To compensate for changes in the Medical College Admission Test, students are pushing for the addition of a social science general education requirement for science majors accompanied by a decrease in general education requirements in other subjects.

In addition to a new critical analysis and reasoning skills section, the MCAT will include a section about psychological, social and biological foundations of behavior, to go into effect in 2015.

The Association of American Medical Colleges, which administers the MCAT, added the section to account for physicians’ need to understand how people think and interact.

Science majors are currently exempt from the social science requirement expected of students in Georgetown College and the School of Nursing & Health Studies. Because pre-med students will now be tested on knowledge gained through introductory sociology and psychology courses, a social science requirement would ensure that students are properly prepared for the next section.

“It would make sense to have the social science requirement count for science majors, but to reduce the general education requirements in another area to compensate for the MCAT changes,” Riya Modi (COL ’16), a member of the College Academic Council, said. She is drafting a proposal to change the general education requirements for science majors.

However, Edward Meyertholen, assistant dean and director of pre-health programs, pointed out that not all pre-med students major in science. Non-science College majors still must fulfill a social science requirement.

“The vast majority has already taken [psychology]. I don’t think it’ll be affecting … their plans as much,” he said. “At the end, it’s going to be pretty easy for them to get the knowledge that is necessary.”

Meyertholen said that he thought the change was unnecessary, but added that because no one has actually taken the new exam, it remains unclear as to how to meet the needs of students.

Meyertholen stressed the importance of Georgetown’s independent control of curriculum.

“I don’t think medical schools should be dictating to undergraduate schools what the requirements are,” Meyertholen said.

The MCAT changes will begin to affect only those planning on entering medical school in the fall of 2016, or current freshmen.

“As it is now, the MCAT doesn’t include what [it] will when I’m taking [it],” biology major Claire Ruane (COL ’16) said. “It will be beneficial for me to have taken those classes, so I think that makes sense for them to change the requirements … but it will be a big challenge to fit those classes into an already very crowded schedule.”

Human science major Ashwin Karanam (NHS ’13), who applied to medical school, said there was not a lot of space for electives in the science curriculum.

“There’s not a lot flexibility [but] I don’t think it’s necessary to change the requirements for all sciences. The vast majority of science majors are not pre-med,” Karanam said. “I would have taken sociology and psychology instead of classes just for fun.”

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