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Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine


Admission requirements

For our third class, which will enroll in entering year 2019, we aim to increase our enrollment to 80 students from Washington at the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine. They will share a passion for giving back to their communities. They will approach challenges with sound judgment and a spirit of benevolence. They will intuitively strive to collaborate.

These students will relentlessly seek answers to questions that beset Washington’s most challenging health care environments. When faced with limited resources, they will innovate. They will lead teams of professionals with expertise across the health care spectrum. Together they will bring health care and compassion to communities across the state.

Here’s what it takes to join the class of 2023.

Holistic Review

Associate Dean for Admissions, Recruitment and Inclusion Leila Harrison recently presented through AAMC on our holistic review process.

The College evaluates your application for admission using a holistic review process. This process considers a range of characteristics that are associated with outstanding physicians.

Scholastic aptitude is vitally important. However, academic metrics such as grades and test scores cannot entirely capture your character or personal journey—both critical to the practice of medicine. Personal stories and aspirations reveal what academic marks cannot. They explain your drive for pursuing a medical career.

The College seeks individuals who want to leave a legacy of improving the health of Washington communities throughout the state. In particular, we seek individuals who want to help us fulfill our vision of solving problems in challenging health care environments within the state.

In a holistic process, your academic metrics are considered in the broader context of your life experiences.

  • What opportunities have you pursued? How did they help you see the world differently? What did you learn about yourself?
  • What adversities have you overcome?
  • What leadership roles have you assumed to challenge yourself?
  • What tenacity have you shown in the face of hardship and complex situations?
  • What values and principles guide your decisions and choices in life?

Before reaching a decision, the Admissions Committee examines the complete picture of your qualifications as it aligns with the College’s mission.


“Holistic review is a flexible, individualized way of assessing an applicant’s capabilities by which balanced consideration is given to experiences, attributes, and academic metrics and, when considered in combination, how the individual might contribute value as a medical student and future physician.” Association of American Medical Colleges


No matter your area of academic study, if you are passionate about pursuing a career in medicine and you meet the eligibility requirements, the College encourages you to apply. Those who review your application not only verify that you have fulfilled academic requirements, they also seek the following characteristics:

    • Experience with rural or underserved communities and populations: Experience to understand the unique challenges and opportunities in rural and underserved environments
    • Clinical exposure: Quality of experience (including shadowing, scribe, helping care within your family, emergency medical technician) AND amount of exposure
    • Adversity and resilience: Perseverance in the face of internal or external challenges
    • Experience beyond the classroom: Including community service, cultural experiences, arts, work, new language, volunteerism, longevity of service, hobbies, passion outside of academics, military service
    • Leadership: Demonstrated leadership that has inspired others, the capacity to mobilize people toward a goal, and the potential to excel as a leader through actions and activities
    • Communication: Includes social skills, teamwork, ethical judgment, empathy, compassion, cultural competence, active listening, emotional intelligence and social awareness
    • Intellectual excellence: Includes capacity for improvement, critical thinking, ability to succeed academically, and independent thinking and reasoning
    • Ethical responsibility to yourself and others: Includes professionalism, service orientation/altruism, empathy for the underserved
    • Teamwork/collaboration: Demonstrates effective ability to work with others, intergroup collaborations with diverse individuals, and ability to address conflict in a positive, productive manner

Academic Requirements

Academic metrics

For your candidacy to be considered, you must achieve an acceptable combination of undergraduate cumulative grade point average (GPA) and Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) score.


Take the MCAT no later than September 30 of the year you are applying to medical school.

The MCAT assesses your problem solving, critical thinking, and knowledge of natural, behavioral, and social science concepts and principles prerequisite to the study of medicine. There is a fee to register for the exam. You can take a free practice test online.

The MCAT is required for acceptance.

  • Latest you can take the MCAT: last September test date in the year you submit your application
  • Oldest MCAT considered: 4 years prior to the date you expect to matriculate. For students entering in Fall 2019, the oldest acceptable MCAT is 2015.
  • If you take the MCAT multiple times: The highest eligible composite score will be considered.


You must meet one of the following standards at the time you apply to be considered for a secondary application. There are only three options as detailed below with no in-between combinations. These thresholds will be effective for the entering class of 2019 (application season beginning May 2018).

  • If undergraduate cumulative GPA is 3.8 – 4.0, then 27th percentile rank or higher on either version of the MCAT
  • If undergraduate cumulative GPA is 3.4 – 3.79, then 43rd percentile rank or higher on either version of the MCAT
  • If undergraduate cumulative GPA is 2.6 – 3.39, then 61st percentile rank or higher on either version of the MCAT

If you have taken graduate coursework toward or completed a degree in medical/clinical or basic sciences, the graduate cumulative GPA will be considered individually if the above combinations are not met. This will be considered on a case-by-case basis with the consideration of the degree and area of focus and number of hours/courses completed. The graduate GPA in these select areas will be combined with the MCAT composite score as follows:

  • If graduate cumulative GPA is 3.7 – 4.0, then 27th percentile rank or higher on either version of MCAT
  • If graduate cumulative GPA is 3.5 – 3.69, then 43rd percentile rank or higher on either version of MCAT
  • If graduate cumulative GPA is 3.2 – 3.49, then 61st percentile rank or higher on either version of MCAT


After you have met the MCAT/GPA requirements and your application goes into review, the Admissions Committee may look at grade trends as well as your performance in prerequisite courses.


Successful completion of required courses, as well as rigorous upper-division coursework, suggests that you possess some of the competencies needed to excel in medical school. But fulfilling course requirements is just a starting point. The Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine seeks well-rounded, intellectually curious students who explore a wide range of disciplines.


You must have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in the United States by July 15 of the year you will begin medical school. Your degree may be in the discipline of your choice, as long as you have completed the prerequisite coursework.

Effective for Entering Year 2019:
If you do not have a bachelor’s degree because you enrolled in a doctoral-level (terminal degree) program from a U.S. accredited institution that did not require a bachelor’s degree for entrance, you may apply if you will earn or have earned the doctoral degree by July 15 of the year you will begin medical school.

If you have earned a bachelor’s degree from a Canadian institution which has received accreditation from one of the U.S. regional accreditation bodies, you may also apply (this will be verified with the applicable regional accreditation websites).


You’ll need to complete the following minimum course requirements with a grade of C or better by July 15 of the year you expect to enroll in our medical school. While prerequisites do not need to be completed when you apply, your acceptance is conditional, pending successful completion of the requirements.

Note: Coursework does not expire.


CourseSemester Credit Hours
Biology with lab
Preferred focus: Genetics, molecular biology
4 (3 hours of lecture, 1 hour of lab)
Organic chemistry with lab4 (3 hours of lecture, 1 hour of lab)
Physics with lab4 (3 hours of lecture, 1 hour of lab)
*4 semester credit hours is equivalent to 6 quarter hours.

The science courses should be specified for science majors.


Please keep in mind that while our prerequisite courses listed above are the only ones we require for enrollment, to successfully complete the medical school curriculum, taking additional science courses is highly recommended.

Genetics, anatomy or comparative anatomy, and human or mammalian physiology all could meet the biology requirement as long as they have a lab. These are specified below as they would be helpful in the medical curriculum, however, other biology courses could meet the pre-requisite.

CourseSemester Credit Hours
Literature, art, music, or history
Anatomy or comparative anatomy3
Foreign language
Preferred focus: Spanish, intermediate verbal proficiency
Research courses or data management3
Psychology1 credit or more
Human or mammalian physiology1 credit or more


AP, CLEP, and IB credits that were acceptable to your undergraduate institution may be used to satisfy prerequisite courses. These credits must be documented on your official transcript.


The College accepts prerequisite courses completed at accredited community colleges.


  • Courses taken pass/fail or credit/no credit
    Prerequisite courses must be graded with a range of numbers or letters that indicate the comparative level of performance.
  • Remedial/developmental or “English as a Second Language” courses

Requirements to Receive a Secondary Application

To be considered for a secondary application and be eligible for admission, the following must be met:

  • U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident.
  • Meet a definition of “resident student” of Washington or meet 3 of 4 “from Washington” ties (defined below).
  • Meet one of the three MCAT/GPA combination thresholds (found in the “Academic Requirements” drop-down).
  • All required letters of recommendation have been received from AMCAS (3 individual letters or Health Professions Advisory Committee packet). Details:
    • Your letter writers submit all letters of evaluation through the AMCAS Letters of Evaluation/Recommendation Service.
    • Submit a minimum of at least 3 individual letters, but no more than 4. If your premedical advising office provides a committee letter compiling feedback from multiple sources, this committee packet letter will meet the required letters of evaluation and you may submit an additional, non-required, fourth single letter. Select writers who know you well and can speak to your qualifications for entering the field of medicine, particularly relative to the desired selection criteria.
      • If recently in school, try to include at least one faculty member who has gotten to know you during the course of your studies. If you have been out of school for some yeras, consider an employment supervisor.
      • The College discourages letters from family members and/or friends.
      • Letters should be dated from the current application year.
      • Letters should be written on letterhead.

Connection to Washington

The ESFCOM is seeking applicants whom are resident students of Washington or whom have strong ties to Washington. Upon receipt of the AMCAS application, we will consider both the indicated state of residence on the application as well as meeting the ties to Washington described below. ESFCOM will ask an applicant who indicates that s/he/they is a Washington resident on AMCAS but does not have 3 or more ties to Washington to provide official documentation to establish that the applicant meets a “resident student” definition.

Applicants who do not meet the definition of a Washington resident student or do not have 3 or more ties to Washington are not eligible for admission.

Resident Student
The ESFCOM uses the definition of “resident student” in RCW 28B.15.012(2) to determine state residency. Common examples of those meeting the definition of resident student include:

  1. Applicants who are financially independent and have maintained a bona fide domicile in the state of Washington primarily for purposes other than educational for at least one year immediately prior to December 31 of the application year/January 1 of the enrollment year.
  2. Applicants who are financially dependent with at least one parent or legal guardian who has maintained a bona fide domicile in the state of Washington for at least one year immediately prior to December 31 of the application year/January 1 of the enrollment year.
  3. Applicants who are on active military duty stationed in the state of Washington or are members of the Washington national guard.
  4. Applicants who (i) are members of a federally recognized tribe whose traditional and customary tribal boundaries include portions of the state of Washington, or whose tribe was granted reserved lands within the state of Washington, and (ii) have maintained a bona fide domicile in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, or Washington or a combination of these states, for one year immediately prior to December 31 of the application year/January 1 of the enrollment year.

There are other, less common, ways of establishing yourself as a “resident student”. Please review RCW 28B.15.012(2) for additional considerations, especially if you are a veteran or are a relative of a veteran or active duty service member.

Ties to Washington
If you are a not a resident student of Washington, you must demonstrate that you are “from Washington” by meeting at least 3 of these 4 ties to Washington:

  1. Born in Washington
  2. Childhood address in Washington as indicated on AMCAS
  3. Graduated from a Washington high school
  4. Parent/guardian currently lives in Washington

The ESFCOM does not differentiate in the admissions process between those applicants who meet the definition of “resident student” and those who have met the ties to Washington only.

All of our admitted students pay the same tuition and fees, which can be found here.


For your application to be considered, you must be a U.S. citizen or hold a valid U.S. permanent resident card (green card) in addition to being a Washington resident or meeting the “from Washington” criteria. If you hold a permanent resident card, you must provide appropriate documentation verifying this status.

Criminal Background

In compliance with the Fair Chance Act of Washington State, the ESFCOM does not automatically or unreasonably deny an applicant’s admission based on an applicant’s criminal history.