What Schooling Is Required to be Bariatric Doctor?


Doctors have some of the most extensive schooling requirements of the careers in the United States. After completing an undergraduate degree, all doctors are required to attend medical school and complete a residency program to attain a medical license. Medical students interested in specializing as a bariatric doctor often take courses relevant to the bariatric practice and try to get into a residency program in the field.

High School

  • High school may be thought of as the starting point for bariatric doctors. To prepare for college, College Board recommends that all potential college students take a year each of biology; chemistry and/or physics; and earth/space sciences, advanced biology, advanced chemistry or physics. Students who are interested in becoming bariatric doctors, however, may choose to take more than the recommended science classes in high school. They may include courses in anatomy and physiology or organic chemistry, which may give them a good introduction to the sciences in college.

Undergraduate Education

  • There is no formal degree program to get into medical school; however, many students wishing to go to medical school major in sciences such as biological sciences or chemistry. Ultimately, you may major in whatever subject you wish as long as you take the required premedical courses. These courses include biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry and physics. Many medical schools also require that you take at least a semester of calculus, while some schools require that you have a year of calculus.

Medical School

  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 129 medical schools are accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, the main organization to accredit U.S. medical schools. The first two years of medical school generally take place in laboratories and classrooms while the last two years are in hospitals and clinics for hands-on experience. According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, many medical schools are beginning to use a more interdisciplinary approach to educate their students.

Example Program

  • As one of the top medical schools in the United States, the medical program at Harvard Medical School provides a good example of a medical curriculum. Its four-year program includes preclinical courses for the first two years in health, science and technology and social medicine. Its program also has core clinical clerkships and elective courses. Some of the preclinical courses include clinical epidemiology and population health, health care policy and integrated human physiology.


  • One of the final steps of schooling for bariatric doctors or surgeons is a residency program, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As a surgeon, residency allows program participants to sharpen their skills and learn the intricacies of performing surgeries. You may apply for a general surgery residency, a program that focuses on surgery and will give you a good bariatric background, through the Electronic Residency Application Service. The service is a general tool of the Association of American Medical Colleges.

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