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Holistic Review

What is holistic review? 

Holistic review is a flexible, individualized way of assessing an applicant’s capabilities by which balanced consideration is given to experiences, attributes, and academic metrics and, when considered in combination, how the individual might contribute value as a medical student and physician.

How is Holistic Review applied in the CMSRU Admissions Process?

Applications are pre-screened to assure that the student is highly likely to succeed in our curriculum. Those applicants sent secondary applications are carefully reviewed using the factors noted in the graphic below. CMSRU weighs all these attributes in making decisions:

  • CMSRU seeks to admit students with the potential to become competent and caring physicians with a passion for learning and a commitment to serving others. Academic readiness is assessed, as demonstrated through coursework, MCAT, research and scholarship. We recognize that academic paths vary, and we look at these metrics to answer the question "Are you ready now?"
  • We value applicants who understand service to something larger than themselves. For CMSRU, service learning means engagement with the community in a real way – getting to know and understand the people we serve.
  • We expect to see well-developed interpersonal skills. Physicians must be able to work effectively with the healthcare team as well as connect in a real way with their patients.
  • The successful CMSRU student will thrive in an urban environment. While every type of physician is needed all over our country, we seek applicants who will resonate with the needs of an underserved, highly diverse patient population.

Are grades and test scores important in a holistic review?

Absolutely. To be successful in medical school, students must be academically prepared. Grades and test scores are important predictors of future academic and testing performance. Academic metrics do not, however, measure all the skills and abilities needed to be a successful student or physician. By utilizing a holistic review process, we evaluate academic metrics along with experiences and attributes to assess potential for academic and clinical achievement.