When talking with students about BS/MD programs, many express a desire to avoid the MCAT. But how much does the MCAT really matter?
About 20 of the BS/MD programs don’t require the MCAT at all. Here is a list of those BS/MD programs that don’t require the MCAT.
That means that most of the programs do require the MCAT. However, each program handles that requirement differently. Some BS/MD programs require that students take the MCAT but don’t require any minimum score. Most of the programs that require a minimum score to advance to the medical school require a 30 on the MCAT.
When I am working with students applying to medical school through the traditional approach I always advise them that to be the most competitive they will want to have at least a 30 on the MCAT. Higher than a 30 is preferred.
Since a 30 on the MCAT is the minimum for traditional medical school, requiring a 30 to advance to the BS/MD program is not so bad. Students in these programs do not have to worry about getting the highest possible MCAT score. They just need the minimum score.
I understand that students want to avoid the MCAT if possible. To do well on the test requires a great deal of studying. But having a minimum score of 30 allows a student to avoid the stress of getting the highest possible score. Moreover, many of the BS/MD programs that require the MCAT also provide MCAT prep as part of the program. The medical schools really do want the students admitted to these programs to succeed.
There are a few programs that require an MCAT score higher than a 30. If you are considering one of those programs, you need to be very aware of that requirement and the risk that you may not score at that higher level.
Wanting to avoid the MCAT is a legitimate reason to apply to a BS/MD program. But, the bottom line is that most BS/MD programs provide an advantage over traditional medical schools even if the MCAT is required.
Farah naftchi says
Could you post updated BS/MD list without MCAT . I heard Rice requires MCAT?
Also list of the best pre-med.
I love you website.
Todd Johnson says
The list of BS/MD programs that don’t require the MCAT is current. Rice does not require the MCAT for the Rice/Baylor program.
My daughter is a US Citizen, but studying in India currently. I read on the UC San Diego website that for the accelerated program, residency is required. International students may not be eligible. Is that so for all accelerated / combined programs? Please advice.
Todd Johnson says
As a US citizen your daughter is not considered an international student for most admissions purposes even though she studies over seas. The private BS/MD programs are almost all open to US citizens. Of the state programs, some like UCSD are for residents of that state only, while others will consider students from other states. My book lists each of the programs including information on whether they consider students from other states.