Important Selection Criteria for Med School Acceptance

Listed below are some of the important selection criteria that Admissions Committees rely upon for their decisions. Please note that these are not listed in order of importance, but all medical schools require evidence of academic excellence. After that, they differ on priorities.

  • APPLICATION MATERIALS:
    • Individual as well as composite MCAT scores (The average MCAT composite score for acceptance is about 30. Remember this is an average, and there are successful applicants with lower scores. You don't want any individual score below 8.) Comparison of latest MCAT scores with previous scores (score weighting may include averaging)
    • Transcripts from all colleges attended
    • Primary and Secondary Applications : Organization, content, and style of written comments
    • Letters of Recommendation
  • ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE:
    • Universities or colleges attended
    • Difficulty of chosen program of study (honors, double major, etc.)
    • Overall GPA and BCMP (biology - chemistry - physics & math) GPA
    • GPA trends (improvement)
    • GPA distribution science courses vs. non-science courses (balance)
      An AMCAS GPA calculator can be downloaded from this link; however, you will need to run this Excel document on a Windows machine and accept the macros for it to work properly. It will calculate both your overall GPA and your BCMP GPA. I m told this is very useful.
    • Comparison of course load, GPA, and extracurricular involvements (including effects of work, family obligations or illness)
    • Honors in recognition of academics (deans list, outstanding student awards, honor societies, etc.)
  • EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES:
    • Degree of exposure to medicine and patient care settings
    • Breadth of interests outside of the health professions
    • Work performed and degree of independence
    • Number of hours committed and years involved
    • Experiences and their applicability to career goals
    • Leadership roles (president or vice president of an organization, team captain, etc.)
    • Honors or awards (recognition of service or accomplishments, publications in refereed journals)
    • Interpersonal and communication skills evidence