Last Updated on December 13, 2022 by Omoyeni Adeniyi
The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s Guaranteed Admission Program (GAP) is for outstanding high school seniors who have been admitted to the University of Pittsburgh as undergraduates and are interested in attending the University’s medical school after completing their undergraduate degree(s). The undergraduate Office of Admissions provides information for students who meet the required criteria for the Medicine Guarantee.
The GAP uses a quota-based system where we reserve a percentage of our class seats for guaranteed admission candidates. This ensures that we can provide equal access to our academic programs to all qualified applicants, regardless of socioeconomic or other barriers. The number of guaranteed seats available each year varies depending on our applicant pool and class size.
Applying for the Guaranteed Admission Program
Applying for the GAP is a multi-step process. To be considered, applicants must submit a completed undergraduate application for admission on or before November 1 (applicants must be a US Citizen, Lawful Permanent Resident (not pending or conditional) or have Asylee Status. International students as well as applicants to the regional campuses of the University of Pittsburgh are not eligible for this program). An applicant must select the “Medicine” Guaranteed Admissions Program on their undergraduate admissions application. Also, applicants must earn the highest grade point average available at your high school in the context of a curriculum showing the greatest academic rigor possible. In addition, achieve a minimum SAT score of 1490 (combined Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math) or 34 ACT composite score. With the University expanding the test-optional policy through fall of 2023, the MCAT will be required prior to matriculation to the medical school only for test-optional candidates entering Pitt as first-year guaranteed admits starting in 2021. However, the earned score will only be used for advising purposes following matriculation to medical school. The MCAT requirement does not apply to students admitted with SAT/ACT scores.
After the initial review described above, students selected to continue in the process will be notified by the School of Medicine of their eligibility to apply for the Medicine GAP. Those selected will be asked to submit a supplemental application in support of their candidacy, which is DUE: TUESDAY JANUARY 18, 2022 (11:59 PM EST – NO extensions will be granted). The supplemental application will be reviewed by the School of Medicine’s Admission Committee. Selected students will be invited for an interview to the School of Medicine in March (no one is admitted to the medical school without an interview).
Selection for the interview is based on:
- Academic performance
- Medically related experiences
- Research Experience, if available
- Community Service
- Two letters of recommendation (1 from either a school counselor or and teacher and the other from a person who knows the applicant through their participation in the activities above) – this information is only requested if a student is selected for nomination to complete the supplemental application to the School of Medicine
- An essay
The Covid-19 pandemic has made it necessary to change the expectations regarding medically related experiences, community service and research.
Updated Requirements for applying to the GAP program during the next 2021-2022 admissions cycle are as follows:
1. Medically related experiences – Virtual shadowing experiences will be accepted along with a list of the websites, names of the physicians and their areas of specialization. In person shadowing, if any, should be added to the application along with contact information and number of hours.
2. Community Service – Since in-person activities were not possible, the level of creativity displayed by seeking remote involvement in community service will be considered. For example, activities like making masks for hospital or front-line workers, delivering food packages to the elderly, participating in virtual teaching, teaching English to refugees.
3. Leadership activities – Some examples could include student council member, captain of a debate team, involvement in team sports with specific responsibilities, conducting a school band or chorus.
4. Research – Online research like data entry, data analysis, research protocol development to name a few.
If accepted into the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine’s Guaranteed Admission Program, students must:
- Maintain an overall GPA of 3.75 with a Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Mathematics (BCPM) GPA of 3.75 as an undergraduate
- Complete the undergraduate degree within four years
- Continue to gain medically related experiences* during their undergraduate years
- Seek research opportunities in a medically related field
- Seek opportunities for community service
- Meet with the Director of the Guaranteed Admit program once every semester to discuss their progress in terms of medically related activities, research and community service.
- Meet with the University Pre-Medical Advisor at the start of each semester in order to confirm that they are fulfilling the academic pre-requisites for admission to the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. In addition, students will be given information regarding various research** and volunteering opportunities.
- Provide the Office of Admissions with an official transcript at the completion of their junior year
Please keep in mind, students must also meet with the advisor who was assigned to them by the University of Pittsburgh at matriculation.
*Students need to be HIPAA certified before they can be permitted to volunteer in any UPMC-affiliated hospital. The certification can be done online by:
- Visiting http://cme.hs.pitt.edu
- Clicking on “Internet Based Studies in Education and Research” and then
- Clicking on “HIPAA Privacy Awareness for Faculty, Students, Health Professionals and Trainees.”
**For those interested in Neuroscience Research visit the website of The Center for Neuroscience for the University of Pittsburgh.
University of Pittsburgh is ranked No. 13 (tie) in Best Medical Schools: Research and No. 34 (tie) in Best Medical Schools: Primary Care. Schools are ranked according to their performance across a set of widely accepted indicators of excellence. HOW WE RANK SCHOOLS
Procedures for Matriculation into the School of Medicine
At the end of the undergraduate junior year, students who meet the requirements listed above will be emailed detailed instructions on completing the application and matriculation process for the medical school. Students will be granted pre-approval status to submit the medical school application through AMCAS. In addition, students will be required to provide AMCAS and the medical school Office of Admissions and Financial Aid with official transcript(s).
Medical School Program Rankings
- #13inBest Medical Schools: Research (tie)
- #34inBest Medical Schools: Primary Care (tie)
Medical School Specialty Rankings
- inInternal Medicine
- #11inObstetrics and Gynecology
- #6inPsychiatry (tie)
Additional Medical School Rankings
- #56inMost Diverse Medical Schools (tie)
- #99inMost Graduates Practicing in Medically Underserved Areas
- #139inMost Graduates Practicing in Primary Care Fields (tie)
- #88inMost Graduates Practicing in Rural Areas
You’re premed. Does it matter where you go to college?
You’re headed to college and ready to begin your premed and medical school application timeline journey.
So, does it matter where you go to college?
Going to the “best college” to which you are accepted may not always be a wise choice.
If you are certain that you want to go to medical school, think twice.
I’m often asked: Isn’t a “top ranked” college the best option for a premed?
Is the college in which you’re interested notorious for being a “premed weeder” school?
Do their premedical classes have impossible curves?
If so, your GPA may suffer. This could negatively influence your chance of admission to medical school.
Where you go to college matters.
So, what should you do?
First of all, I do advise all premed students to attend four year universities rather than community colleges.
Community college classes are not considered as rigorous and most admissions committees do not respect grades from community college courses.
What should you consider when evaluating premed classes?
As you decide where to attend college, also consider class sizes.
A common applicant complaint is:
“But my classes are huge. My professors don’t know me. I have no one I can ask for letters of reference.”
You know you want to go to medical school.
In other words, you know you want to go to medical school.
- Consider the academic competitiveness of the school
- Class sizes in making your college choice
- Consider the curriculum that will help you prepare for the MCAT and has a track of record of students who obtain competitive MCAT scores
So, here’s the deal:
What may be best is to attend a reputable undergraduate college,
Don’t choose a school that is not notorious for making it very tough to earn good grades.
Do choose a school where you will get a solid educational foundation in the sciences.
Choose a school where you will have the chance to work directly with your professors rather than teaching assistants.
And that’s not all:
As you make your college choice, seek out information on how premedical students fare.
Be sure to ask premed precollege administrators the following questions:
What percentage of students who enter college as “premeds” graduate and attend medical school?