Admission Requirements for Medical School

Medical school admission requirements vary from school to school. In general, before applying to medical school, students should complete the Medical College Admission Test® (MCAT®), and demonstrate that they can handle rigorous coursework.
College students preparing for examination.

Some schools require applicants to complete a certain list of premedical course requirements while others have moved to a competency-based admissions. At a minimum, students will likely complete the following types of courses:

  • One year of biology
  • One year of physics
  • One year of English
  • Two years of chemistry (through organic chemistry)

To find school-specific requirements for each U.S. and Canadian medical school, see the Medical School Admission Requirement website.

In addition to challenging coursework, applicants should look for opportunities to demonstrate a range of competencies. To gain experience, applicants should consider volunteering at a local hospital or clinic to gain practical experience in the health professions. A well-rounded sampling of extra-curricular activities or work experiences, both related and unrelated to medicine, will help broaden an applicant's knowledge and development.Chapter 7 of the Official Guide to Medical School Admissions, “The Admissions Decision,” describes the evaluation process in to further detail.

Students interested in medicine are encouraged to research the wide variety of careers available in the health professions, to discuss the nature and demands of medicine with a pre-medical advisor or health professional, and to ask a lot of questions before embarking on the application process.

Each school's specific prerequisites are detailed in the Medical School Admission Requirements website. A one-year subscription be purchased from AAMC Publications.

The Official Guide to Medical School Admissions

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The Official Guide to Medical School Admissions can help you prepare to apply to medical school.

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Medical School Admission Requirements™

The Medical School Admission RequirementsTM (MSAR®) is an online database that enables you to browse, search, sort, and compare information about U.S. and Canadian medical schools and BS/MD programs, and more.

Early Decision Program

The Early Decision Program (EDP) gives medical school applicants the opportunity to secure an acceptance from one EDP-participating medical school by October 1, while still allowing sufficient time to apply to other schools if you are not accepted.