Professional Programs

The School of Medicine’s Professional Programs consist of seven undergraduate and professional programs: Exercise Physiology;  Health Informatics and Information Management; Immunology and Medical Microbiology; Medical Laboratory Sciences; Occupational Therapy; Pathologists’ Assistant; and Physical Therapy.

Student Profiles Faculty Profiles

Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental/Pre-Professional

The undergraduate programs of Exercise Physiology, Immunology and Medical Microbiology, and Medical Laboratory Science are stand-alone undergraduate degrees as well as excellent preparatory pathways into many advanced degrees such as medicine, dentistry, chiropractic medicine, optometry, veterinary science, physical therapy, physicians’ assistant, pathologists’ assistant and other graduate programs. Students interested in attending one of these or other professional programs can select one of the School of Medicine's three undergraduate preparatory programs. Check out Exercise Physiology, Immunology & Medical Microbiology and Medical Laboratory Science below for more information.

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Exercise Physiology

Pre-Medical, Dental and other professional program preparatory program

Exercise physiology trains students to evaluate people in order to prevent or delay the onset of chronic disease in healthy people or to provide therapeutic or functional benefits to those with known disease. The Bachelor of Science degree is a preparatory program for graduate or professional schools and includes courses in science, anatomy including a human cadaver lab, physiology, and hands-on laboratories where students gain practical patient skills. There is a 135-hour clinical internship and the only Aquatic Therapy Area of Emphasis in the United States.

Immunology and Medical Microbiology

Pre-Medical, Dental and other professional program preparatory program

The Immunology and Medical Microbiology program combines the study of the immune system and medical microbiology to address how humans and other mammals respond to infectious disease. The Bachelor of Science degree is the only such program offered in West Virginia and surrounding states. This program is both a stand-alone program and a preparatory program for graduate or professional schools and includes courses in biology, chemistry, and physics. Students get hands-on laboratory experience as soon as the second semester of the first year. Career opportunities include biotechnology, pharmaceutical and medical industries, and governmental and public health agencies.

Medical Laboratory Science

Pre-Medical, Dental and other professional program preparatory program

Medical laboratory scientists are skilled professionals who perform and analyze laboratory tests used to diagnose and treat diseases and disorders. The Bachelor of Science degree leads to 100% employment or graduate or professional schools placement. Many of our graduates go on to enroll in medical school or our Pathologists’ Assistant graduate program. Courses include biology, chemistry, math and student laboratory and clinical experiences.

Health Informatics and Information Management

HIIM professional are trained in information management technology applications and understand the operations and workflow of a variety of healthcare organizations. They are vital to the daily operations management of heath information and electronic health records. Graduates can work in a variety of organizations including large healthcare systems, physician practices of all sizes, healthcare centers and clinics, skilled and long-term care and others. Projections for employment are strong with the Bureau of Labor Statistics citing health services manager positions are projected to grow 17% in the next 8 years. This is much faster than the average of 7% for all occupations.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy professionals provide services to people of all ages with physical, mental, developmental or emotional disabilities. Assessment and treatment focus on developing an individual’s capacity to function independently in self-care, leisure or work activities at home and in the community. This program has competitive admission and is an entry-level master’s degree. Students start out in a two year Pre-Occupational Therapy program that focuses on science and pre-requisite courses that include biology and physics. After completion of the pre-requisite courses and other requirements, students apply to the program. Successful applications spend 3 years in the OT program earning a bachelor’s degree after the first two years and a Master of Occupational Therapy after the last year.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapists diagnose and manage movement disorders. They improve and restore physical function and are uniquely qualified to promote health and fitness and to prevent injury, illness and disability. Our program is a three-year, post-baccalaureate, entry-level Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program. To apply, students must have completed a bachelor’s degree. Exercise Physiology is an excellent preparatory program for Physical Therapy, as it has all the required prerequisite courses in the curriculum.

Pathologists' Assistant (M.S.)

A pathologists’ assistant provides anatomic pathology services under the direction and supervision of a pathologist. This Master’s of Health Science program is 24 months long and focuses on surgical and autopsy pathology with additional training in laboratory management, clinical pathology, forensic and biomedical photography and more. An undergraduate degree is required to apply. Two excellent pathway choices from the School of Medicine are Medical Laboratory Science and Immunology and Medical Microbiology.