In perusing medical schools in Ohio, you might get a bit overwhelmed. There are six schools in total for the Buckeye State and trying to track down information for all six is a daunting task in and of itself. Let alone actually attempting to figure out what it all means or how to properly use it in your medical school application process. Among medical schools in the US, Ohio schools provide great options, but you’ll need a comprehensive view of their medical school requirements to submit a strong application.
In this article, we’ll explore all the medical schools in Ohio, give you their statistics, analyze the data, and talk about their preferred applicants. We’ll also go over requirements and recommended experiences and academics, and we’ll even give you some tips and strategies on how to best use these data to your advantage.
Please note: although we have made every effort to provide the most accurate information, admissions information changes frequently. Therefore, we encourage you to verify these details with the official university admissions office. You are responsible for your own results. BeMo does not endorse nor affiliate with any official universities, colleges, or test administrators and vice versa.
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List of Medical Schools in Ohio
This is a breakdown of the raw statistics for each of the six medical schools in Ohio.
1. Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine
2. Northeast Ohio Medical University
3. Ohio State University College of Medicine
4. Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Want to know the 3 key elements that will set your medical school application apart? Watch this video:
4. The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences
5. University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
6. Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine
How to Analyze These Data
Ample amounts of data won’t do you any good if you just get lost in a sea of numbers, so let’s break down some of this information so you have a better idea of what you’re looking at.
Reading acceptance rates can show you the easiest medical schools to get into and help your chances of admission.
A quick look shows that in-state applicants have the best shot at Northeast Ohio, which has an acceptance rate in the double digits for Ohio students. However, most of the other schools also have high acceptance rates for Ohio residents.
Case Western and University of Cincinnati are the only schools to have an acceptance rate for out-of-state students of 2% or more.
Case Western is the only school to accept international students in recent years. Out-of-state, Canadian, international, and DACA status students are all welcome at Case Western. However, they exclude all non-US citizens – including DACA status citizens – from the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) program. University of Cincinnati will only accept Canadian students, not international students generally, and only if those Canadian students have completed 20+ hours of coursework at an American university.
Ohio State also allows DACA status students, but besides Ohio State and Case Western, none of the other medical schools in Ohio do.
Northeast Ohio and Wright State have the lowest MCAT numbers for matriculating students, so if you have a great application but low MCATs, those schools might hold more appeal.
University of Toledo has the lowest GPA among accepted students, but Northeast Ohio and Wright State were close. Sometimes, how to get into medical school with a low GPA is a question of just knowing the odds.
Of course, if you have a very high GPA and MCAT score, you might want to apply to schools with the lower accepted scores anyway, as you will stand out.
Tuition and Fees
Case Western is the only school with equal fees for in-state and out-of-state students, but it is also the most expensive medical school in Ohio. Also, again, while other schools offer lower tuition rates for out-of-state students, only Case Western has a track record of actually accepting international students, so if you are international, that won’t help.
If you are from out-of-state, Ohio State, University of Cincinnati, and Wright State are all much cheaper.
Whether in- or out-of-state, Ohio State is the least expensive school in Ohio.
Choosing which school to apply to is not based on any one factor, and everything must be taken into consideration. You should first find a school at which you will thrive. This will make your application passionate and your reasons for applying stand out. That will help you more than test scores or statistics.
Acceptance rates aren’t dice throws. If a school has a 10% acceptance rate, that doesn’t mean that you have a random 1-in-10 chance. That means your application must be stronger than 90% of applicants. Picking schools that fit with you and into which you will fit is always the best strategy.
There are certain requirements for every school, which come in terms of courses as well as other experiences like shadowing a physician, clinical experience, or any number of other experiences that a school decides students need to study at their institution.
Required courses give students a knowledge base that guarantees the school that they will have enough basic academic knowledge, often with lab experience, to complete their program.
Prerequisite: Biomedical Science; Biology (with Lab; required for MSTP); Calculus or Biostats (required for MSTP); College English; Inorganic Chemistry (with Lab; 2 semesters or 3 quarters); Organic Chemistry (with Lab)
Recommended: Biology (with Lab; recommended for Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine [CCLCM]); Physics (with Lab); Psychology; Social Sciences
Prerequisite: Biochemistry; Biology (with Lab; 2 semesters); Organic Chemistry (with Lab; 2 semesters); Physics (with Lab; 2 semesters)
Recommended: Anatomy; Calculus; Cell Biology; College English; College Mathematics; Genetics; Humanities; Immunology; Inorganic Chemistry; Microbiology; Molecular Biology; Physiology; Psychology; Social Sciences; Sociology; Statistics
Ohio State University
Prerequisite: Biochemistry; Biology; Inorganic Chemistry (with Lab); Organic Chemistry (with Lab); Physics (with Lab)
Recommended: Anatomy; Behavioral Sciences; College English; Diversity/Ethics; Genetics; Humanities; Psychology; Social Studies
University of Toledo
Prerequisite: Biochemistry; Biology (with Lab; one full year required); General Chemistry (with Lab; one full year required); Organic Chemistry (with Lab; one full year required); Physics
Recommended: Anatomy; Biostatistics; College English; College Mathematics; Genetics; Humanities; Inorganic Chemistry; Medical Terminology; Physiology; Psychology; Social Sciences
University of Cincinnati
Prerequisite: N/A - the University of Cincinnati has no prerequisite courses, only recommended courses.
Recommended: Anatomy & Physiology (with Lab); Behavioral Sciences; Biochemistry; Biology; College English; College Mathematics; Genetics; Histology; Humanities; Immunology; Inorganic Chemistry; Organic Chemistry (with Lab); Physics (with Lab); Psychology; Social Sciences
Wright State University
Prerequisite: Biochemistry; Biology (with Lab); College English; College Mathematics; Inorganic Chemistry (with Lab); Organic Chemistry (with Lab); Physics (with Lab)
Wright State accepts community college credit, if the course includes a lab component and is comparable to a four-year college course.
Recommended: Behavioral Sciences; Calculus; Computer Science; Genetics (with Lab); Humanities; Psychology; Social Sciences
Case Western, Ohio State, and Wright State all have a requirement that students perform community service while in medical school. If you are a socially conscious student with lots of community service and volunteering in your past, these schools might appreciate your altruism if shown prominently on your application. Cite your passion for volunteer work and for community-mindedness.
Case Western and Wright State both require research or theses during medical school, and applicants who are scientifically oriented might want to highlight that on their applications or cite that as a reason for application.
All Ohio schools say they recommend shadowing a physician, although none require it. Should you? Yes. A recommendation is a way to stand out. Lots of other applicants will take a shortcut and consider this recommendation non-essential, but it is always an opportunity to set yourself apart and rise above a lot of other applications. Furthermore, shadowing a physician is just a great way to get more intimate knowledge of health care as a field.
Obviously, if this is impossible for your area, you will likely have to find a different way to stand out. However, some hospitals can accommodate shadowing in a virtual environment. It is worth contacting hospitals or medical facilities to see if this is an option for you.
How to Navigate Requirements for Medical Schools in Ohio
You can see that all medical schools in Ohio will require that you have a basis in the hard sciences, with the University of Cincinnati as the exception, of course, as they have no requirements.
That’s interesting, isn’t it? No prerequisites, only recommendations, might seem to give you free rein. However, you should take a cue from the other schools and understand that hard sciences are an integral part of medicine. The advantage with Cincinnati is that you can avoid courses you won’t do as well in and exchange them for similar courses in which you will achieve higher grades. For example, if you know that you won’t do as well in inorganic chemistry, you can take organic instead, making your GPA higher and increasing your chances of acceptance.
That’s one of the ways you should approach recommended courses: take as many as you can, but also plan them out to appeal to your strengths. This will result in higher test scores that set you apart.
However, you also want to consider the kind of doctor you want to become. If you are planning to enter psychiatry, for instance, you will want that course. You might also want to pick electives like social sciences that put you more in contact with the psycho-emotional side of people. Cite this reasoning in your “Why medicine” essays or similar places. On the other hand, if you are entering an MD-PhD program and plan to be as much a scientist as a physician, you will need more of the hard sciences and extra lab work.
Who you want to be is what you are planning, so make no mistake and plan accordingly.
What Kind of Student Are Medical Schools in Ohio Looking For?
Most schools in Ohio favor Ohio students. Notably, Northeast Ohio Medical University will offer Ohio students who apply early a preferential spot. So, if you are applying to Northeast Ohio, and you are from the Buckeye State, apply early.
So, what if you aren’t from Ohio? There is still hope! For example, University of Cincinnati boasts a class that is roughly half (40–60%) from out-of-state. If you are looking at Ohio but do not live in or hail from that state, University of Cincinnati gives you an even chance of entry.
If you presently live outside of Ohio but are originally from Ohio, or if you have close family in Ohio, you might find time to let these schools know this on your application. Or perhaps if you are moving to Ohio and planning to practice medicine there, put that into one of your essays – it’s a perfect fit for “Why did you pick this school?” or similar prompts. Including a connection to Ohio in your application might cause the admissions committee to look more favorably on you.
Case Western and Northeast Ohio are both located in rural environments. Ohio State offers a community medicine track which trains for rural medicine.
While none of Ohio’s schools specifically mention rural applicants, these three schools are either located in or supply training for medicine in a specifically rural environment. If this appeals to you, you should mention this in your application, in conjunction with why you are applying to these schools specifically. This is a great way to show a strong connection with the values and environments of these institutions.
Northeast Ohio has the Underrepresented Students in Medicine (URIM) pathway, designed to help students from underrepresented groups have greater access to their dream roles as physicians. Here, underrepresented means minority students or students from educationally and/or socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds.
University of Cincinnati offers a Medical Spanish/Latino Health Elective (MSLHE) which allows students the opportunity to learn Spanish, but to prepare themselves to “...deliver culturally-proficient and linguistically competent care to the Latino community.” While they don’t specify that this affects applications, a close tie to this community and a desire to serve them as a physician is something you should put in your application.
Preferred Premed Experiences and Extracurriculars
Almost all students – close to 100% in a recent year – had research and/or lab experience before matriculating to Case Western. They had percentages in the low-90s for community service, physician shadowing, and medical or clinical volunteer experience. Fewer than half of the students had paid medical or clinical experience, but between 40–46% still did. This means that you should have clinical experience, but it need not be professional or paid.
Like Case Western, the highest premedical experience at Northeast Ohio for matriculating students was in research and lab work, although this was only at 80%. Next highest were 75% of students having community service, physician shadowing, and medical or clinical volunteer experience. Half had paid experience in clinical or medical roles. Notably, in recent years, all of these numbers have seen dramatic increases. For example, in a four-year span, research and lab experience went from 38% of matriculating students to 80%. Similar growth was seen in all premedical experiences. In other words, these experiences are important now but will likely become more important if these trends continue.
Ohio State mimics Case Western’s distribution and numbers almost exactly, with 98% having research or lab experience, and percentages in the low 90s in community service, physician shadowing, and medical volunteer experience among accepted students.
University of Toledo
Research/lab experience, physician shadowing, and medical or clinical volunteer experiences were all close to 85% in recent years at the University of Toledo, although the latter fell off slightly in a recent year to 78%. Community service was also high. Toledo had over 50% of students with medical or clinical paid employment.
University of Cincinnati
This school won’t break the established pattern: mid-90s for the percentage of students with research or lab experience. Low-90s for physician shadowing, and high-80s for volunteering in a clinic or medicine and community service, the latter of which has seen a small rising trend in recent years. Paid experience is below 50%, in the low-40s.
Research and lab experience, along with physician shadowing experiences, are close to 90% at Wright State and just ahead of the mid-80s for community service and medical or clinical volunteer experience. One recent year saw paid experience in medicine or clinical environments to be 64%, although other recent years have this number at around 50%, so this spike might have been a fluke. Still, it is worth considering that this is the highest showing for paid experience and making an extra effort to find employment in a health care-related field. Also noteworthy is the fact that Wright State is the only medical school in Ohio to crack 5% for military service among premedical experiences.
Programs at Medical Schools in Ohio
Most institutions in the Buckeye State offered combined degrees. Northeast State does not, however, so if you want to enter an MD-PhD program, you cannot go there. Of course, the University of Toledo doesn’t offer that particular combined degree, either.
You could combine your MD with an MBA, to better understand how to open your own clinic or medical business. You could also seek a simultaneous master’s degree, which might assist you if you want to have an academic career in addition to your health care degree. Use our breakdown of schools in this article to find the combination degree that suits you best for the future you want.
Case Western has the CCLCM and MSTP available for application.
The CCLCM aims to “... educate a diverse group of individuals to become physician investigators who advance biomedical research, deliver exceptional clinical care and promote health equity.” They are oriented toward physician investigators. If you are scientifically motivated or oriented, this is a good program for you.
The MSTP is the MD-PhD program, also directed at the scientific aspects of medicine.
More generally, Case Western’s Pathways Programs “...provide individualized enrichment experiences for students with interest or expertise in pursuits beyond the core curriculum.” Case Western emphasizes primary care, and 41% of their graduates entered training in primary care fields.
Northeast Ohio is peer-instructed in M1 and M2. They want to eschew traditional lecture formats so that students are more empowered and will internalize instruction. M3 is more traditional with a plethora of rotations in locations across northern Ohio. M4 features electives and sub-internship clerkship. Primary care is emphasized through all four years.
Ohio State’s Lead.Serve.Inspire (LSI) is designed to deliver high-quality care to a diverse population. Students practice primary care in underserved areas. LSI has students attend clinic twice per month, interacting with patients from week 9 of first year. Students also have their own faculty coach assigned to them and can direct their own learning into advanced learning in areas that interest them.
University of Toledo first speaks of their scientific basis. They have interdisciplinary instruction in Genes, Genomes & Cell Biology, Hematology & Oncology, Immunity, Infection & Disease, Musculoskeletal, Neuroscience, Behavior, Cardiopulmonary, Renal, Gastrointestinal, and Reproduction. Overall, the curriculum is systems-based and emphasizes decision making, along with science. Clinical skills are taught over all four years. Third and fourth year feature clerkships.
University of Cincinnati keeps up with the latest health care advances by focusing on societal needs and changing health care practices as well as scientific innovation and advancement. Clerkship is used in years 1 and 2 before rotations in year 3 with core clerkships. Year 4 includes specialty electives and refreshers on scientific knowledge.
Wright State uses three different phases: Foundations of Clinical Practice, Doctoring, and Advanced Doctoring. The first phase integrates biomedical science and clinical science and grants students self-directed learning and active learning. Second, the Doctoring phase, includes seven clerkships as well as electives. Advanced Doctoring, the third and final phase, requires a scholarly project, more electives, and a “...capstone program to re-visit important biomedical science applications to clinical practice.” Wright also emphasizes social engagement and training future physicians for work in areas with shortages of health care workers.
With six possibilities, there is plenty of variety in your potential choice of medical school in Ohio. Using the data, analyses, and strategies presented in this article, we think you’ll have a good head start on your application. Of course, you’re just starting out on your medical school journey, so keep using all the resources available to help you to take your best shot at your dream school.
1. What’s a good number of medical schools to apply to?
We recommend between 6 and 8. Don’t overreach, but don’t risk everything on just one or two applications.
2. Can I take deferred entry in an Ohio medical school?
Deferral is on a case-by-case basis, a policy shared by all six medical schools in Ohio.
3. Is it a good idea to take a gap year before medical school?
A gap year before medical school can be a positive or negative, depending on what you do in that time. If you just relax and essentially have an extended break, that won’t reflect well on your application. However, if you wisely invest that time in increasing experience or working to save money, this can show maturity and actually help you stand out.
4. Is it better to interview online or virtually?
It’s best to select your schools first and deal with their interview process, however they manage it. If you have an option, it’s up to you. The difference for you is just whether you need to test your computer the day before or pre-drive your route to the school, so you won’t be late.
5. Do application processes have fees?
Small fees, but yes, they do. It costs money to sit tests like the MCAT or to submit a secondary application in most circumstances.
6. Do medical schools in Ohio take late applications?
Consider it “No.” You want to stand out in a positive way from other applicants, and with competitive admissions rates, you cannot afford to send in a late application.
7. Can I take the MCAT more than once?
Yes. You can take the MCAT three times in one year or four times in two. Note that seven times is the limit for anybody in their life. If you retake the MCAT, make sure you can increase your results significantly.
8. Does my GPA matter?
There are cut-off GPAs after which you wouldn’t be considered, and average accepted GPAs that you should hit to remain competitive. If you want to stand out, yes, a higher GPA will do that, but if you don’t have the highest GPA, don’t worry; there are other ways to stand out.
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