UC San Francisco

How to Get Into UCSF Medical School

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

Whether you’re comparing medical schools that you have been accepted to, preparing for an interview, or wanting to learn more about UCSF med school, this keep reading!

If you have questions about UCSF Medical School, contact us down below. 


The most common reasons we’ve heard from students:

  • Located in San Francisco
  • Great in both primary care and specialized medicine
  • Student culture with great quality-of-life and work life balance
  • Several opportunities for paid research and public health initiatives
  • Supports medical innovation and healthcare business
  • Collaboration with Silicon Valley and UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health


UCSF Medical School secondary application essays are optional. However, we always recommend our students writing something for Essay #1. This is a good amount of space for you to write about one of your extra-curricular activities, extenuating circumstances, or highlight your strengths / leadership potential.

How to get into UCSF Medical School with the Cracking Med School Admissions team

UCSF Medical School Secondary Application Essay Prompts (2020-2021):

Essay 1) Applicants are interviewed by invitation only. Please note that we do not conduct regional interviews. Interviews are scheduled from September to February (days vary). Please let us know if you will be out of the country during the interview season. (300 words)

Essay 2) If you wish to update or expand upon your activities, you may provide additional information below. (500 words)

Essay 3) If you are 2019 or earlier college graduate, please use the space below to tell us what you have done since completing your undergraduate degree. (350 words)


If you have questions about UCSF Medical School’s secondary application, email us at info@crackingmedadmissions.com 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 info@crackingmedadmissions.com or contact us.

UCSF Medical School
Interview Format

UCSF Medical School interviews are one-on-one traditional format. There is usually 1 interview with a current UCSF student (usually a 3rd or 4th year) and 1 interview with a UCSF faculty member. 

Contact us if you want to schedule a mock interview for UCSF School of Medicine. Or click the button below.

To ace your traditional interview, you need to know how to answer common medical school interview questions. It’s important to practice, practice, practice.

Cracking Med Resources for Interviews:

Contact us if you want to schedule a mock interview with our Cracking Med School Admissions team! Take a look at our interview packages.

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.

UCSF Medical School Acceptance Rate

Admit Rate

UCSF Medical School Admissions Statistics:

  • UCSF Medical School Average GPA: 3.84
  • UCSF Med School Average MCAT: 518 (130 chemical & physical / 129 critical analysis / 130 biological & biochemical / 131 psychological, social)

How did UCSF Medical School Students Do on Their USMLE Step Exams?

  • Average University of California San Francisco Medical School USMLE Step 1 Score: 239
  • Average University of California San Francisco 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

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
helps students get accepted to top medical schools.
We can help you get accepted!

Contact us today.

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

How to Get Into University of California San Francisco Medical School – Know the Curriculum

University of California San Francisco Medical School Curriculum Overview:

As a UCSF medical school student, your first two years are spent as a pre-clinical student, mainly learning through lectures. Then, you take USMLE Step 1 and spend the next two years in clinical rotations.

UCSF Medical School Pre-Clinical Curriculum:

The pre-clinical curriculum is split through systems-based blocks. A lot of learning occurs through small group discussion sessions. There are several additional electives you can take during your first two years. UCSF has “Pathways” in the following topics: clinical and translational research; global health; health and society; health professions education; and molecular medicine.


During the first two pre-clinical years, grades are Pass/Fail.

For the most part, most core clerkships are graded: Honors; Pass; and Fail.


How to Get Into UCSF Medical School – Know the Opportunities Available:


Unique highlights about pre-clinical years:

  • Systems-based learning with small group discussions
  • Learn how to read and use science-based articles using evidenced-based medicine
  • Classes on teaching communication skills, including “How to deal with upset patients” and “How to communicate well with nurses.”
  • Several electives spanning all of healthcare, including global health and health policy

Taking Time Off:

Many students take time off between 3rd and 4th year. Many students pursue additional degrees, including a Master’s of Global Health and a Master’s of Public Health. For more information about UCSF Medical School’s official joint degree programs, read here: http://meded.ucsf.edu/mse/programs

Special Joint Programs at UCSF Medical School:

  • MD/MS with UC Berkeley: Students can enter a special 5-year program in which you can get a Master’s degree, selecting thesis topics on other aspects of health and human disease (including historical, social, ethical, epidemiological, or policy)
  • PRIME-US (Program in Medical Education – Underserved): Another 5-year program that accepts 15 students annually. Students work directly with urban underserved populations, including in San Francisco, Berkeley, and Fresno. For more information about UCSF’s PRIME-US program: http://www.medschool.ucsf.edu/prime/
  • MD/MPH: UCSF medical school students can take a year off between their 3rd and 4th years of medical school and get an MPH at UC Berkeley.


What students are saying about UCSF Med

The Insider’s View on UCSF Medical School's clinical Years

UCSF Medical School Clinical Rotations:

At the end of your second year, you start your clinical rotations. UCSF has a longitudinal rotation where you spend one day every other week in a family medicine clinic. This way, you can understand what having a “panel of patients” feels like and you can follow-up on patients’ care. During your last year, there is a lot of flexibility to pursue your individual interests. You can use this time to pursue advanced clinical training or scholarly research. You can take courses such as “Designing & Conducting Research,” “Career Exploration,” and “Community Engagement.”

Core Rotations:

  • Internal Medicine (8 weeks)
  • Surgery (8 weeks)
  • OB/GYN (6 weeks)
  • Pediatrics (6 weeks)
  • Neurology (4 weeks)
  • Psychiatry (4 weeks)
  • Anesthesia
  • Family & Community Medicine (longitudinal)

Main Clinical Rotation Sites:

  • Parnassus
  • UCSF Fresno
  • San Francisco General Hospital
  • San Francisco VA Hospital
  • Kaiser Oakland

Unique highlights about clinical years:

  • Students can choose to do longitudinal clinical work at primarily one hospital their 3rd year or rotate through several clinical sites.
  • Many opportunities to work with the under-served.
  • Longitudinal clerkship
  • Ample time to explore electives and career development during your last year

What students are saying about clinical rotations at UCSF Medicine


Where do students live?

There are no dorms or student housing. Students live around San Francisco. Most live in the Western part of San Francisco next to UCSF. However, a good portion of students move to the “Mission” neighborhood where it is still easy and feasible to commute.

Getting around:

There’s great public transportation in New York City. For almost all your clinical rotations, you walk a few blocks.


Financial Considerations:

You can apply for grants and financial aid with UCSF’s financial aid office. Most out-of-state students can become a California resident by their second year of medical school and can qualify for in-state tuition.

  • UCSF Medical School Tuition: ~$35,000 in-state and ~$47,000 out-of-state
  • Average indebtedness of graduates: ~$140,000

Cracking Med School Admissions Resources

Get in!

Ask Us a Question.
We help Students just like you Get Into UCSF!

Scroll to Top