Medical schools have varying and specific admissions requirements:
- U.S. Medical School Admissions Requirements (prepared by Harvard OCS based on the specific admissions sites for each school).
Medical schools also have varying policies for matriculation based on factors including state of residency and date of your MCAT and specific policies on financial aid. Note: Current applicants should refer to this spreadsheet when determining school list.
- U.S. Medical School Admissions Information – Financial Aid Policies, MCAT policies, and information about in-state, out-of-state, and international applicants (prepared by Harvard OCS based on information available in the Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR)).
See the OCS Premedical Information for Harvard Students: Timelines, Courses, & Resources (2022-2023) (pdf): This guide provides an overview of the academic requirements and application timelines for admission to U.S. medical schools.
Learn more about:
Financing Your Medical Education
Information for Non U.S. Citizens or Non U.S. Permanent Residents
Gaining admission to U.S. medical schools and obtaining funding to pursue that education can be difficult for individuals who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Many medical schools will review the application of an international student without any bias, but many others, particularly state schools, admit few if any international students.
Students who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents are not eligible for the federal government-sponsored loans that are used by most U.S. medical students to fund their medical educations. Some medical schools require that students prepay tuition or deposit money sufficient to cover one or more years of tuition and fees into escrow accounts.
A small number of medical schools have merit scholarships that are awarded without regard to U.S. residency status. Canadian students can often secure loans for medical school through the Canadian government. Some students may be able to secure loans or grants from their home countries, but this varies greatly from country to country.
NIH-sponsored Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) grants for MD/PhD positions are limited to U.S. citizens. However, there are some medical schools that exclude international students from their MD programs but will accept these students into their MD/PhD programs. Funding for these students comes from institutional funds, rather than MSTP grants. An AAMC chart (pdf) provides a summary of the MD/PhD programs, policies, and funding.
Information about Medical Schools that accept Non-Canadian Applicants who are not U.S. Permanent Residents
This chart contains information about the number of International Students who apply, are interviewed, and matriculate at U.S. Medical Schools: U.S. Medical School Admissions Information – Financial Aid policies, MCAT policies, and information about in-state, out-of-state, and international applicants.
This chart contains information about the financial aid policies regarding International Medical Students for the schools that accept Non-Canadian Applicants who are not permanent U.S. residents. The bottom of the chart also lists information regarding financial aid resources for medical school for international applicants.
Information for Canadian Students & Students Selecting Canadian Medical Schools
Canadian Students Selecting U.S. Medical Schools
- Many U.S. medical schools consider Canadian applicants the same way they consider international applicants.
Canadian Students Applying to Canadian Medical Schools
There are 17 medical schools in Canada, all of which are described in Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR) published by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). A much more comprehensive view of these schools can be obtained from “Admissions Requirements of Canadian Faculties of Medicine, Admission in 2017” published by The Association of Canadian Faculties of Medicine (ACFM) at Admissions Requirements ACFM and from the individual school websites. Residency match rates for the individual schools can be viewed on the website of the Canadian Residency Matching Service.
The General Information section of the ACFM guide provides an excellent starting point for understanding the process:
- The number of places available is determined by provincial governments based on educational and financial resources as well as Canada’s future physician workforce requirement. Since the universities are under provincial jurisdiction, the majority of places in a faculty of medicine are allocated to permanent residents of the province in which the university is located.
- An applicant must decide to which faculty or faculties of medicine application will be made. Obviously, the geographic location of a faculty of medicine is of critical importance to a prospective applicant. For those applicants who are free to move to any location where a place may be offered, chances of success in gaining admission may be considerably enhanced. Those who apply to only one faculty of medicine have the smallest chance of being offered admission. As the number of applications increases, so does the chance of being offered a place at a faculty of medicine.
- The competition to enter a faculty of medicine is very keen so it is important that applicants ensure that they fully meet the entry requirements of each faculty of medicine to which they apply.
Information about the schools:
The language of instruction at Laval University, the University of Sherbrooke, and the University of Montreal is French. The University of Ottawa teaches in French and English. The language of instruction at the other schools is English.
3-year versus 4-year programs
Most schools have 4 year programs. Laval University lists the program as 4-5 years. McMaster and Calgary both have 3-year programs.