What to do Prior to Completing Your Medical School Application

February 4, 2015

Arriving at Morogoro Regional Hospital for the day! What to do Prior to Completing Your Medical School Application

Completing medical school applications is a big deal. The application process is one of the first steps towards becoming a physician. Before the time comes to complete your medical school applications, there are several things that you need to consider including the following:

  • Give a great deal of thought to becoming a doctor 

Going to medical school involves a lot of time and money. Before you start the process, make sure you are positive you want to become a doctor and are doing it for the right reasons. Med school is challenging, and if you don’t really want it, you can feel overwhelmed quickly.

  • Register for the MCAT 

Medical schools require the MCATs as part of their admission process. Give yourself plenty of time to study, take the test and get your results. 

  • Research schools 

One of the biggest decisions you will make in your career is where to attend med school. Start researching schools as soon as you decide to become a doctor. Review the school’s acceptance rate and required MCAT scores. Determine what medical facilities they are affiliated with, which will help you get an idea of where clinical rotations are completed. It is also a good idea to find out the cost of a program. Most information can be found online. Compare different programs and make a list of the schools that you are interested in.  

  • Become familiar with the application process 

The American Medical College Application Service is used by most medical schools to submit your initial applications. Visit their website long before you have to fill out the application in order to determine what you need and how the process works.

  • Determine if you qualify for fee assistance 

The costs of applying to medical school can add up. Application and testing fees can become expensive.  The Association of American Medical Colleges offers fee assistance to some qualified applicants. Assistance is based on the United States poverty levels. Information can be found on the Association of American Medical Colleges website.

  • Shadow a doctor 

Shadowing a doctor will help you get a better understanding of what a doctor does on a day to day basis. It will also give you the chance to ask questions and learn more about the profession.  

  • Meet with an advisor 

Although med schools do not require you to have a specific major, they do require completion of certain classes. Don’t wait until your senior year of college to determine what classes you need. Meet with an advisor early in your undergrad career to make sure you stay on track with the classes you need.

  • Save some cash 

If you can work during your undergrad studies, consider putting some money aside. Savings may help you pay for living expenses or books. You may also want to consider how you will pay for medical school. In addition to student loans, there are loan forgiveness programs and grants.