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Calendar for Applying to Medical School - for Swarthmore Juniors, Seniors, and Alums

The process of applying to medical school is known for being long, complicated and filled with anxiety. The Health Sciences Office is here to support Swarthmore students and alumni/ae through that process.

If you hope to enter medical school in August 2018, please contact Gigi Simeone at She will send you a packet of information and forms you will need, as well as our Guide for Applying to Medical School for Swarthmore Undergraduates and Alumni/ae. Before applying, be sure you have completed the required coursework discussed in our guide.

The links for allopathic medicine (M.D.) and osteopathic medicine (D.O.) on our Useful Websites page provide links to medical schools, the required application services, and information about M.D.-Ph.D. programs and other important topics. MCAT information is also available on the web.

The following calendar outlines the major steps involved in applying to medical school through the Swarthmore Health Sciences Office. A more detailed checklist is available in the packet mentioned above.

November 2016

Request "Guide for Applying to Medical School" packet of information and forms from Gigi Simeone at

Request letters of recommendation from faculty and employers. Be sure to submit our Recommendation Form to them, with your signed waiver.

If you have not already taken the MCAT, plan which of the computerized MCAT exam dates you would prefer and note when registration opens for that date. Seating is limited and you will maximize your chance of getting your preferred test site if you register very early. Registration for January MCAT dates opens October 30.

The online Fee Assistance Program application and supporting material must be received and approved by the AAMC before you register for the MCAT if you require financial assistance for the MCAT. It must be submitted in the calendar year in which you register to take the MCAT.

December 2016

Monitor the MCAT Web site for the date registration opens for your preferred test date.

January 2017

Complete our Information Form, print out two copies, sign the waivers, and return them to the Health Sciences Office by January 22. Keep a copy for yourself as well.

Request a personal credit report.

March 2017

Schedule an appointment for an interview with Gigi Simeone by e-mailing her. (If you cannot meet with Gigi in Swarthmore, a telephone interview can be arranged.)

Obtain a copy of your transcript(s) to use in preparing your AMCAS application. Verify that it is correct.

May 2017

Online AMCAS and AACOMAS applications should be available.

Contact the Registrar's Office of every U.S. or Canadian college where you have ever registered for or taken courses, and request that your transcript be sent to AMCAS, AACOMAS and to non-AMCAS medical schools, using the appropriate Transcript Request form. Do this now as it sometimes takes four to six weeks. If coursework is in progress, wait until grades for these courses are available. (You can request that the Swarthmore Registrar's Office send your transcript as soon as all grades are recorded, but not later than June 15.)

June 2017

Check non-AMCAS schools' Websites for their application procedures.

Submit AMCAS and AACOMAS applications in early to mid-June, or as soon as you find out your MCAT scores. Verify that they have received your transcript(s). If you plan to take the MCAT after June, talk with Gigi about when you should submit.

Mail/fax yellow Medical Schools List form to the Health Sciences Administrative Assistant by June 15.

July 2017

Submit non-AMCAS applications early in the month.

Fill out and submit any secondary applications within 2 weeks of receiving them.

August 2017

Check your application status at schools a week or two after submitting your secondary. Many schools have online status checks. Follow up if your application is not complete.

If you are a current student and your summer location is closer to some of the medical schools than Swarthmore, you may be able to arrange interviews at those schools before you return to college.

Fill out and submit any secondary applications within 2 weeks of having received them.

Read Medical School Interview in the Guide for Applying to Medical School.

September 2017–February 2018

If you are on campus, attend the Medical School Interview Workshop. Schedule a videotaped practice interview with Gigi.

Check the notebook containing interview reports at the Health Sciences Office. Keep us posted on your progress.

Travel to interviews at medical schools. Be sure to write business format thank you letters to your principal interviewers upon arriving home.

If you receive multiple acceptances, withdraw from those schools you know you would not attend.

May 2018

By May 1, if you have received multiple acceptances, you must choose the one you prefer and withdraw from the others. However, you may remain on wait lists of other schools until you begin orientation at the school where you've been accepted.

August 2018

Welcome to medical school!