Month/Year of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)



First Advisor

Dr. Katie Shirazi


Choosing a major as an incoming undergraduate student can be very stressful. This study investigates the differences in success that come with choice of undergraduate major, particularly focusing on the performance of mathematics majors. A large majority of medical school applicants come from a biological sciences background. Despite this preference, there is evidence that students from nontraditional majors produce higher Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) scores and superior grade point averages (GPAs). Utilizing data visualization and analysis through R programming, this research examines public data from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) to understand the benefits of pursuing a math-focused education. Additionally, qualitative information was gathered through interviews with mathematics faculty at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. This information was used to help understand how mathematical skills might be useful for admissions to medical school and overall preparedness. The findings revealed that students majoring in mathematics consistently show greater MCAT scores and GPA performance than all other majors. Furthermore, interviews with professors gave insight as to why a mathematics background contributes to enhanced critical thinking and problem-solving strategies. They also emphasized the benefits of rigorous mathematical studies for success in medical school or a future in healthcare.