What is the Admissions Committee Looking For?

The information below pertains to the 2017-18 M.D. Application Cycle (also called 2018 AMCAS Application Year).

1. Mission of admissions process for the M.D. program

The overarching goal of the admissions process is to identify, attract and enroll well qualified students that promise to graduate into caring and well-rounded physicians, committed to serving the primary care and health care needs of rural and medically underserved areas or medically underserved populations in Georgia.

2. Eligibility Criteria for submitting an Application to the M.D program at MUSM:

Primary Applications to the M.D. program are invited via the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) for the 2017-18 Admissions Cycle (aka. 2018 AMCAS Application Year) from those that meet all of the following 4 Eligibility Criteria:

i) The applicant must be a US Citizen or US Permanent Resident.

ii) The applicant must have established domicile in the state of Georgia at least by August 15, 2017 and maintain domicile for 12 consecutive months immediately preceding the first day of classes of the school term for which he or she is applying. 

Applicants that have established or reestablished domicile in the state of Georgia as late as August 15, 2017 will not be eligible to apply as an Early Decision Program Applicant, since the Early Decision Primary AMCAS Application Deadline is August 1, 2017.  Also, an applicant that is not able to claim GA as his/her State of Legal Residence will not be allowed to designate MUSM as a recipient of their Primary AMCAS Application.

iii) Applicants should have obtained an undergraduate degree or a more advanced degree with a minimum of 90 credit hours of coursework or be on track to completing an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university by June of the intended year of matriculation.  For applicants who are on track to graduate with an undergraduate or a more advanced degree by June of the intended year of matriculation, the Admissions Committee reserves the right to stipulate that eventual acceptance of an applicant into the program is contingent upon documentation that the applicant has obtained the undergraduate or advanced degree from the program in which he/she is enrolled.

iv) The applicant has taken the ('2015 MCAT' or 'New MCAT') Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) at least once on or after 1 April 2015 and has obtained a percentile rank of at least 27.

Eligibility criteria for applying to the M.D. program at Mercer University School of Medicine are the same regardless of whether one applies for Early Decision Program or the Regular Pool.  Primary Applications can be submitted as soon as AMCAS allows it.  Mercer University School of Medicine Code is GA-832.   To submit a Primary AMCAS Application (2017-18 Admissions Cycle; 2018 AMCAS Application Year), visit https://students-residents.aamc.org/applying-medical-school/applying-medical-school-process/applying-medical-school-amcas/ Only Primary Applications that are initiated and submitted by the appropriate deadline via AMCAS are considered.  

3. Required Premedical Courses:

One year laboratory courses in each of the following:

  • General Biology;

  • General or Inorganic Chemistry;

  • Organic Chemistry; and

  • General Physics. 

A semester of biochemistry may be taken with lab instead of a second semester of Organic Chemistry.  One need not have completed all pre-requisites at the time of submitting an application, although we recommend that applicants take the MCAT only after completing pre-requisites.  A standard stipulation in acceptance letters initially sent out is that eventual acceptance of applicants is subject to documentation of completion of these required premedical courses with official transcripts by June 30, 2018.   

4. Step 1 of Screening Process:  Review of Verified Primary AMCAS Applications. Criteria used to determine which applicants are invited to submit a Secondary Application: 

Primary AMCAS applications (that have been annotated as verified by AMCAS) from eligible applicants are screened by MUSM Admissions Office, and invitations to complete a secondary application are sent to applicants who meet the criteria specified below.   For the 2017-18 cycle, an invitation to submit a Secondary Application is sent to otherwise eligible applicants (as defined above in the page) who meet criteria 1-3 or 4 below:

i. Has taken the MCAT at least once on or after April 1, 2015.

ii. Average MCAT Percentile Rank* of at least 27

iii. Average MCAT Percentile Rank × Cumulative Undergraduate BCPM-GPA* is > 93

iv. For applicants with an earned graduate degree, an invitation to submit a Secondary Application is also sent if the average MCAT percentile rank is 27 or greater, regardless of Cumulative Undergraduate BCPM-GPA.

An invitation to submit a Secondary Application is a pre-requisite for further consideration of an applicant.

*Please note definitions of Average MCAT Percentile Rank and Cumulative Undergraduate BCPM-GPA below:

Average MCAT Percentile Rank (AMCAT-PR):  While, as noted above, at least one MCAT score must be from a test taken on after April 2015 (i.e., the applicant must report a score from the '2015 MCAT' or New MCAT at least once) Total MCAT Percentile Ranks reported from tests taken Jan 1, 2014 onward will  be included for calculating an applicant's Average MCAT Percentile Rank. 

Cumulative Undergraduate BCPM-GPA refers to the Cumulative Undergraduate BCPM-GPA reported on completed Primary American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) Application verified by AMCAS.  This includes BCPM grades from Post-baccalaureate coursework. To check whether any of the courses you consider BCPM are or not accepted by AMCAS, please see guidelines on this topic in the 2018 AMCAS Instruction Manual.

Applicants that claim on or document through the Primary AMCAS Application that they meet Eligibility Criteria 1-4 above, and applicants meet the criteria for a Secondary Application, as specified above, will be invited by the MUSM Admissions Office via e-mail to submit a Secondary (Supplemental) Application online and to submit a Complete Applications (see What constitutes a Complete Application below), and will receive further consideration if these are submitted by the applicable deadline.  The criteria for invitation of Secondary Applications are identical regardless of whether one applies for Early Decision Program or Regular Pool.  An invitation to submit the Secondary Application is essential for further consideration.  An invitation to submit a Secondary Application does not constitute a guarantee of an invitation to interview.  It does not imply that the Committee considers an applicant meeting the above criteria academically qualified.   There is further screening of academic qualifications, experiences and attributes before an interview invitation is considered.

Mean (SD) of GPAs, MCAT percentile ranks of the most recent cohort of matriculants and related applicant data can be accessed here. 

 

5. Deadlines for Applicants to the Early Decision Program (EDP) 2017-18 Application Cycle or 2018 AMCAS Application Year:

August 1, 2017:  Primary AMCAS Application & Transcripts must be submitted to AMCAS by August 1, 2017.

August 25, 2017: MUSM Admissions Office must receive an applicant's GPA and official MCAT score on a Verified Primary AMCAS application by 5:00 pm ET Aug 25, 2017 for a Secondary Application Invitation for the Early Decision Program to be considered.   Since completed applications are considered by the Admissions Committee on a rolling basis and the number of interview spots is limited, we encourage all applicants to complete their application as early in the cycle as possible.  

August 31, 2017, 5:00 PM ET is the deadline for completing and submitting all components of the Secondary Application for the Early Decision Program (see Question 7 below: What constitutes a complete application?)  Once applications are deemed complete by the Admissions Office, applicants will receive an e-mail acknowledgment from the Admissions Office that their file is complete and eligible for further screening by the Admissions Committee.  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

If invited to interview as an Early Decision Program Applicant, an applicant will receive an e-mail invitation no later than Sep 6, 2017.

Note on 'Latest MCAT Score Considered' in the 2017-18 Admissions Cycle, or 2018 Application Year for Early Decision Program Applicants for the purpose of interview invitations:  AMCAS allows submission of primary applications even before an applicant's MCAT scores, official transcripts are submitted to AMCAS.  AMCAS notes that it takes about 6 weeks to verify an application.  Only applications that have been annotated as verified by AMCAS are screened by MUSM Admissions Office.  Since GPA and MCAT scores are used to screen applicants prior to inviting a Secondary (Supplemental) Application, MUSM Admissions Office must receive an applicant's GPA and official MCAT score(s) verified on the Primary AMCAS application by 5:00 PM ET Aug 25, 2017 for an MCAT score from a recently taken test to be used for screening applicants to the Early Decision Program.   

MCAT test dates are controlled by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), so please see the AAMC's testing calendar and score release dates, and plan to submit applications to MUSM and schedule MCATs well on time to maximize chances of consideration of your application.  

Applicants who take (or retake) the MCAT after submitting an application are allowed to note Additional Intended MCAT Test Dates on their Primary AMCAS Application.  If an applicant to the EDP invited to submit a Secondary Application retakes the MCAT after submitting the application, the most recent MCAT score will be available to the Admissions Committee through updates to the Primary AMCAS Application assuming the applicant remains under consideration by the Admissions Committee.  If you have taken the MCAT after submitting your Secondary Application or after you have interviewed,  we encourage you to e-mail the Admissions Office at musmadmissions@mercer.edu and let us know. 

6. Deadlines for Applicants to the Regular Pool - 2017-18 Application Cycle; 2018 AMCAS Application Year:

Nov 1, 2017: The deadline for submitting Primary AMCAS Application for Regular Pool so that it is forwarded by AMCAS to Mercer University School of Medicine is November 1, 2017.  

Nov 15, 2017: The deadline for submitting transcripts to AMCAS for Regular Pool so that it is verified by AMCAS for Mercer University School of Medicine is November 15, 2017.  Since completed applications are considered by the Admissions Committee on a rolling basis and the number of interview spots is limited, we encourage all applicants to complete their application as early in the cycle as possible.  

'Latest MCAT Score Considered' in the 2017-18 Admissions Cycle, or 2018 AMCAS Application Year for Regular Pool Applicants for the purpose of interview invitations:  AMCAS allows submission of primary applications even before an applicant's MCAT scores, official transcripts are submitted to AMCAS.  AMCAS notes that it takes about 6 weeks to verify an application.  Only applications that have been annotated as verified by AMCAS are screened by MUSM Admissions Office.  Since GPA and MCAT scores are used to screen applicants prior to inviting a Secondary (Supplemental) Application, as indicated above (see Eligibility Criteria and Criteria for a Secondary Application Invitation), the last point in time in the 2017-18 cycle that the MUSM Admissions Office will screen verified Primary AMCAS Applications to determine if an applicant meets the Criteria for a Secondary Application is 5:00 PM ET Dec 15, 2017 for Regular Pool applicants as well as Early Decision Program applicants deferred to the Regular Pool.  MCAT test dates are controlled by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), so please see the AAMC's testing calendar and score release dates, and plan to submit applications to MUSM and schedule MCATs well on time to ensure you are able to complete your application by the applicable deadline. 

For those that are invited to submit a Secondary Application, the deadline for completing and submitting all components of the Secondary Application for Regular Pool Applicants is 5:00 PM ET, Jan 15, 2018 (see Question 7 below: What constitutes a Complete Application?).  Once applications are complete, applicants will receive an e-mail acknowledgment from the Admissions Office that their file is complete and eligible for review by the Admissions Committee.  Please see below as to what consitututes a Complete Application, eligible for further screening.  Incomplete applications will not be considered. 

 

7. What constitutes a Complete Application?

For an application packet to be considered complete and eligible for further screening by the Admissions Committee, the following materials must be received by MUSM Admissions Office by the applicable deadline which varies with the application type (Early Decision vs. Regular Pool).   As noted above, an applicant must first qualify to be invited to submit a Secondary Application.

1. Completed Secondary Application (completed online via the web-link sent in the e-mail invitation from MUSM Admissions Office to submit a Secondary Application)

2. Pay a non-refundable fee (90 US dollars only) for processing the secondary application (this fee is automatically waived for applicants who have a valid Fee Assistance Program waiver from AMCAS)

3. Upload a scanned copy of a notarized declaration of domicile in the State of GA at the same web-link as referred to above.

4. Upload a photocopy of a state issued photo identification document (via the same web-link referred to above)

5. At least 2 letters of recommendation (by individual letter writers) or 1 Committee letter submitted via the AMCAS Letters Service (see our Policy on Letters of Recommendation - 8 below).

If the applicant completes a file by the deadline, the Admissions Office will send an e-mail acknowledgment within 2 business days of the file being completed indicating the applicant's file is complete and eligible for further screening by the Admissions Committee. 

 

8. Policy on Letters of Recommendation:

MUSM participates in the AMCAS Letters Service; therefore, all Letters of Evaluation (Recommendation) must be submitted through the AMCAS Letter Service.   The types of letters that can be sent to AMCAS on an applicant’s behalf include: Committee Letter, Letter Packet or Individual Letter.    

If you have been invited to submit a Secondary Application, you are required to have at least 2 Letters of Evaluation (or 1 Committee Letter) in reference to your application submitted to Mercer University School of Medicine through the AMCAS Letter Writers Service before an interview invitation is considered.   We require at least one letter to be from a science faculty member that has taught the applicant, and we recommend at least one letter from a physician or health care professional the applicant has shadowed or worked with.   

We do not accept e-mails or hard copies of letters submitted directly (by applicants or Letter Writers) to the Admissions Office, Admissions Committee members, Interviewers.   The Association of American Medical Colleges has established a centralized set of guidelines for letter writers.  They can be accessed here. 

 

9. What happens after you have submitted a Complete Application?

'Complete Applications' (defined above) submitted by the deadline are subject to further screening by the Admissions Committee before a decision to invite an applicant to interview is made.  Incomplete applications are not presented to the Admissions Committee for screening.   As soon as Complete Applications are received, applications are further screened by the Admissions Committee before a decision to interview or not interview is made. 

The first step of the screening process consists of review of an applicant's academic record to determine if an applicant has minimum acceptable academic qualifications for the purpose of an interview.   The second step in the screening process is a holistic review of documented experiences (work experiences; volunteer / service experiences; shadowing experiences) and attributes, in reference to MUSM's mission.  It is important for applicants to document experiences in appropriate sections on the Primary AMCAS Application, and elaborate on them as appropriate in the Secondary Application.  From this point onward, review of applications by the Committee is holistic and in reference to MUSM's mission.  Assessment at the level of the interview is holistic, in reference to MUSM's mission; an applicant's academic qualifications, attributes, motivation to pursue medicine, and evidence of committment to MUSM's mission will be assessed. 

The Admissions Committee receives over 1000 applications each cycle, and is able to invite no more than 315 applicants to an interview.  Interview Invitations are sent by e-mail from MUSM Admissions Office.  Applicants that submit a complete application and who do not receive an interview invitation by Jan 22, 2018 can assume the Admissions Committee is unable to further consider their application.  

 

10. Does MUSM M.D. Program Admissions Committee use a rolling admissions process?

Yes.  This means that applications are screened by the Admissions Committee as soon as they are deemed complete by the Admissions Office.  Interview invitations, ranking of interviewed applicants, and offers of acceptance also occur on a rolling basis.   The Committee is scheduled to interview approximately 315 M.D. applicants (Early Decision - approximately 60; Early Assurance approximately 5; and Regular Pool approximately 250) in the 2017-18 admissions cycle.  It is advantageous for applicants to complete their applications as early as possible, well ahead of the deadline, whether one applies for Early Decision or as a Regular Pool applicant.

 

11. Other Important Dates for Applicants that are invited to an interview:

Interview Dates:

Early Decision Program Applicant Interviews: Aug 22 - Sep 12, 2017

Early Decision Program Applicants will be notified of the outcome (accepted / rejected / deferred to regular pool and remain under consideration) no later than Sep 30, 2017.

Regular Pool Applicant Interviews: Sep 14, 2017 - Jan 25, 2018

Interviews are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays on the Macon and Savannah Campuses.

Notification of accepted interviewed Regular Pool Applicants will commence Oct 18, 2017.  Applicants that are not accepted are rolled over to the next available meeting.  Applicants from Early and Regular Pools that the committee would like to continue to consider past mid-March will be sent an invitation to be on the Wait List no later than March 15, 2018.

 

12. What are initial offers of acceptance contingent upon?

An initial offer of acceptance, if made, is contingent upon the applicant meeting all of the following criteria:

  1. The applicant providing documentation that he/she is a US Citizen or US Permanent Resident.

  2. The applicant providing documentation of domicile in the state of GA at least 12 months prior to the start of classes.[Documentation of Domicile in the State of GA - Adobe PDF format].

  3. The applicant documenting with official transcripts of completion of premedical requirements required for matriculation in the M.D. program at MUSM, and documentation of completion of an undergraduate degree or a more advanced degree with 90 or more credit hours of coursework from an accredited college or institution in the United States.  MUSM Admissions Office should receive official and final transcripts including the note that an undergraduate degree or a more advanced degree has been awarded, and all post-secondary coursework you have undertaken directly from the respective institution(s) by June 30, 2018.  Data in transcripts should be consistent with that reported in your Primary AMCAS Application verified by AMCAS for the 2017 AMCAS Application Year.

  4. MUSM’s receipt of an acceptable Criminal Background Check facilitated by the Association of American Medical Colleges (See this Link for more information).

  5. The applicant meeting MUSM's Technical Standards for Admission to the M.D. program.

 

Note: Criteria for admission are reviewed by the Admissions Committee on an annual basis and any revisions will be published on this page reasonably in advance.