Applying to BS/MD programs? When did you know that you wanted to be a doctor? For some premeds, they decided to become a doctor during their undergraduate studies, but for others, they knew they wanted to be a doctor from a very young age. As competition to get into medical schools continues to rise, applicants are seeking ways to secure their future career as a physician as early on as possible. BS/MD programs may provide this opportunity, so if you're considering applying to this joint program, you've come to the right place.


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Is a BS/MD Program Right For Me?: MD Opinion How Competitive are BS/MD Programs? How to Get Into BS/MD Programs BS/MD Admission Interviews FAQs

Is a BS/MD Program Right For Me?: MD Opinion

“I did not apply to any of these programs. I knew that I wanted to take gap years prior to medical school. My work/research experience made me a more well-rounded individual that affected my career prospects in medicine ... I have worked with a few colleagues who have [completed a BS/MD]. I also know a few people who have dropped out of such programs. I have a relatively neutral view towards these and believe that they could either assist premeds or be a hindrance, depending on the specific individual. I would be very cautious in recommending them as it could limit prospects for those who discover they don’t necessarily want to pursue medicine during the undergraduate portion of the program.” – Dr. Tony Huynh, DO


"I applied to a BS/MD program, but got rejected. I applied because I knew medicine was the right career choice and I wanted to fast-track undergraduate studies as much as possible. Given the amount of 'extra courses' that were non-medicine related, I felt 4 years of undergrad was a stretch and was eager to start learning medicine as much as possible. Even though I got rejected, simply going through the process of applying to BS/MD was phenomenal as it was identical to applying to medical school. The components of application preparation, personal statement, work/activities, interviews, were so similar that applying to medical school was quite easy for me." – Dr. Sona Nuguri


"I started to consider a BS/MD program when I was a junior in high school. At that time I was already thinking about going into medicine and had started exploring clinical opportunities. However, there were only a few locations that I was interested in and some of those locations still required you to take the MCAT, so I didn't really see a benefit in doing the program ... At the end, I really wasn't 100% committed and I felt that this was the major reason not to apply." – Dr. Monica Taneja, MD


BS/MD programs are extremely competitive programs designed to give exceptional high school students, and in some cases, first or second-year undergrads, the chance to complete their baccalaureate degree and proceed directly into medical school to obtain their MD.

In some cases, the undergraduate degree and medical degree will be obtained from the same university, while in other cases, each degree will be completed at a separate partnered institution. Depending on the program, students can obtain both a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts, along with an MD or DO in 7-8 years.

Seven-year BS/MD programs are accelerated versions of the eight-year program, allowing students to complete their undergrad degree in only 3 years. While rare, a handful of schools offer BS/MD programs that take only 6 years to complete, combining an accelerated undergrad with a 3-year medical school curriculum.



BS/MD programs are a good way for dedicated premed students to accelerate their journey into medicine.

Knowing whether a BS/MD program is right for you is a tricky question to answer. While there are some benefits to enrolling in one of these programs, there are also factors that are important to consider. Weigh these pros and cons versus following a traditional path to medical school.

Pros of BS/MD

Cons of BS/MD

How Competitive are BS/MD Programs?

How competitive are BS/MD programs? Some BS/MD programs accept as few as 4-5 students but the number of applicants fighting for those spots could be in the hundreds, if not thousands. The popularity of BS/MD programs is growing and because of that, more and more applicants are fighting to gain a spot. Most programs have an acceptance rate ranging from 1-5%, making the level of competition fierce. Many BS/MD programs set minimum GPA, SAT or ACT stipulations and require high school students to be in the top 5-10% of their graduating class to be considered.

BS/MD and BA/MD Programs

This list is comprised of BS/MD programs that are available to high school students and it includes each school's admission statistics, available positions, and program duration. The SAT, ACT, and GPA scores below are the minimum requirements for consideration unless otherwise specified.

BS/DO Programs

How to Get Into BS/MD Programs

Getting into a BS/MD program is just as challenging as getting into medical school, and in some cases even more so. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you want to get accepted into a competitive program:

1. Show Academic Excellence

Maintain a high GPA throughout high school, particularly in challenging courses such as AP or IB classes, especially in science and math. You should also achieve high scores on standardized tests such as the SAT or ACT. Some programs also require the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). Most programs only accept students who are in the top 5-10% of their class.

“GPA [is an] important screening tool. It won’t be the end all for you to get in or be rejected from a school, but … [it] shows schools that you can handle rigorous academics.” – Dr. Monica Taneja, MD.

 

2. Get Healthcare Experience

Gain experience in healthcare settings through volunteering, shadowing medical professionals, or by participating in medical internships for high school students. This demonstrates your commitment to and understanding of the medical field.

“Clinical experience is a bonus because most schools like to know if a candidate knows what they are signing up for. Medicine is a long and arduous journey, so commitment is key.” – Dr. Neel Mistry, MD.

 

3. Maintain Strong Extracurricular Activities

Participate in extracurricular activities, especially those related to science and healthcare, such as science clubs, research projects, or health-focused volunteer work. Show your leadership skills through your extracurriculars for medical school. Initiatives that you start or lead, particularly those related to healthcare or science, can be especially impactful.

“It is important to do what you enjoy rather than simply for the “title” or for the sake of doing it … Ideally, the more relevant they are, the better. For instance, volunteering at the hospital, long-term care center, or leading a medical student club at your school are all great options that allow you to be exposed to the healthcare setting.” – Dr. Neel Mistry, MD.

 

4. Secure Letters of Recommendation

Obtain strong letters of recommendation from teachers, especially in science subjects, and from professionals you've worked with in healthcare settings. These should speak to your academic abilities, character, and suitability for a career in medicine.

“[As a teacher] I would be more willing to provide a letter for a student I had a few 1-1 interactions with, so it is always good to try and go to office hours for classes you may want a letter from. I’d also ask professors if they can write the letter soon after your taking the class ideally at the end of the semester or within the next semester.” – Dr. Monica Taneja, MD, University of Maryland School of Medicine.

 

5. Ace Your Personal Statement and Essays

Write compelling personal statements and essays that highlight your passion for medicine, your understanding of the profession, and why you want to become a doctor.

“What I did was start with a story. Like any good novel, the stories first lines are meant to hook the reader. This can be about anything if you can bring it back and relate it to your application. It could be about the time your friend was smashed up against the boards in hockey and you, with your limited first aid experience helped to treat him. It is important that the story be REAL.” – Dr. Jaime Cazes, MD, University of Toronto Temerty Faculty of Medicine.

 

6. Prepare for Interviews

Prepare thoroughly for interviews, which are a critical part of the application process. Be ready to discuss your interest in medicine, your experiences, and what you bring to the program. It is also common for these programs to use multiple mini interviews (MMI), so it’s a good idea to review this unfamiliar interview format!

“My first interview for medical school was an MMI and I was not prepared! After that experience, I went back and focused on thinking about what kinds of questions I would get during an MMI. It’s very different from traditional where you are mostly talking about your application. In an MMI, there are not only ethical scenarios, but also instructional exercises, patient simulations, and creative discussions. Just having a better sense of the questions was really helpful in preparing.” – Dr. Monica Taneja, MD.


 "From my experience, showing emotional maturity is key. Applicants are high schoolers who do not have much 'real life experience' as compared to traditional medicine applicants." – Dr. Sona Nuguri, MD


MMI interview coaching can help you prepare! Here’s how:

BS/MD Admission Interviews

BS/MD programs often use medical school interviews in their admissions processes. And they often employ a unique medical school interview format: the MMI, or multiple mini interview. This type of interview may be completely unfamiliar to applicants, so MMI interview coaching can be a valuable prep tool.

Here’s what some of our BS/MD students say about their MMI interview prep through BeMo:

“[BeMo] helped me gain admission to an eight-year BS/MD program. The particular program that I applied to utilized a specific interview style known as the multiple mini interview or MMI. I had prepared for several traditional style interviews this past year for the various other universities I applied to but I was unfamiliar with this certain interview style and reached out to [BeMo] for further assistance. The interview tips offered by consultants were incredibly useful in helping me become more able to tackle the various different kinds of questions in that could be asked … Coming out of high school this past year [BeMo] not only helped me become a better interviewer but also helped me navigate the different stages of the medical school application process.” – Alex, BeMo student.

 

“I was a BS/MD applicant so I was applying to medical schools straight out of high school. I used BeMo’s program and I saw such an improvement in my MMI skills. I found that the mock interviews were especially helpful for three main reasons. First, the mock interviews gave me an idea of what to expect on the actual interview day. Second, the team helped me improve my answers by pinpointing specific areas I could work on the professionals helped me develop strategies to answer any and all types of questions. Third, the mock interviews themselves really helped me develop the confidence I needed for interview day.” – Sonia, BeMo student.

 

FAQs

1. What are BS/MD programs?

BS/MD programs are joint degree programs which grant you a Bachelor of Science and an MD. They combine the traditional premed undergrad curriculum and the medical school curriculum.

2. How competitive are BS/MD programs to get into?

BS/MD programs are extremely competitive. They have stringent admission requirements and only admit a handful of matriculants per year, and many receive hundreds or even thousands of applicants. 

3. What are the requirements for a BS/MD program?

To apply to a BS/MD program, you must maintain a high GPA in your high school years and earn high competitive scores on your SAT or ACT. Some programs also evaluate your science GPA or require you to be in the top of your class.

4. How long as BS/MD programs?

Most BS/MD programs are 7 to 8 years long, although a few rare programs are accelerated to 6 years.

5. Which schools have a BS/MD program?

Some of the best medical schools in the US have BS/MD programs, including the Ivy League medical schools and some of the top private and public universities in the US.

6. What GPA do I need for a BS/MD program?

BS/MD programs have high requirements for applicant GPAs, usually only accepting students who are in the top 5-10% of their high school classes. A GPA of 3.9 and above is recommended.

7. Do I need to take the MCAT to get in?

BS/MD programs often require the submission of SAT or ACT scores to be admitted. While some BS/MD programs do require you to take the MCAT, the score requirement will be lower than their average medical school matriculant.

8. How long is medical school?

Medical school curriculums are typically 4 years long. BS/MD programs can shorten your undergraduate curriculum but usually don’t shorten how many years medical school will be.

To your success,

Your friends at BeMo

BeMo Academic Consulting 


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16 Comments

Deborah Nwabor

Hi!! I am wondering if people applying to bs/md programs for the year of 2022 will need to take to SAT's?

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Deborah! Thank you for your question. Many schools have cancelled the SAT and ACT requirement for the foreseeable future. It is best to contact your school of choice to confirm whether they still require the SAT/ACT score.

BeMo Academic Consulting

Deborah Nwabor, you are the winner of our weekly draw. Please email us by the end of the day tomorrow (April 17th) at content[at]bemoacademicconsulting.com from the same email address you used to leave your comment to claim your prize!

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Deborah Nwabor

Hi! I just emailed! Thank you for choosing me as a winner!

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Douyana

hi, I am a junior right now in high school.I really trying to get expected into a bs/md program specifically Howard University program.I believe that I am on track but I am still scared.Also I have been wondering do you have to accept the school to b invited to the program?

Reply

BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Douyana! Your anxiety if understandable. BS/MD programs are not easy to get into. We can help you with any part of your journey. Please fill out the form here https://bemoacademicconsulting.com/Contact-Us.php and we will get back to you shortly. Just to clarify, may I ask what you mean about accepting the school?

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Dex Honega

Hey, I am wondering how expensive these programs are?

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Dex! Thanks for your question. Unfortunately, BS/MD programs are just as expensive as medical school, with tuition ranging between $45K-$60K a year. You would need to look at each school specifically to get an exact amount. Hopefully this helps!

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Maitra

Hi, I am a sophomore in Canada. But, there are no Advanced placement courses in my school. Can I still get into a bs/md program? And are there any that don't accept international students?

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Maitra! Thank you so much for your question. Having AP classes is helpful, but they are not essential for getting in. As you could see from the article, there are many other requirements that have to be fulfilled to be eligible for BS/MD or BS/DO programs, such as extracurriculars and high GPA. Many of these programs do accept Canadians, but we strongly suggest reach out to your chosen schools to make sure they accept Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

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Nora Fotuhi

hello! I am in the class of 2023 and was wondering if I apply going into junior year or going into senior year?

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Nora, thanks for your question! As I understand you are still in high school if you are planning to apply to BS/MD programs? In this case, you should wait until senior year of high school to apply.

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katy

very informational article! thanks

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Thank you, Katy! We are glad you find this helpful!

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Stef Mauler

Just checking - is that acceptance rate at Rutgers accurate? It seems very high. Can you please provide the source?

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Stef! Thanks for your comment. Our team gathered this information by contacting the schools directly and visiting their official websites. Note: acceptance rate is sometimes much higher than admittance rate. This is because some people turn down the spot or choose to go to a different program/school. However, we will ensure this information is correct and up-to-date and we will update you if the acceptance rate is different from the one reported here. I wish you a great weekend!

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Anonymous

Hi! During this pandemic, I was unable to volunteer at a hospital, will this affect my acceptance to a bs/md program

Reply

BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello! Thank you for your question! This pandemic did change many students' plans, but there are some things you can do to bolster your application even in the pandemic. Did you know that there are virtual volunteer opportunities? These can be as simple as interacting with a resident of a care home via Zoom or Skype or tutoring a younger student online. If you are worried whether you have enough volunteering, you can try these activities!

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Tanish Jain

Hi, is the rutgers combined program acceptance rate really that high? Can you update/clarify that?

Reply

BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello Tanish! Thanks for your question. Our team gathered this information by contacting the schools directly and visiting their official websites. Note: acceptance rate is sometimes much higher than admittance rate. This is because some people turn down the spot or choose to go to a different program/school. However, we will ensure this information is correct and up-to-date and we will update you if the acceptance rate is different from the one reported here. Hope this helps!

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Nora Ancer

Hello! Not sure if I'm too late but here are my stats: US junior, 1530, 13 total APs in high school, 4.0uw and 6.0w Gpa, over 150 hours of volunteering (25 from the hospital and the rest through a long term cultural organization thing), dance for the past 8 years, possibly will do some shadowing, 1 junior varsity sport, and a couple of medicine/volunteering clubs through school. I think that's it for the major parts of my profile. Would I have any chance at acceptance into bsmd programs?

Reply

BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello Nora! Thanks for your comment! You have a great profile, but remember that it's not only about your stats. You must pick a school where your profile and skills will be valued. Let us know if you need any help with your admissions journey.

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Sanaullah Mohammed Hayath

I completed my studies till Grade 10 in India now I came back to Canada as I am Canadian so there is no SAT in my School also I am graduating in 2023 so shall I go to America for studying BS /MD or shall I be in Canada to do it. Also, I want to become a Neurosurgeon is it good to go with BS/MD.

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello Sanaullah! Thanks for your comment. If you want to attend a BS/MD in the US, you will need to complete your SAT or ACT. There are no BS/MD programs in Canada.

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Abdul Mohammad

Is the above university list complete? I knew some universities offered 7 year BS/MD but they are not listed here. For eg., Texas Tech Lubbock, also another one in Florida.

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Abdul! Thanks for your comment. We will research the information you provide and add it to our article! Thanks for the tip!

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Asal

Hi, I’m a junior living in turkey and im planning to apply for bs/md programs. I’m currently doing the Ib diploma program. I wanted to ask if it is enough just to have a good IB score or do i have to take the SAT

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello Asal! Thanks for your question. Most programs will still require your SAT or ACT scores. 

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Shanta Sondur

My daughter is in 11th and from India.. we are looking for bsmd program in USA.. plz guide us on the opportunity and how to prepare

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BeMo Academic Consulting

Hi Shanta! Please feel free to reach out to us for a free strategy call to discuss how we can help your daughter. 

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Kate

Hi!! If I am a student that is already at a university for undergrad, am I able to transfer to a BS/MD / BS/DO?

Reply

BeMo Academic Consulting

Hello Kate! Thanks for your question. Each BS/MD program is different, so you may want to do research on each individual institution and find out whether they accept transfer students. 

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