medical school profile

Washington University School of Medicine Requirements, Tuition, and More

We’re covering everything you need to know as you consider applying to the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. You’ll learn about application deadlines, tuition, curriculum, and more.

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All About Washington University School of Medicine

Located in St. Louis, Missouri, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis was founded in 1891 and is known for its commitment to patient care, research, and education.

In 1962, the school joined with Barnes Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children’s Hospital to form a coalition that continues to this day. The medical campus that is home to all three of these institutions—in addition to the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center—covers 178 acres over 18 city blocks in the heart of St. Louis’s Central West End, directly adjacent to Forest Park. The institutions collectively generate an annual economic impact of nearly $6.3 billion and employ over 21,000 professionals, making them one of the largest employers in the St. Louis metropolitan area.

Barnes Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children’s Hospital are Washington University’s primary teaching hospitals. Due to its prime location and relationship with neighboring medical institutions, Washington University School of Medicine offers one of the nation’s largest academic medical centers, including the six-story Farrell Learning and Teaching Center. The Center includes student carrels, state-of-the-art lecture halls and small group meeting rooms, a computer lab, simulated outpatient clinic rooms, and the Wood Simulation Center, where students have the opportunity to receive emergency and trauma care training with full-body, high-fidelity patient simulators. Clinical education takes place at individual patients’ bedsides, as well as in one-on-one or small group teaching settings.

Washington University School of Medicine is world-renowned for its achievements in the medical field. The school published the first evidence linking smoking and lung cancer, served as a major contributor of genome sequence data to the Human Genome Project, developed screening tests that are now used worldwide to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease, helped pioneer the use of insulin to treat diabetes, developed the first surgical prevention of cancer based on genetic testing, and demonstrated that severely malnourished children given antibiotics along with therapeutic peanut butter-based food are more likely to survive than those who receive therapeutic food only.

The faculty of Washington University’s School of Medicine has pioneered many advances in research and treatment. Of the current faculty, 13 are fellows of the National Academy of Sciences, 27 have been elected to the National Academy of Medicine, and 6 are investigators with NIH MERIT status. Collectively, they have received 101 individual and/or institutional career development awards from the National Institutes of Health and 58 career development awards from non-federal agencies. The school’s full-time clinical faculty (Washington University Physicians) is one of the five largest academic clinical practices in the country.

Washington University began admitting women in 1918, and today, women make up half of each incoming class for medical programs. The School of Medicine is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion and actively works to create a welcoming environment for students of all backgrounds.

The Curriculum at Washington University School of Medicine

Washington University School of Medicine offers 13 degree programs in medicine, audiology and communication sciences, biology and biomedical sciences, physical therapy, occupational therapy, public health, clinical research, and informatics. Its innovative and flexible curriculum is designed to help support students’ individual goals, and faculty mentors provide assistance in finding and following the best path.

The following degree tracks are available to those pursuing a degree in medical education:

Washington University will launch a new, innovative Gateway Curriculum beginning in 2020. The first curriculum renewal in 20 years, the new Gateway material is intended to equip students with an understanding of the latest developments in technology, scientific discovery, health care delivery, and more.

The Gateway Curriculum consists of three phases, conducted over four calendar years:

  • Phase 1: Gateway to Foundations (16 months)

    Students begin their medical education journey with an introduction to the curriculum, a 4-week overview of the human body and its systems, 8 foundational science modules of varying lengths, and three 4-week clinical immersion experiences that rotate students through in-patient, out-patient, and perioperative/periprocedural clinical environments.

  • Phase 2: Gateway to Clinical Medicine (12 months)

    The next stage of the program involves six 8-week clinical clerkships where students rotate through internal medicine, surgery, pediatrics, OB/GYN, neurology, and psychiatry. Students interested in a career in science may also complete 8-16 weeks of research during Phase Two.

  • Phase 3: Gateway to Specialization

    The final phase of Washington University’s Gateway Curriculum is tailored to each student’s individual passions and career goals. All students are required to complete a 4-week Internal Medicine Subinternship, four 4-week Advanced Clinical Rotations, three 4-week Keystone Integrated Science Courses, and—lastly—a 4-week Capstone early in their graduation year. The remaining 10 months are elective and can be used to focus on areas of interest identified throughout tenure in the medical program.

There are many opportunities available for students interested in research, and although it is not a requirement, 95% of students in the School of Medicine choose to participate in a research project during their program. Areas of investigation include personalized medicine, cardiovascular diseases, developmental biology, diabetes, genetics and genome science, imaging, immunology, infectious disease, neuroscience, and more. Research opportunities range from elective programs to year-long projects.

How has Washington University School of Medicine Made an Impact?

Washington University’s School of Medicine was the first to:

  • Create a positron emission tomography (PET) scanner, used to image the brain and other organs at work
  • Perform a nerve transplant using nerve tissue from a cadaver donor
  • Propose the now-common practice of taking aspirin to help prevent heart attacks
  • Develop a blood test that quickly and safely identifies whether a patient needs invasive treatment for a heart attack

The School of Medicine’s many ongoing research areas include:

  • Participating in a national network to determine new ways to prevent preterm birth
  • Developing new ways to diagnose and treat strokes
  • Making groundbreaking contributions to decoding the genetics of cancer and developing personalized treatments
  • Pioneering minimally invasive surgical treatments for heart arrhythmias and heart valve replacements
  • Spearheading attempts to understand and prevent the devastating consequences of the Zika virus
  • Identifying biomarkers in the brain and spinal cord to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms develop

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis – Notable Programs

Washington University School of Medicine: Enrollment, Tuition, and More

Washington University School of Medicine enrolls approximately 100 students every year. The most recently enrolled class included graduates of 54 different institutions from 30 U.S. states and 5 countries. 

In 2019, the incoming class included 49 women and 51 men. 

How expensive is tuition at Washington University School of Medicine?

Washington University School of Medicine guarantees incoming students a fixed tuition rate—and fixed financial aid award amounts—for all four years of study in order to help students and their families plan for the future. Starting in 2019, Washington University in St. Louis has committed to awarding half of its incoming MD class a full-tuition scholarship.

The cost of tuition for a single student in the 2019–2020 first-year class is $66,913, with an estimated $1,161 in additional education-related expenses. Housing, food, personal, and travel costs are estimated at $19,504.

Scholarships are available to all admitted applicants entering Washington University’s MD program, and applications are reviewed on an individual basis by an admission scholarship committee. Awards may be need-based, merit-based, or both, and may cover all or part of an admitted student’s tuition costs.

When is the application deadline for Washington University School of Medicine?

The School of Medicine encourages early applications as it recruits on a rolling basis. Application requirements include MCAT (Medical College Admissions Test) results, at least 90 hours of undergraduate credit from an approved college or university, and at least one year of advanced study in biology, chemistry, physics, or calculus.

Deadlines for each stage of the application process include:

  • Early June: AMCAS application opens
  • Early July: Target date for submitting application
  • October–February: Interviews
  • November–April 15: Acceptance notifications
  • December 1: Last day to submit application
  • December 16: Transcript deadline
  • December 31: Last day for Washington University to receive supplemental application, recommendation letters, and MCAT scores
  • April 15: Last day to be notified of acceptance status
  • April 30: Deadline to choose to attend Washington University School of Medicine

Median MCAT Scores for Washington University School of Medicine

Unfortunately, the school does not publish data regarding the MCAT scores of students it accepts.

Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis Residency Program Match Rates and Locations


In 2019, the top residency programs that Washington University School of Medicine students matched with were in the following specialties:

  • Internal Medicine (24 students)
  • OB/GYN (11 students)
  • Dermatology (9 students)
  • Emergency Medicine (9 Students)
  • Psychiatry (9 Students)
  • General Surgery (7 Students)
  • Orthopaedic Surgery (7 Students)
  • Ophthalmology (6 Students)
  • Pediatrics (6 Students)
  • Plastic Surgery (6 Students)