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Application Guides

Timeline for Applying to Health Professional Programs

This is a general timeline for preparing to apply for some health professional programs (e.g. medical, dental, optometry, veterinary, and others). Note, that not all programs are on the same timeline. Do your research and consult with an advisor.

Fall semester 2 years before you matriculate

  • Consult your Action Plan to determine if you are on track to submit your best application
  • Identify the best time to take the entrance exam and registration deadlines
  • Take the exam as early as you can but keep these three things in mind:
    • Make sure you plan enough time to study
    • You want the best score you are capable of the first time
    • If you have to retake the exam, you want to have enough time improve your score and submit early in an application cycle
  • Study for the entrance exam
  • Make sure you allow yourself enough preparation time so that you can do your best on the exam
  • Research Fee Assistance Programs for exams and applications
  • Consider which individuals you will ask to write strong, positive letters of recommendation on your behalf
  • Write your personal statement
  • Considering a gap year? Explore meaningful opportunities/experiences to complete during that time

Spring semester the year before you matriculate

  • If you haven’t done so already,
    • Identify the best time to take the entrance exam and registration deadlines
    • Study for the entrance exam
    • Consider which individuals you will ask to write strong, positive letters of recommendation on your behalf
    • Write your personal statement
  • Take entrance exam (if it is time, and you are prepared)
  • Research and apply for Fee Assistance programs
  • Research specific programs that interest you
  • Prepare for committee letter process, if applicable
  • Familiarize yourself with application service for your programs of interest
  • Watch tutorials, read tips, know the deadlines
  • Start application

Summer the year before you matriculate

  • Complete and submit applications
  • Complete the committee letter process
  • Track your application status
  • Complete secondary applications
  • Schedule interviews

Fall year before you matriculate through the spring semester

  • Complete remaining application materials
  • Interviews
  • Receive acceptances
  • Some fields have Applications and Acceptance Protocols. Review these, if applicable.

Current Application Guides

Below are the current application guides available, take note of their open and deadline dates.

  • Allopathic Medical School (MD)

    • Application Service: AMCAS
    • Opens: Early May
    • Deadline(s): September-December
  • Osteopathic Medical School (DO)

    • Application Service: AACOMAS
    • Opens: Early May
    • Deadline(s): October - April
  • Dental School

    • Application Service: ADEA AADSAS
    • Opens: Early June
    • Deadline(s): Early February
  • Veterinary School

    • Application Service: VMCAS
    • Opens: Early May
    • Deadline(s): mid-September
  • Optometry School

    • Application Service: OptomCAS
    • Opens: June
    • Deadline(s): December-June
  • Pharmacy

    • Application Service: PharmCAS
    • Opens: July
    • Deadline(s): September-March

Advisors Toolkit

If you are an academic advisor to a student interested in pursuing a healthcare profession, this toolkit is here to assist you in answering questions and getting them on the right track.

View Toolkit

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