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Admissions Process & Requirements

The MCAT (Medical College Admission Test) and 90 semester hours (135-quarter hours) of undergraduate and/or graduate-level course work from an accredited U.S. or Canadian college or university located in the United States or Canada are required. Feinberg does not place emphasis on any major field of study. Required are at least yearlong courses in biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry (or one semester of organic plus a semester of biochemistry) and physics. We also recommend courses in statistics, writing and social science. In addition, students are expected to have clinical exposure and research experience. Find detailed information about our admissions process including:

What is the timeline for the Office of Admissions to send out acceptances to prospective candidates who have interviewed?

The Feinberg School of Medicine has a modified rolling admissions process that utilizes a batched approach to sending acceptances. We interview candidates September through early February. Our pool of interviewees is very large, so many decisions are pending until after the interview season is completed. Some prospective students receive acceptances during the active interview season, the first acceptances being sent in November, but many of our slots are not committed until March. 

How does the admissions process work at the Feinberg School of Medicine?

All completed applications are holistically reviewed and evaluated. The Committee on Admissions seeks candidates who have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership skills, intellectual curiosity and personal maturity. A premium is placed on breadth and rigor of the academic program and the life experiences of the individual. Applicants should be liberally educated people who have studied, in some depth, subjects beyond the conventional premedical sciences. The Committee on Admissions admits candidates who major in many subjects besides science, including history, English and communications. Research and activities that demonstrate the applicant’s view of medicine as a service profession are positive factors in the review process. In-person interviews are required of all candidates considered seriously for acceptance. Interview invitations are issued solely at the request of the Committee on Admissions. Interviews are conducted at Feinberg.

How do I apply to Feinberg?

A completed application consists of the AMCAS web-based application, MCAT scores, the Feinberg supplemental application and letters of recommendation. Applicants start the process by completing an AMCAS application and designating Feinberg as one of the schools to which they wish to apply. All applicants who apply are given the opportunity to complete a supplemental application.

Is there an age limit for applicants through AMCAS and/or Feinberg?

No.

Do you offer deferred matriculation into an entering class?

Yes, accepted applicants can apply for deferral. The admissions committee evaluates requests based on whether the proposed time away will enhance the student’s medical development. Deferrals are usually one year in length. The student should contact the Office of Admissions to obtain details on deferral requirements and the approval process.

Once my application is complete, how long will it take for me to hear back from Feinberg about an interview decision?

Application review time varies from applicant to applicant.  Interview invitations are released on a rolling basis from August through mid-January of the application cycle.

How will I receive notification of my application status for Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine?

Your application status will be available through our applicant portal.  Invitations to complete the Northwestern Supplemental Application and to interview will be sent by email.

How do I schedule an interview at Feinberg?

If you are invited to interview, you will receive an email from our Office of Admissions letting you know how to schedule your interview day.

Do you have a student hosting program?

We do have a student hosting program at Feinberg. When you are invited to campus, you will receive additional information about requesting a student host. Please note that our student hosting program is currently suspended due to COVID-19.

Can I find out in advance who my Feinberg faculty and student interviewers will be?

We do not announce interviewers prior to the interview date. All candidates will learn who their interviewers are at the same time, at the end of the morning welcome session.

What if I have a last-minute problem on the day of my Feinberg interview?

We kindly request you contact us as soon as you may anticipate a conflict in regards to your interview day (scheduling conflict, illness, etc). We recommend that you add the Feinberg School of Medicine Office of MD Admissions phone number (312-503-8206) to your contact list for easy reference. If it is after typical office hours, please call anyway and leave a message so that we can start working through any problems as soon as possible.

Are applicant updates accepted? Are transcripts accepted?

If applicants would like to notify us of an update to their application, we ask that they send it to the main med-admissions@northwestern.edu email address, in the body of the email or as a PDF attachment. Please include your AAMC ID number in the update letter.

Only those transcripts initially submitted through AMCAS are required for review of your application. If applicants would like to notify us of updates to their coursework, we ask that they do so through a brief, written update email, rather than sending an updated transcript. We do require a final transcript from every matriculating student prior to the start date.

Do Illinois residents get preference?

As Northwestern is a private university, we do not give preference to Illinois residents.

What are the average GPAs and MCAT scores of candidates accepted to Feinberg? Are there any GPA or MCAT cut-offs?

The undergraduate median GPA for the 2020 entering class was 3.90. The median MCAT score was 519. There are no minimum MCAT or GPA scores required for entrance to the Feinberg School of Medicine. Although high academic performance is an important aspect of a successful application, we complete a holistic review, including the academic course load and rigor, academic honors, extracurricular activities, clinical and research experience and letters of recommendation.