When I first talk with a parent or student they often say that they want to attend an accelerated medical programs. But is this really what they want?
Technically, accelerated medical programs are BS/MD programs that last less than 8 years. However, half of BS/MD programs actually last a full 8 years so they are not accelerated.
Practically, a student interested in BS/MD programs should not have a primary focus on finding a shortened program. BS/MD programs are so competitive that a focus on accelerated programs reduced the number of options that a student has. And these are not programs that you want to limit your options on more than necessary.
Approximately half of BS/MD programs last 7 years, while only 4 can be completed in 6 years. Every BS/MD program requires 4 years of medical school. Those that are accelerated reduce the length of time as an undergraduate.
The accelerated programs sometimes take longer than the stated 6 or 7 years. The intensity of training with an accelerated program often overwhelms a student which requires a students to back off and take longer to complete. For other students, they decide they want more of the traditional college experience and may decide to do a study abroad program.
If a student is interested BS/MD programs, one of their preferences might be an accelerated program. That is fine. But don’t focus just on accelerated programs if your real desire is to get into a BS/MD program.
Want more information about BS/MD programs? Check out the Guide to BS/MD Programs.