If you’re considering reapplying to medical school, you’re probably wondering how to improve your chances of being accepted the second or third time around. Should you use the same statement of purpose? Can you utilize letters of recommendation from the past? Should you apply to a different list of schools, or can you reapply to the same medical school?
In this blog, we’ll provide answers to these questions and give you directions on how to improve your application if you’re applying for the second or third time. We know firsthand that the medical school application process can be time-consuming, emotionally draining, and expensive, so you’ll want to go through it as little as possible.
Is it bad to reapply for medical school?
Many candidates worry that they will be rejected again and that the medical school admissions committee will view them as “damaged goods,” resulting in a significant decrease in their chances of getting in. However, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), there were 62,443 candidates overall during the 2021 application cycle (i.e., for admittance into the fall 2021 entering class), of whom 46,758 (or 75%) were first-time applicants, and 15,685 (or 25%) were reapplicants. (Note: The AAMC does not say how many candidates were repeating the process, etc.)
While it’s true that 36% of the overall application pool entered medical school that year, the AAMC does not disclose the breakdown of matriculants by first-time candidates versus repeat applicants. This means we don’t have information on whether first-time candidates are admitted to medical school at a higher rate than reapplicants.
It’s possible that first-time applicants who matriculate into medical school are simply stronger candidates. For example, a student with a 3.8 GPA and a 515 MCAT score may be accepted the first time they apply, while a student with a 3.2 GPA and a 502 MCAT score may be rejected. If the latter student reapplies with the same numbers, they will likely still be uncompetitive for most MD programs. Therefore, any issue with the reapplicant label is more likely to be a correlation than a cause.
If you have the extracurricular activities, GPA, and MCAT score to be admitted to medical school, you can compete in subsequent application cycles. We can confidently say this because we frequently assist reapplying students who initially express concern about a “medical school reapplicant disadvantage.”
In any given year, more than 50% of students who do not matriculate do not apply during the following cycle. As a reapplicant, you will be part of the select group of people who didn’t let one or two unsuccessful attempts stop them from pursuing their goals. Therefore, reapplying for medical school does not have to be viewed as a negative experience. If done correctly, it can actually be viewed as a positive one.
Can I reapply to the same medical school?
If you’ve made significant improvements to your application since your last submission, you can definitely reapply to the same medical school. For example, if you’ve improved your GPA, taken additional coursework in the sciences, or participated in additional extracurricular activities, you should highlight these improvements in your application.
However, if you haven’t made any significant improvements, it may be a good idea to consider applying to a different list of schools. This can help you diversify your options and potentially increase your chances of being accepted.
Should I use the same statement of purpose or make changes?
If you’re reapplying to medical school, you’ll want to make sure that your statement of purpose is tailored to your new application. This means that you should focus on what you’ve done since your last application and how it has prepared you for a career in medicine. reapplying
If you’re using the same statement of purpose from your previous application, be sure to make any necessary updates to reflect your current experiences and goals. Additionally, you may want to consider incorporating feedback from your previous application into your revised statement of purpose.
Can I utilize letters of recommendation from the past?
If you’re using the same letters of recommendation from your previous application, be sure to remind your letter writers of your updated experiences and goals. They should be able to provide a fresh perspective on your capabilities and potential as a future physician.
If you’re unable to use the same letters of recommendation, it’s important to seek out new letters from individuals who can speak to your current experiences and qualifications. This could include professors, supervisors, or other professionals who can provide insight into your skills and abilities.
Reapplying to medical school can be a daunting task, but with the right preparation and strategy, you can increase your chances of being accepted. Whether you’re applying to the same medical school or a different list of schools, it’s important to focus on what you’ve done since your last application and how it has prepared you for a career in medicine. By highlighting your improvements and seeking out strong letters of recommendation, you can increase your chances of success and achieve your dream of becoming a physician.