As a prospective medical student, it’s understandable that you’ll want to make a great impression in your medical school application and interview, and both may take up most of your attention. During your med school interview, you’ll be asked the question, “Why do you want to attend our medical school?” The answer you give will depend on the factors that influenced you in picking a medical school. Were you impressed by the faculty, the curriculum, the clinical focus or the residency opportunities? Or was it the location or financial aid options?

Equally as important as the application, your choice of medical school will play a large part in your future as an MD. Choosing a medical school that’s right for your specific needs is an important consideration when you select where to go to medical school and key to a successful medical career.

Knowing how to choose a medical school is a crucial part of planning your medical education. The most important question to ask yourself is, “Which is the best medical school for me?” When evaluating schools to add to their application list, aspiring medical students should select schools that offer programs that can be customized to meet their personal requirements and learning style.

How to choose a medical school

Some important factors that come into play when thinking about how to choose a medical school: the type of curriculum, cost, admissions options and state residency restrictions. Here are some helpful guidelines to follow before you apply:

  1. Create a list of medical schools based on the curriculum offered, course structure and teaching style. Decide on your preferred location. For example, a city, campus or collegiate setting.
  2. Research the number of applications received, student success rate, and how each school uses admissions tests.
  3. Review the admissions requirements. This will help you decide how to maximize your odds of admission, based on your prerequisite courses and GPA and MCAT scores.

    At Ross University School of Medicine (RUSM), admissions staff will not only assess your entire achievement history, but also evaluate your interpersonal skills and life experience. RUSM admissions staff will review the following requirements for consideration:
  • A bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Undergraduate cumulative GPA and GPA in required pre-medical course work will be reviewed
  • Performance in graduate work (if applicable)
  • MCAT scores
  • Personal statement
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Extracurricular activities and accomplishments
  • Work history and professional or volunteer experience
  • Strong performance in advanced biology and chemistry courses (recommended)
  1. Once you’ve narrowed down your list of schools, contact someone currently attending the school to ask about their experience or arrange for a virtual visit to get a sense of what to expect.


How to pick the right medical school for you

Perhaps the most important evaluation is if your desired school offers a personalized experience to maximize your educational and career success. RUSM has several med school options that allow students to choose a customized plan to meet their specific needs.

Rolling admission

RUSM enrolls three new student cohorts each year in September, January, and May, offering students a flexible option to begin their medical education. RUSM allows you to begin your degree when it’s convenient for you.  

Hospital affiliates

After spending about one-third of their medical education in our campus in Barbados, RUSM students complete core and elective clinical rotations at affiliated teaching hospitals in the United States and Canada.


Modeled after curricula used in the United States, RUSM offers an integrated and rigorous hands-on medical sciences curriculum that allows faculty to present traditional disciplines in a systems-based learning format. Our clinical sciences curriculum covers a range of patient populations, allowing students to make the most impact. RUSM offers two tracks in the Medical Sciences curriculum: a four-semester accelerated track and a five-semester track. The choice of tracks ensures you can advance through the program at a pace that aligns with your personal study needs.  

Advisors to support you

RUSM is the only med school that offers the Rely On Student Service (ROSS) model to support you as you progress through your rotations. Our advisory team can assist you with everything from questions about clinical rotations to financial aid inquiries.

Additionally, RUSM has several advantages that make it a top consideration for students:

United States Medical Licensing Examination® Pass Rate

RUSM students had a USMLE Step 1 first-time pass rate of 91% in 2020.


RUSM is accredited by the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and other Health Professions (CAAM-HP)*. Accreditation by CAAM-HP is a rigorous, peer review process which examines all aspects of a medical program. The CAAM-HP certifies medical schools that are operating at the highest levels of educational standards. 


Each year, hundreds of our graduates reach their goal of being matched at leading hospitals across the United States and Canada. The majority of RUSM graduates secure residencies through the National Resident Matching Program. In the 2019-2020 academic year, RUSM’s first-time residency attainment rate was 95.2%**.

Ross University School of Medicine has been providing students with the foundation they need to pursue successful careers in medicine for over 40 years. More than 15,000+ alumni who chose RUSM are making an impact on the communities they serve in the United States and Canada and beyond.

An admissions associate can answer any questions about RUSM and the admissions process, and provide additional information to guide you through the process of selecting the right medical school. You can reach the Admissions Office at 855-637-6778 or email

*Ross University School of Medicine is accredited by the Caribbean Accreditation Authority for Education in Medicine and other Health Professions (CAAM-HP,

** First-time residency attainment rate as reported to RUSM by the National Resident Matching Program® and through other sources such as the Canadian Resident Matching Service and Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program®.

In 2020, 91% of RUSM students passed the initial step of the United States Medical Licensing Examination® (USMLE®) on the first attempt. And in 2022-2023, results show yet another strong year for RUSM with a 97% first-time residency attainment rate* thus far. Located on the island of Barbados and with a network of more than 15,000 alumni, RUSM is one of the largest providers of doctors for the U.S. healthcare system. RUSM graduates practice in all 50 states and in Puerto Rico.

*First time residency attainment rate is the percent of students attaining a 2023-24 residency position out of all graduates or expected graduates in 2022-23 who were active applicants in the 2023 NRMP match or who attained a residency position outside the NRMP match.