Origins of modern premedical education

R. H. Fishbein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The author reviews the contributions of those individuals and major academic and professional organizations responsible for the development of the modern concepts of the premedical education of a physician. The late 19th century gave rise to scientifically-based medical education in U.S. medical education. It followed that this new emphasis, in medical schools, on laboratory investigation of disease processes demanded a sound introduction to the natural sciences by those who would be candidates for this type of challenging education. Starting with a vocal few, the message gradually was received throughout the country that a properly schooled physician must have the equivalent of a broad baccalaureate education in the natural sciences as well as in the traditional humanities. This essential was recognized by a small nucleus of individuals responsible for the creation of The Johns Hopkins University in 1876 and its school of medicine in 1893; the group was led by the university's first president, Daniel Coit Gilman. Almost simultaneously other established academic institutions incorporated similar changes and a new era began.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-429
Number of pages5
JournalAcademic Medicine
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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