The Medical School Admissions Process

There is no doubt that gaining medical school admission is competitive. There is also a lot of confusing information amongst individuals who may not be completely informed or experienced with the process.

We present the facts to you below about Canadian Medical School Admissions, so that you may arm yourself with information on how best to prepare for this career goal.


  • Gaining admission is undeniably competitive. The statistics change every year and the applicant pool is so diverse, so it is difficult to give a simple answer to each individual student’s chance of success. However, on average, the average applicant has a less than 10 % success rate when applying to a Canadian medical school. 
  • It also continues to become more competitive over time, as the number of applicants increase every year, while the number of medical student spots does not match this increase. For example, in 2010 there were a total of 5412 applicants to Ontario medical schools, and a total of 954 spots. However, in 2017, the total number of applicants increased to 6596, whereas the total medical student spots only increased by one to 955 spots.
  • Please view the official statistics published by the OUAC here


  • Gaining admission is no longer only about academic excellence and outstanding examsmanship 
  • For the last decade, medical school admissions committees have been placing increasing value on the non-academic traits required to be a good physician: leadership, advocacy, scholarship, communication and collaboration to name a few.
  • For the applicant, this means that demonstration of excellence in community service, research work and a extracurricular activities are now just as important as top academic performance.
  • However, with the complex admissions process, it is not sufficient to merely have participated in these commitments. The student must be able to communicate their experiences in a meaningful way in writing in the Application and verbally at the Interview.
  • The general basic required steps in medical school application process is below. Please note that this is highly simplified and that many preparations need to be taken for each step:

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It is important to be fully aware of the financial fees required in the admissions process, which are outlined below:

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This cost includes only application to the 6 Ontario medical schools. Many applicants apply to medical schools across Canada as well as the United States in order to increase their chances in an increasingly competitive environment. Application fees to US Medical Schools are much more expensive than for Canada, and can cost upwards of $8000 CAD on their own.

If one considers the costs associated with an undergraduate degree, the pursuit of medical schools very totals upwards of $10 000 CAD for each applicant. For this reason, it is important not to take this decision lightly, and to seek expert consultation in order to avoid misspending all the hard work and financial investment.

Resources to view: