Since liberal arts education is essential to sound professional education, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences provides an opportunity for students to study both a liberal arts and a pre-professional curriculum in their choice of a number of pre-professional areas before entering professional schools. With thoughtful planning, transfer to the professional schools can be made without loss of credit or time. Such programs are available to students interested in engineering, journalism, law, library science, home economics, medicine, dentistry, dental hygiene, medical technology, pharmacy, occupational and physical therapy, the ministry, religious education and social work.
The Pre-Law Program is a co-curricular support service open to all students of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences who are interested in learning more about career opportunities in the practice of law. As such, the program has two primary goals: (1) to provide students with the information and advising necessary for them to make informed decisions as to whether or not a career as a lawyer is for them, and (2) to provide serious pre-law students with support services designed to assist them in selecting and gaining admission to an appropriate law school.
The University has a pre-law club and a chapter of the international law fraternity, Phi Alpha Delta. Participation in PAD is open to all pre-law students with at least a 3.0 GPA. The pre-law club is open to all interested students.
No particular course of study (major or minor) is a prerequisite for admission or success in law school. Today's law students may have undergraduate degrees in Political Science, English, Business, Psychology, natural science, History, foreign languages, Education, Music, or other subjects. Therefore, the main guide to undergraduate study should be the student's own interests and talents. Since the successful study and practice of law can be based on any of a large number of college backgrounds, pre-law students are advised to select a major which interests them and in which they believe they can show their best work.
The skills most related to success in the study and practice of law can be developed or improved through study of any academic field in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Still, we recommend the following general guidelines to pre-law students for making curricular decisions: A lawyer must be able to communicate effectively in oral and written expression. Words are the tools of the lawyer's trade; therefore, lawyers must be able to speak and write well. In addition, law students must develop the capacity for creative and critical thinking, since they must be able to reason logically from given premises to tenable conclusions and to do so quickly and under pressure.
To assist pre-law students in preparing for law school, a Pre-law Handbook is published by the pre-law program. That handbook contains a list of recommended courses for the consideration of pre-law students. Copies of the Pre-law Handbook may be obtained free of charge from the Dr. John Carter, Professor of Political Science and Director of the Pre-Law Program.
A list of recommended courses is provided to assist in identifying individual courses that may have special value in preparing for law school and a legal practice. This list is intended to supplement the CMU's general education requirements, as well as the specific requirements of whichever academic major the student may elect. Some of the courses listed may fulfill specific academic requirements of the university and/or one or more of its departments of study.
Recommended Pre-Law Preparation Courses
I. Communication Skills Area
- AC201 Principles of Accounting I
- AC202 Principles of Accounting II
- CT201 Public Relations
- CT306 Media Law
- CT320 Interpersonal Communication
- EN305 Expository Writing
- EN306 Technical Writing
II. Human Institutions and Values
- AC340 Income Tax
- AC350 Accounting for Governmental and Not-for-Profit Organizations
- BU341 Business Law—Contracts
- BU342 Business Law—Commercial
- CJ202 Criminal Law
- CJ301 Constitutional Aspects of Criminal Justice
- PL306 Ethics and the Professions
- PS101 Introduction to American Government
- PS308 American Constitutional Law and the Judicial Process
- PS309 Law in American Society
- PS318American Legislative Politics
III. Critical Thinking
- EC201 Macroeconomics
- EC202 Microeconomics
- EC330 Law and Economics
- MA105 Elementary Statistics
- PL101 Introduction to Logic
- PL105 Introduction to Philosophy
- PL311 The Study of Knowledge
- SO350 Social Theory
The Pre-Professional Health Program is open to all students interested in the health sciences. Of all Pre-Professional Health students who choose to pursue the following specialty areas, most will be required to minor in Chemistry: Optometry, Veterinary Medicine, Genetic Counseling, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Podiatry, Chiropractic Medicine, Public Health, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Osteopathic Medicine (DO), and Allopathic Medicine (MD). Most of these specialty areas also strongly recommend taking MA118 Calculus and Analytical Geometry I. An ACT of at least 26 from high school is required for most of these programs. While at CMU, students should have at least a 3.75 GPA, with no Cs in any Science or Math courses. Some of these programs allow an ACT less than 26, a GPA less than 3.75, and a minor other than Chemistry. Some of these programs do not have a specialty exam to pass with a specific score; the GRE is accepted instead. Consult members of the Pre-Professional Health Advisory Committee for specific information. Students in this program receive intensive advising throughout their college experience.
The Pre-Professional Health Program has three goals. First, the program helps students grow in self-knowledge and in understanding of the requirements and lifestyles of various professions, and assists them in making career decisions. Students in our program go on to become successful physicians, optometrists, veterinarians, dentists, podiatrists, pharmacists, physical therapists, physician assistants, occupational therapists, or other clinical health professionals. Other students enter graduate programs and pursue careers in public health or research. Second, the program encourages breadth of educational preparation and provides assistance in successful placement into appropriate professional schools. Third, the program strives to promote professionalism and maturity of perspective.
While a particular major or minor for pre-Professional Health students is not prescribed, each professional school has certain course requirements of which the student will be advised. Additionally, the following are important components of all students' pre-professional preparation. (1) Pre-Professional Health students should have a strong liberal arts background, the ability to communicate well (both orally and in writing), and strong interpersonal skills. Students work toward development of these requirements through their general education curriculum and electives as well as other aspects of the Pre-Professional Health program. (2) All students are given help in finding meaningful internship experiences. Students have done internships at the Fayette Medical Clinic and in a variety of hospitals, private offices, clinics, and clinical research facilities. (3) Interested students may pursue research opportunities at on-campus with faculty direction and at off-campus locations. Students have worked at NIH-, NSF-, and NASA-funded programs. (4) Pre-Professional Health students are encouraged to develop an attitude of service and to initiate or participate in community service and other humanitarian endeavors. (5) The following courses are either required or recommended for most Pre-Professional Health students: BI101, 102, 107, 205, 305, 306, 308, 315, 364, 368, 380; CH111, 114, 317, 341, 342; CS121 or 122; MA103 (or MA101/102), 104, 105, 118; PH111 or 205, 112 or 206; PL306; PY101, 301; SC225 and SC425; and the Honors Colloquium and Honors Thesis.
The Pre-Professional Health Advisory Committee actively helps students prepare for entry into professional schools. The committee meets regularly with each student to discuss the student's academic and social adjustment to the University and to discuss pre-professional preparation. The committee sponsors a yearly career fair, at which physicians, other health professionals, medical researchers, and admissions representatives from various professional and graduate schools discuss lifestyles, professional issues, and admission requirements. Speakers also visit campus to discuss with students a variety of special-interest topics. Committee members help students prepare for entry tests such as the MCAT, GRE, OAT, DAT, and PCAT. In the Junior and Senior year, students receive help in the application process and are given mock interviews.
Most Pre-Professional Health students belong to AED (Alpha Epsilon Delta, national pre-health professions honor society), BBB (Beta, national biological honor society), and Student Affiliates of the American Chemical Society. These groups visit medical, professional, and graduate schools, pharmaceutical companies, and other sites of interest. Students of AED administer a mock MCAT plus entry tests for any other professional school needed, each semester. They also attend national conventions and have been honored with awards for their outstanding activities and service. AED and BBB meet jointly and regularly to discuss issues in medical ethics and to plan service projects. Consult a member of the Pre-Professional Health Advisory Committee for more information.
Service to the faith community is an exciting and important part of one's spiritual journey. Whether as ordained clergy, paid church staff, or active lay volunteer, success in ministry requires proper preparation. Central Methodist's Pre-Ministry program is designed to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and experience necessary to minister effectively in a number of different settings and circumstances. The Pre-Ministry program is open to all students, regardless of academic major or denominational affiliation, who feel a calling to serve. The program includes:
- Academic coursework in Bible, Christian History, and Religious Studies.
- Assistance in arranging internships, camp counseling, community outreach and other ministry opportunities.
- Providing contacts with seminaries from various mainline denominations.
- Arranging "peer mentoring" relationships in which seminary-bound students share their experiences with other interested students.
- Developing lay ministry programs in Youth Ministry, and Christian Education.
- Program in Church Certification in Music Ministry through the United Methodist Church.
For more information please contact Dr. Daryl Jefferies.
Central Methodist University offers four-year programs designed to meet Missouri state certification requirements for early childhood, elementary, middle school, and secondary teachers. Complete descriptions of these programs are provided under "Education" in this catalog. Students interested in certification should study this section carefully and consult with members of the education faculty as soon as they enter the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.