Students wishing to apply to medical (and most health professional) schools must begin the application process almost two years before intended matriculation. That means, if you wish to enter medical school in the fall of 2020, you must have started the process in the fall of 2018.
Medical school applicants must assemble three main credentials: the application form (administered through AMCAS), the MCAT score, and the Health Professions Advising Committee recommendation. To get full consideration from the largest pool of medical schools, the MCAT must be taken in April or May one calendar year before intended matriculation. (Most medical schools fill slots on a rolling basis, starting late summer based on applications submitted as early as June 1 so taking the MCAT later in the summer delays consideration and hurts your chances of acceptance.) That means, if you wish to enter medical school in the fall of 2020, you should take the MCAT in April or May of 2019. Other health professions follow similar time line.
If you are considering applying to medical or other health professional schools in the near future, see the "Application Timeline" for Health Professions Advisory Committee meetings and due dates for this 2018-2019 academic year.
Step 1: Be considered by the committee and take the MCAT
- Early in fall semester two years before matriculation: Information meeting held to outline the application process. Premedical advisors are assigned after meeting. Alumni and those off campus need to contact premed office to activate credentials file, obtain materials, and get added to e-mail list.
- Mid-to-late fall: students should set up a meeting with advisors and start soliciting recommendation letters.
- Late fall-early spring: students should work on and finish autobiographical statement and other materials; see the Committee Application Materials page for details on submitting documents.
- Late fall through mid-spring: study for and take MCAT. (The MCAT is administered by computer and is offered several times a year.)
- Mid-to-late spring: students are given preliminary evaluations by the Committee on a rolling basis. Letters containing the evaluation level are mailed after each evaluation meeting.
- Late May: the committee assigns final evaluations after spring grades are recorded.
- Early August: the Health Professions Committee begins mailing recommendation letters to medical schools.
Step 2: Formal application process
- May: complete application materials for on-line application (through AMCAS for MD schools; the AACOMAS application for for DO schools may not be ready until June; see "Online Resources" link on left of page for links to AMCAS and other health professional organizations). Make application decision after receiving MCAT result. Make sure to notify your advisor of your application decision so she or he can write your letter. Letters are written on a rolling basis and take considerable time.
- Early June: learn MCAT results and make application decision; decide which schools to apply and send in AMCAS application as close to June 1 as possible. Apply as early as possible; most medical schools have "rolling admissions" which means they start considering (and accepting) applicants as applications are submitted.
- July - August: receive and complete secondary application materials from schools. Bring addressed envelopes with separate stamps, to Health Professions Office so recommendation letters can be mailed out (or follow other directions given by the Health Professions Office).
- Early fall-following spring: interview at medical schools; hear results; accept one school. If you are certain you will not go to a school in which you are accepted, let school know so your place can go to another student.
- Following fall: enter medical school.