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Preparing for a Career in Podiatric Medicine

Podiatric medicine is a branch of medicine devoted to the study of diagnosing, treating, and preventing disorders of the foot, ankle, and lower extremity. Demand for Doctors of Podiatric Medicine (DPMs) is on the rise, as there is a growing aging population, a rise in diabetes cases, increased interest in sports medicine, and a rise in the desire for individuals to maintain an active lifestyle through and beyond middle age. The foot may be the first area to show signs of diabetes and cardiovascular disease, so DPMs are a vital link to other healthcare professionals.

Doctors of Podiatric Medicine receive medical education and training comparable to medical doctors, including four years of undergraduate education, four years of graduate education, and two or three years of hospital-based residency training. A residency program provides an interdisciplinary experience with rotations such as anesthesiology, internal medicine, infectious disease, surgery, ER, and pediatrics. All podiatrists receive a DPM degree.

For further information on education and training in this field, see the American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine (AACPM) Web site. For general information regarding podiatric medicine careers and foot health, visit the American Podiatric Medicine Association (APMA) Web site.


(See individual podiatry school requirements for specific information.)

  • 8–12 credits of biology courses with laboratories
  • 8 credits of general chemistry with laboratory
  • 8 credits of organic chemistry with laboratory
  • 8 credits of physics with laboratory
  • 6 credits of English
  • A letter of recommendation from a podiatric physician

The AACPM Application Service (AACPMAS) provides a simplified process of applying to schools and colleges of podiatric medicine

The MCAT has been the only standardized test required for admission to colleges of podiatric medicine. However, some colleges will accept the GRE or US DAT in lieu of the MCAT. (Check with the specific requirements for podiatric schools.)

Register for the MCAT and access upcoming dates and test site locations.

Register for the US DAT and access upcoming dates and test site information.

Register for the GRE and access upcoming dates and test site information.