Minimum GPA For Med School & How To Be Competitive

What’s the Best Undergrad GPA For Med School Applicants?

medschoolcoach

Posted in: Applying to Medical School

In 2022-2023, the average science GPA of matriculants was 3.68, while the overall GPA was 3.75. On the other hand, applicants had an average science GPA of 3.52 and overall GPA of 3.68.

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The minimum GPA for most med schools is 3.0. But if you’re a pre-med student, you’ll need to aim for a GPA of 3.6 or higher to compete with other applicants.

Not all medical schools require a certain minimum GPA to apply. But the minimum cutoff GPA is absolutely irrelevant because your GPA needs to be competitive for the particular school that you are applying to. A competitive GPA and the minimum GPA required to apply to that school are usually much different.

When it comes to the medical school admissions process, grade point average is often one of the first things that admissions officers and the admissions committee look at.

The sheer volume of medical school applications they receive means that an applicant’s GPA can be a critical factor for screening. But what does a competitive GPA for medical school look like?

Our Calculator uses a combo of your GPA, MCAT score, and various factors about your undergraduate studies to determine how competitive your med school application will be.

What is a competitive GPA for medical school?

A competitive GPA for medical school is generally 3.6 or higher.

On average, successful matriculants — students who are accepted and enroll — have higher GPAs than other applicants. 

According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the average GPAs and MCAT scores for medical school applicants and matriculants in the 2022-2023 academic year were:

 Average Science GPAAverage Non-Science GPAAverage Overall GPAAverage MCAT Score
Applicants3.523.763.62506.5
Matriculants3.683.843.75511.9

These averages provide a good benchmark for what medical schools consider competitive.

However, remember that these are averages; they include GPAs from applicants and matriculants from all MD programs across the country. Admissions requirements vary from school to school, but the cutoff is typically around the 3.0 mark to be considered.

Some top-tier schools of medicine may have even higher average GPAs, and these schools may use national GPA averages as cutoffs for initial selection. Because of the competitiveness of the application process, you’d typically need a GPA that’s higher than the national average.

You can access more med school admissions statistics at AAMC, as well as look into individual schools’ admissions requirements using the MSAR.

Average GPA and MCAT Score By School

Medical SchoolStateDegree TypeAverage GPAAverage MCATMinimum MCAT
University of Alabama School of MedicineALMD3.8509.2494
University of South Alabama College of MedicineALMD3.83510NR
Alabama College of Osteopathic MedicineALDO3.47505NR
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine – Auburn CampusALDO3.67502494
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of MedicineARMD3.81509NR
Arkansas College of Osteopathic MedicineARDO3.5+500+NR
University of Arizona College of Medicine – TucsonAZMD3.74508498
University of Arizona School of Medicine – PhoenixAZMD3.77515495
Mayo Clinic Alix School of MedicineAZMD3.94521NR
A.T. Still UniversityAZDO3.45505NR
Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern UniversityAZDO3.53507NR
California Northstate University College of MedicineCAMD3.6511497
California University of Science and MedicineCAMD3.61513NR
Drew/UCLA Joint Medical Program Drew University of Medicine and ScienceCAMD3.42NRNR
Loma Linda University School of MedicineCAMD3.83509NR
University of California – Davis School of MedicineCAMD3.58509NR
Stanford University School of MedicineCAMD3.89518NR
University of California – Irvine School of MedicineCAMD3.78514.2NR
University of California – Los Angeles David Geffen School of MedicineCAMD3.81516NR
University of California – Riverside School of MedicineCAMD3.6509NR
University of California – San Diego School of MedicineCAMD3.77515.11NR
University of California – San Francisco School of MedicineCAMD3.87517NR
University of Southern California Keck School of MedicineCAMD3.8517NR
Kaiser Permanente School of MedicineCAMD3.76516NR
Touro University California College of Osteopathic MedicineCADO3.56509NR
Western University of Heath Sciences College of Osteopathic Medicine of the PacificCADO3.66508NR
California Health Sciences University College of Osteopathic MedicineCADO3.48506498
University of Colorado School of MedicineCOMD3.82516NR
Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic MedicineCODO3.54504.4NR
Quinnipiac University Frank H. Netter MD School of MedicineCTMD3.7513NR
University of Connecticut School of MedicineCTMD3.76513NR
Yale School of MedicineCTMD3.87519NR
George Washington University School of Medicine and Health SciencesDCMD3.7512NR
Georgetown University School of MedicineDCMD3.7512NR
Howard University College of MedicineDCMD3.61507494
Florida Atlantic University Charles E. Schmidt College of MedicineFLMD3.79513NR
Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of MedicineFLMD3.76509NR
Florida State University College of MedicineFLMD3.8507498
University of Central Florida College of MedicineFLMD3.84515500
University of Florida College of MedicineFLMD3.79514500
University of Miami Miller School of MedicineFLMD3.75514NR
University of South Florida Health Morsani College of MedicineFLMD3.89517NR
Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Bradenton CampusFLDO3.47503NR
Nova Southeastern University Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Allopathic MedicineFLMD3.76512NR
Nova Southeastern University Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic MedicineFLDO3.6506NR
Emory University School of MedicineGAMD3.7514NR
Medical College of Georgia at Augusta UniversityGAMD3.8513NR
Mercer University School of MedicineGAMD3.66504493–494
Morehouse School of MedicineGAMD3.68506NR
Georgia Campus Philadelphia College of Osteopathic MedicineGADONR503.9NR
University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of MedicineHIMD3.74512NR
University of Iowa Carver College of MedicineIAMD3.79513NR
Des Moines University College of Osteopathic MedicineIADO3.44495NR
Idaho College of Osteopathic MedicineIDDO3.57507501
Carle Illinois College of MedicineILMD3.73513498
Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and ScienceILMD3.69511510
Loyola University of Chicago Stritch School of MedicineILMD3.7510NR
Northwestern University The Feinberg School of MedicineILMD3.9520NR
Rush Medical College of Rush UniversityILMD3.57510NR
Southern Illinois University School of MedicineILMD3.82508498
University of Chicago Pritzker School of MedicineILMD3.87519NR
University of Illinois College of MedicineILMD3.8513NR
Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern UniversityILDO3.7510NR
Indiana University School of MedicineINMD3.83512.1NR
Marian University College of Osteopathic MedicineINDO3.71504491
University of Kansas School of MedicineKSMD3.88509NR
Kansas College of Osteopathic MedicineKSDO3.0 Minimum for considerationNR500
University of Kentucky College of MedicineKYMD3.78506495
University of Louisville School of MedicineKYMD3.68507NR
University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic MedicineKYDO3.5500NR
Louisiana State University – New Orleans School of MedicineLAMD3.73509NR
Louisiana State University – Shreveport School of MedicineLAMD3.7507NR
Tulane University School of MedicineLAMD3.58510NR
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine – Louisiana CampusLADO3.7502496
Boston University School of MedicineMAMD3.72517NR
Harvard Medical SchoolMAMD3.9520.06NR
Tufts University School of MedicineMAMD3.74514NR
University of Massachusetts Medical SchoolMAMD3.76515NR
Johns Hopkins University School of MedicineMDMD3.94521NR
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences F. Edward Hebert School of MedicineMDMD3.7511496
University of Maryland School of MedicineMDMD3.8515NR
University of New England College of Osteopathic MedicineMEDO3.61505490
Central Michigan University College of MedicineMIMD3.69508NR
Michigan State University College of Human MedicineMIMD3.77510NR
Oakland University William Beaumont School of MedicineMIMD3.84510NR
University of Michigan Medical SchoolMIMD3.8515NR
Wayne State University School of MedicineMIMD3.8514NR
Western Michigan University School of MedicineMIMD3.77513497
Michigan State University College of Osteopathic MedicineMIDO3.50–3.70506–508NR
Mayo Clinic Alix School of MedicineMNMD3.94521NR
University of Minnesota Medical School – Twin CitiesMNMD3.7511NR
University of Minnesota Medical School – DuluthMNMD3.7508NR
University of Missouri – Columbia School of MedicineMOMD3.77508494
Saint Louis University School of MedicineMOMD3.85510.63NR
University of Missouri – Kansas City School of MedicineMOMD3.85510500
Washington University School of MedicineMOMD3.86520.2NR
A.T. Still University of Health Sciences Kirksville College of Osteopathic MedicineMODO3.72503NR
Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences College of Osteopathic MedicineMODO3.62505NR
University of Mississippi School of MedicineMSMD3.7504496
William Carey University College of Osteopathic MedicineMSDO3.53505NR
Duke University School of MedicineNCMD3.9519NR
East Carolina University Brody School of MedicineNCMD3.58507NR
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of MedicineNCMD3.76512NR
Wake Forest School of MedicineNCMD3.76511NR
Campbell University Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic MedicineNCDO3.66507NR
University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health SciencesNDMD3.8507NR
Creighton University School of MedicineNEMD3.83513NR
University of Nebraska Medical Center College of MedicineNEMD3.82511NR
Geisel School of Medicine at DartmouthNHMD3.77516NR
Cooper Medical School of Rowan UniversityNJMD3.77511NR
Rutgers New Jersey Medical SchoolNJMD3.7514NR
Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical SchoolNJMD3.7512NR
Hackensack Meridian School of MedicineNJMD3.71513NR
Rowan University School of Osteopathic MedicineNJDO3.65506NR
University of New Mexico School of MedicineNMMD3.72507494
Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine at New Mexico State UniversityNMDO3.7502.1493
University of Nevada Reno School of MedicineNVMD3.77509500
University of Nevada Las Vegas School of MedicineNVMD3.6–3.7510NR
Touro University – Nevada College of Osteopathic MedicineNVDO3.54506.9500
Albany Medical CollegeNYMD3.6511NR
Albert Einstein College of MedicineNYMD3.82516NR
Columbia University College of Physicians and SurgeonsNYMD3.9522NR
Hofstra Northwell School of MedicineNYMD3.85518NR
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount SinaiNYMD3.81519NR
New York Medical CollegeNYMD3.6514NR
New York University Grossman School of MedicineNYMD3.92522NR
New York University Long Island School of MedicineNYMD3.8516NR
SUNY – Downstate Medical Center College of MedicineNYMD3.73513NR
University at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical SciencesNYMD3.58507NR
SUNY – Upstate Medical UniversityNYMD3.64509.86NR
Stony Brook University School of MedicineNYMD3.79515.6NR
University of Rochester School of Medicine and DentistryNYMD3.8516NR
Weill Cornell Medical CollegeNYMD3.9519NR
New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic MedicineNYDO3.62506NR
Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine – Middletown CampusNYDO3.48502.68498
Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine – Harlem CampusNYDO3.47506.75498
Case Western Reserve University School of MedicineOHMD3.82518NR
Northeast Ohio Medical UniversityOHMD3.68510NR
The Ohio State University College of MedicineOHMD3.81514NR
The University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life SciencesOHMD3.72509NR
University of Cincinnati College of MedicineOHMD3.78516NR
Wright State University Boonshoft School of MedicineOHMD3.7507NR
Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic MedicineOHDO3.68504.5NR
University of Oklahoma College of MedicineOKMD3.81508492
Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences College of Osteopathic MedicineOKDO3.6500492
Oregon Health & Science University School of MedicineORMD3.65509497
Drexel University College of MedicinePAMD3.66511NR
Geisinger Commonwealth School of MedicinePAMD3.75511.62NR
Pennsylvania State University College of MedicinePAMD3.75511NR
Perelman School of Medicine University of PennsylvaniaPAMD3.92521.7NR
Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson UniversityPAMD3.73514NR
Temple University Lewis Katz School of MedicinePAMD3.74512NR
University of Pittsburgh School of MedicinePAMD3.88517NR
Lake Erie College of Osteopathic MedicinePADO3.41503NR
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic MedicinePADO3.5504.45NR
Ponce School of Medicine and Health SciencesPRMD3.5499494
San Juan Bautista School of MedicinePRMD3.71500492
Universidad Central Del Caribe School of MedicinePRMD3.8501495
University of Puerto Rico School of MedicinePRMD3.86506495
Brown University The Warren Alpert Medical SchoolRIMD3.83516NR
Medical University of South Carolina College of MedicineSCMD3.77511496
University of South Carolina School of Medicine – ColumbiaSCMD3.7508NR
University of South Carolina School of Medicine – GreenvilleSCMD3.7–3.75509NR
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine – Carolinas CampusSCDO3.7500-506496
University of South Dakota Sanford School of MedicineSDMD3.82508496
East Tennessee State University Quillen College of MedicineTNMD3.78510.74NR
Meharry Medical College School of MedicineTNMD3.46503NR
University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of MedicineTNMD3.61512NR
Vanderbilt University School of MedicineTNMD3.5-4.0509-528NR
Lincoln Memorial University DeBusk College of Osteopathic MedicineTNDO3.5501NR
Baylor College of MedicineTXMD3.92518NR
TCU and UNTHSC School of MedicineTXMD3.66509NR
Texas A&M Health Science Center College of MedicineTXMD3.86513NR
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Paul L. Foster School of MedicineTXMD3.8509NR
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine – LubbockTXMD3.9512NR
University of Houston College of MedicineTXMD3.59506NR
University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical SchoolTXMD3.78514NR
University of Texas Medical Branch School of MedicineTXMD3.8511NR
University of Texas McGovern Medical School at HoustonTXMD3.84512NR
University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of MedicineTXMD3.69508495
University of Texas School of Medicine at San AntonioTXMD3.86517.64NR
University of Texas Southwestern Medical SchoolTXMD3.83517NR
Sam Houston State University College of Osteopathic MedicineTXDO3.65506NR
University of the Incarnate Word School of Osteopathic MedicineTXDO3.6503NR
University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth Texas College of Osteopathic MedicineTXDO3.81508.7NR
University of Utah School of MedicineUTMD3.87514500
Noorda College of Osteopathic MedicineUTDO3.47504500
Eastern Virginia Medical SchoolVAMD3.5513NR
Virginia Commonwealth University School of MedicineVAMD3.7512NR
Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research InstituteVAMD3.6512NR
University of Virginia School of MedicineVAMD3.87518.41NR
Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine – Virginia CampusVADO3.7502494
Liberty University College of Osteopathic MedicineVADO3.4504501
The University of Vermont Larner College of MedicineVTMD3.7511NR
University of Washington School of MedicineWAMD3.75511NR
Washington State University Elson S. Floyd College of MedicineWAMD3.59507.5NR
Pacific Northwestern University of Health Sciences College of Osteopathic MedicineWADO3.6504NR
Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of MedicineWVMD3.66503496
West Virginia University School of MedicineWVMD3.8511NR
West Virginia School of Osteopathic MedicineWVDO3.53504495
Medical College of WisconsinWIMD3.75511NR
University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public HealthWIMD3.69511NR

What is included in the GPA used on your medical school application?

Your GPA for medical school application purposes consists of your science GPA, non-science GPA, and your cumulative GPA. 

Your science GPA is based on grades from medical school prerequisite courses like biology, chemistry, physics, and math, often referred to as “BCPM” (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics) by the AMCAS. Your non-science GPA is based on grades from all other courses. 

While the overall GPA provides a general idea of your academic performance, your science GPA specifically reflects how capable you are in the health sciences, which is particularly important to admissions committees.

Learn more about acceptance rates and your chances of getting into your preferred school with our chance predictor.

How to Get into Med School with a Lower GPA

Getting into medical school with a lower GPA is possible, but you’ll probably need to put in extra work to stand out as an applicant. The good news is that applicants who fall below national GPA averages can still be accepted if they excel in other components of their applications.

Medical schools understand that each applicant is unique. That’s why they take subjective aspects of an application into account, like your extracurricular involvement, research experience, and personal qualities. 

Here are 6 strategies to get into med school if you have a less-than-stellar GPA.

1. Focus on extracurriculars.

Medical schools value well-rounded applicants who demonstrate a commitment to the field of healthcare. Engage in meaningful extracurricular activities such as clinical experience, volunteer work in hospitals or clinics, participation in research projects, and community service.

Physician shadowing is another great option to gain on-site experience in the specialties you’re interested in. Aim for 100-150 shadowing hours if possible.

These experiences can showcase your dedication, passion, and unique qualities beyond your GPA. Leadership positions or active involvement in student organizations can also illustrate your teamwork and management skills, which are highly valued in the healthcare industry.

2. Get a high MCAT score.

A good MCAT score can counterbalance a low GPA. Getting a high score on this standardized test will prove to the admissions committee that you’re capable of handling the academic rigor of medical school, despite your lower-than-average GPA.

The average MCAT score for matriculants in the 2022-2023 year was 511.9 — and it keeps going up. For now, that’s the score to beat if your GPA is less than impressive. Be sure to prepare thoroughly, using resources like MCAT prep courses, practice tests, and studying the coursework extensively.

If you know you’re likely to struggle with the MCAT, hire a tutor before your first test attempt. You can certainly retake the exam, but several do-overs may give a negative impression to admissions committees.

Want your best shot at acing the MCAT and getting into your preferred school? Learn more about how we can help you boost your MCAT score.

3. Submit glowing letters of recommendation.

Strong letters of recommendation can provide a holistic perspective of your capabilities and potential as a future physician.

Cultivate relationships with professors, healthcare professionals, and mentors who can speak to your academic abilities, personal qualities, and dedication to the field. Choose recommenders who know you well and can provide meaningful insights into your strengths.

4. Write a strong personal statement.

Your medical school personal statement is your chance to tell your story, share your motivations for pursuing medicine, and highlight experiences that shaped you. It’s a unique opportunity to connect with the admissions committee on a personal level and make a lasting impression. 

Make sure your essay is well-crafted, sincere, and reflects your commitment to becoming a medical professional. The best personal statements use storytelling to communicate why you’re pursuing this career and point to your passions and soft skills that can’t be defined by a test.

5. Prepare for med school interviews.

If you receive an interview invitation, make sure to thoroughly prepare

Research the medical school, practice answering common interview questions, and reflect on your experiences and goals. Present yourself confidently, articulately, and passionately during the interview to demonstrate your potential as a medical student.

Interviews are an opportunity to show your enthusiasm for medicine and explain any academic shortcomings. Use this platform to articulate why you believe you’ll succeed in med school and make a significant contribution to the healthcare field. 

A low GPA is a potential red flag that admissions committee members will most certainly ask you about during an interview. Be ready to discuss your GPA openly and honestly, and explain what you’ve learned from the experience.

6. Boost your GPA.

Consider ways to improve your GPA. This could mean retaking courses where you underperformed or enrolling in a post-baccalaureate program designed to help pre-med students enhance their academic records.

Can a student with a 3.5 GPA get into medical school? Yes, with a well-rounded application highlighting other strengths, it’s still possible to get into medical school with a GPA of 3.5 (or even lower).

Schedule a free 15-minute consultation to learn how we can help boost your chances of success getting into medical school.

Key Takeaways

A competitive GPA is vital for medical school admission. Strive for a GPA of 3.6 or higher, particularly in science courses, to increase your chances of acceptance into top-tier medical schools.

Remember that GPA is just one aspect of the holistic evaluation process. Medical schools assess applicants based on a range of factors, including extracurricular involvement, research experience, letters of recommendation, and personal qualities. 

Standing out in these areas can compensate for a slightly lower GPA and make you a strong candidate for medical school admission.

Renee Marinelli MD

Renee Marinelli MD

Dr. Marinelli is an advisor at MedSchoolCoach and former admissions committee member at UC Irvine School of Medicine. Her insight into the application process is second to none!

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