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Dual Degrees

Admission to the MD-PhD Dual Degree Program

Students committed to a career that incorporates research with clinical care are encouraged to apply to the Medical Scientist Training Program. The application process for this MD-PhD dual degree program at IU School of Medicine begins when an applicant chooses the appropriate box on the AMCAS application, indicating interest in the MD-PhD program. Six to eight students are admitted to the program each year.

Begin MD-PhD Dual Degree Study

Interested participants in the MD-PhD dual degree program at IU School of Medicine can begin the application process.

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The Medical Scientist Training Program requires admission to both IU School of Medicine and an Indiana University or Purdue University graduate school program. GRE scores are not required. Students currently enrolled in medical school (pre-clerkship) are eligible to apply and are competitively considered.

Basic requirements for admission to IU School of Medicine’s MD program are available. Applicants should not submit a graduate school application unless requested.


Upon review of the applicant’s commitment to a physician-scientist career, undergraduate research experience and record, and MCAT scores, the Medical Scientist Training Program admissions committee extends invitations for interviews to qualified candidates. Program candidates are asked to submit at least two letters of recommendation from faculty advisors.

The interview consists of a combined interview with one Medical Scientist Training Program co-directors or associate director and a member of the IU School of Medicine MD admissions committee. If an applicant is being considered for a biomedical engineering PhD, a second interview takes place on the Purdue University campus. Two to four interviews are scheduled with members from either IU School of Medicine or Purdue University research faculty. Every effort is made to schedule at least one interview with a faculty member requested by the applicant.

If invited for a second interview, an applicant receives a more in-depth perspective of potential research opportunities, nature of the curriculum and a better understanding of student life on the IU School of Medicine—Indianapolis campus and local community.


  • How do I apply for the Medical Scientist Training Program, and when is the deadline?
    Begin the application process through AMCAS by choosing the appropriate box indicating interest in the MD-PhD program in the application. The deadline for the 2020 admission cycle is November 15, 2019.
  • How can I learn more about the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering at Purdue University?
    Visit Weldon and learn more about the school’s engineering academics.
  • What applicant qualities are preferred by the admissions committee?
    The admissions committee places great emphasis on research experience and commitment in becoming a caring and diligent physician. Letters of recommendation from research mentors play a crucial role in the decision process. Every application is reviewed, regardless of standardized test scores and GPA.
  • Is financial support provided?
    Yes. All students in the Medical Scientist Training Program are provided a stipend and full tuition throughout all years of the program, assuming satisfactory progress and adherence to program requirements.
  • I was invited for a second interview does that mean I have an offer of admission?
    Yes! Congratulations!
  • I didnt receive an admission offer from the Medical Scientist Training Program Is it possible to get an offer from the IU School of Medicine MD program?
    Yes, though declined by the Medical Scientist Training Program admissions committee, an applicant can still remain under consideration for the MD program, provided they meet the MD admissions criteria.
  • I received an offer what is the deadline to accept or not?
    The Medical Scientist Training Program adheres to the AAMC Traffic Rules. Every student offered admission is given at least two weeks, or until April 30 of the application year, to make a final decision.
  • Ive accepted the offer of admission when am I required to begin?
    The Medical Scientist Training Program begins mid-June with no exceptions. The first summer is important as it provides the opportunity to do a lab rotation of the student’s choice.
  • How many research rotations do students do before selecting a lab for their PhD studies
    Commonly three; one during the first summer and two in the summer between the first and second year.
  • Is the MCAT required?
  • What preparation is offered for students returning to medical school after completing their PhD training?
    While it can feel daunting, most students make a smooth and successful transition. To help facilitate, the Medical Scientist Training Program provides a clinical reentry course that is taken by all returning students in the spring. This course provides instruction in history-taking and physical exam skills, and places students in in-patient and out-patient settings where clinical evaluation and diagnostic skills can be utilized in real-world situations.
  • Are opportunities available for students in the PhD phase of training to maintain their clinical skills?
    PhD students are required to participate in clinical activities but only to the extent that it not interfere with the completion of the PhD training. Typically, students do one or two clinical experiences each semester, which require direct patient contact and care under guidance of a senior attending physician.