In order to make a career surgeon you need to spend 13-15 years of your life for study. Surgeon education is one of the longest and most severe, but only after finish it you’ll be eligible to practice medicine.
First of all you need to get a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline, but preferably by natural science. Duration of study to get a bachelor degree is 4 years. It may be separated into two biennial units with an intermediate degree of Associate. In this case, after the first two years of study in two-year college (where education is cheaper), you can change the educational institution. Simultaneously with obtaining a bachelor’s degree, in addition to the basic program a student have to take pre-medical course called Pre-Med. Usually, students doesn’t take this course earlier then fourth or even fifth semester. Duration of Pre-Med program is not limited in the sense that as soon as a student passes all required courses, one can sign up for exams. It can also be done at the third and fourth year of education – here everything depends on the student, how fast one can “overcome” the program. Pre-Med program is not required. However , all medical school applicants must complete year-length undergraduate courses with labs in organic chemistry, general chemistry, biology, and physics; some medical schools have additional requirements such as calculus, genetics, psychology, biochemistry and English.
After you will learn all above mentioned sciences you will need to pass the MCAT. MCAT exams accepted on University campus during the year several times, in addition (if you want and need) you can sign up for the test in other cities of the U.S. All the information about this you’ll find on the official website of the Association of American Medical Colleges (https://www.aamc.org/).
The question which interests all the students: What if the MCAT exam will be failed?
You can retake the exam, and it can be done an endless number of times. However, you should be borne in mind, that all the information about your retaken tests will be known in all the medical schools to which you will do. So we would advise not to rush with the test and to prepare better for it, and we would not recommend to re-take the exams more than 3 times.
So, in 4 years after the start you have “in your hands” all that is required for admission to any U.S. medical school, namely:
– Bachelor’s degree in natural sciences
– Successfully passed Medical College Admission Test.
On top of it should be noted that these two points are complemented by excellent English proficiency (without which medical practice, for obvious reasons, impossible) and the experience of academic life. You are ready to study in medical school!
You apply a papers to the medical school (alone or with help of the academic tutor councils of the University) and wait for their decision about enrollment. If the GPA (grade point average – achievement) on the bachelor program was high enough, and the Pre-Med exams was passed on the high score, then admission to a school is almost guaranteed! Of course, the more prestigious medical school is, the more successful students they are expect, so that, eventually success depends on your own.
Education in medical school continue 4 years. First two years are spent taking basic science courses, such as biochemistry, anatomy, physiology, pathology, pharmacology and microbiology. Your last two years are spent gaining patient care experience and completing clinical rotations in family practice, internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics and psychiatry.
After graduating the medical school you will need to pass the USMLE exams (a common medical test, mandatory for the all doctors on http://www.usmle.org) and complete successfully a residency. During the residency, you will take part in the treatment of patients, the researches and conferences. The duration of the residency depends on your medical specialization and last from 5 to 7 years.
After completing your residency, you have the option to earn board certification in general surgery. The American Board of Surgery certifies allopathic surgeons, while the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery certifies osteopathic surgeons. You may be required to participate in continuing education and periodically renew your certification. Also you must pass a licensing exam in whatever state you wish to practice.
Generally, after finishing the residency, each doctor has three options:
– the practice;
– the admission into clinical postgraduate school for a period of one to three years depending on the specialization;
– Job at the University Hospital, but this is possible only for 5-10% of the best graduates.
Upon successful completion of all surgeon education steps you can work not only in U.S. but also in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and many European countries.