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5 Reasons Why Medical Students Should Pursue a Master of Science

Learn Why a Master of Science May Be a Great Choice for You

The proverb “it’s about the journey, not the destination” applies to everyone. Yes, even medical students! Putting themselves through years of grueling study, these aspiring professionals hope to be placed in respectable residency programs come Match Day. However, some of the greatest lessons a student can learn are taught outside of medical school and inside a Master of Science (MS) program.

An MS instills relevant medical knowledge that can prove invaluable to your studies and future career, regardless of where you are on your academic journey. Let’s take a look at five reasons why you should pursue a master’s degree, especially a master’s degree in medical physiology and pharmacology from the University of Florida. In as little as two semesters, you can earn your MS and become a more capable and competitive medical student.

1. Regain Your Focus

After spending your days caring for patients and your nights studying for the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE), chances are that you’re flirting with burnout. Our master’s degree program is an opportunity to not only expand your physiology and pharmacological knowledge, but also regroup and complete the remainder of medical school with renewed vigor.

Think about it. Four years of medical school followed by a minimum three-year residency. Tack on a few more years if you want to pursue a fellowship, and you’re looking at about a decade of training to become an independent physician. The grind of clinical rotations can help you become a better medical practitioner, but a master’s degree program may be one of your last remaining opportunities to catch your breath before diving back into rotations and your eventual residency.

2. Bolster Your Resume

Match Day is the culmination of countless hours spent cramming for tests, performing repetitive, seemingly thankless tasks and shadowing physicians. It’s when tens of thousands of medical students from around the world find out where they will be training for the next three to seven years. Applicants at the head of the pack can look forward to Match Day with confidence. However, applicants lacking in one or more areas, such as grades or test scores, may need to bolster their resumes.

Earning a master’s degree is a practical way to differentiate yourself from your fellow applicants, especially if you’re applying to a competitive specialty. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, the top five residency specialties all received an average of over 60 applications per applicant in 2021. When every other applicant is an MD or DO, having the additional designation of MS can make all the difference. A master’s degree program, moreover, can help you develop your soft skills for interviews. Come Match Day, you’ll know that you did everything in your power to get into the top choice on your rank-order list.

3. Earn an MS in Less Than Two Semesters

It’s not uncommon for medical students to take an academic leave of absence to pursue a Master of Public Health (MPH). However, an MPH doesn’t align with every student’s career goals, and a leave of absence can start to look more like an unplanned detour when you take into account the minimum two years required to earn an MPH.

Our master’s degree in medical physiology and pharmacology is a 30-credit-hour program that can be completed in as little as two semesters. Over the course of their program, students learn about the impact of drugs on living organisms at the molecular level. Courses are offered in the spring, fall and summer semesters, and students are accepted year-round. Medical students trying to make the most of their leave of absence need look no further than our online master’s degree program.

4. Join a Flexible, Affordable Online Program

Our master’s degree program’s efficient schedule is due in part to its online and asynchronous course content, which can be completed on your own time, at your own pace. Watch lectures, engage in online discussions and complete research assignments from the comfort of your own home (or favorite coffee shop). Esteemed faculty members have taken every measure to ensure that our online program is as accommodating as possible for medical students.

It’s no secret that medical students often make sacrifices in pursuit of a noble cause. In honor of the moonlighters and the penny pinchers, we strive to ensure that our master’s degree program is as affordable as possible. Tuition is $550 per credit hour plus fees (approximately $5,500 per semester plus fees) for all students, regardless of their location. Moreover, master’s degree students are eligible for financial aid (UF’s Federal School Code is 001535). We understand that affordability is a prime concern for students, and we stand behind our program’s affordable tuition cost.

5. Expand Your Physiology and Pharmacology Knowledge

You’ve no doubt gained some physiology and pharmacology knowledge in your time as a medical student. Nevertheless, you can expect your education on drugs, biologics and their interactions with human systems to continue well into your residency and long after. Pharmacology is, after all, an integral component of healthcare. By gaining an understanding of the underlying mechanisms of physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology, you can become not only a more competitive medical student, but also a more effective medical provider.

Throughout our online master’s degree program, you’ll explore the effects of drugs on abnormal conditions affecting the systems of the human body. Gain comprehensive knowledge of physiology and pharmacology, the basis of anesthesiology, cardiology, endocrinology and other medical specialties. Courses include:

  • Cell Signaling & Therapeutics
  • Fundamentals of Pharmacology & Therapeutics
  • Medical Cardiovascular and Muscle Physiology
  • Pharmacology of Cannabis, Tobacco and Vaping
  • Physiology of Circulation of Blood

Don’t be satisfied with knowing whether or not a medication works. Discover why a medication works and how it improves your patient’s condition. Apply to our online MS in physiology and pharmacology program to take the next step on your journey to become a more competitive, qualified medical professional.