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Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions

Pursue your passion as a health professional. The CU Continuing Education Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Program one-year program offers college graduates access to science prerequisite courses needed for graduate programs.

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Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions

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Designed for Professionals Interested in a Healthcare Career

The Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Program at CU Boulder is a highly selective program designed for career changers. The transition from a previous career to a calling in the medical field is momentous and requires thoughtful planning and dedication. From your initial inquiry to the completion of the program, we work hard to understand your individual goals and challenges. The education and experience you receive at CU Boulder are tailored to serve as the next step in your professional journey toward your career as a healthcare professional.

There are many factors that make CU Boulder’s program unique and a great fit for highly dedicated students from a diverse array of backgrounds. Many students thrive in the small, cohort community of the program. The roughly 20 students admitted to our program each year benefit from the personalized attention they receive from the program director, pre-health advisor, and mentors. Members of the cohort are immersed in challenging curriculum while they study with the outstanding faculty at CU Boulder, an R-1 research institution in preparation for their medical school careers.

Our One-Year Format

Every student who enters our program completes an intensive, one-year science “boot camp.” You begin your coursework in June and complete the program in May of the following year. Students in this program should only need to focus on their pre-requisites and MCAT preparation in anticipation of applying to their health profession school. This means you already have:

  • A history of consistent academic excellence at the undergraduate level, along with solid math skills in algebra and trigonometry
  • Shadowed at least three health care providers in your chosen profession and/or
  • Volunteered or worked in a clinical setting with at least 60 hours of direct patient care
  • Have a history of working and volunteering in roles involving service to others, and
  • A strong understanding of your professional goals and an ability speak to how your experiences informed your decision to pursue a career in health care.

This one-year program is academically and emotionally challenging, leaving little room for full or part-time employment.

Courses for Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions

As a Post-Baccalaureate student, you will gain a solid foundation in the necessary science classes required for most medical school applications and the subjects heavily featured on the MCAT.

Students in each cohort are required to take the entire core curriculum. Substituting courses is not an option. If you are preparing to apply to professional schools that require additional courses, our advisors can help you understand how best to complete those additional courses after you have completed our program or on a case-by-case basis.

Prerequisites for the program include:

  • Pre-calculus (algebra and trigonometry) taken within two years of the start of the program with a B or better.
  • An online, preparatory general chemistry course. All admitted students must take this course—provided at no additional cost to you by the program—prior to the start of summer term.

Required Core Curriculum:

  • General Chemistry 1 with Lab
  • General Chemistry 2 with Lab
Fall (13 Credits) $6,125
  • Introduction to Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Organic Chemistry 1 with Lab
  • General Physics 1 with Lab
Spring (13 Credits) $6,125
  • Principles of Genetics
  • Biology laboratory course (equivalent to a full-year biology laboratory sequence)
  • Principles of Biochemistry
  • General Physics 2 with Lab

Students must complete the summer general chemistry sequence with grades of B or better to continue in the program. A GPA of 3.5 or higher is needed for enrollment in spring courses in order to be a competitive medical school applicant in most situations. Courses cannot be taken for pass/fail or no credit.

A Program with Exceptional Student Support

CU Boulder’s Post Baccalaureate Pre-Health program offers a variety of features to help support students through this unique program and beyond.

Pre-Health Advising

Students enrolled in the Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions program will meet one-on-one with their pre-health advisor during the program and throughout the entire application (or “gap”) year.

The pre-health advisor’s role is to assist you as you prepare to apply to healthcare-related professional schools. The pre-health advisor can provide you with the following services:

Provide feedback on your current areas of strength and weakness as a prospective applicant to professional school. Refer you to appropriate activities that will enhance your candidacy. Provide resources and options should you encounter a setback on the pre-health path. Help you prepare strong application materials for professional school admission.

Committee Letter

Students also work with their pre-health advisor in the Committee Letter process. Many healthcare professional schools—including medical schools, podiatry schools, and optometry schools—require a letter of evaluation from CU Boulder’s pre-health committee. The Committee Letter process introduces you to admissions committees and reviews your preparation and accomplishments. The process of obtaining a Committee Letter is important because it encourages you to work on your application materials early; it assesses your readiness to apply; and it provides an opportunity for committee feedback on your weaknesses so you can either address them before you apply or change your application timetable.


In addition to one-on-one sessions, the pre-health advisor hosts workshops for Post-Baccalaureate students throughout the year that focus on different aspects of the healthcare field and the application process. Topics may include:

  • Tips for preparing strong application materials
  • Research strategies
  • Bioethics
  • Choosing a strategic list of schools
  • Preparing for interviews

Program Mentoring & Tutoring

A distinguishing feature of our program are our mentors and tutors. Program mentors—selected from the previous year’s cohort—are an invaluable resource to Post-Baccalaureate students because they have been through the program and can provide insights and advice to you as you progress through the program and application process. Likewise, dedicated tutors are available for chemistry, organic chemistry, and physics and other subjects as needed.

MCAT Preparation Seminar

For students who are preparing to apply to medical school, we offer a year-long MCAT preparation seminar that meets for one to two hours per week. The seminar is taught in conjunction with the courses you are already taking in the program. The instructor covers material from General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry and Biology to help you make connections among the subjects and can apply your understanding to the MCAT. This prep seminar deepens your understanding of the test material and teaches you how to deconstruct MCAT questions so you can formulate answers on the test.

Is the Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Program Right for You?

The first step for every prospective student is to decide whether to enroll in the formal post-baccalaureate program or to complete the prerequisite science courses informally, on your own. Continuing Education advisors are available to help you review your options and make the best decision for you.

If you are new to considering a career in health care, we strongly recommend scheduling a meeting with our career advisor as a first step. Prospective students may take advantage of up to two individual appointments with our career advisor prior to enrolling at no charge, and additional appointments can be arranged for a fee. Enrolled students may access career advising at no charge. Schedule an appointment with our Career Advisor.

If you are interested in exploring enrollment at CU Boulder, you have access to our academic advisors who can discuss the myriad options for completing pre-health prerequisites at CU Boulder. Academic advisors can provide assistance with enrollment, course permissions, and CU Boulder resources. Please schedule an appointment or email with your questions.

If you are interested in the Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions program and have questions not answered on the program page, please contact Program Director, Jennifer Burnham, at

Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Application Process

The application for the 2017-2018 cohort is now available. The review process will begin in early October but applications will continue to be accepted through February 1, 2018. Applications completed after this deadline will be reviewed on a space-available basis.

Please pay close attention to the application instructions. For more information, or if you are interested in applying, contact the program director at 303-492-5148 or email

Application packets should be submitted by fax to 303-492-3962 or mailed to:

Post-Baccalaureate Program
Continuing Education
1505 University Avenue, 178 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309

We require transcripts from every collegiate institution you attended during and after high school, whether or not courses were completed and whether or not you believe the record will affect your admission. Transcripts must be official and submitted directly to CU Boulder from the issuing institution. Transcripts can be mailed to the address listed above or sent to

Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Application Requirements

Preferred applicants have:

  • A strong academic history with a bachelor’s degree in a non-science field. Most successful applicants will have a grade point average of 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale) or above.
  • An interest in graduate education in medicine, veterinary medicine, physical therapy, physician assistance, anesthesiologist assistance and more.
  • An informed understanding of the health profession they seek to enter based on extensive and meaningful clinical experience in a healthcare setting, such as shadowing medical professionals, volunteering with patients, or employment in a healthcare field.
  • Successfully completed pre-calculus mathematics or the equivalent.

Complete applications include:

  1. A completed application form (refer to the application instructions)
  2. A nonrefundable application fee of $50. Make checks payable to the University of Colorado.
  3. A personal statement
  4. An official transcript exhibiting the official seal and signature of the registrar from each college or university you have attended.
  5. Verification of math proficiency that meets the prerequisite for pre-calculus (or algebra + trigonometry) in one of the following ways:
    • A transcript showing completion of pre-calculus OR college algebra and trigonometry taken in the past two years with a grade of B or better.
    • ALEKS assessment showing math proficiency at the required (precalc/algebra+trig) level. You may receive information or a login code for the ALEKS assessment by emailing
  6. Two letters of recommendation (Click here for instructions)

Email for additional information on the application process.

Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Calendar

You will find important dates for the 2018-2019 cohort listed below. Contact us at 303-492-5148 or email with questions about the calendar.

Application Dates October 1, 2017 – February 1, 2018
Cohort Orientation May 31, 2018
Chemistry I June 4, 2018
Chemistry II July 10, 2018
Fall Classes Begin August 27, 2018

The program follows the Boulder main campus withdrawal policies and applicable dates for nondegree students.

Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Program Costs

2017 – 2018

Credit Hours In-State Out-of-State
Summer Tuition 10 $5,040 $11,380
Fall Tuition 13 $6,125 $17,191
Spring Tuition 13 $6,125 $17,191
University Student Fees $919 $919
Annual Program Fee $1,000 $1,000

Financial Aid and scholarship opportunities may be available to students who qualify. It may also be possible to waive some student fees.

Students who are Colorado residents may be eligible to apply to the Colorado Opportunity Fund.

Some students may be required or choose to take additional courses in additional semesters, adding to their overall cost. Contact us at 303-492-5148 or email with questions.

The listed tuition and fees are estimated costs. The Board of Regents reserves the right to change the tuition and fee rates at any time.

Post-Baccalaureate Health Professions Financial Aid

Federal loans, not grants, are available to qualifying students for three semesters. Email for additional information on the application process.

Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits are available to eligible students. CU Boulder’s Veteran Services Office works with students to take advantage of all federal education benefits. Email or call 303-492-7322 for additional information.

Now that you’ve selected your favorite Continuing Education courses, email or print the information, including class number, to more easily search MyCUInfo and enroll. Still have questions? Contact an advisor.