Medical students must possess a broad range of competencies to successfully learn and develop in medical school and become effective physicians. The premed competency model includes professional, thinking and reasoning, and science competencies, and serves as a roadmap for students as they prepare to succeed in medical school.
The premed competencies, formerly core competencies for entering medical students (view previous competencies), were updated in 2023 to reflect expectations for medical students. Medical schools will begin using these competencies in the 2024-2025 application cycle to evaluate applicants’ readiness for medical school. (View the printer-friendly Premed Competencies.)
To learn how the premed competencies were updated in 2022-2023, read Refreshing the Premed Competencies: The Process Used to Update the Core Competencies for Entering Medical Students.
Practices continuous personal and professional growth for improvement, including setting and communicating goals for learning and development; reflects on successes, challenges, and mistakes; pursues opportunities to improve knowledge and understanding; and asks for and incorporates feedback to learn and grow.
Appreciates how historical, sociocultural, political, and economic factors affect others’ interactions, behaviors, and well-being; values diversity; and demonstrates a desire to learn about different cultures, beliefs, and values.
Seeks out and engages diverse and divergent perspectives with a desire to understand and willingness to adjust one’s mindset; understands a situation or idea from alternative viewpoints; reflects on one’s values, beliefs, and identities and how they may affect others; reflects on and addresses bias in oneself and others; and fosters a supportive environment that values inclusivity.
Effectively conveys information to others using spoken words and sentences; actively listens to understand the meaning and intent behind what others say; and recognizes potential communication barriers and adjusts approach or clarifies information as needed.
Demonstrates accountability for performance and responsibilities to self and others; prioritizes and fulfills obligations in a timely and satisfactory manner; and understands consequences of not fulfilling one’s responsibilities to self and others.
Shows a commitment to something larger than oneself; demonstrates dedication to service and a commitment to making meaningful contributions that meet the needs of communities.
Applies knowledge of the self, others, and social systems to solve problems related to the psychological, sociocultural, and biological factors that influence health and well-being.
Applies knowledge and skill in the natural sciences to solve problems related to molecular and macro systems, including biomolecules, molecules, cells, and organs.
Uses logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Applies quantitative reasoning and appropriate mathematics to describe or explain phenomena in the natural world.
Applies knowledge of the scientific process to integrate and synthesize information, solve problems, and formulate research questions and hypotheses; is facile in the language of the sciences and uses it to participate in the discourse of science and explain how scientific knowledge is discovered and validated.
Effectively conveys information to others by using written words and sentences.
Originally created in 2011, the premed competencies were updated in 2023 through a joint effort between the AAMC and members of the academic medicine community to reflect current and future expectations for new medical students. Medical school representatives across MD- and DO-granting schools from admissions, student affairs, diversity affairs, faculty, and students, as well as prehealth advisors and competency experts contributed. The 17 premed competencies highlight essential knowledge, abilities, and skills that medical schools consider to be important for entering medical students and evaluate in each applicant through a holistic review of the application.