Holistic review, a more comprehensive way to screen medical school applicants, has been in place at several medical schools for the last several years. First introduced by the Association of American Medical Colleges approximately 10 years ago, holistic review proposes new methods and metrics for assessing med school applicants’ potential success in medical school and eventual contribution to the medical profession. Holistic review takes into account applicants’ GPAs and MCAT scores. But med school admission committees put this data in a broader context by also considering any adversities applicants have overcome, along with the challenges they have faced, and the resiliency they have demonstrated when encountering difficulty.
Boston University School of Medicine has been one of the leaders in implementing holistic review. Dr. Robert Witzburg, Dean of Admission at BU, along with Dr. Henry Sondheimer of the AAMC, have written an article in the New England Journal of Medicine describing the positive impact of holistic review.
–Liza Thompson, Expert Medical School Admissions Consulting