Stanford University

Stanford Medical School Admissions Information

Hi premeds! Drs. Rishi Mediratta and Rachel Rizal LOVED their Stanford Medical School experiences. We also love helping premeds get into their dream medical schools.  When we take a look at our Stanford Med classmates around us, they were incredible and talented in so many ways! This page serves as an informational resource for Stanford Medical School admissions and what you can expect as a student at Stanford School of Medicine.

Getting accepted to Stanford School of Medicine is hard. Very hard. Stanford is looking for the next game changers in healthcare. Every single part of the application is important. In the past cycle, Stanford Medical School Admissions increase the length of the Stanford Secondary Application and the Stanford medical school interview is BOTH traditional and Multiple Mini Interview format. Skip below for:

  1. Stanford Secondary Application Tips
  2. Stanford Medical School Interview Tips

You will have facts such as Stanford Medical School admissions statistics AND we will give you a perspective of student life about the Stanford Medical School curriculum, including Stanford Med’s Scholarly Concentrations and Med Scholars.

Our Cracking Med School Admissions team often gets asked, “How to get into Stanford Medical School?” While there are several ways you can strengthen your medical school applications – other than having a high MCAT score and GPA – there is not one way to get into Stanford University School of Medicine!

Be sure to contact us or email us at or if you want to learn more about our Cracking Med School Admissions team’s story, check out our “About Us” page.

As a disclaimer, the information on this page was not endorsed by Stanford School of Medicine or Stanford Medical School Admissions. Our goal is to provide pre-meds with more information to help them gather more information about Stanford. Whether you’re comparing medical schools that you have been accepted to, preparing for an interview, or wanting to learn more about our experience at Stanford Medical School, keep reading!

Why Choose Stanford School of Medicine?

The most common reasons we’ve heard from students:

  • Focus on innovation
  • Endless opportunities and support (including ample funding) to pursue research projects and scholarly pursuits
  • All my classmates are going to be future leaders in healthcare
  • Inspiring classmates and faculty members
  • Located in Silicon Valley
  • Several interdisciplinary opportunities, and close connections with the undergraduate campus, Engineering School, and Business School
  • Easily take time off during medical school to pursue endless research opportunities


Stanford School of Medicine has several secondary essays, and in the past few years, the Stanford secondaries get longer and longer. The Stanford Med admissions committee want to understand your passions and what drives you to excel. Furthermore, they want to understand how you will utilize Stanford University’s opportunities in order to fulfill your professional goals. Note – the entire campus is at your disposal as a Stanford Medical School student… not just the awesome medical school. For instance, Dr. Rachel Rizal took several business school classes at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Stanford Secondary Application Tip – How To Get Into Stanford Medical School: 
  • Make sure to be as specific as possible about what you want to do at Stanford. Read our pre-clinical and clinical rotation sections below. Some of the Stanford Medical School secondary essays specifically ask how you will take advantage of Stanford Med’s curriculum. Do your research, specifically looking at the Stanford Scholarly Concentration. Learn more about Stanford School of Medicine’s pre-clinical curriculum, clinical curriculum, and culture in our Stanford School of Medicine profile.
  • Discuss your vision to change healthcare in your Stanford secondary essays.

Read more Stanford Secondary Essay Tips here: Stanford University School of Medicine Secondary Application Tips

Stanford Medical School Secondary Application Essay Prompts:
  1. Describe in a short paragraph your educational and family background. (600 characters max)
  2. Select your desired medical practice. Why do you feel you are particularly suited for this practice scenario? What knowledge, skills and attitudes have you developed that have prepared you for this career path? (1,000 characters max) Choose the single answer that best describes your career goals and clinical practice setting:
    • Academic Medicine (Clinical)
    • Academic Medicine (Physician Scientist)
    • Non-Academic Clinical Practice
    • Health Policy
    • Health Administration
    • Primary Care
    • Public Health/Community Health
    • Global Health
  3. How will you take advantage of the Stanford Medicine Discovery Curriculum and scholarly concentration requirement to achieve your personal career goals? (1,000 characters max)
  4. Please describe any lessons, hardships, challenges or opportunities that resulted from the global COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, describe how these insights have informed your motivations and preparation for medical school in areas of academics, research, employment, volunteer service and/or clinical experiences. (1,000 characters max)
  5. The Committee on Admissions regards the diversity (broadly defined) of an entering class as an important factor in serving the educational mission of the school. The Committee on Admissions strongly encourages you to share unique, personally important and/or challenging factors in your background which may include such discussions as the quality of your early education, gender, sexual orientation, any physical challenges, and life or work experiences. Please describe how these factors have influenced your goals and preparation for a career in medicine and may help you to uniquely contribute to the Stanford learning environment. (2,000 characters max)
  6. Please describe how you have uniquely contributed to a community with which you identify. (1,000 characters max)
  7. Please describe an experience/situation when you advocated for someone else. (1,000 characters max)
  8. Please describe any lessons, hardships, challenges or opportunities that resulted from the global COVID-19 pandemic. In particular, describe how these insights have informed your motivations and preparation for medical school in areas of academics, research, employment, volunteer service and/or clinical experiences. (1,000 character max)
  9. (Optional) Please include anything else that will help us understand better how you may uniquely contribute to Stanford Medicine? (1,000 characters max)
Stanford Knight-Hennessy  Scholars

Stanford also has an AWESOME program, the Knight-Hennessy Scholars, open to any graduate students who have a passion for changing the world through an interdisciplinary lens!

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Application Questions

  1. State contribution of: employment, family, loans, and scholarships/grants
  2. List up to 6 employment
    • Organization Name:
    • Country: 
    • City:
    • State:
    • Dates of Employment (Month, Year): 
    • Position/Title: 
    • Sector [Nonprofit, Private, Public]:
    • Hours/Week:
    • Job Type [Full-Time, Part-Time, Intern]:
    • Organization’s Activities [150 char]: 
    • Your Responsibilities [150 char]: 
    • Your Accomplishments 150 char]: 
    • Your Challenges [150 char]:
    • Reason for Leaving [100 char]: 
  3. List up to 3 Activities
    • Organization / Activity:
    • Role(s):
    • Country:
    • City:
    • State:
    • Dates of Participation:
    • Frequency of Participation:
    • Did you participate during and/or after college?
    • Why did you get involved?
    • What did you achieve and/or learn?
  4. List up to 3 Awards & Honors
    • Award / Honor Received:
    • Date Received:
    • Basis of Selection:
    • Why is this award / honor meaningful to you?
  5. Resume
  6. 2 Letters of recommendation
  7. Short Answer Essay: How will your K-H Scholars experience prepare you to realize your immediate and long-term intentions? [250 words]
  8. Short Answer Essay: Tell us when you [150 words total]:
    • Made somebody proud of you?
    • Were most challenged?
    • Fell short of expectations?
  9. Short Answer Essay: Please tell us eight improbable facts about you [150 words total]
  10. Long Essay / Personal Statement: Connect the dots, How have the influences in your life shaped you? [600 words total]
  11. Optional Essay: Has there been a period exceeding three months when you were neither working nor in school since you completed high school/secondary school? Please let us know what you did during the gap period(s). [750 characters]
  12. Optional essay: One Last Thing/Additional Info [750 characters]


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.

Stanford Medical School
Interview Format

Stanford Medical School has BOTH traditional and Multiple Mini Interviews. 

Stanford Medical School Interview Tip – How to get into Stanford Medical School:
  • In your Stanford Medical School interview, you need to highlight your leadership and how you want to change healthcare. Think big! Link your previous experiences and what you want to do at Stanford with what you want to do in the future. 
  • Talk about innovative ideas in your healthcare fields of interests. The innovation MMI questions will test your communication skills about abstract ideas.
  • Be able to discuss your major research project as a pre-med. Remember, the interviewer is likely not an individual on the medical school admissions committee. So, you should be able to explain your research to an educated individual who is not familiar with scientific / medical research.
  • Be able to describe your vision to change healthcare and improve society! 
  • Bring specific opportunities you want to pursue at Stanford. Reading how to answer “Why this medical school” and the level of specificity is important.
  • Cracking Med School Admissions Stanford MMI Practice Guidance: Practice all leadership MMI questions and innovation MMI questions on our MMI Practice Questions blog post.

Want to learn more about how to prepare for your Stanford Medical School interview? Get tips to ace interviews by reading our blogs and doing a mock interview with Dr. Rizal and Dr. Mediratta. We can help you incorporate your stories and experiences throughout your MMI answers.

It is important to prepare for your Stanford MMI:

  1. How to Prepare for Medical School Interviews
  2. 4 Common Medical School Interview Questions and How to Answer Them
  3. MMI Practice Tests
  4. Mastering the Multiple Mini Interview course by Dr. Rachel Rizal, former Stanford School of Medicine MMI Interviewer.

The Cracking Med School Admissions team has helped several students get accepted to Stanford and ace their medical school 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
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Stanford Medical School Acceptance Rate

Admit Rate

Stanford Medical School Admissions Statistics:

  • Stanford Medical School Average GPA: 3.89
  • Stanford Med School New MCAT: 519 (130 chemical & physical / 129 critical analysis / 130 biological & biochemical / 131 psychological, social)

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

  • Average Stanford Medical School USMLE Step 1 Score: 238
  • Average Stanford Medical School USMLE Step 2 Score: 243

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 people accepted to top medical schools, like Stanford.
We can help you get accepted!

Contact us today.

Stanford School of Medicine Pre-clinical Years

Stanford Medical School Admissions Tip – How to get into Stanford Medical School: It is critical that you know the unique opportunities and differences in Stanford Medicine’s curriculum. Furthermore, our Cracking Med School Admissions team advises students to say specifically what they want to do at Stanford. Be sure to read about the Discovery Curriculum and the Scholarly Concentrations. Below is our compiled resources so you can learn more about Stanford University School of Medicine! 

Curriculum Overview:

Stanford University School of Medicine has a brand new curriculum called the Discovery Curriculum. 

Read more about Stanford Medical School’s New Curriculum:

From our team’s experience, the Stanford Medicine curriculum is extremely FLEXIBLE. Our Stanford Med classmates took 1 month off to 5+ years off in order to pursue their interests or take a breather for personal issues.

Pre-Clinical Curriculum:

Based on the Discovery Curriculum description, one of the key new features is that you can do your pre-clerkship curriculum in two years or three years. 

Stanford Medical School Admissions Tip – How to Get Into Stanford School of Medicine: Understand The Scholarly Concentration Program and How You Will Take Advantage of the Opportunities:

Stanford Medical School Scholarly Concentration: What’s unique about Stanford is that your pre-clinical years allow you to explore several of your academic interests, and you are not tied to classes in the medical school. Think about scholarly concentrations as “majors.” Dr. Mediratta did his Stanford Med Scholarly Concentration in “Community Health” and Dr. Rizal did her Stanford Med Scholarly Concentration on “Health Policy.” Aside from the scholarly concentration courses, Stanford Med students can take courses in the business school, engineering schools, and even undergraduate courses, including introductory golf.

Read more information about the Stanford Scholarly Concentrations here.

Stanford Medical School Admissions Tip – How to Get Into Stanford School of Medicine: convey research ideas and interests  you want to pursue in medical school.

Stanford Med Scholars: Stanford University excels and prides itself as a top research institution. While we were medical school students, the Med School granted up to 5 quarters (more than 1 year!) of research funding. What’s great about research is that Stanford supports research in a non-traditional sense. We had friends who did basic science research in a lab, go abroad to do global health research, do data research for nearby start-up companies, and write books. All of this was considered scholarly work!

Read more about Stanford Research funding opportunities here


Pass/Fail during your pre-clinical year. Honors/Pass/Fail during your clinical years.

Student Ranking:

Stanford does not rank its students. It likes to foster a non-competitive atmosphere.

What students are saying about Stanford Medical School

Stanford Medical School's clinical years

Clinical Years:

During the 3rd and 4th years of medical school, students are in clinical rotations.

The third year curriculum consists of:

  • Internal Medicine (8 weeks)
  • Surgery (8 weeks)
  • Pediatrics (8 weeks)
  • OB-GYN (8 weeks)
  • Psychiatry (4 weeks)
  • Family Medicine (4 weeks)
  • ICU (4 weeks)
  • Longitudinal primary care clinical experience (optional, throughout the year)

Main Clinical Rotation Sites:

  • Stanford Health Care
  • Stanford – Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital
  • VA Palo Alto
  • Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara
  • Santa Clara Valley Medical Center


Unique highlights about clinical years:

  • Longitudinal Clinical Exposure: During your 3rd and 4th years of medical school, you can work with one preceptor in a department you are interested in. It’s great to see patients over a period weeks, months, and even years. 
  • Students have a wide variety of clinical sites they can choose from for each rotation. This allows students a wide breadth of experience across different types of hospital settings and patient populations. For example, Santa Clara Valley is a community hospital, and students can work clinics serving low-income, minority populations.
  • Flexible schedule to take months off for studying for Step 2, residency interviews, or pursue research opportunities. 
  • Several months of flexible time without clinical rotations during the 4th year. 

What students are saying about clinical rotations at Stanford


Here is a glimpse of some of the activities we were involved with at Stanford Medical School:

Stanford Med School Housing:

Students can live on-campus in graduate-student housing scattered around Stanford University’s graduate housing. Most students live on-campus their first and second years of medical school and then move to surrounding cities their last years of medical school. Most students find reasonable off-campus housing in surrounding cities like Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Mountain View, and Redwood City. But, some students live as far as San Francisco, Fremont, and San Jose.

Learn more about Stanford University Housing Options:

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:

  • Stanford is very generous with grants and loans. Because it is a private institution, it oftentimes gives its own private grants/scholarships to help pay for your medical education.
  • Don’t think you qualify for financial aid? You may be surprised. They have “middle-income” assistance loans for students who are from families classified as middle-income. 
  • You can be a Teaching Assistant for classes at the medical school, undergraduate campus, or other graduate classes. 
  • You are eligible for 1-5 quarters of research funding if you apply with a good research idea through its “Medical Scholars” program. To learn more about Med Scholars and to read what prior students have done, visit this website:
  • Learn more about Stanford Medical School Tuition and Financial Aid:
  • You can apply for grants and financial aid with Stanford School of Medicine’s financial aid office.
  • Stanford Medical School Tuition: ~$61,000 plus room and board
  • Average indebtedness of graduates: ~$97,000

Source: U.S. News Graduate School Rankings 2021


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