Frequently Asked Questions

Process Overview

Financial Aid




Application

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Interview

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Selection

The Admissions Committee seeks to admit individuals who demonstrate the ability to derive meaningful life lessons from their experiences. We believe that this predicts a commitment to lifelong learning, an important quality found in the best physicians. For this reason, it is much more important for you to tell us what you have learned than it is for us to know what you have done.

Acceptance

Alternate

Not Accepted

Reapplying

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Application:

Is the application to the University of Utah School of Medicine available online?

No.  All applications should be made through the American Medical College Application Services (AMCAS)                

What is the deadline for applying?

Applications must be submitted to AMCAS no later than 11:59 p.m. EST on November 1st.

What are the average GPA and MCAT scores of entering students at the University of Utah School of Medicine?  Is there a minimum that I need to be above?

The average GPA for entering freshman is 3.67 with an average MCAT score of 10 in each section. The minimum acceptable GPA is 3.2. Applicants with a science, non-science, or overall GPA below 3.2 will not be considered. The minimum acceptable MCAT score for each section, (physical science, biological science and verbal reasoning) of the MCAT examination is 7.

What criteria does the Admissions Committee consider when evaluating applicants?

We evaluate applications against minimum and average standards in 7 specific areas. Applicants must achieve at least the minimum level of performance in all 7 areas and be average or above in 5 out of the 7 areas in order to proceed in the admissions process. Successful applicants distinguish themselves with outstanding performance in one or more of these areas. The 7 areas are listed below.

Do you accept out of state residents?

Yes. The University of Utah School of Medicine is a state-assisted institution. A minimum of 82% of the available positions are offered to Utah residents and/or non-residents who graduated from a Utah high school, college or university.  For consideration, nonresidents applicants must meet one of the requirements.  

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To be considered as a non-resident what Utah ties do I need to have?

Significant ties to Utah such as lived in Utah for 3 consecutive months, own property in or have first generation family members who currently live in Utah, or graduated from high school or college/university in Utah. Additional information may be required.

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Do you have a dedicated amount of positions for Idaho?

Yes.  The state of Idaho has contracted to provide access to 8 positions each year at the University of Utah School of Medicine. Students must be certified through Idaho State University as residents of Idaho prior to applying. http://www.isu.edu/areg/residency/residencyInfo.shtml

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What is the breakdown of the available 102 positions?

  • 84  Utah residents or non residents who graduated from a Utah high school, college or university
  • 10  Non residents with Utah ties, MD/PHD  or members of a population group underrepresented in the physician workforce.
  • 8 Idaho residents

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Do I need a college degree to apply to your medical school?

Yes.  A Bachelor’s degree is required to matriculate at the University of Utah School of Medicine.  Applicants must complete their schooling in an accredited college or university in the United States or Canada. The degree must be posted on your transcript prior to matriculation.

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Do I have to major in “Pre-Med” or have a science degree to be considered for your school?

No.  Although the majority of accepted students are science majors, we do not require any specific undergraduate academic major.  We recommend that undergraduate students choose a major or field for which they have enthusiasm and interest.

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Do I have to complete my required coursework before I can apply?

No.  You may apply before the coursework has been completed; however, completion of coursework must occur prior to matriculation.

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Is there a math course requirement?

No.  A mathematics course is not required, but recommended.

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Does your school have rolling admissions?

No.  The majority of the applicants will be notified of their acceptance no later than March 31st.

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When do you start accepting students?

The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) recommends that each school notify applicants of acceptance to medical school only after October 15 of each admissions cycle. AAMC Recommendations for Medical School and M.D.-Ph.D. Admission Officers

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At my school, there isn’t a Premedical Advisor so where do I go for assistance with my application?

The National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions (NAAHP)

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Do you offer secondary invites to all applicants?

No.  Applicants who pass the preliminary screening will be invited to submit secondary materials.

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Explain the preliminary review process.

Applicants must meet the minimum science, non-science, and overall GPA of 3.2. The minimum acceptable score for each section (physical science, biological science, and verbal reasoning) of the MCAT is 7. Applicants must meet the residency/non residency requirements.

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What is the average number of applicants applying to your school each year and how many get interviewed?

The average number of applications to the University of Utah School of Medicine is 1500 with roughly 500 interviewed per year.

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How do you view the MCAT scores if an applicant took the test more than once?

For the 2015 application cycle, the best score for each section will be considered. Please keep in mind that only scores from tests taken three years prior to matriculation will be accepted.

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What is the latest day I can take the MCAT and still be considered for the 2014 application cycle?

September 18, 2014

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Can I use one of my activities to count for two or more of the required activities?

Many preparatory experiences could reasonably be considered under more than one heading and you should list them in each applicable area so that you do not fall short of meeting the criteria in any areas. You should always strive to be average or above average in each area. Successful applicants list different activities for each individual category. The admissions committee suggests that you make your decisions about where to list your activities based on the impact that they have had on you and on your personal development. Overlapping or double dipping experiences may be viewed negatively if done in excess.

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What if I haven’t completed some of the activities prior to submitting my secondary forms?

Applicants must achieve at least the minimum level of performance in all 7 areas and be average or above in 5 of the 7 areas in order to be a competitive applicant. Successful applicants distinguish themselves with outstanding performance in 1 or more areas. 

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Does the University of Utah School of Medicine accept letters from the AMCAS letter service?

Yes. 

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Can I use one letter of recommendation to fulfill two required areas?

As long as the letter writer adequately addresses both elements in their letter, it may be used for two categories; however, one professor letter cannot be used to meet two letter requirements even if the individual taught you in several classes.

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For the supervisor letter, can I use a letter of recommendation that was written by a professor that taught me in dance, school symphony or another class in a non-traditional classroom setting?

Yes.  The letter may be from any individual of your choosing who has supervised your involvement in academics, athletics, research, volunteering, or employment. We will not accept a letter from a premedical advisor or a peer. The letter must clearly state that the letter writer supervised/directed your activity and include a detailed description of the activity and their experience with you including the duration of your involvement.

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When will my letters of recommendation be reviewed?

Letters of recommendation are reviewed after you have been offered a secondary invite and have paid the application fee.

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Can a family member write one of my letters of recommendation?

This is strongly discouraged.  Your application will be considered stronger if you have objective individuals write your letters.

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What do I do if I have changes to my coursework after I submitted my application to your school?

All changes must be submitted in writing, via email, to the Office of Admissions.

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If I decide to drop or add a minor or major after I submit my application, should I let the Admissions Office know?

Yes.   

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Is there a Quota System at the UUSOM?

No.  Each applicant is held to the exact same standard.

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Interview

Can I schedule a mock interview with a member of the admissions committee?

No.  Contact your premedical advisor for assistance with practice interviews.

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When do interviews begin?

Interviews begin in September and continue until the end of February.

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How should I dress for my interview?

Dress in professional business attire.

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Can I find out who I am interviewing with before my interview day?

No.  The names of your interviewers will be provided to you on your interview day.

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Can I send a thank you note to my interviewers after my interview day?

Though not required, you may write a thank you note.  However, they must be sent through the Admissions office.

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Acceptance

Acceptance by the University of Utah Graduate Office of Admissions is contingent on the verification of a baccalaureate degree. The School of Medicine Office of Admissions must receive official transcripts from all colleges and/or universities you have attended. The degree(s) must be posted as shown on the AMCAS application prior to matriculation.

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Do my transcripts need to be sent to your school if they have already been sent to AMCAS?

Yes.  The School of Medicine requires an official transcript from every college or university attended if you are accepted.  The degree(s) must be posted as shown on the AMCAS application prior to matriculation.

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Will I be required to complete a criminal background check?

Yes.   Acceptance to medical school is contingent upon satisfactory results of a criminal background check.

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Will I be required to have a Dean’s Certification letter sent from each college or University that I attended?

Yes.

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What is a Dean’s Certification letter?

A Dean’s Certification letter is a type of academic background check that would contain any information about pending or former institutional actions against you as a student.

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If I decide to change the date of my graduation from Spring of 2014 to Summer of 2014 after I submit my application should I let the Admissions Office know?

Yes.

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How much does medical school cost?

For 2013-2014, the total tuition and fees for Utah residents is $32,934.00 and $61,500.00 for non-residents.  

Can non-residents become Utah residents for tuition purposes?

The Admissions Office does not determine residency for tuition purposes.  Information and guidelines for Utah residency for tuition purposes may be obtained at http://admissions.utah.edu/apply/residency/ .

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Alternate List

I am on the alternate list, can I send in additional information to help improve my chances of being accepted?

No.  Ranking scores are final. 

Applicants on the alternate list may be offered acceptance up until the first day of school. Applicants are accepted from the alternate list in the order that the Admissions Committee ranked them. Your rank is secure throughout the admissions process. Updates to your application will be accepted; however, they will not impact your rank. Your rank is confidential and will not be released to anyone.

It is not possible to predict the number of alternate positions that will be available. Applicants may withdraw from the alternate list by notifying the School of Medicine Office of Admissions in writing via email.

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I am on the alternate list; can I call and get an update?

Your rank is confidential and will not be released.  Applicants are accepted from the alternate list in the order that the Admissions Committee ranked them. Your rank is secure throughout the admissions process.

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How many people are usually admitted from the Alternate list?

The number of applicants admitted from the alternate list varies from year to year. 

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I’ve been accepted to another medical school, but the UUSOM is my first choice.  If I contact the Admissions Office at UUSOM, would this information make a difference?

Congratulations on your acceptance to another medical school.  We strongly encourage you to pursue your goal of becoming a physician by accepting offers from other institutions.  This information will not change your placement on the alternate or rejected list.  Furthermore, such rejection of acceptance letters to other medical schools would not increase your chances of getting into the UUSOM the following year.

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Not Accepted

I wasn’t accepted, can I appeal the decision?

No, all Admissions Committee decisions are final.  

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I have not received a letter in the mail, what should I do?

Notifications are sent via email no later than March 31st.  If you have not received an email, please contact the Office of Admissions at deans.admissions@hsc.utah.edu to request the status of your application.

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Can I meet with my interviewers or a member of the admissions committee to find out why I wasn’t accepted?

No.  Should you consider reapplying, we have created a self-assessment tool to assist you in determining if your qualifications, personal characteristics, and goals make you a good fit with the University of Utah School of Medicine.  Please visit our website at http://medicine.utah.edu/admissions to access this tool. We encourage you to meet with your premedical advisor to discuss ways in which you might strengthen your application. 

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My MCAT and GPA scores were very competitive, how was I not accepted?

The UUSOM practices Holistic Review, meaning we take into account other measures when evaluating applicants.  This includes research, community service, leadership, patient exposure, physician shadowing, essays and interview evaluations.  Though important, MCAT and GPA scores are not the sole determinants of acceptance.  We’ve had a record number of applications for a limited number of positions.  There are many more qualified applicants than there are positions.  We strongly encourage you to take our self-assessment test and meet with your pre-medical advisor to improve your application should you consider reapplying.

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Reapplying

What is the best way to reevaluate my application?

The first step in reevaluating your application should be the self-assessment tool that is available on our website. From there, we suggest that you visit with your premedical advisor to review your application and develop strategies for strengthening your future application to our school.

  1. Review the admissions requirements and make significant changes in more than one area.  Changes should be a true reflection of your interest in a medical career as well as an echo of your essay(s) and AMCAS personal comments.
  2. Before submitting your application, proof read your personal comments, experiences, and secondary forms to make sure there are no typos or obvious grammatical mistakes. If possible, have your essays and AMCAS personal comments read by someone who can be objective about the information.
  3. The Experience section of the AMCAS application gives you the opportunity to include 15 significant experiences.
  4. Re-evaluate who you asked to write your letters of recommendation. 
    • Did the letter writer know you well?
    • Are you confident that they were able to write a positive letter for you?
    • If you used one letter to fulfill two requirements, consider obtaining two separate letters that will describe each element in more detail.
    • Tell the letter writers what you want them to address in their letters.
    • Letters from previous year’s submissions are not available. If you plan to use the same letter writers, ask them to update their letter including a current date and additional experiences if possible.
    • Timing is important. Do not wait until you have submitted your AMCAS or secondary materials to request the letters and especially do not wait to receive your letters before you submit your secondary materials.
  5. Re-evaluate your experiences.  If you used the same experience to fulfill more than one category, look for opportunities to gain experience in other areas.  For example, if you volunteered in a nursing home and you used this for your patient exposure and community service, you may want to volunteer in another area that will bring a diversity of experience into your life and application. Participate in activities that are of interest to you or that allow you to experience something new that will challenge what you know. Avoid double dipping whenever you can.

    All experiences should be approached with the intent to gain and/or give. If you are participating in an activity just because you think it “looks good” or because someone else did it that got into medical school, it will be obvious to astute committee members. Participate in activities that are of interest to you personally or that allow you to experience something new that will challenge what you know.
  6. Make sure you understand and can discuss the hypothesis of your research experience. Participating in research is an opportunity for you to express your intellectual curiosity. Actively participate and ask questions about the research you are involved in regardless of your role.
  7. We recommend that you shadow several physicians who work in various specialties including primary care so you are able to observe different perspectives regarding the profession. When reviewing your shadowing experience consider the length of time you shadowed each physician and what you learned during the experience.  Were you able to understand the pros, cons of each specialty?
  8. Evaluate your patient exposure experience. Were you able to provide hands on patient care or was your experience superficial? Expose yourself to enough of the profession so that you understand the life you are choosing

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If I am reapplying, will you compare my previous application with my current one?

No, we will not compare previous applications with current ones.

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How many years can I apply to the University of Utah School of Medicine?

Application to our school may be made for no more than three consecutive years. If you desire to apply to the University of Utah again, it will be necessary for you to wait at least one year before submitting another application.

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If/when I reapply, do I get additional consideration?  If someone has reapplied one or two times, does the Admissions Committee give them credit?

We evaluate each application on its own merits.  We do not give additional consideration or credit to those who re-apply multiple times.  We have had a record number of applications this year (1500) including approximately 250 re-applicants.  Those that re-apply are judged and scored exactly the same as those who are applying for the first time.

Financial Aid

What forms do I need to complete for Financial Aid for Medical School?

  • Supplemental Application for Institutional Scholarships and Loans is available to accepted students on the School of Medicine website. 
  • After you have completed your 2013 federal tax return, your financial aid application is two easy steps:

    Complete the 2014/2015 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.ed.gov.  If you electronically filed your taxes and they have been recorded by the IRS you will have the option to auto-fill your FAFSA with your tax data!
  • Complete the UFORM (Financial Aid Institutional Form)   Financial Aid Year: 2013-2014 https://www.acs.utah.edu/uofu/stu/UForm
  • It is very important that you have both your FAFSA and UFORM completed as soon as possible.  This will allow the Financial Aid Office time to process your application and notify you if any additional documentation is required.  To be considered for the Perkins Loan you must meet the On-Time Completion deadline through the Financial Aid Office of April 1, 2014. 

FAQs - http://medicine.utah.edu/financialaid/frequently_asked_questions.php

Utah residency for tuition purposes http://admissions.utah.edu/apply/residency/

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