Application services facilitate the process of applying to professional school and standardize all applications to the participating schools. You complete only one application (usually over the internet) and send one set of transcripts to the application service, which processes and verifies your records, includes your admission test scores and sends the complete information to each school you have chosen. This is your application to the schools you have selected. A fee is charged, depending on the number of school to which you are applying.
The application is quite long, and you should spend some time to complete it carefully. Make sure you follow all instructions exactly. If you have questions, contact the application service for help. Application is usually made in the summer between your junior and senior years, with June 1st the earliest date for submission. Application deadlines vary at different schools, so you should check the dates for the schools to which you are applying. It is to your advantage to apply as early as possible, since at that time, admission committees usually have more time for a careful review of an entire application, rather than just checking the GPA and MCAT scores.
As part of your application, you will be asked to write an essay or personal statement that, of course, should be well written and carefully thought out. This is your first opportunity (hopefully not your last) to describe your special strengths that set you apart from all the other applicants. Your autobiography should give you some ideas for topics. If any part of your background needs explanation, this is the place for it. Cover a few important topics in depth rather than repeating factual information already in your application. An anecdote helps you come across as a "real" person.
The application service only processes your application; it does not make any admission decisions. Each school receiving the application materials will contact you concerning the status of your application with them. If you pass the first screening process, the school will provide you with the secondary application materials including requests for additional fees, letters of recommendation, an interview or other information. Send your senior year fall semester grades to the schools where your application is pending.
List of Application Services
- American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS)
- Associated American Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS)
- American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine Application Service (AACOMAS)
- American Association of Colleges of Podiatric Medicine Application Service (AACPMAS)
- Veterinary Medical Colleges Application Service (VMCAS)
- The Pharmacy College Application Service (PharmCAS)
- Central Application Service for Physician Assistants (CASPA)
Any school not participating in an application service must be contacted directly for application materials.