Toxicology as a pre-med major

Hello, I’m currently a college sophomore majoring in biology with a pre-med pathway. I was talking to a biology professor about majors and he mentioned toxicology. I just am wondering which major would be better between biology and toxicology. I am interested in both but I am more so concerned with which would appeal more to medical schools and which would help the most in medical school. both majors have the prerequisites for med school, so as for required courses both meet my needs for the science, physics, and math. I just know some majors would help more and some wouldn’t help as much. I’ve been trying to do my own research on the helpfulness of both but I haven’t found much besides the fact that you can get accepted into med school with any major. Any advice would honestly help, I just don’t want to end up lacking in something that could be rather beneficial. Thank you!

It will not matter to the medical admissions committees. Do the one you are more interested in and don’t worry or try to guess what medical schools will think.


Agreed that med schools do not care at all. They care about your GPA, MCAT, ECs, medical experience (volunteering, shadowing), and desire to become a Dr.

Pick any major you like as you’re likely to do better in it for the GPA.

Otherwise… since med school is so competitive, pick one that could work as a Plan B if needed. Bio tends to NOT be good for that. I’m not sure about Toxicology. Investigate what recent grads have done.


Agree with the above. Medical schools won’t care which one you major in. All they really look for is that you’ve completed all the pre-reqs.

Pick the major that best complements your Plan B career path. Bio, generally speaking, doesn’t have great post-graduation employment options, but specialty bio majors (like neuroscience, ecology, microbiology, molecular bio and toxicology) have even poorer employment outcomes.

If you want to work in toxicology as a career–you’ll need a PhD (or an MD + IM/EM residency + toxicology fellowship) for that. A BS in toxicology might get a job as lab assistant in a toxicology lab.

(For what it’s worth, I was a biomedical research librarian for major toxicology research lab for about a decade. Everyone I worked with/for had at least a PhD. Many had MD/PhDs or DVM/PhDs.)