Medical School applicants are required to apply through the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS). The AMCAS application cycle runs from June through December. The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) processes and verifies the completion and submission of the AMCAS application, application fee and supporting documents before we review an applicant's file.

Candidates who meet our criteria will receive a secondary application and from those secondary applications, candidates will be selected for interviews. 

Applicants' Right to Protest and Holistic Review Process

The UAB School of Medicine condemns racism, and we have committed to taking the lead in eliminating racism, unconscious bias, health disparities, and other forms of prejudice.

We support our applicants' rights to lawfully and peacefully protest against injustices, and we do not screen out applicants reporting institutional actions, arrests, misdemeanors, or felonies on their applications.

Our Admissions Office uses a holistic process to review applications for admission, giving balanced consideration to a students' experiences, attributes and academic preparation. Each application is reviewed comprehensively, including an applicants’ explanation of reported actions.

Accepted students are required to complete a criminal background check, facilitated by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The rationale for the AAMC – Criminal Background Check service  includes 1) the need to enhance the safety and well-being of patients and, in so doing, to bolster the public's continuing trust in the medical profession, and 2) to ascertain the ability of accepted applicants to eventually become licensed physicians. The UAB Criminal Background Check committee holistically reviews any findings, giving applicants the opportunity to provide their perspective.

Letters of Recommendation

All letters of recommendation must be submitted through the AMCAS Letters Service by using AMCAS Letter Writer Application, Interfolio, mail and/or VirtualEvals. Please ensure all your letters are submitted to AMCAS through one or more of the above mediums. Only letters submitted through this service will be included in your application for review by our admissions committee. Please note that there is a five letter maximum for this requirement.

We offer three options for fulfilling the letters requirement portion of our secondary application:

Committee Letter - Preferred Option

A committee letter is authored by a pre-health committee or pre-health advisor and intended to represent your institution's evaluation of you. A committee letter may or may not include additional letters written in support of your application. If you have committee letters from two different programs/schools, list one as your committee letter and include the other as an individual letter.

Letter Packet

A packet or set of letters is assembled and distributed by your institution, often by the institution’s career center. A letter packet may include a cover sheet from your pre-health committee or advisor; however, in contrast to a committee letter, a letter packet does not include an evaluative letter from your pre-health committee or advisor.

Three Individual Letters

Individual letters should include at least one letter from a faculty member (preferably a science faculty member) and two letters other faculty or individuals who can provide in-depth evaluation and recommendation.

Secondary Application

2020 Secondary Application requests will be sent out starting July 10. Once your initial application has been processed, you will be contacted and asked to submit the secondary application. Please refer to our Selection Criteria on who will receive a secondary application request.

We realize that applications might be delayed due to scheduling issues with MCAT testing related to the COVID-19 pandemic, so we are providing the secondary application essay prompts for the 2021 cycle. If you anticipate that you will receive a secondary application and would like to go ahead and get started, here are the essays:

Each prompt is limited to 750 characters.

Where do you see yourself in your medical career fifteen to twenty years from now?

Please share any information you want us to know about you that is not included in your AMCAS application or in this secondary application.

Briefly indicate how you would add diversity to our medical school class.

Please describe if and how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected your preparation for applying to medical school.

Describe an observed patient-physician interaction, what you learned from the experience, and how those lessons will impact your approach to patient care.

Describe a fulfilling or challenging community service experience and how you grew personally from the experience.


Interviews allow you to meet with members of the Admissions Committee and give them a better understanding of your interests, experiences, motivation, and capacity to be a physician. Interviewers will have access to your AMCAS and secondary applications, but do not have access to your grades, MCAT scores, or letters of recommendation. Our goal with interviews is to conduct thoughtful and respectful evaluations. 

For the 2020-2021 Admissions cycle, we will offer virtual interviews.

Our virtual interview day will include two 30-minute interviews, an admissions presentation, and a student panel. The interviews will consist of one traditional one-on-one interview with an admissions committee member and one modified multiple-mini interview with two MMI raters. For the multiple-mini interviews, interviewees will be asked to respond to three different prompts.

In addition, we are using the AAMC Video Interview Tool for Admissions (VITA™) as a pilot project. These interviews will be part of a study and will not be used for making admissions decisions in this application year. If you are invited to complete the AAMC VITA, we encourage you to participate. You will receive an interview invitation from HireVue, the video interviewing platform. The AAMC VITA is an online one-way interview that you will only have to complete once. It can be completed in a location and at a time most convenient for you during the interview window. Free preparation materials, including an Applicant Preparation Guide are available through the AAMC. A practice test will be available from the AAMC starting in mid-July. You are encouraged to prepare for this in the same way you would prepare for an in-person interview. In light of the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, there are no fees for the AAMC VITA interview for the AMCAS 2021 season.

For more information visit:

Acceptance Status

Once the School of Medicine Admissions Committee makes a final decision, each applicant will be informed of acceptance electronically. Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis starting Oct. 15. Applicants who have not received notice of a final decision are still under consideration.

Deferral Policy

Admitted students who wish to request a deferral should submit the request as soon as possible and prior to April 30. The Admissions Committee grants one year Deferred Admission on a case-by-case basis.

  • Only applicants with solid academic records are considered
  • Common reasons to consider a deferred admission include opportunities for year-long research, educational, or service experiences
  • To be considered, you must submit a written request to the Committee that includes a description of the plans for the year
  • The Committee may request additional details about the opportunity

AAMC Choose Your Medical School Tool

Beginning in March, admitted students will be asked to participate in the AAMC's Choose Your Medical School Tool. Key dates include:

Prior to April 30
You will be asked to designate your top choice school as "plan to enroll" and you can update this selection at any time. Medical schools will not see individual responses - just aggregate data.

You will need to withdraw acceptances from all but one medical school by April 30.

Beginning April 30
If you know on April 30 (or any time between April 30 and July 5) that you will be attending the UAB School of Medicine, we ask that you designate us as “Commit to Enroll". In order to “Commit to Enroll,” you should withdraw your application from any waitlists. If you would like to continue to be considered for other waitlists after April 30, we ask that you designate UAB as “Plan to Enroll.”

By July 5
In order to hold a spot in the UAB School of Medicine for the Entering Class of 2021, you must "Commit to Enroll" by July 5. This deadline is 21 days prior to classes to allow anyone who might receive a new offer of admission time to prepare to start medical school.

Contact Information

All applicants must maintain updated contact information with AMCAS throughout the entire application process. Your AMCAS contact information is our only source of contact information for you. We do not maintain a separate database of contact information.