How to Apply

Impact of Covid-19 on application review for the 2020-2021 application cycle

We recognize that Covid-19 has had a significant impact on applicants to MD-PhD programs and will continue to do so. We have provided some information below on common issues. We are monitoring this situation closely and will update information as needed. Please feel free to contact us directly for any additional information you might need.


The University of Minnesota MSTP understands that candidates have faced significant challenges securing an MCAT test date during the COVID-19 pandemic (March 14, 2020 – September 28, 2020). Therefore, the MSTP is making the MCAT optional for the 2021 application cycle. In fairness to all applicants, MCAT scores will not be considered in the initial review of applications for interview decisions. Following the interview, any MCAT scores will be considered holistically in the context of all other aspects of the candidate's application.

Prerequisites and Academic Coursework

The University of Minnesota MSTP will accept S/N (commonly referred to as Pass/Fail) grades for courses taken in the Spring and Summer of 2020. Please keep in mind that the AMCAS calculated cumulative and BCPM GPAs do not include P/F grades. We conduct a holistic review of all applications and the academic profile is reviewed in terms of courses taken, grade trends, and final outcomes.

Letters of Recommendation

We will continue to take both committee and individual letters. The MSTP Steering Committee does not place greater weight on one over the other.


We recognize that for many applicants Spring and Summer 2020 research, clinical, service, employment and other opportunities have been cancelled, shortened, or adjusted. The MSTP will take the impact of COVID-19 into consideration and remain flexible when reviewing this and other aspects of the applicant file.

Supplemental Application

We have added one additional question to our supplemental application that will provide candidates with an opportunity to describe any impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on their preparation for MD/PhD training. This will be an opportunity for candidates to provide us with specific information regarding the impact of the pandemic on academic performance, the MCAT exam, research and other opportunities, personal and financial challenges, etc. All candidates will have the opportunity to complete a supplemental application. The date for submission of the supplemental application has been extended this year to December 1. As in previous years, there is no fee associated with our supplemental application.


The University of Minnesota MSTP will NOT be participating in or utilizing the AAMC VITA tool during the 2021 application cycle.

AAMC Situational Judgment Test Operational Pilot

Only the MD program on the Twin Cities campus will be accepting scores from the AAMC Situational Judgment Test (SJT) Operational Pilot. The University of Minnesota MSTP will NOT be part of the AAMC Situational Judgment Test Operational Pilot, and thus University of Minnesota MD/PhD applicants do NOT need to take the SJT.


The University of Minnesota MSTP will host virtual interviews only for Cycle 2021. We are committed to providing each candidate with a fair and equitable interview process, and creating a virtual experience that is as close to being in person as possible so that candidates will have a strong understanding of our program and what it has to offer. More information will be provided to candidates at a later date.


Please contact MSTP Director Dr. Yoji Shimizu at if you have any questions about the 2021 application cycle.

Application procedure for the University of Minnesota MSTP

We welcome your application to the University of Minnesota’s MSTP (MD/PhD). Follow these steps to submit an application:

  1. Complete the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) no later than September 30 of the year you wish to apply. MCAT scores more than three years old are not acceptable. Please note that for the 2021 application cycle, the MCAT is optional.
  2. Verify that you will have completed all course prerequisites prior to your intended matriculation date. If there are courses that you have not yet completed, create a time table for satisfying these requirements.
  3. Complete and submit your medical school application via AMCAS: Applications are open between June 1 and November 15 for a matriculation date in late June/early July of the following summer. To complete the application you will need:
        • MCAT Scores (optional for the 2021 cycle)
        • Academic Transcript
        • Personal Statement
        • MD/PhD Statement
        • Significant Research Experience Statement
        • Biographical Information
        • Official Transcripts
        • Four letters of recommendation OR one committee packet. At least one letter must be from a research advisor
  4. Applicants will be invited to complete a brief supplemental application. There is no fee associated with the supplemental application.

The application deadline is November 15. However, decisions regarding interviews and admissions are made on a rolling basis. Therefore, applicants are encouraged to complete their applications early.

Completed applications are forwarded to our office upon final verification by AMCAS. Our office may contact you with a request for additional information.

Click here to learn more about our evaluation process.

Applicants who apply to the University of Minnesota MSTP are not eligible to be considered for admission to MD only in the same application year. Individuals interested in applying for MD only may reapply in the next application year. Applicants can apply multiple times to the MSTP. Although there is no limit to the number of times you can apply, please assess any changes in a reapplication in the context of our basic eligibility requirements for admission. Although you may use previous recommenders, updated letters of recommendation should be submitted with a reapplication. Applicants also need to follow the Medical School guidelines on reapplication found on the Medical School admissions website.

NOTE: Do not assume that your file is complete until you have received notification from the MSTP office. If you feel that you have completed all of the requirements for application but have not received notification from the Program, please contact us via telephone at 612-625-3680 or email


B681 Mayo Building, MMC 293
420 Delaware St. SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455

Phone: 612-625-3680 | Fax: 612-626-5994