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Best Medical Schools In Atlanta

Last Updated on February 17, 2023 by Fola Shade

Atlanta is the capital of Georgia (US state) and is richly populated. History shows that the city rose from ashes after it was burnt entirely during the Civil War of America. This city struggled and brought advancements in the fields of education, technology, and research. These developments have made Atlanta city, the center of the world. It is a very busy city, as it is evident from the fact that its international airport has the largest traffic of passengers in the world. Atlanta has great influence in global commerce, media, art, entertainment, and technology. It is ranked 15th globally and 10th domestically for its GDP of above $380 billion. About 500 business companies are working in Atlanta. Because the city is serving in different technological aspects like aerospace, transport, professional and business services, media services, medical services, and IT, its economy is quite diverse.

Atlanta is the 7th most visited city of the US, with the count of over thirty-five million tourists annually. It has numerous attractions like Georgia Aquarium, houses of famous political personalities and writers, and museums like Margaret Mitchell and World of Coca-Cola. It also has many famous recreational places like zoos and parks. Its greenery and the natural scenery are very soothing and satisfying. So, despite being a busy city, it has a calm environment.

Atlanta has more than 200 educational and research institutes dedicated to higher and professional education. The most famous of these institutes are Emory University, Morehouse School of Medicine, Savannah College of Art and Design, John Marshall Law School, and many more. With this large count of well-known institutions, Atlanta has become the center of attention of many domestic as well as international students. According to an estimate, about 250 thousand students enroll at different institutes of Atlanta. As for medical students, Atlanta has two renowned medical schools, which are medical schools of Emory University and Morehouse, and both of these are private institutions. Being the only two medical schools in Atlanta, there is a great competition between them, and this is the reason that both schools are providing the best quality education, professional experience, and research.

Is There a Way to Get in Medical Schools in Atlanta?

Many medical schools in the United States ensure you pass your MCAT to get admission. Also, you might be lucky to gain access to their preparatory test courses to have more knowledge regarding the MCAT exam. Passing the license exam is a great way to practice medicine in America. The live MCAT prep course is on Suwannee, GA campus that allows you to learn in small group settings, and it offers room to meet with a mentor to tutor you.

Reasons to Study Medicine in Atlanta

  • The two medical schools in Atlanta have global recognition from corporate bodies like the Medical Council of India and the World Health Organization.
  • Medical schools in Atlanta are globally accepted.
  • Medical students studying in Atlanta can attend international conferences and seminars to have more medical experience.
  • Reasonable discounts on transportation are available especially traveling within the cities of Atlanta.
  • You have access to world-class education from academic staff with significant years of experience.
  • Affordable tuition fees compared to other cities in the United States of America.
  • Easy admission process due to having well-organized admission officers
  • Good standard of living because of the low of living

Top Medical Schools in Atlanta

Below is the list of best universities in Atlanta ranked based on their research performance in Medicine. A graph of 4.03M citations received by 77K academic papers made by 7 universities in Atlanta was used to calculate publications’ ratings, which then were adjusted for release dates and added to final scores.

We don’t distinguish between undergraduate and graduate programs nor do we adjust for current majors offered. You can find information about granted degrees on a university page but always double-check with the university website.

1. Morehouse School of Medicine

Morehouse School of Medicine, also known as MSM, is a top-level medical school. It was under the supervision of Morehouse College since its establishment. Later it became independent in 1981 and is now located in southern Atlanta. It ranks as the sixteenth-best medical school in the US. It offers graduate and Ph. D. programs in medicine and medicine research. Currently, MSM is offering the professional degree of medicine (MD), MS in medical sciences, Masters in public health, and many residency programs like general surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry, obstetrics, and family medicine, which are being served at the different medical institutes and hospitals associated with the school. Students get to learn and practice medicine in the various clinics and hospitals affiliated with the MSM. Its MS programs are non-thesis programs which are being offered in the courses like biochemistry, anatomy, epidemiology, physiology, pharmacology, medical terminology.

The total number of students currently enrolled at this medical school in Atlanta is more than 500 and most of them are local citizens. Students from various countries are applying to get admission at MSM. It has a professional faculty, consisting of about 130 full-time educators and practitioners.

The alumni of Morehouse School of Medicine can be seen at top positions at various federal government posts, CEOs of many prominent medical institutions and organizations, chief of surgery at many private sectors, and many influential personalities of the US. Most prominent of them are Regina Benjamin (Surgeon General), Karyn Butler (Professor), and James D. Lock.

2. Emory University School of Medicine

Emory University School of Medicine, with a rank of thirty-second in the world for its clinical and health education, is certainly a place to pursue a medical career. It is also ranked as the twenty-fourth best medical research institute in the US. It’s a graduate school under the administration of Emory University. It is an old institute, as it was established in the mid of the nineteenth century as Atlanta Medical College. It was later joined with Emory University and was renamed to its current name in 1915. It is on the premises of the main campus of Emory University. The long list of courses that are being offered at this medical school includes the famous doctor of medicine (MD), MS in genetics and anesthesiology, physical therapy, and a minor degree physician assistant training. Because of such outstanding ranking among national and international medical schools, studying at Emory school of medicine has become a global trend. More and more students are applying for admission every year. This is the reason for the very low acceptance rate of the school, which is below 8%. More than 430 students are currently enrolled at Emory School of Medicine.

Courses of this medical school in Atlanta are designed as such that first year and a half are dedicated to basic medical sciences. The many affiliations of school present the students with clerkship opportunities in the following years. It also provides them with the facility of hands-on practice of medicine and surgery. Many dual degree programs of public health, clinical research, bioethics as well as MD-Ph.D. are also being offered. Its affiliated medical research facilities include Grandy Memorial Hospital, EU Hospital, Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and many more.

Emory University School of Medicine has many noticeable alumni, including Samuel Hollingsworth Stout (professor of surgery), Arnal Patz, Ferrol Sams (physician and novelist), and Sonny Carter (Astronaut).

I hope that this article on best medical schools in Atlanta was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Medical School Category!

List of Unranked Medical Schools in Georgia

The following schools are unranked by US News.

Mercer University School of Medicine (Macon, GA)

Mercer University, located in Macon, Savannah, and Columbus, was established in 1982 to increase rural Georgia’s medical care quality. Mercer takes this mission so seriously that all students wishing to apply must be Georgia residents for at least 12 months. This residency requirement is a significant advantage for applicants who are Georgia residents because it virtually eliminates out-of-state competition.

Students who are independent learners may be a good fit for the Mercer University School of Medicine. Mercer implements a self-directed learning approach instead of traditional lectures. The problem-based learning that Mercer fosters involves getting exposure to real-world dilemmas and using those experiences to guide academic instruction. Due to this model of education, Mercer students receive clinical experiences beginning in their first semester.                

Graduates from Mercer’s School of Medicine take pride in caring for the state’s medically underserved populations. In fact, Mercer ranks 2nd in the nation for graduates practicing in rural areas and working in primary care within Georgia.  Mercer is known for accepting students who exemplify their mission of caring for the medically underserved. To get accepted into this medical school in Georgia, applicants should highlight their experiences working at free clinics or shadowing primary care providers.

Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta, GA)

Morehouse School of Medicine was founded in 1975 and is one of three historically black medical schools in the United States. This medical school’s mission is to prepare future physicians to provide quality care for people of color in urban and rural Georgia. Morehouse focuses on the importance of preventative care, with most MSM graduates serving as primary care physicians.

Morehouse School of Medicine strives to increase the number of Black doctors entering the medical field. Although the school already prides itself on being third in the country for the number of medical degrees awarded to Black doctors, they refuse to stop there. In December of 2020, Morehouse partnered with CommonSpirit Health and pledged to spend $100 million recruiting and educating more Black doctors to address racial health disparities in the United States. Although Morehouse is a historically black medical school, it accepts students of any racial or ethnic background as long as they have a passion for diversity and inclusion.

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (Suwanee & Moultrie, GA)

As one of the nation’s oldest medical schools, the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine prepares its graduates to provide “whole person” care to a diverse patient population. At PCOM, future osteopathic physicians learn to integrate traditional western medicine with complementary therapies and lifestyle modifications.

While their main campus is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, PCOM Georgia is located in Suwanee, and PCOM South Georgia is located in Moultrie. These campuses were added to the university to address the severe physician shortage in the South. PCOM Georgia was created in 2005, while the Moultrie location accepted their first class of DO students in 2019. Both Georgia branches offer the doctor of osteopathic medicine degree.  

Osteopathic medicine is a fast-growing healthcare profession in the United States, and 25 percent of all medical students are enrolled in a DO program. Osteopathic physicians are licensed to provide medications, perform surgery, diagnose, and treat patients the same way a medical doctor can. PCOM is passionate about osteopathic philosophy and recruits students who align with this ideology.

Ranked Georgia Medical Schools

The following schools are ranked by US News in their “Medical Schools – Research” category. The ranking you see here is based on their order relative to other schools in Georgia.

2. Augusta University Medical College of Georgia

Augusta University, also known as the Medical College of Georgia, is the only public medical school in Georgia and one of the largest medical schools in the United States. MCG and its graduates have a special responsibility to identify and address the healthcare needs of the state of Georgia.

MCG is a hot spot for pivotal medical research and strives to integrate new research into students’ medical education seamlessly. Augusta University recently spent millions investing in vision research and educational innovation.

Students who would like to experience large teaching hospitals and small primary care practices may appreciate MCG’s regional campus model. Using this model, the medical school is implementing a new three-year medical curriculum. This redesigned curriculum consists of a 3-year core medical program and allows students to choose their path for their 4th year. The options are to go straight into a primary care residency, obtain a dual degree, or receive advanced residency preparation.

1. Emory University School of Medicine

It is no surprise that Emory University is the highest-ranked medical school in the state of Georgia. The medical school is ranked #24 in research and #25 in primary care by US News and World Report.

Located in the heart of Atlanta, Emory Healthcare is the most extensive health system in Georgia and is world-renowned for its ground-breaking research and medical treatments. Students who want to participate in well-funded medical research will appreciate that Emory is ranked 14th nationally in NIH dollars’ amount. This year, Emory’s Department of Pediatrics ranked #1 in the number of research grants from the NIH and received nearly $100 million for research on childhood diseases.

Emory has strong ties with the CDC and put Atlanta on the map during the 2014 Ebola crisis. During this time of extreme fear, Emory’s Serious Communicable Diseases Unit (SCDU) saved several Ebola patients’ lives using evidence-based treatments and protocols. Students who want to answer the call to serve during worldwide public health crises may find Emory School of Medicine to be a great fit.

How to Get Accepted

As a general rule, average MCAT scores required for osteopathic programs, such as the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, tend to be slightly lower than average MCAT scores for MD programs. Therefore, it makes sense that the average MCAT scores for PCOM’s Georgia campuses are between 500-503, and the average GPA is 3.5.

Applicants with intermediate MCAT and GPA scores should look into Mercer and Morehouse School of Medicine. Students accepted to these schools have average MCAT scores in the range of 505-506 and an average GPA of 3.6 – 3.7. In addition to these scores, prospective Mercer and Morehouse students should align with each school’s values and ideology. Both schools are more likely to accept applicants who have a passion for caring for rural populations in Georgia and address racial inequalities in healthcare and medicine.

Students with higher MCAT scores and GPAs may gain admission to the more selective Georgia medical schools on this list. Emory University and Augusta University tend to accept students with MCAT scores in the range of 512-515, and most have a GPA above 3.8. Prospective med students looking into these prestigious schools should also emphasize their interest in research and evidence-based practice.

Medical Schools in Georgia

Medical Schools In Georgia: Rankings & Information

Georgia is in the midst of a doctor shortage, specifically within rural areas. The state plans to continue increasing its amount of medical school seats over the next few years in the hopes of educating the state’s future physicians. Georgia boasts a growing population and favorable wages for practicing clinicians. There are opportunities to serve uninsured and underinsured individuals within this state. It is also a demographically diverse state, exposing medical students to people with different cultures and backgrounds. Georgia offers beautiful scenery; with its mountains, lakes, and beaches, there is something for everyone in this charming state. Do you have Georgia on your mind?

Let’s take a look at all the medical schools in Georgia:

Best Medicine colleges in Atlanta 2021

A degree in medicine is the highest degree one can obtain in the medical field. It’s more commonly known as a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.). Both are graduate degrees awarded by an accredited school of medicine (medical school). After obtaining an undergraduate degree in a variety of sciences, including pre-medicine, students typically complete four more rigorous years in medical school in order to receive their doctoral degree. After graduation, a student will spend three or more additional years in a medical internship and residency program before starting a career as a physician. While physicians often specialize in a particular type of medicine, medical degrees cover the foundational skills needed to practice medicine, including subjects such as anatomy and physiology, genetics, biochemistry and immunology.

There generally is not an undergraduate degree in medicine specifically; however, there are often pre-med degree programs that combine classes to help prepare students for the MCAT exam, which students are required to pass to get into medical school in the United States. Often, students study some form of life science (biology, chemistry, biochemistry, or kinesiology). However, students can receive a bachelor’s degree in any major prior to seeking a degree in medicine.

Medical Schools in Georgia: How to Get In (2021)

Georgia medical schools are a great option for applicants who are looking to experience warm weather, enjoy a low cost of living, and treat diverse patient populations. Whether you want to work with rural patient populations and other medically underserved areas of Georgia as a Mercer University trainee or you hope to delve into research in an urban city as a Emory medical student, you will likely find a Georgia school that fits your personalized professional goals. 

Our goal for this guide is to outline the various admissions statistics for each of the Georgia medical schools and to highlight what makes each school unique in its own regard. This will help you see what it takes to successfully apply to a Georgia school so that you can receive an acceptance letter in the mail at the end of your application cycle.

Learn how hard it is to get into the best medical schools in Georgia and strategies to make it happen

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Part 2: List of medical schools in Georgia: 2021 rankings & admissions statistics

We have compiled information on Georgia medical schools’ rankings, locations, available degrees, tuition fees, and other statistics so that you have consolidated information regarding each school, allowing you to compare programs side-by-side. Whether you’re a Georgia resident or an out-of-state applicant, you can use the strategies in this guide to maximize your chances of obtaining admission.

While compiling this information, we noted the following key takeaways:

  • Most schools in Georgia are private institutions, which means that in-state and out-of-state residents pay the same tuition fees yearly.
  • The Mercer University School of Medicine only accepts pre-medical applicants who are legal residents of Georgia (i.e., the applicant must have established residency in the state of Georgia for at least 12 months prior to matriculation).
  • Many Georgia medical schools offer multiple degrees that may be combined with your medical degree; for example, the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University allows for students to pursue MD/PhD, MD/MPH, and MD/MBA joint degrees
  • Georgia schools have varying degrees of of selectivity; Emory School of Medicine is the most competitive program to apply to among the six schools.

Numbers in parentheses reflect each medical school’s national ranking, whereas numbers outside parentheses reflect each Georgia medical school’s relative rank. We use relative ranking to determine which are the “best” medical schools in Georgia.

(Note: We strongly advise you to sign up for MSAR for the most up-to-date and comprehensive data on individual MD programs and to sign up for Choose DO for DO program data.)

Georgia Medical SchoolsUS News RankingLocationDegreeYear Est.Annual Tuition & FeesAvg. GPAAvg. MCATInterview RateFirst-Year Class Size
Emory University School of Medicine1 (22)AtlantaMD1854$52,048 IS
$52,048 OOS
3.851719.1% IS
4.5% OOS
136 (33.1% IS)
Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University*2 (75)AugustaMD1828$31,671 IS
$60,595 OOS
3.8251343.3% IS
3.8% OOS
240 (98.3% IS)
Mercer University School of Medicine3 (UR)MaconMD1982$42,586 IS3.7350432.1% IS
125 (100% IS)
Morehouse School of Medicine3 (UR)AtlantaMD1975$47,514 IS
$47,514 OOS
3.6350420.3% IS
5.2% OOS
105 (49.5% IS)
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-Georgia Campus3 (UR)SuwaneeDO2005$51,972 IS
$51,972 OOS
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-South Georgia Campus3 (UR)MoultrieDO2019$51,972 IS
$51,972 OOS

*Public medical schools in Georgia | UR: Unranked | IS: In-state | OOS: Out-of-state | NA: Not available


Part 3: Georgia medical school profiles

Now that you have a better idea of the admissions landscape for Georgia medical schools, we’ll provide you with profiles of each school so you can learn what make them unique, besides their competitiveness and cost. Below, we have detailed key takeaways about each Georgia medical school to give you insight into whether your own goals and learning philosophies align with the various program offerings.

Emory University of School of Medicine

Emory University of School of Medicine is a world-renowned clinical institution with a sprawling medical campus that emphasizes research along with patient-centered care in the heart of Atlanta. Emory aspires to educate the next generation of leaders in healthcare in the South and attracts high-performing medical school candidates from all over the country. 

(Related reading: How to Get Into Emory Medical School)

Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University

Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University is the only public medical school in Georgia; therefore, in-state applicants will benefit from both an admissions perspective and a tuition-fee lens. Moreover, MCG offers great clinical variety to its students; students will have the opportunity to travel to over 350 clinical sites to experience the full spectrum of healthcare, from acute inpatient care to primary care in rural communities. 

Mercer University School of Medicine

Mercer University School of Medicine only accepts applicants who have been legal residents of Georgia for 12 months; thus, if you are a Georgia resident applying to medical school, this school should be on your list given your significant advantage. Additionally, students may study at one of the four campuses throughout Georgia. Moreover, Mercer emphasizes small, problem-based group learning over large lecture style instruction. 

Morehouse School of Medicine

Morehouse School of Medicine is a historically black school; it is committed to ensuring a diverse student population. Morehouse also emphasizes education centered around primary care medicine and community service. 

(Related reading: How to Get Into Morehouse School of Medicine)

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (Georgia Campus)

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (Georgia Campus) was founded to respond to the significant need for more physicians required to serve the expanding Georgia population. It is located just 27 miles north of Atlanta; students have the opportunity to treat both urban and rural patient populations. It is designed to educate students about osteopathic principles and practice.

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (South Georgia Campus)

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (South Georgia Campus) was recently founded to meet the healthcare needs of Southwest Georgia. The first class matriculated in the fall of 2020. PCOM South Georgia operates on the same tenets established by the PCOM campuses in Philadelphia and Suwanee.


Georgia medical school admissions strategies

In this section, we will discuss two key strategies that will be critical in your success as an applicant to these programs.

Strategy 1: Take a data-driven approach when deciding which Georgia medical schools to apply to

The data above demonstrates that there is a significant difference between the average GPA and MCAT scores required to be a competitive candidate for admission to the Emory School of Medicine and the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University in comparison to the other four medical schools. It is important to think critically about your own likelihood of admission based on your stats when applying to programs and to avoid throwing in programs “just because.” If you do throw in these “just because” applications, you will focus on completing these secondary applications in lieu of working on applications for schools that have metrics that align more with your own data.

(Suggested reading: How Many Medical Schools Should I Apply To? Which Ones?)

Strategy 2: Develop an understanding for the tenets that drive each Georgia medical schools’ mission statements and ensure that your own application demonstrates a good fit

As we detailed in the profiles above, each Georgia medical school stands out among the rest based on its location, the patient population it serves, and the overarching mission statement that drives medical education and patient care.

This information should help you decide which Georgia medical schools to apply to. Next, you’ll want to focus on producing well-written secondary application essays that demonstrate why you would be a good fit for the programs you’ve selected. Students often believe that there is a “one-size-fits-all” approach to writing secondary essays, but the truth is that each secondary essay requires you to take a different angle. The same advice is also true for medical school interviews.

By discussing the experiences that highlight your best personal qualities, you can persuade admissions committees that you’re the best candidate to help the school advance its specific mission.

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