Entrance Requirements

In general, we value intellectually curious students who will become life-long learners and innovators, and we believe that the field of medicine is enriched by physicians with a variety of educational backgrounds and diverse interests. We strongly encourage applicants to explore fields for which they have a passion, and to include study in a broad range of subjects, from liberal arts to basic and applied sciences. We also encourage applicants to take coursework or participate in experiences that emphasize human behavior, cultural competence, and analytic thinking. Exposure to psychology, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, ethics, and economics is particularly encouraged but not required.

Applicants to the Pritzker School of Medicine must complete the MCAT exam. Applicants may submit MCAT scores from up to three years prior to the time of application. Beyond that period of time, an applicant is required to retake the exam.

Applicants must have completed 90 credit hours (using the AMCAS methodology) prior to matriculation from an accredited four-year degree-granting U.S. or Canadian college or university.* A baccalaureate degree is not required but is strongly preferred by the Admissions Committee. If you completed a baccalaureate degree in a country outside of the U.S. or Canada, we require you to complete at least 1 year of full-time coursework (predominately in the sciences) in a U.S. or Canadian institution. Courses pursued in other English-speaking countries will also be considered.

Since the medical profession needs individuals with a wide range of talents and academic backgrounds, there is no preferred undergraduate major, and applicants should feel free to choose a major that allows them to explore their academic area(s) of interest.

*Applicants may also complete the required credit hours at a community college in combination with additional credits from an accredited four-year, degree-granting institution. 

Applicants may request a waiver for any of the requirements listed above. A request should be made in a letter to the Admissions Committee ( The request should explain why a waiver is reasonable, necessary, and appropriate. A copy of a completed AMCAS application should also accompany a request.

We do not accept transfer student applications or applications for advanced standing to the Pritzker School of Medicine. All applicants must apply as incoming first-year students through AMCAS.

Full-time and visiting medical students must present proof of immunity to meet current university requirements. This process is completed during the summer of the year of matriculation to medical school. Failure to submit proof of immunization or vaccination will result in class registration penalties and reduced access to campus facilities (library, athletics, etc.) by the University Registrar.

A full current list of required immunizations is available on the UChicago Student Wellness website. Please note that medical students have a separate, medical school-specific form and will receive instructions on completing and submitting their documentation the summer prior to matriculation.

The curricular goals of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine are intended to develop physicians from diverse segments of society whose personal attributes are manifest in their high moral, ethical, and compassionate care of patients; who are responsible to social and societal needs; and who have been thoroughly educated in the art and science of medicine so that they demonstrate sustained competence in medicine.

In order to meet these goals, the faculty of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine have developed, in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the following essential function requirements for medical students. All students, for matriculation and promotion should, with or without reasonable accommodation:

  • Possess the neuromuscular control and eye-hand coordination needed to efficiently, safely, and independently carry out all necessary procedures involved in the learning of the basic and clinical sciences, as well as those required in the hospital and clinical environment. These include, but are not limited to, anatomic dissection, basic science laboratory exercises, basic and advanced cardiac life support activities, physical examinations, surgical, clinical laboratory, and other technical procedures as required for diagnosis and treatment.
  • Possess the sensory ability, as well as the mental capacity, to rapidly assimilate large volumes of technically detailed and complex information presented in formal lectures, small group discussions, and individual clinical settings. Students should possess the intellectual abilities to acquire, assimilate, integrate and apply information obtained from written, oral, and visual sources.
  • Possess the use of senses to allow for effective observation and communication in the classroom, scientific laboratory, and clinical setting.
    *In the clinical setting, the use of a trained intermediary cannot be used to fulfill essential requirements.
  • Possess the emotional and physical health required for full utilization of their intellectual abilities, the exercise of good judgment, the prompt completion of all responsibilities attendant to the diagnosis and care of patients, and the development of mature, sensitive and effective relationships with patients.


Our admissions requirements emphasize not the number of courses taken, but the level of mastery that should be achieved. Please review our competencies below to ensure that your undergraduate coursework meets these requirements.


  • Gene expression, Cell Structure & Organization, Metabolism, Membrane Receptors, Signal Transduction & Signaling Pathways, Reproduction, Differentiation, Basic Physiology, Immunology
  • The Biology Competencies will typically be satisfied through a one-year college biology course with lab. Advanced biology coursework will also satisfy these requirements where an applicant has tested out of first-year college biology.


  • Applicants must have a familiarity with biochemistry, which in turn requires a background in general and organic chemistry.
  • Applicants will typically satisfy this requirement after completing one semester of organic chemistry and one semester of biochemistry, or a year-long integrated organic/biochemistry course, including one semester of lab.


  • Mechanics, Electricity, Magnetism, Optics, Thermodynamics, Quantum Theory, Nuclear Theory
  • The Physics Competencies will typically be satisfied through a one-year college physics with lab sequence. Interdisciplinary courses with biological relevance are encouraged when available. Advanced placement may also satisfy these competencies.


  • The ability to organize, analyze, and evaluate data is vital to medical and scientific education and investigation.
  • The Mathematics Competencies will typically be satisfied through a college course in statistics or biomathematics. Coursework integrating biology, statistics and epidemiology with an emphasis on data analysis is encouraged.


  • Applicants should develop general cultural competence and show evidence of liberal arts exploration.
  • The Humanities Competencies will typically be satisfied through 6 semester hours of college coursework in the arts, humanities, social sciences or language. Some fluency in a foreign language is encouraged, but not required.

Writing & Analysis

  • Applicants should be able to analyze sources of evidence, develop a thesis, and support an argument logically with appropriate attribution.
  • The Writing & Analysis Competencies will typically be satisfied through one year of coursework emphasizing writing and analysis, which may be in applied or basic sciences or humanities. Where appropriate, writing coursework may also satisfy the Humanities competencies.

Interpersonal Skills

  • The ability to function as part of a team is essential to the practice of medicine. The application should include evidence of a significant extracurricular, academic, or other experience requiring teamwork and leadership. Non-traditional backgrounds that bring unique perspective and real-life work experience are also valued.

Clinical Exploration

  • It is recommended that applicants explore their interest in medicine by taking advantage of clinical exposure opportunities in clinics and health care facilities.
  • Long-term commitments that include direct patient contact are valued over short-term experiences. Although many applicants have international clinical or public health experiences, we equally value significant commitments to patient care in the applicant’s own community.