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MD Admissions

The Admissions Process

Application

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As a convenience to the applicant, Tulane University School of Medicine participates in the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS). AMCAS applications are available online here.

All applicants who have their primary application forwarded by AMCAS to Tulane Medical School will receive an e-mail notification with instructions to complete the Electronic Secondary Application and online fee payment form.  An application fee of $125, which covers the handling and processing of the application, must accompany the completed Electronic Secondary Application. The deadline for completing the Electronic Secondary Application is November 15th.

It is important that all potential applicants understand that Tulane School of Medicine receives more than 13,000 applications a year. Applicants are encouraged to submit an application with the necessary supporting documentation as early as possible.

TUSOM has identified several personal attributes that will be considered in the application process.  These are academic ability (as reflected in grades and MCAT scores), leadership, commitment to service, clinical activity, appreciation of diversity and scholarly activity (research), maturity, and a passion for medicine.  

Technical Standards

To accomplish its mission, Tulane University School of Medicine has established a curriculum consisting of core courses and clerkships, required rotations, and elective rotations. The faculty and administration of the school have developed essential functions with which all students must comply independently in order to satisfy medical school curricular demands. The essential functions are listed below:

Observation Candidates must be able to acquire information from demonstrations and participate in experiments of science, including but not limited to such things as dissection of cadavers; examination of specimens in anatomy, pathology, and neuroanatomy laboratories; and microscopic study of microorganisms and tissues in normal and pathologic states.  Candidates must be able to accurately acquire information from patients and assess findings. These skills require the use of vision, hearing, and touch or the functional equivalent. They must be able to observe a patient accurately both directly and through indirect methods (at a distance and close at hand), to obtain and analyze medical history. Medical students must be capable of viewing and interpreting diagnostic modalities and to detect and interpret non-verbal communication from the patient. They must be able to perform a full and complete physical examination in order to integrate findings based on this information and to develop an appropriate diagnostic and treatment plan.

Communication Candidates must be able to communicate effectively and efficiently with patients, their families, health care personnel, colleagues, faculty, staff, and all other individuals with whom they come in contact. Candidates must be able to read and write in standard format, and must be able to interact with computers when necessary in rendering patient care. Candidates must obtain a medical history in a timely fashion, must be able to record information accurately and clearly in a written patient work-up, and orally present the work-up in a focused manner to other healthcare professionals. Candidates must be able to listen carefully and develop rapport with patients and their families, in order to elicit information and perform appropriate examinations; observe patients attentively; perceive changes in mood, activity and posture; and interpret non-verbal communication such as facial expressions, affects, and body language. Candidates must communicate effectively and efficiently in English with other health care professionals in a variety of patient settings.

Motor Function Candidates must, after a reasonable period of training, possess the capacity to perform physical examinations and diagnostic maneuvers, e.g., elicit information from inspection, palpation, auscultation, percussion, etc. Candidates must be able to respond to clinical situations in a timely manner and execute the movements reasonably required to provide both general and emergency care. These activities require some physical mobility, coordination of both gross and fine motor neuromuscular function, balance, and equilibrium. Specifically, candidates must be able to manipulate equipment and instruments, perform basic laboratory tests and procedures, and possess the physical capacity to examine patients in order to identify both normal and abnormal clinical findings. Finally, candidates must be able to adhere to universal precaution protocols and meet the safety standards applicable to all required clinical settings, e.g., inpatient, outpatient, emergency department, etc.

Intellectual-Conceptual, Integrative, and Quantitative Abilities Candidates must be able to assimilate the detailed and complex information presented in the medical student curriculum. They must be able to learn through a variety of modalities including, but not limited to, classroom instruction; small group, team and collaborative activities; independent study; simulation; use of computer technology; observation; and through direct patient care. Candidates must be able to memorize, measure, calculate, reason, analyze, synthesize, and transmit information. They must recognize and draw conclusions about three-dimensional spatial relationships and logical sequential relationships among events. They must be able to formulate and test hypotheses that enable effective and timely problem-solving in diagnosis and treatment of patients in a variety of clinical settings and health care systems.

Ethical, Legal, Attitudinal, Behavioral, Interpersonal, and Emotional Attributes Candidates must demonstrate the maturity and emotional stability required for full use of their intellectual abilities. Because the medical profession is governed by generally accepted ethical principles and by state and federal laws, candidates must have the capacity to learn and understand these values and laws to perform within their guidelines. Students must be of the highest ethical and moral behavior. As such, candidates and current students must meet the legal standards to be licensed to practice medicine in Louisiana as well as the standards of Tulane School of Medicine, even as students may choose to practice in other locations after graduation. Candidates for admission must pass the criminal background check, as required by AAMC. In addition, after matriculation, students who are enrolled in Tulane’s School of Medicine’s medical education program must immediately notify the Associate Dean of Students of any arrest, charge, conviction or institutional investigation or action occurring thereafter. Felony conviction or failure to disclose prior or new offenses can lead to disciplinary action by the school that may include dismissal.

In addition to legal requirements, candidates must accept responsibility for learning, exercising good judgment, and promptly completing all responsibilities attendant to their curriculum and to the diagnosis and care of patients.

Candidates must be able to relate to patients, patients’ families, staff, and colleagues with honesty, integrity, dedication, and non-discrimination. Students must be able to develop mature, sensitive, and effective relationships with patients. Students should be self-reflective, must be able to identify personal reactions and responses, recognize multiple points of view, and integrate all of these appropriately into clinical decision-making. Students must be able to communicate and provide treatment to persons whose culture, sexual orientation, or spiritual beliefs are different from their own. Candidates must not let their own personal attitudes, perceptions, and stereotypes compromise care of the patient.

Candidates must behave in a manner that is conscientious, altruistic, with a spirit of cooperation and teamwork. Candidates must be able to contribute to collaborative, constructive learning environments and integrate constructive feedback from others in order to modify behavior. Candidates must have the physical and emotional stamina and resilience to tolerate physically and emotionally taxing workloads and function in a competent and professional manner. Candidates must be able to tolerate and adapt to changing environments, display flexibility, and manage the uncertainty inherent in the care of patients and the health care system.

Secondary Application

Every student who applies to TUSOM will need to fill out a secondary application. Once AMCAS verifies your application, they send the application to us. AMCAS can take a few weeks to verify your application, but once your primary application or AMCAS application is verified, AMCAS sends you an e-mail informing you Tulane has received your application. Within the next week, you will be emailed a secondary application from TUSOM. It is in your best interest to fill out your secondary application as soon as possible as we work on rolling admissions. Do not forget to check your spam mail for any communications.

Screening

An application is considered complete once the Tulane School of Admissions and Student Affairs has received the primary and secondary applications, application fee, MCAT score, and all letters of evaluation. Once an application is complete, the file is read by one or more members of the Admission Committee. One of two actions may result from screening. The applicant may be:

  • INVITED FOR INTERVIEW BY EMAIL, or
  • NOTIFIED OF NON-ACCEPTANCE BY EMAIL

During the screening process the contents of the entire application are taken into account, but at this stage of review the greatest emphasis is placed upon an applicant's academic record and letters of evaluation. Nonetheless, experience shows that students with a broad range of coursework (both science and non-science courses), active participation in college or campus life, and a good record of community service are more likely to be invited for interviews.

The Interview

During the 2020-21 admission's cycle, all interviews will be held virtually.  

Approximately 600 applicants are invited to New Orleans and Tulane School of Medicine each year for interviews. Interviews are held from September through the end of February. Invited applicants are emailed an invitation to schedule the interview. Do not wait to schedule; the calendar is open on first come first serve. If it is necessary to reschedule an interview one may request a subsequent date, but there is no guarantee that we can accommodate due to our heavy volume. Additionally, in recognition of the cost of interviewing, Tulane School of Medicine will attempt to accommodate those applicants trying to coordinate interviews with several schools.

In previous admission's cycles, interview days were Mondays through Fridays and last from 8:00 am until approximately 2:30 PM.  If available, overnight housing with a medical student can be arranged.  For this year, interviews will begin at 8:00 expect on certain days when the day will begin later.

Applicants will be interviewed by one faculty member or administrator. All interviews with faculty members or administrators are blind and informal. The interviewer will be able to view the applicant's personal statement and secondary application if they choose to do so.

The interviewee will also participate in a "standardized patient" exercise in which they will play the role of a first year medical student interviewing a patient. Applicants will also be interviewed by a current Tulane medical student. The student interview will be in the form of a "working lunch." All interviewers will write a report about the interview and that report will become a part of the applicant's file. With the addition of the interview reports, an applicant's file is considered complete and ready for review by the Admissions Committee.

Committee Action

Typically within 3-5 weeks after the interview, the application goes before the full Admission Committee for evaluation. The Committee may decide to accept an applicant, place the applicant on a "acceptance range" wait list or reject an applicant. No mathematical formula are used in making this decision and no specific guidelines are given to committee members to place particular weight upon MCAT's, GPA, or other parts of the completed application. 

Acceptances are offered weekly, beginning October 1 and continuing until the class is filled. Each week, the Committee may elect to send offers of acceptance to applicants from the "acceptance range" list or to send offers of admissions only to applicants whose files have been reviewed that week.

Acceptance

Those applicants who receive letters of acceptance are given two weeks to either accept or decline the offer of admission to Tulane School of Medicine. Those who accept their place must electronically submit a deposit of $100. The instructions for submitting the payment can be found in the acceptance letter. The deposit must be received no later than April 30th of the year of the student's expected matriculation. Upon enrollment, this deposit is credited toward the student's tuition and is not refundable after April 30th. Therefore, applicants are advised to submit their deposit only after they have made a final decision about attending Tulane School of Medicine.

A letter of withdrawal is required if a student wishes to relinquish a reserved place in the class. An e-mail will suffice (medsch@tulane.edu) or the student may withdraw the application inside the Tulane Secondary Portal.

Accepted students are asked to be considerate to others in the applicant pool awaiting an acceptance. Tulane School of Medicine strongly encourages students to not hold more than one seat at a time, but recognizes that a final decision often can not be made until all information is available. In cases where an applicant is awaiting additional information before deciding upon which medical school to attend, we encourage the applicant to narrow the choice to two or three schools at most and to relinquish any additional places being held. The applicant should make decisions as information is received from the medical schools.