SMP Program FAQ

Fall 2023 Applications

Apply to join the Georgetown SMP, or attend one of our monthly webinars to learn about postbacc programs and what Georgetown has to offer.


Do I need to have previously applied to medical school/submitted an AMCAS application to apply to the Special Masters Program?

Previous application to medical school is not necessary for acceptance to the Georgetown SMP (see Supplemental Information on SMP How to Apply page). Although the AMCAS application contains useful information for evaluating an applicant, lack of this form will not negatively affect your chances of acceptance to our program. If you have not applied to medical school, you must submit the supplemental material listed on the How to Apply page of our website in lieu of the AMCAS application form.

Do I need to have taken the MCAT to apply to the SMP?

No, although the MCAT is highly preferred; if you have not yet taken it, you may submit GRE scores instead, but they will not be as competitive as having an MCAT. Keep in mind that MCAT scores allow us to better evaluate whether successful performance in the program will significantly enhance your chances at eventually gaining acceptance to a medical school. Because many medical schools routinely admit students with MCAT totals averaging 510, it is a good idea for anyone with a score less than 510 to retake the exam after proper preparation.

Can I be considered if I take a spring MCAT?

The latest test dates accepted are in June, so we can receive the scores in July (or program starts the first week of August).  We encourage you to submit the rest of your application as early as possible. Include a note in your application with the date you are taking the exam. Once you receive your scores, email a score report to us ASAP; we will hold your application until we receive your scores. Students are routinely admitted to the program as late as orientation, so taking the exam is a good decision if your previous MCAT scores are not competitive and you still want consideration.

What is the admissions procedure for the SMP?

Applications are accepted beginning in the fall until May 15th of the year the student wishes to matriculate. The admissions process generally does not contain an interview, however, in some cases we will ask an applicant for an interview. Acceptances are made on a rolling basis, and applicants will be taken off the waitlist until orientation.

If I applied to Georgetown University School of Medicine in the same year as I am applying to the SMP, can my MCAT’s, transcripts, and AMCAS application simply be transferred to the SMP from the medical school admissions office?

No. SMP admissions are done through Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, which is a completely separate entity from the medical school admissions office. It is not possible for this information to be transferred between offices, so even if you have applied to Georgetown University School of Medicine, you must resubmit all of your application materials to the Special Masters Program.

What are the admissions criteria for the SMP?

To get into the SMP, it is recommended that students have at least a 3.0 undergraduate GPA and a 505 on the MCAT. The class of 2019 had an average undergraduate GPA of 3.3 and MCAT of 510.

Who should write my letters of recommendation?

If you have an undergraduate pre-medical committee or advisors letter, it is sufficient in fulfilling this part of the application. If you do not have an undergraduate committee letter, you are required to submit three letters of recommendation. It is recommended that you have two academic letters from science professors. Other letters can be from employers and those who have overseen your extracurricular and volunteer activities.

If I am using Interfolio (or college letter service) what do I need to do?

If using Interfolio to submit individual LORs, click on “three individual recommendations” option.  For each recommendor, enter your letter writer’s name and the unique email address generated by Interflio. Interfolio will then process the request.

Tuition & Financial Aid

What is the tuition for SMP?

Tuition is subject to change each academic year. For the most current, visit the BGE Tuition & Fees page.

Are scholarships available?

Scholarships are available. Visit the BGE Scholarships page for the list of scholarships. However, plenty of federal and private loan money is available. It is possible to take out enough in loans to cover tuition and living expenses for the entire year.

Applying to Medical School while in the SMP

Can I apply to medical school while enrolled in the SMP?

Yes. Not only can students apply to medical school while enrolled in the SMP, they are encouraged to. Over 50% of our students are accepted to medical school while they are enrolled in the Special Masters Program. Since the SMP is an 11-month program, it is possible for students to finish the requirements for their degree by July and matriculate to medical school right away in August. We inform medical schools of students’ enrollment in the program in the fall, and follow-up with a recommendation letter that includes grades from first block of medical level classes (end of Oct). Because of the modified block schedule in the spring semester, some courses are finished before the end of the semester and performance in these classes can also be brought to the attention of medical schools at which you are still under consideration in the spring.

What medical schools should I apply to?

Most U.S. medical schools have accepted students from our program at one time or another. We suggest you apply to any state schools or schools which preferentially accepts students from your state or region. You should also apply to private schools that are know to accept students from the national pool of applicants or any school where you have the support of an alumnus or faculty member. In addition, all SMP students are advised to apply to Georgetown University School of Medicine. Check out the Alumni page to see where our recent grads have gone.

Do students from the program ever apply to osteopathic schools of medicine?

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in osteopathic medicine. While Georgetown University School of Medicine is a traditional, allopathic medical school and most of our Special Masters students apply to, and are accepted by, allopathic schools some are interested in osteopathic medicine as a career choice. The program readily serves the needs of this group of students. We encourage students to carefully consider all available career paths.

Does participation in the SMP guarantee admission to Georgetown University School of Medicine?

Participation in the SMP does not guarantee admission to Georgetown University School of Medicine, or any other medical school for that matter. Although there is no formal agreement between our program and the medical school, historically, about 15% of SMP students have been accepted to Georgetown each year.

Does Georgetown University School of Medicine interview most or all of the SMP students?

In most years, about 50% of SMP students who apply to GUSOM are interviewed. Selection for the interview is based mainly on performance in the program, but also other aspects of the student’s record and recommendations are taken into consideration.


Do I have to retake the medical school classes I took while in the SMP?

It depends where you go to medical school. Students matriculating to Georgetown University School of Medicine generally are not required to retake any classes they have successfully passed as a Physiology student. However, if these students choose not to retake the classes, they are still required to pay full tuition and take enough credits to be a full-time student. Students matriculating to medical schools other than Georgetown are usually required to retake the classes. Policies differ from school to school on whether students are allowed to exempt or test out of classes.

How many of the SMP students are admitted to medical school?

Historically, about 50+% of our students have been accepted to medical school during the year they are in the program and begin school the fall semester directly after finishing the SMP. Overall, about 85% of students have been accepted to medical school, most within two years of completing the program.

What opportunities are available to me with this degree besides medical school?

The SMP offers a unique biomedical education in a medical school setting. The Masters Degree itself indicates completion of graduate-level education, making it a resume booster in any area. Specifically, while most students do go on the attend medical school, other students have decided to pursue other areas, such as law or research. The education and skills learned while in the SMP help them gain access to these opportunities. Often, these opportunities include: jobs in academic, industrial, or government laboratories or in non-research positions in biomedical sciences in industry or government.

What are my options after the SMP program, if I’m not accepted into medical school?

Some students choose to reapply for one or two years; a significant proportion of these students subsequently are admitted to medical school. In the intervening year or two, we encourage these students to continue their exposure to biomedical sciences, usually through a job in a related field such as laboratory research. Other students enter into Ph.D. programs or degree programs in other health fields (osteopathy, dentistry, etc.) or seek permanent employment.

Do you accept pre-dental students?

No, although some students decide to pursue dentistry following the program, and their performance does help increase their credentials.

What does the SMP have in terms of med school advising?

As they work toward their career goals, SMP students gain the benefits of an in-depth, personalized advising program designed to support their applications to medical schools. Each student is assigned a primary advisor (who will write their letter of recommendation), plus a team leader who has extensive experience in pre-health advising. The program also provides invaluable resources such as interview and student and study skill workships, AMCAS application advice and volunteer opportunities, as well as informative presentations on career pathways, financial aid, and other relevant topics.

When to apply to Medical School if admitted to the SMP?

Apply early to AMCAS. Fill out the AMCAS application as early as possible so that you can get your secondary applications completed before you get to school. Many physios have to fill out secondaries during the semester while they are in class, which can be a big time drain. This is one hassle that can be avoided if you get you secondaries off before classes start. If you are enrolling in the Special Masters Program, simply indicate that on AMCAS and your secondary applications. At the beginning of this program, a letter will be sent to all of your schools stating that you are enrolled in the SMP and describing its merits. An additional letter will be sent out by your advisor at the end of the first block of medical level courses (end of Oct) about you and your grades. PLEASE NOTE: When you are applying to Georgetown Medical School, do NOT submit your secondary application before you start school as they won’t really look at applicants from the SMP until after the new calendar year. Save this application until after you have experienced Georgetown (say November/December) because you really have until the last days of the application filing period to fill this one out. In other words, don’t rush this one.