How to get into UCLA medical school

How To Get Into UCLA Medical School: Application Tips

Hey premeds! This page serves as a high-yield resource for the UCLA Medical School Admissions. The information from this page is a GOLDEN resource. We’ve compiled it from UCLA Medical School acceptance rate data, the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA website, and most importantly, from UCLA med school students themselves! You will have facts such as UCLA Medical School admissions statistics And you’ll get an insider perspective about how to get into UCLA medical school, including the student life and curriculum.

Our Cracking Med School Admissions team often gets asked, “How hard is it to get into UCLA Medical School?” It’s definitely very hard. But there are many strategies and steps you can take to learn how to get into UCLA Medical School. Whether you’re comparing medical schools that you have been accepted to, preparing for an interview, or wanting to learn more about med school, keep reading!

Why Choose UCLA School of Medicine?

The most common reasons we’ve heard from students:

  • Living in Los Angeles and Southern California
  • Access to a great public health school and public health opportunities
  • Excellent clinical opportunities in diverse communities 


How to get into UCLA Medical School – Write excellent secondary essays

One way to stand to the UCLA Medical School Admissions committee is to submit stellar secondary essays.  The essays are relatively short, but diverse.  Your responses should give a wide breadth and depth of your passions and personal qualities. The David Geffen School of Medicine secondary application is one of the most daunting. Why? Because it has at least 8 essay questions. 

How to get into UCLA medical school

UC Los Angeles Medical School Secondary Application Essay Prompts (2019-2020):

Essay 1) Describe your involvement in the one most important non-academic activity in your life. (800 characters)

Essay 2) What has been the one most unique leadership, entrepreneurial or creative activity in which you participated? (800 characters)

Essay 3) What has been the one most important volunteer work you have done and why was it meaningful? (800 characters)

Essay 4) Has there been or will there be a gap between achieving your last degree (baccalaureate or other degrees post baccalaureate) and the expected time of medical school matriculation? (300 characters)

Essay 5) What is the one most important honor you have received? Why do you view this as important? (300 characters)

Essay 6) What has been your most scholarly project (thesis, research or field of study in basic or clinical science or in the humanities)? Describe one and give number of hours, dates and advisor. (300 characters)

Essay 7) Describe a problem in your life. Include how you dealt with it and how it influenced your growth. (500 characters)

Essay 8) Where do you see yourself post-graduate education? What experiences have led you to this goal?

Essay 9) Please list any major paid work experience during or since college. (4000 characters)



UC Los Angeles Drew Medical School Secondary Essays:

Essay 1) Have you experienced any uneven performance in grades and academic achievement? If so, please explain. (800 characters)

Essay 2)If you are currently not a full time student, please list and describe your current activities. (800 characters)

Essay 3) Describe the role you play in your immediate family.  (800 characters)

Essay 4)Describe your community and socioeconomic environment. (800 characters)

Essay 5) List the most significant community, public service, and leadership activities you have been involved in over the last six years. (800 characters)

Essay 6) Describe how your experience, your community, and family background impact your understanding of the underserved communities. (800 characters)

Essay 7) Other than healthcare access, what are some of the most important healthcare issues confronting underserved communities? How would you address them? (800 characters)

Essay 8)Please describe how your experiences and personal attributes contribute to the mission of Charles R Drew University. (800 characters)

Essay 9) Have you ever been convicted of a crime other than a minor traffic or parking violation? (800 characters)

Essay 10) Please provide any additional information which will give the Admissions Committee greater insight into you as an applicant. (800 characters)

Essay 11) How did you hear about our program? (800 characters)

If you have questions about UCLA Medical School’s secondary application, email us at or contact us.


Get the Cracking Med School Admissions team’s expertise through our secondary essay editing packages. If you have questions, email us at or contact us.

UCLA Medical School
Interview Format

How to Get Into UCLA Medical School – Ace Your Interview:

UCLA Medical School interviews are traditional one-on-one interviews.

Our Cracking Med School Admissions team strongly advises you to stress why you will thrive at UCLA and why you want to attend David Geffen School of Medicine over other medical schools. 

Want to learn more about how to prepare for your UCLA medical school interview?

  1. How to Prepare for Medical School Interviews
  2. 4 Common Medical School Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

The Cracking Med School Admissions team has helped several students get accepted to Harvard and ace their interviews! Make sure to contact us and get our help.

download your interview guide

If you are prepared, the interview gives you the perfect opportunity to standout and shine by sharing with people what you are passionate about.

Med School Admissions Interview Guide eBook Cover
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

UC Los Angeles Medical School Acceptance Rate

Admit Rate

UCLA Medical School Admissions Statistics:

  • Geffen Medical School Average GPA: 3.83
  • Geffen Med School New MCAT: 517 (129 chemical & physical / 128 critical analysis / 130 biological & biochemical / 130 psychological, social)

How did UCLA Med Students Do on Their USMLE Step Exams?

  • Average Geffen Medical School USMLE Step 1 Score: 230
  • Average Geffen Medical School USMLE Step 2 Score: 244

Source: U.S. News Graduate School Rankings 2021

Your medical school application Coaches, Mentors, & Cheerleaders

We Personally Advise Every Student We Work With

Dr. Rachel Rizal - Cracking Med School Admissions

Rachel Rizal, M.D.

Changing the trajectory of people’s lives

Princeton University

Medical School
Stanford School of Medicine

Harvard, Emergency Medicine

Awards & Scholarships
Fulbright Scholar
USA Today Academic First Team
Tylenol Scholarship

Rishi Mediratta, MD, MSc, MA

Rishi Mediratta, M.D., M.Sc., M.A.

Advising students to attend their dream schools

Johns Hopkins University

Medical School
Stanford School of Medicine

Stanford, Pediatrics

Awards & Scholarships
Marshall Scholar
Tylenol Scholarship
Global Health Scholar

Each year, the Cracking Med School Admissions team
gets students accepted to top medical schools.
We can help you get accepted!

Contact us today.

The Insider’s View on UCLA Medical School's Pre-clinical years

How to Get Into UCLA Medical School – Know the Curriculum:

Curriculum Overview:

As a David Geffen UCLA School of Medicine student, your first two years are spent as a pre-clinical student, mainly learning through lectures. Then, you take USMLE Step 1. Finally, you spend your last two years in clinical rotations.

Pre-Clinical Years:

The first two years are pre-clinical years, divided into various blocks, based on organ system. Aside from classroom learning, you also have a class on “doctoring & clinical skills.”

The first year consists of the following blocks:

  • Foundations of Medicine
  • Cardiovascular
  • Renal & Respiratory
  • Gastrointestinal
  • Endocrine
  • Reproductive
  • Musculoskeletal
  • Neuroscience

The second year consists of the blocks organized by organ system, similar to the first year. However, you go more in-depth with each organ system.


Grades for pre-clinical years are pass/fail.

Grades for clinical years are Honors/High Pass/Pass/Fail (basically like grades).

How to Get Into UCLA Medical School – Know Unique Highlights:

Unique highlights about pre-clinical years:

UCLA med students are collaborative and work together to learn the pre-clinical program.

Although the campus and the UCLA community is spread out, there are plenty of opportunities to take advantage of through UCLA (partnerships with both the undergraduate students and other graduate schools). For example, UCLA’s mobile clinic serves the poorer communities in Los Angeles; students from the undergraduate school, medical school, law school, and public health schools all get involved.

Watch more about UCLA’s walk-in and mobile clinic around downtown Los Angeles.

Taking Time Off:

Most MD candidates at UCLA graduate within 4 years. There is less flexibility in the curriculum to take time off, even in the 4th year, because of the large work-load of clinical requirements. Additionally, because you are placed in a cohort of students in your 3rd and 4th year, there is less flexibility to take 1-2 months off during your 3rd and 4th years.

Research Opportunities:

There are several opportunities for research at the David Geffen School of Medicine. However, med students take advantage of several other departments and institutes across UCLA. For a full list of UCLA research opportunities, check out this link here:

Learn more about UCLA:

Why choose UCLA? Check it out!

What students are saying about UCLA Medical School

The Insider’s View on UCLA Medical School's clinical years

Clinical Years:

During the 3rd and 4th years of medical school, students are in clinical rotations. While there is ample time to pursue electives during your fourth year of medical school, there is less time (compared to other medical schools) for free time to pursue non-clinical related activities and travel.

The third year curriculum consists of:

  • Surgery (12 weeks)
  • Pediatrics (6 weeks)
  • OB/GYN (6 weeks)
  • Internal Medicine (8 weeks)
  • Psych/Neurology (8 weeks)
  • Ambulatory/Family Medicine (8 weeks)

The fourth year curriculum consists of 30 weeks minimum of electives.

To check out more details about the UCLA School of Medicine curriculum:


How to Get Into UCLA Medical School – Tailor Unique Opportunities to Your Interests:

Unique highlights about clinical years:

  • Students have the opportunity to work at several hospitals and through different types of hospital systems.
  • Advanced clinical electives are a requirement and are a large bulk of your 4th year (30 weeks); as a results, there are plenty to choose from.

Main Clinical Rotation Sites:

  • UCLA Olive View Hospital
  • Cedars Sinai Medical Center
  • Harbor UCLA
  • Kaiser Sunset
  • Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital
  • Ronald Regan Medical Center at UCLA
  • Santa Monica – UCLA Orthopedic Medical Center
  • St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • West Los Angeles Veteran’s Affairs

What students are saying about clinical rotations at UCLA


Where do students live?

Students can apply for graduate housing during medical school, however most students find off-campus housing.

Getting around:

You will need a car to get around, preferably all 4 years of medical school. And be prepared for traffic! Although, when you are doing your clinical rotations, you often commute during non-rush hours. So the commute times don’t have to be too bad :).


Financial Considerations:

You can apply for grants and financial aid with UCLA Med School’s financial aid office. The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA is known to give out scholarships and grants to top students, based on merit. 

  • UCLA Medical School Tuition & Fees: ~$41,000 in-state and ~$53,000 out-of-state
  • Average indebtedness of UCLA Med School graduates: ~$145,000

Cracking Med School Admissions Resources

Get in!

Ask Us a Question.
We help Students just like you Get Into UCLA School of Medicine Every Year!

Scroll to Top