That’s a good question. The first step is a Bachelors degree. I chose a major in biology and a minor in chemistry. This covers all of the prerequisites for medical school and is a great foundation for all of the advanced courses you will encounter in medical school. Four more years of medical school is required. It is at this point you will have to choose which field of medicine you wish to study. At this time, you will receive your M.D. degree. If at this time you haven’t decided which field best suits you, an internship might be in order. If psychiatry is your passion, then four more years are required for general psychiatry, more years are required if you wish to sub specialize. This could be child & adolescents, geriatrics, and many others. I hope this helps. In other words, 12 years beyond H.S.