Skip to content

Enrollment in Premedical Program

Most premedical/predental/pre-veterinary students will need two years to complete their program requirements, although depending on their credit assignment some are able to do so in one year and a summer. Most pre-PA students will need between two and three years to complete the program.

You begin your studies in a summer or fall term. Due to the sequential nature of course offerings, you cannot begin in a spring term.

In addition, you cannot be enrolled as a candidate in the Premedical Program and another Harvard Extension School degree program simultaneously.

Enrollment Requirements

Once admitted in June, you need to register during the upcoming summer or fall term. If you do not, your admission will be rescinded and you’ll need to re-apply to the program the following year.

Once you begin your studies, you must maintain continuous enrollment (fall and spring) throughout the program. Enrollment during the summer semester and January term is optional and is not required to maintain standing in the program.

Failure to register during a fall or spring semester, or dropping/withdrawing from all courses in a single semester without approval of the program director, will result in your being voluntarily withdrawn from the program. This withdrawal would be nonpunitive; it is not a disciplinary action. However, if you wished to return to the program, you would need to reapply, and go through a new admission process and decision.

Premedical/predental/pre-veterinary students are required to complete the program within two years.

Pre-PA students are required to complete the program within three years. 

At the end of this period, your program participation will automatically end, along with program privileges, such as Harvard University ID card access. 

If you complete your assigned credit requirement in less than this period, we will consider the program complete, and your program participation will end. 

Premedical and predental students may remain eligible for Sponsorship for one year beyond program completion, as long as they remain enrolled in Premedical Program coursework at Harvard during that year.

Petitions to take a semester off from the program or to have extended time to complete the program are considered on a case-by-case basis. 

Speak to one of the program advisors should you need special enrollment consideration. If granted, you’ll be given a firm deadline to complete, which cannot exceed three years (premedical/predental/pre-veterinary)/four years (pre-PA).

Medical Leave Policy

If you have a documented health or medical issue that requires a modification of, or reasonable accommodation to, the continuous enrollment and/or completion policy, then you need to proactively work with the Accessibility Services Office (ASO) to request a medical leave.

ASO will help make appropriate arrangements for the duration of the leave as well as plans to return and ensure compliance with all academic rules. ASO will engage in an individualized and interactive assessment, which may require consultation with others at the University, as appropriate. With prior permission, ASO may also require consultation with your health care providers.

You should contact the ASO as soon as a health or medical issues arises, as HES does not ordinarily alter academic policies after the fact.

Extensions to the completion deadlines are not ordinarily granted beyond one additional year as successful completion of courses within a certain period of time is a fundamental academic requirement.

Returning from a Medical Leave of Absence

To return from a medical leave of absence, the ASO will require documentation that the circumstances that led to your leave have been satisfactorily addressed and you are ready to resume your studies.

ASO will engage in an individualized and interactive assessment, which may require consultation with others at the University, as appropriate. With prior permission, ASO may also require consultation with your healthcare providers.

The ASO will make the decision whether to allow you to return and determine the conditions for your return based on (1) the best available objective medical evidence and (2) consultation with others at the University, which may include the Harvard University Health Services, the Dean of Student Policy and Governance, or the Administrative Board, as appropriate.

Medical Leave Enrollment and Registration Policies

While on medical leave, your premedical program status will be inactive, and your ID card will not be valid. You are not eligible for loan deferments or financial aid, nor are you able to work at HES as support teaching staff or a faculty aide. You cannot attend HES or University-wide student events, participate in student groups, or use student services.

Course registration. If you request a medical leave while currently registered for courses, the Accessibility Services Office (ASO) will work with the Registrar’s Office to determine a fair and equitable resolution to your registration status, which may include a drop for a refund, if early in the term, or late withdrawal grade, if later in the term.

Medical Leave Student Conduct

All students on leave are reminded to maintain a satisfactory standard of conduct.  Any pending disciplinary matters must be resolved before a student on a medical leave of absence will be allowed to return. 

Repeat Policy

You cannot be enrolled as a candidate in the Premedical Program and another Harvard Extension School degree program simultaneously. For an explanation of our repeat policy, see Academic Standing.