Students studying in the Taubman library

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Admissions … Answered

We strive for transparency in our admissions process. Following are some of the most common questions we hear from our applicants.

If you think of something else you would like to know, please email your question to our Admissions team, take part in the next Tweet Chat or call us!

Pre-Application

Q: Do I need a college degree to apply to medical school?

A: No, but almost all admitted students have obtained one. You must have at least 90 hours of college coursework, of which 60 must be from an accredited U.S. or Canadian based institution.

Q: When is the best time to take the MCAT?

A: The best time to take the MCAT is when you are well prepared, both in terms of college courses completed and having time to sufficiently study/prepare for the exam itself. Clearly, MCAT scores reflect knowledge, not just intelligence, so if you have not taken the necessary courses in college, you will need to do a lot of independent work to be adequately prepared. A good place to start is the Aspiring Docs section of the AAMC website, a trusted resource we recommend for future physicians. Another resource is the Khan Academy MCAT Test Prep

We will accept MCAT exam scores taken by September of your application year, however we highly recommend you take the MCAT in the spring. We accept MCAT scores within three years of your matriculation year. 

Please note: All applicants who have an MCAT score in the 25th percentile or above will be automatically emailed a Secondary Application once our Office of Admissions has received their verified AMCAS application. Those applicants who have a score lower than the 25th percentile may receive a Secondary Application after an initial review.

Q: Can I apply to medical school if I don't have all my prerequisite core competencies completed?

A: Yes, as long as you have a plan to complete them by the time you matriculate.

Q. Does it matter when I apply?

A: We strongly encourage all applicants — including MSTP — to apply as early as possible due to our competitive rolling admission process. June is a good month to apply!

Q: What qualities do you look for in med school applicants?

A: Medical students at the University of Michigan get an outstanding clinical education that allows them to build relationships with and take care of patients from all walks of life, anywhere on the globe. We seek out individuals who not only have the potential to excel academically, but also possess personal attributes and competencies that align with our commitment to train the leaders and best. The CASPer test requirement is designed to assess these non-cognitive and interpersonal characteristics that we believe are important for success in our program and beyond.

For more information, please review our Process for the Evaluation of ApplicantsClass Profiles and Requirements pages. 

Q: Do you accept transfer students?

A: The University of Michigan Medical School does not generally consider any transfer requests with the exception of very unique circumstances. Students considered for transfer must have a current established relationship with the University of Michigan. 

Q: How do I know if I'm eligible for in-state tuition?

A: The University of Michigan’s tuition structure is two-tiered, reflecting resident and non-resident rates. Residency status is determined at the University level by U-M’s Office of the Registrar. Learn more.

CASPer

Q: What is the CASPer test and why am I required to take it?

A: The CASPer (Computer-Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics) is a relatively new situational judgment test that some medical schools in the U.S. and Canada have started to adopt as a tool to assist in their holistic application reviews. Based on promising results in other programs, Michigan will start requiring the CASPer test of all MD and MD/PhD (MSTP) applicants in the 2018-19 application cycle. Your test results are valid for one admissions cycle.

CASPer is comprised of 12 sections of video and written scenarios, similar to an MMI, that are designed to provide a robust and reliable view of the personal and professional characteristics we seek in all applicants. While no studying is required to take the CASPer test, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with the test content and system requirements

Q: What is the fee for the CASPer test?

A: There is a $10 fee to take the CASPer test and an additional $10 per school where you elect to send the results, including the University of Michigan Medical School. Please note that both fees are waived for those approved for the AAMC-Fee Assistance Program. We are conscious of keeping our secondary fee lower to accommodate for these extra costs.

Q: How do I sign up for the test?

A: Please go to www.takeCASPer.com to sign up for the American Professional Health Sciences test (CSP10101) and reserve a test using your AMCAS ID (available beginning in early May) and a piece of government-issued photo ID. You will be provided with a limited number of testing dates and times. Please use an email address that you check regularly; there may be updates to the test schedule. If you have any further questions about CASPer, please review the CASPer FAQs or refer to the “Contact Us” page on their website.

Q. When is the best time to take the CASPer test?

A: Take the CASPer test as soon as you are able to before or around the time you obtain the link to your Secondary Application. 

Q: Will you review my file without my CASPer score?

A: We review files at all of these stages: 

  • With your Primary AMCAS Application.
  • With your Secondary Application.
  • With or without Letters of Recommendation.
  • With or without CASPer score.

Please note, however, that you will not be offered an interview without your CASPer score on file.

Q: When will you receive my CASPer score?

We receive scores approximately three weeks after your test date.

Application Process

Q: What happens after I submit my application?

A: We aim to make our Admissions process as transparent as possible throughout our holistic review of your application.

All applicants who complete a primary application to the University of Michigan Medical School through the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) will receive a secondary application unless their MCAT percentile rank falls below the 25th percentile. Those applicants may still receive a secondary application, but only after an initial holistic screening.

Once you apply and submit your secondary application, you can check your status at anytime through your applicant portal page on our Admissions page.

Q: How many people apply to U-M and how many applicants get interviews?

A: We usually receive about 7,000+ applications, and will interview approximately 500+ MD and MSTP candidates.

Q. What is an interview day like at Michigan?

A. It's a fast-paced but fun day that provides plenty of opportunities for you to learn about us and for us to learn about you. Read more and watch videos about our "24 Hours in Blue" interview days.

Q. How does the Office of Admissions build a class?

A. Each year, there are many more applicants who possess all of the essential attributes to become a competent and effective physician than there are available seats in the class. Our admissions process, following the holistic evaluation of each individual applicant, seeks to build a richly diverse class both to enhance the educational experience of the class itself and to provide for future patient care of the highest quality. See our complete list of factors we consider when building an incoming class.

Q. What are the possible outcomes for my application?

A. The final decision on which applicants will receive an offer of admission with the Admissions Executive Committee. No quotas will be set up for any particular quality or characteristic sought in the candidates or for the Medical School incoming class. In the month following their interview, interviewees will be notified of their status and provided an explanation of that status. This may be Offered Admission, Deferred Decision, Waitlist or File Closed. For more information about how our deferred decision and waitlist policies, click here. Learn more about the entire application timeline.

Q: How many students from outside of Michigan do you take?

A: Our aim is that about half the class or more will be made up of non-Michigan residents. The entering class is very diverse. For more information, please review our Class Profiles.

Q. Do you have a revisit weekend?

A: Yes, all admitted students are invited back in April for our student-organized Second Look Weekend. It's a highly rated event that helps many students make their final decision to attend Michigan.

Q: When do I have to decide which school I will attend?

A: If you're admitted to the University of Michigan Medical School, your spot will be held (no deposit required) until the nationally designated decision date.

Scholarships & Financial Aid

Q: How do I know if I’m eligible for a scholarship?

A: Every admitted student is eligible for an Admissions scholarship, which are typically awarded in March. Our Financial Aid Office works with students one-on-one to help them figure out what financial assistance makes sense for them, including need-based scholarships, grants and/or loans. For more information, review Before You Go Blue.

Q. When do I need to apply for Financial Aid?

A. To be considered for need-based scholarships, Admissions requires that you complete the Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the University of Michigan Institutional Application for Financial Aid no later than February 15.

Q. How many students get financial aid?

A. Approximately 85% of our students receive financial aid, including loans. More than 60% receive a scholarship or grant, ranging from hundreds of dollars to full tuition.

Q. Do UMMS grads have a lot of debt?

A. Our graduates’ average medical school debt load is well below the mean when compared with debt load for all medical school graduates (Source: AAMC FASR). For more details, see Before You Go Blue.

More Questions about Michigan Med?

Interested in FAQs on topics ranging from our curriculum and research opportunities to how well our students do on exams and in the National Residency Match Program process? Read through our responses to the AAMC's "Selecting a Medical School: 35 Questions I Wished I Had Asked."

“Too many prospective medical students say, ‘I have to do this, this and this’ on their applications. They’re going through the actions they think they need to be good candidates for medical school, but not exploring what they need to become great physicians.”

Steven Gay, M.D., M.S., Assistant Dean for Admissions

Read more from Dean Gay and Director Carol in 8 Ways to Make Your Medical School Application Shine