Credit:     3.0 units of USC credit
Pre-Requisites:  Proof of vaccination (see below)

2 years of high school science

with grades of B or better

Future PhysiciansOverview:

Interested in becoming a physician? Gain insights into the academic preparation necessary to become a successful medical school applicant. Learn about medical training, issues affecting the practice of medicine, and cutting-edge medical research. Observe and talk with physicians in various clinical and lab settings and participate in hands-on laboratory activities.


  • Learn from a variety of physicians inside and outside of the classroom
  • Participate in practice-based labs and clinical experiences
  • Spend a day "shadowing" physicians at the world-class hospital and teaching site for the USC Keck School of Medicine, Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA)
  • Observe physicians and medical researchers in various clinical and lab settings
  • Hear talks by practicing physicians about preparing for medical school, life as a resident, and career options in health care
“We learned various aspects of medicine, but also about college and life as a physician.”

Topics of Study:

  • Gross Anatomy
  • Histology
  • Microbiology
  • Physiology
  • Biology of Disease
  • Ethics
  • Issues of Patient Care
  • Politics of Health Care Reform

Note: The schedule for this course varies on the day students visit the hospital, see below. Commuter students must depart from and return to campus with the class on all field trip days.

Hospital Visit Day Schedule (tentative):

7:15 am – 7:45 am: Travel to hospital
8:00 am – 12:00 pm: Hospital rounds
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm: Travel back to campus
2:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Afternoon class session

Required Clothing: On field trip days, students must follow a professional dress code (slacks, button-down shirt, long dress/skirt, blouse) and wear closed toe shoes. The following are not permitted: jeans, tight pants, extreme low-rise pants, low cut shirts, tank tops, bare back or bare midriff, flip-flops or sandals. Students will NOT be permitted to attend field trips, including the hospital visit, if they do not follow the dress code.

Final Project

Required Proof of Vaccination:

Admitted students must submit the Vaccination Records form and medical records showing the following:

  • MMR Vaccination (Measles, Mumps and Rubella; usually given in infancy)
  • TB test dated after July 31, 2013

For more information, see Required and Optional Forms


Watch the video below to learn more about the experience students had in a past Future Physicians course.

Note: Some components have changed - students will visit CHLA one day and have other hands-on lab and clinical experiences, as well as the opportunity to observe physicians and medical researchers in other clinical and lab settings.