MD PHD Programs Admissions vs. MD Admissions

Medical School Application: MD PhD Admissions vs. MD Admissions

MD-PhD admissions differ from MD admissions in several crucial ways. Recognizing these differences will help you decide if MD-PhD is the route for you to enter medical school.

Focus on Research

While MD-PhD students often have higher scores than MD applicants, this is largely because of self selection bias by the applicants. Do not let your grades determine your pathway. The single most important factor in MD-PhD admissions is your research. Programs want to see commitment to research and an understanding of what it will take to graduate. This, more than anything, will determine your competitiveness as an applicant.


MD-PhD applicants have the distinction of getting to write three primary application essays. AMCAS is longer to fill out, and you still have to fill out secondary applications. Brace yourself for the long haul.


MD-PhD interviews typically last 2 days. You will meet researchers who will ask you about your research in an attempt to discover if you have what it takes for the research portion of the program. Members of the medical college are also present to decide if you fit in with their medical class. Luckily, they also often cover your travel expenses and host several dinners.

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