Did you know that the MCAT is not the only way to get into med school? Some schools don’t need you to take the test. However, they have other requirements that candidates must meet.
Learning about the medical schools that don’t require MCAT will put you in an advantageous position. The info will come in handy if you find yourself in any of the following situations:
- Struggling to get good MCAT scores
- No science background
- No interest in taking the MCAT
- Afraid that the MCAT is too hard
- Reached your MCAT testing limit
In this post, you’ll learn how to get into med school without taking the MCAT. We’ll also provide you with a comprehensive list of medical schools that don’t require MCAT in the US. Got questions? We’ll answer them at the end of this article.
Let’s dive in, shall we?
Can You Get into Medical School Without MCAT?
Yes, it’s possible to get into med school in the US and Canada without taking the MCAT. In fact, there are at least five methods for achieving this feat.
Below, we’ll discuss each of these methods.
- Baccalaureate – Medical Degree Program (BS/MD, BA/MD, or BFA/MD)
Some universities will provide medical school admissions to students on their combined degree program. This program allows you to pursue a joint Baccalaureate-MD in that order. That means you’ll have to complete your Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, or Bachelor of Fine Arts program before transitioning into the associated med school for your Medical Degree.
Of course, these universities will require you to meet some minimum academic requirements before you can make the transition upon getting your first degree. Some of these requirements include the following:
- Valid studentship at the university
- Minimum GPA
- Prerequisite courses (with minimum grades)
- Good disciplinary records
You can complete your Baccalaureate program in at least three years and your MD program in four. So, the combined degree program takes roughly seven to eight years to complete.
Attending med school using the MCAT takes less time to get a medical degree. However, with a combined program, you can boast of having two degrees at the end. The main advantage remains that the medical school will not require you to take the MCAT before granting you admission.
- Flexible Admission Program (FAP)
Did you know that you can gain admission into medical school based on your achievement in other fields? Some universities have a flexible admission policy that allows them to consider candidates who don’t meet MCAT requirements but have made some notable learning accomplishments.
The Flexible Admission Program will allow you to get into med school because the school believes that your external experience will make you a successful student and, ultimately, a doctor.
These schools don’t just dish out flexible admission to anyone; you’ll need to apply by providing specific info, some of which include the following:
- Resume or CV
- Several letters of reference
- Personal statement
- Evidence of your accomplishments
You should know that despite the strict requirements, only a few schools offer the FAP.
- Early Assurance Program (EAP)
The EAP is similar to the Baccalaureate-MD program because it involves transitioning into medical school after completing an undergraduate degree program. The major difference is the time of admission.
For combined programs, admission is granted at the end of the undergraduate studies after the panel reviews your academic performance and decides whether you met the requirements.
For EAP, admission occurs a lot earlier, typically around the third year of the undergraduate degree program. Once accepted, you don’t have to worry too much about losing your admission due to a drop in academic performance.
Med schools don’t just hand out these programs. You need to apply and compete with a lot of other students. The schools will pick a few out of the bunch and accept them without asking for MCAT scores. They typically choose based on the following criteria:
- High GPA
- Excellent extracurricular performance
- High grades in core courses (mainly biology)
- Guaranteed Admission Program
The guaranteed program is almost identical to the EAP. However, first-year undergraduates can apply. If accepted, they gain admission into the university’s med school when they complete their degree program.
Only a few universities have a Guaranteed Admission Program in the United States. You’ll need to meet their minimum requirements to be considered. They include:
- Exceptional high school GPA
- Minimum SAT or ACT score
- Medical experience
- Community contributions
Some schools consider the MCAT, but most will take your SAT or ACT scores.
- Medical Honors Program
The Medical Honors Program is so rare in the US that only one college of medicine offers it: the University of Florida’s.
It is a special Bachelor of Science – Medical Degree that could take as long as seven years to complete. Some of the key requirements include the following:
- Prerequisite coursework in college
- Excellence in extracurricular activities
- Medical field experience
- Volunteer work
- Minimum GPA
List of Medical Schools that Don’t Require MCAT
Next, we’ll look at some of the biggest Universities in the US where you can apply to and gain admission without taking the MCAT.
This is only possible because these schools offer one or more of the five programs we discussed in the previous section.
The college of medicine at the University of Alabama is one of the best research universities in the United States. The college offers an early acceptance program which works the same way as a Guaranteed Admission Program.
Students who are about to complete high school can apply. The school typically only picks 20 students for the program. Minimum requirements include:
- 3.50 GPA
- English and Math courses (four years)
- Biology and Physics/Chemistry (one year)
Albany college offers exceptional high school students with stand-out academic performance a way to attend their medical school without taking the MCAT.
This is a GAP called the Guaranteed Entrance for Select Majors Program. The following sets of students can apply:
- Spanish majors
- Chinese majors
- Engineering majors
This is a great opportunity if you’re a high school student.
Purchase College and SUNY Upstate Medical University College join forces to provide a way for students to matriculate into med school through a Baccalaureate – Medical Degree program.
You can choose to earn a BS, BA, or BFA degree before getting your MD. The program lasts for about eight years (4-year Baccalaureate and 4-year MD).
The SGU uses the B-MD program system. You can get into med school through a BS/MD program. Getting admission can be tricky as you’ll be required to submit a number of verified documents for evaluation.
Even after all that, you’ll need to show up for a rigorous but professionally-conducted interview with the admissions committee.
Just like Purchase College, Adelphi University collaborates with SUNY Upstate Medical University College to allow students to combine a BS, BA, or BFA with an MD program.
You’ll spend four years completing your degree program at Adelphi before moving to SUNY’s medical school for your MD.
CNU’s college of medicine offers a BS/MD program that lasts between six to eight years. Like most of the combined degree programs in other schools, CNU’s requires students to do some prerequisite coursework during their BS degree program.
You’ll also need to participate in certain activities set by the school. Keeping to their rules will ensure you remain on the path to med school.
The Warren Alpert Medical School at Brown University, one of the top Ivy League institutions in the US, allows students to gain admission without writing the MCAT.
The school provides a Baccalaureate – Medical Degree in the form of the Program in Liberal Medical Education or PLME. No Ivy League college does the same.
The PLME takes about eight years to complete. The major requirement for enrollment is your SAT or ACT scores. You get to choose which one you want the admissions panel to consider.
The College of Medicine at Howard University in Washington D.C allows candidates to gain admission via their BS/MD program.
You’ll need at least a 3.25 GPA and 3.50 CGPA to be considered, as there’s a limited number of slots available within the program. Only science subjects will be considered.
The program lasts for six years, making it one of the shortest BS/MD programs right now.
The Pre-Professional Scholars programs (in Medicine and Dentistry) offer a way for you to study at the CWRU med school by pursuing a Bachelor’s degree program of your choice before transitioning into the MD path. It doesn’t require the MCAT, but allocations are super-competitive.
Only 15 to 20 students get into the PPS program in Medicine. You have to complete your Bachelor’s degree before moving to MD. You must also complete the entire eight years of study.
For the PPS program in Dentistry, the university only chooses about ten candidates. You don’t have to complete your Bachelor’s degree before moving to MD.
The school of medicine at CUNY offers a BS/MD program tagged the Sophie Davis Biomedical Education Program.
You’ll need to have an impressive academic performance record to get in. Like most combined degree programs, this lasts for eight years.
The college of medicine: Drexel university/college offers an EAP for students working towards a BS or BA in the following fields of study: Biomedical Engineering, Biological Sciences, and Chemistry.
Combined, the complete Drexel University College of Medicine program should last for eight years (4 + 4). You don’t need an MCAT, but you must meet the required GPA and ACT or SAT score.
The AMC in New York offers two programs that allow you to skip the MCAT. One of them is an EAP that requires a strong GPA, relevant coursework, and extracurricular participation.
The second program is a Baccalaureate – Medical Degree Program that requires you to be academically sound and obtain between 138 to 193 credits.
RPI partners with Albany Medical College to offer its students the opportunity to pursue medical degrees after their undergraduate programs.
For now, the program only covers the BS/MD path. After you bag the BS degree, you’ll transfer to AMC to get your medical degree.
The Baccalaureate – Medical Degree Program offered by GWU is unique because even though you don’t need a recent MCAT score to get in, the university still requires candidates to take MCAT practice exams.
The practice test is for advisory purposes and, along with other relevant requirements, will help the admission panel decide whether to take you on as a student. GWU’s combined degree program is shorter than most, with seven years being the stipulated time.
This is a small university with only a few thousand undergrad students. However, they may grant you medicine university admission without an MCAT score if you apply to their EAP in your sophomore year.
Besides meeting the minimum GPA and credit requirements, having prior experience in the medical field will strengthen your application.
Two Virginia-based institutions, Hampton University and Eastern Virginia Medical School, join forces to deliver an MCAT-free opportunity in the form of a BS/MD program.
Applicants are considered based on academic excellence and outstanding displays of leadership. That means you stand a better chance if you’ve contributed to medical research or done some volunteer work in the past.
You may apply for the Robert Wood Johnson college’s BA/MD program in your second year at the school. If you don’t want to apply with the MCAT, you may use your SAT or ACT score instead. Without those, the school would have to insist on your MCAT results.
There are also some academic requirements you need to meet. The program offers a partial scholarship because you don’t need to pay for one out of your four BA years.
You can apply for the University of Toledo’s EAP, which is called the MedStart program. Students in their junior year at accredited institutions can apply for this program.
The school doesn’t require MCAT scores, but you’ll need to take the SAT or ACT.
The Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine at Marshall University, West Virginia, is currently accepting candidates for their seven-year BS/MD program.
Biology is a required major for this program. You should be comfortable with the idea of studying the subject during your stay at the school.
The school offers a typical BA/MD program that doesn’t require an MCAT. You’ll need to meet their other academic requirements to be considered.
The Icahn school is one of the few US establishments that offer a Flexible Admission Program. The school will consider your standardized test results (MCAT not included), but they will look at other factors in your application.
This is a great opportunity for people who didn’t do well in their tests but have some relevant accomplishments. The FlexMed Admissions scheme at Icahn, Mount Sinai, is a way for you to get into med school.
The Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School joins forces with MSU to provide their students with a Baccalaureate – MD scheme called the Health Careers Program. It functions like a partial FAP, but you need to meet the minimum SAT score requirement.
The program is aimed at helping people from financially-disadvantaged backgrounds who desire a medical degree and have the academic capacity to get one.
By considering Spelman, you have several options when it comes to getting into med school without an MCAT.
The school offers both Early Assurance Programs and baccalaureate – MD programs by partnering with over five other institutions, including Boston University, SUNY, and Morehouse School of Medicine.
The University of Florida college of medicine has a Medical Honors Program that allows people to gain admission without taking the MCAT. The program covers BS degrees and has a set of character requirements.
Yeshiva partners with a number of colleges to provide EAP and baccalaureate – MD programs.
The NWU partners with The Feinberg School of Medicine to provide some baccalaureate – MD programs. You can spend four years at NWU’s college of arts, sciences, communication, and engineering.
The list goes on and on. So, here’s a list of some other notable colleges:
- College of Medicine: Georgetown University/School
- College of Medicine: Tufts University/School
- School of Medicine: Brody at East Carolina University
- School of Medicine: Loyola University
Pros and Cons of Taking the MCAT
Whatever your reasons for not taking the MCAT, you have to admit that medical schools love it. Most of the medical school admissions committees will only grant entry to people who did well on the test.
However, there are advantages and disadvantages to taking the test.
If you’re still on the fence about your decision to skip it, here’s a pros and cons list to help you make up your mind.
Solid Medical Foundation
You cannot go through med school without a clear understanding of science-related subjects like Biology and Chemistry. Taking the MCAT will force you to study those subjects, even if they are outside your current field. However, you need to study hard to catch up to the rest of the test-takers.
Med School Exam Prep
The length and difficulty of the MCAT are only a reflection of what you’ll face in medical school. If you eventually gain admission, you’ll need to study hard and sit through extensive exams to become a successful student.
That is why some schools that don’t require the MCAT in their admission process encourage candidates to at least take a practice test. They know that it will prepare you for the tough times to come.
The MCAT is a popular admission requirement for med schools in the US and Canada. So, taking the test and other standardized tests will maximize your chances of gaining admission into medical school.
The MCAT is a difficult exam. The questions are tricky and require in-depth knowledge of medical-related subjects such as organic chemistry and biochemistry.
If you’ve not taken science courses in the past, you may struggle with most of the questions. This is one of the core reasons some people would rather not take the MCAT.
Lengthy Test Duration
The MCAT has 230 questions, and you have 7 hours and 30 minutes to attempt them. Not everyone can write an exam for that long without feeling a great deal of discomfort. In some cases, this discomfort affects the outcome of the exam.
Registering and preparing for the MCAT costs a significant amount of money. You’ll pay to take the test and may also part with money to hire a tutor or buy prep materials. Some people would rather spend that money elsewhere.
What’s the lowest MCAT score accepted?
Some students have been accepted into med school with a score as low as 486. This is rare, and you should always aim for a much higher score.
What is the easiest medical school to get into?
Here’s a list of some of the easiest medical schools to get into in the US.
- University of Missouri Kansas City Medical School
- Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
- University of Nevada Reno Medical School
- University of Massachusetts Medical School
Can I get into medical school without a science background?
Yes, you can get admitted into med school without having a science background. However, science subjects are a core part of the curriculum, so you need to expand your knowledge of the field.
How much does MCAT cost?
You need to pay $320 to register for the MCAT if you reside in the US or Canada. If you’re registering from a foreign country, you’ll need to pay an additional $120.
Is MCAT required in the UK and Australia?
MCAT is not a requirement in the UK or Australia, although it is accepted in some. Those countries already have their own standardized tests.
You can always keep your dream of attending med school alive even if you can’t use your MCAT scores to get in. What matters most is that you prove to the medical colleges that don’t require MCAT that you can be a successful student.
We recommend that you build a shortlist from our full list of med schools above and then do some research on each of them.
We’re sure you’ll find more than a few that are ideal for you.
Author at OnlineCourseing