New this year, AMCAS has instituted the “Choose Your Medical School Tool“. This is designed to help medical schools shape their incoming class with more precision. The tool will also push applicants to refine their choices according to a timeline imposed by AMCAS. In its explanation of the tool, AMCAS emphasizes strongly that the tool does not replace normal communications between schools and applicants. You should always keep schools notified regarding your decision to accept an offer of admission, stay on a waiting list, or withdraw from consideration. The Choose Your Medical School Tool is intended to supplement individual communications between applicants and medical schools. This is how it will work:
February 19: Starting on this date, applicants will be able to select “Plan to Enroll” for the school you like best from amongst those where you have been admitted. You can still hold other acceptances elsewhere.
April 15: By this time AMCAS wants you to have narrowed down your school options to three from amongst those where you have been admitted or waitlisted, and then you will ultimately narrow it to one by April 30th (see below), unless you remain on several waitlists. If you are certain of your choice at this point you can opt for “Commit to Enroll” for that school.
April 30: By this date you should have made a final decision about where you will enroll, choosing “Commit to Enroll” — unless you want to remain on a waitlist (or more than one). You will withdraw all other applications (including waitlist positions) if you select Commit to Enroll. In essence, if you select Commit to Enroll you are guaranteeing a medical school that you will matriculate. If you choose one school but want to remain on a waiting list you would leave the selection as “Plan to Enroll.” Only after you’ve made your final decision will you switch to “Commit to Enroll.”
Refer to the AMCAS information (link above) for the exact wording and instructions.
–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consultant