Are the classes
taught in English or in Spanish?
Classes are taught in either or both languages, depending on
the preference of the professor and/or instructors.
Textbooks and exams are in English; however, students must
be fully bilingual in English and Spanish, that is, read,
write, speak and understand both languages. Spanish is the
official language in PR and the student must be able to
communicate with patients in Spanish
Can I take the
required twelve credits of Spanish at an institution that is
not the university/college that I attended?
Yes, you may take them at any Higher Education Institution
as long as the undergraduate institution is accredited by
USA Higher Education accrediting agencies and they will be
reported in an official transcript.
May I take the CLEP
Exam to substitute language courses?
No, the CLEP Test is not accepted at all, neither for
Spanish nor English.
Are my High School
Spanish classes accepted?
No, the expected language level is much deeper. It is an
absolute requirement for all applicants (including local
residents) in order to be considered for admission. This is
also a requisite of the Medical Board of Puerto Rico.
Even if I went to a
university/college in the United States, am I still required
the 12 English credits?
Yes, you still have to comply. Classes described as
“intensive writing” from other departments may be considered
What is your policy
regarding acceptance of non-resident applicants/
Non-resident and/or international students are welcome and
accepted regardless of nationality, race, religion,
handicaps, sex or sexual preference, as long as they have
completed their undergraduate education in an accredited
institution within the USA or Puerto Rico, and comply with
all the requisites. International students have to comply
with USA immigration laws. Nevertheless, preference is
given to Puerto Rico residents (this group usually comprises
around 85% of the entire body class).
When should I take
the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)?
It is requested that the MCAT be taken before December 15.
My MCAT score was
below the requirement, what can I do?
You have no choice but to repeat the test. Our MCAT average
score is 22. The applicant must notify the Admissions Office
his intentions of repeating the test.
If I obtain a medical
degree from Ponce School of Medicine Health Sciences, can I
Ponce School of Medicine Health Sciences is accredited by
the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME)
www.aamc.org. Our graduates can seek residency programs or
practice anywhere within the US through the National
Residency Matching Program (NRMP). Ninety percent of our
graduates match within their first three choices. Some
graduates stay in Puerto Rico for their graduate training
but most opt to continue further training in medical centers
in the Continental USA.
Do you require a
No, a secondary application is not required but documents to
complete your file will be requested.
Will I be
notified that my AMCAS application was received?
Yes. After the AMCAS application is received at the
Admissions Office, the applicant will receive an email with
general information and a list of required documents which
US$150.00 application processing fee
transcript(s) from all universities attended, besides
the ones you must send to AMCAS
of recommendation (no format is required, must be sent
directly to AMCAS)
Will a background
check be required?
Yes, an AMCAS CRIMINAL BACKGROUND CHECK (Certiphi Screening)
will be conducted once the applicant is accepted. If a
criminal record appears in the results of the background
check, the acceptance will be revoked.
courses are recommended for preparation for medical school?
We strongly recommend course work in Biochemistry, Cell
Biology, Genetics, Microbiology, Liberal Arts and
Will the Admissions
Committee pay particular attention to my performance in
The Admissions Committee pays particular attention to the
science courses taken. The acceptance decision is made
considering the sum of all the factors of the evaluation
such as letters of recommendation, interviews, etc.
My transcript shows
several withdrawals. How will the Admissions Committee view
More than two withdrawals without a plausible explanation,
will work against you in the evaluation process.
What does the
Admissions Committee consider other than grades and MCAT
In evaluating the applicants, the Admissions Committee
considers interview reports, letters of recommendation,
hospital voluntary work, community service, awards, research
experience, poster presentation and/or publications and any
other information provided by the applicant.
What is the basic
The candidates who meet the requirements for admission are
invited for an interview which will be conducted by faculty
members. You may be interviewed as part of a group or
When does the
Medical School begin interviews?
The interview process usually begins around November.
What is the Early
The AMCAS Early Decision Program (EDP) allows applicants to
secure an acceptance from one EDP-participating medical
school by October 1 while allowing sufficient time to apply
to other schools if not accepted. Deadline to apply through
the EDP Program is August 1 (AMCAS application and official
transcripts). The candidate must fully comply with all the
requisites. The Committee’s decision could be of either
acceptance or not acceptance. If the candidate is not
accepted, he/she will still compete for acceptance in the
pool of all applicants for that academic year.
recommendations from prominent persons?
Letters from people that really know you, rather than from
people who have impressive titles, are the most valuable.
Three letters of recommendation are required and should
provide input from people in responsible positions who can
comment on your academic, employment or volunteer
performance, character, interests and advocacy experience.
For undergraduates this often means professors, academic
advisors or employers.
How is the
alternate list made up?
The Alternate List is made up of qualified candidates for
whom no space is available. As spaces become available, this
list provides the order to follow for calling the candidates
Do I need a
physical health examination before starting medical school?
Yes, upon acceptance all students are required to submit a
Physical Exam (using a form provided by the Admissions
Office), a Health Certificate from the Department of Health
of PR and evidence of up to date immunization record (must
include Varicella, Td Adult, MMR and three doses of
When do classes
begin? Is the Orientation period required?
Classes begin with the mandatory orientation period usually
during the second half of July.