Medical education is rigorous and intensive. It is essential that entering medical students possess academic stamina as demonstrated in healthy habits and attitudes, behavioral maturity, and cognitive ability.
Expectations of Entering Medical Students
The curriculum requires the student to apply foundational knowledge to the study and understanding of normal and abnormal processes of the human body and of the behavioral and social influences on these processes. In this context, medical students learn the skills of diagnosis, treatment, prognosis and management of disease, health maintenance, risk assessment, disease screening, public health aspects of disease, and disease prevention. In addition, modern medicine dictates the need for excellent communication skills and the ability to work in complex interdisciplinary health care environments while caring for a diverse patient population and maintaining professional and moral-ethical codes.
Entering medical students will therefore demonstrate qualities aligned with competencies expected of medical students graduating from the UNDSMHS.
- An understanding of the natural science underpinnings of biomedical sciences including concepts of introductory-level biology, organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, physics, biochemistry, cellular and molecular biology.
- An understanding of foundational concepts of psychology, sociology, and behavioral biology.
- Skill in scientific inquiry and reasoning, critical analysis, research methods, and statistics as applied to the natural, social, and/or behavioral sciences.
- Interpersonal and communication skills.
- Commitment to working with people of diverse cultures and socioeconomic status.
- Adherence to ethical principles.
- Awareness and responsiveness to complex societal systems.
- Ability to function effectively within a team setting.
- Motivation to pursue lifelong learning.
Minimum Academic Requirement
Completion of a bachelor’s degree at an accredited college or university.
The Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT)
The UNDSMHS requires completion of the MCAT. There is no minimum score, though performance on this standardized test is considered as part of the whole application package. The MCAT assesses preparedness in foundational knowledge, scientific reasoning, problem solving, reasoning about the design and execution of research, and data-based and statistical reasoning. Preparation for the MCAT will vary depending on the academic and personal circumstances of the applicant. Traditional MCAT preparatory courses include two semesters of general biology, two semesters of general chemistry, two semesters of organic chemistry, one semester of biochemistry, two semesters of physics, and psychology/sociology. Follow this link to learn more about What’s on the MCAT Exam.
The UNDSMHS does not require completion of specific academic coursework for admissions. Entering medical students must have more than an introductory level of pre-requisite knowledge and skills to master the volume and complexity of the undergraduate medical curriculum. Suggested coursework in addition to MCAT preparatory courses listed above include an extra semester of biochemistry, one or two upper level biology courses emphasizing concepts applicable to human biology, and an upper level intensive-writing course.
Experience & Attributes Portfolio
The portfolio is intended for the applicant to illustrate evidence of attributes not easily captured in transcripts or standardized tests. Documentation may be derived from formal course work, extracurricular activities, or employment. Some experiences may have sufficient depth and breadth to address more than one part of the portfolio. In such instances, unique artifacts must specifically highlight each experience.
- Written Expression
- Research or Creative Activity
- Evidence with Diverse Populations
- Medical/Clinical Experience