Medical Science online master’s degree gives students more options
By Jan Jarvis
The Medical Science master’s degree program is now available online to help students achieve their career goals in becoming healthcare providers.
The online option is designed for students who want to improve their qualifications for applying to medical, dental, pharmacy or other professional schools while also balancing work, family and education, said Dr. Lisa Hodge, Director of the MS in Medical Science Program.
“It is for individuals who dream of pursuing a clinical career, but for various reasons, they just can’t come to campus,” she said. “Maybe they work and can’t be in class all day, or perhaps they just can’t relocate to Fort Worth. With the online option, students can live anywhere and still attend.”
The new Medical Science option is offered 100% online and designed to be completed in one year. The deadline to apply for the fall semester is June 15. With three starting points each year, students can begin classes in the semester most convenient for them, Dr. Hodge said.
The online option will allow students to take the same curriculum as those on campus, with one exception: gross anatomy training will use computer modeling.
“Learning online is different in that students won’t have an anatomy lab and the cadaver dissection that goes along with it,” said Rustin Reeves, PhD, Director of the Center for Anatomical Sciences. “But online anatomy can be quite successful when presented in the same clinical context of United States Medical Licensing Examination board exams. I found out quickly that students love this approach, and feel this is the best way to prepare for professional schools.”
Students taking the online option will work individually with a faculty advisor and have an opportunity to improve their professional school applications and interview skills.
Just like those in the on-site cohort, online students must enroll full time. They won’t be able to take one or two classes at a time, and for a good reason.
“The Medical Science program prepares students for the rigors of healthcare education,” Dr. Hodge said. “This approach allows students to demonstrate they can master material at the same level and pace as taught in those schools.”
Entrance examinations will not be required for admission to the online option. The entrance exam registration fees are expensive, as are preparation courses, and might be out of reach for many applicants, Dr. Hodge said.
“We hope this opens a door for deserving students to pursue their dreams of working in healthcare,” she said.
Since the Medical Science program was introduced 20 years ago, it has been very successful. From the class that graduated in 2017, approximately 82 percent were successful in gaining admission to medical and dental schools.
For many, the timing is right to pursue a new career.
“I know many of those who are under stay-at-home orders and seeing the critical need, have been thinking about becoming healthcare providers,” Dr. Hodge said. “My advice is to please pursue it; we can help you achieve your goal.”