Foreign medical schools offer tremendous opportunities. But before you make this important educational decision, you should know the ins and outs.
If you are considering medical school, you have likely heard about the potential benefits of foreign medical schools. However, many prospective medical students might not be aware of all the ramifications of studying abroad. Are foreign schools of medicine right for your needs? What can you gain from attending medical school outside the United States?
What foreign medical schools can offer you
While U.S. medical schools are famed around the world for their quality and their comprehensive curriculum, foreign schools can offer some significant benefits for students. Among the biggest draw is that many of these schools do not require the MCAT for admission, which can certainly be a boon for some applicants.
You’ll find that other school systems, most notably those in Europe, take students directly from high school, without the need for baccalaureate education. These are six-year classes, as opposed to the traditional four-year classes, but result in the same quality of education, without forcing you to attend a third school.
Who should attend foreign medical schools?
In short, these schools are excellent options for those who travel globally on a regular basis. They are also great choices for those who wish to find an alternative to U.S. medical schools. That said, you should certainly exercise great care when choosing an international medical school.
For example, you will find that a diploma from some schools is treated identically to one from a U.S. school, while other schools are shunned. You will find that some residency programs will not accept you without a diploma from a U.S. school, giving you a much smaller range of positions from which to choose. You will also discover that some schools should be avoided on general principle, as they are often subpar. Remember that you will still have to take the USMLE Exams 1-3 in order to practice medicine in the U.S., regardless of where you attended school.
Other resources about foreign medical schools
StudentDoc.com provides access to ample information about foreign medical schools.
The NAAHP also provides strong resources for determining whether foreign medical schools are right for you.
Finally, you can check the ECFMG for more information about foreign medical schools.