There are a few constants when it comes to careening through a long and arduous medical school application process. The first fact is that you’ll be utterly exhausted by the time application deadlines have been reached. The second is that you’ll spend several sleepless nights slaving over complex MCAT study books with droopy eyelids. The third constant is that you’ll need to complete an AMCAS medical school application form.
And while the first two constants to getting accepted to a dream medical school tend to be associated with a higher level of difficulty, the AMCAS medical school application – most surprisingly – is hardly a huge feat at all.
Contrary to the painstaking, handwritten process it used to follow in the past, the AMCAS medical school application is a highly-navigable application innovation of the 21st century, and available completely online for aspiring med students.
AMCAS Medical School Application Basics
The beauty behind the AMCAS medical school application is that it’s bound by uniformity. Although particular medical schools that get their hands on your portfolio might interpret it differently based on GPA, MCAT and extracurricular marks, all of the information contained within the application is identical. But given that the eyes of various medical school admissions teams are highly subjective, the key to successfully navigating an AMCAS medical school application is to do it better than the rest of the hopefuls.
The application can also be completed in multiple sittings, so applicants are encouraged to disperse the work among several days.
This section of the AMCAS medical school application is fairly predictable: name, address, phone number, etc.
This is where you’re boasting skills will come into play. Be sure to list an extensive portfolio of all your extracurricular, non-school activities. This would include any particular honors or awards, volunteering or relevant work experience.
Although there’s no rule for length, be sure to list the work in order of importance, and be thorough. For example, you might want to emphasize a relevant internship or research team you were a part of, rather than a part-time receptionist gig at a local urgent care.
Although the essay required on the AMCAS medical school application won’t carry the same weight as a stellar GPA and MCAT score, admissions teams take the time to read each piece with meticulous care and assessment. Never underestimate the power of a thoroughly-constructed, well written and highly relevant admissions essay – it could mean the difference between acceptance and rejection.
Schools Attended, Coursework and Transcripts
Again, a fairly self-explanatory process. However, medical school admissions teams will typically request you provide both formats, as sorting through a mess of semi-complicated transcripts from different schools can be the source of a searing headache.