above programs is highly competitive. In general, admission depends on grades, a written personal statement, professional experience, the completion of specific coursework and/or proficiency exams (e.g., DAT, MCAT), and interpersonal/ interviewing skills. Although specific admissions requirements vary somewhat from program to program, all require extensive coursework in biology, chemistry, and physics. Consequently, a biology degree with a pre-professional emphasis facilitates well the admission requirements for most programs.


Additional coursework is required to complete a bachelor’s degree at WOU, all of which are required or strongly recommended for admission to a majority of these programs. More information about preparatory materials is available from the following program advisors:


Pre-dentistry: Dr. Sarah Boomer 503-838-8209,


Pre-medicine: Dr. Bryan Dutton 503-838-8452,


Pre-clinical lab science: Dr. Michael LeMaster 503-838-8136,


Pre-Occupational therapy: Dr. Rob Winningham 503-838-8297


Pre-pharmacy: Dr. Michael LeMaster 503-838-8136,


Pre-physician assistant: Dr. Bryan Dutton 503-838-8452,


Pre-physical therapy: Dr. Brian Caster 503-838-8364,


Pre-veterinary medicine: Dr. Karen Haberman 503-838-8452



Pre-Professional Studies


Four-year preparation




The minimum requirement for admission to a recognized law school is a bachelor’s degree. Most law schools value intellectual maturity and a broad educational background, such as is provided by majors in the social sciences, natural sciences or humanities, rather than narrow specialization. Well-developed research, analysis, oral and written communication skills are considered desirable.


It is suggested that students take the legal studies minor with additional course work in the following areas: accounting, economics, history, political science, philosophy, psychology, sociology, communication studies and writing. For more specific information on an appropriate course of study, see the pre-law advisor, who is assigned by the Social Science Division.


Admission to law schools is highly competitive. Applicants are usually expected to achieve an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.00 and perform well on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), although strength in one of these areas may compensate for weakness in the other. The LSAT should be taken early in the senior year. More information about preparatory materials is available from the pre-law advisor. Contact the Social Science Division for more information.









Academic Advising and Learning Center 503-838-8428 | or e-mail:
Location: APSC 401

The Academic Advising and Learning Center engages students in identifying and pursuing their educational, career, and life goals through personalized learning experiences. The AALC serves and supports students in developing collaborative relationships that foster student success.

—Mission Statement for the Academic Advising and Learning Center