His early interest in botany was channeled by a teacher at Växjö gymnasium, who acquainted him with several important scientific works. One of his teachers at Växjö Gymnasium, Johan Rothman, was a botanist, who broadened Linnaeus' knowledge in botany and helped him develop an interest in medicine.
At Växjö Gymnasium Linnaeus mainly studied Greek, Hebrew, theology and mathematics, a curriculum designed for boys preparing for the priesthood. Most of the teachers doubted that the boy could ever become a scholar. But Rothman, who was also a state doctor, believed otherwise, suggesting Linnaeus could have a future in medicine. The doctor offered to have Linnaeus live with his family in Växjö and teach him physiology and botany.
The botany, zoology, pharmacology and anatomy lectures were not particularly outstanding at Lund University, that is why Linnaeus decided to transfer to Uppsala University which was viewed as a better choice because Linnaeus wanted to study both medicine and botany. Because of his financial situation, he could only visit a few lectures; however, the university professor Olof Celsius granted Linnaeus access to his library. From 1730 to 1732 he was able to subsidize himself by teaching botany in the university garden of Uppsala. During this time he explored the flora of Skåne, together with students sharing the same interests and became convinced that in the stamens and pistils of flowers lay the basis for the classification of plants, and he wrote a short work on the subject that earned him the position of adjunct professor.
To have the right to conduct medical practice, he was obliged to have a doctorate degree in medicine, so he went to the university of Harderwijk which was known for awarding “instant” degrees after as little as a week. First he handed in a thesis on the cause of malaria he had written in Sweden, which he then defended in a public debate. The next step was to take an oral examination and to diagnose a patient. After less than two weeks, he took his degree and became a doctor, at the age of 28.