Policy on Students Wishing to Transfer into the College of Medicine
Approved by: UAMS COM Executive Committee
Version History: May 16, 1996; July 21, 2022
The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine will sometimes consider a few well qualified applicants for potential transfer into the third year of the College. The rules under which applications will be considered are enumerated below:
I. Applications for transfer into the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine will only be considered from individuals meeting the following criteria:
- They must be currently enrolled and in good academic standing in a United States, LCME Accredited Medical School, and be eligible to continue at their current school;
- They must be (a) citizens of the State of Arkansas who could be considered for admission under the category of “Arkansas resident” using the normal standards as set by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (the applicant must complete and return the Certification of Resident Status form, obtained by request from the Office of Student Admissions; University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine; Slot 551; 4301 W. Markham st.; Little Rock, AR 72205 (501-686-5354) or (b) someone with strong ties to the State of Arkansas which usually means an individual whose parents, or spouse resides in Arkansas;
- They must have academic backgrounds and MCAT scores at least equal to applicants seriously considered by our Admissions Committee for first time entry into one of our freshman classes;
- They must be requesting transfer into the junior year (3rd year) of medical school at IJAMS (The College does not consider transfers into any year other than the third year);
- They must be in the process of completing the equivalent of our second year of medical school and have taken and passed all equivalent courses to those found in our first and second years. (We have no mechanism to allow students to take make-up courses to complete this requirement);
- They must be registered to take, or will register to take, the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) Step 1 examination by the end of July of the year in which they seek admission to the UAMS College of Medicine;
- They must meet all Technical Standards for Admission as outlined in the “Bulletin” of the College of Medicine, and as required of all students in the College of Medicine;
- They must agree that if they are admitted to the College of Medicine they will abide by all rules, regulations, and policies of the College of Medicine, and of the University of Arkansas;
- They must have a compelling reason for the request to transfer. For all practical purposes, transfers are generally only considered for compassionate reasons such as proximity to a spouse, or serious illness in a family member for whom the student is the primary care giver. Documentation of the latter will be required.
II. The College will begin accepting application materials from potential transfer students on March 1 and all application materials must be complete and in the office of Admissions by April 1 of the year in which matriculation would begin (Application materials for transfer may be obtained from the Office of Student Admissions). Absolutely no exceptions will be made to the April 1st deadline. In addition to the application form itself, the applicant must make arrangements for the following information to be forwarded directly from the source to the UAMS College of Medicine’s Office of Student Admissions:
- A letter from the Dean or Student Affairs Dean of the College of Medicine in which the applicant is currently enrolled verifying that the applicant is enrolled, is in good standing, and is eligible to continue at that school;
- A copy of the applicant’s medical school transcript (if grades for the complete second year are not on the transcript at the time of application, the applicant must arrange for an updated transcript to be sent when these grades are finalized);
- An official copy of the applicant’s MCAT scores as well as official copies of all undergraduate and graduate programs attended;
- Three letters of recommendation (in addition to the letter from the Dean), two of which must be from faculty members in the medical school in which the applicant is currently enrolled.
III. After an original screening process, applicants still being seriously considered will be asked to come to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine for interviews.
IV. Completed applications will be screened by the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs. Those fulfilling all appropriate criteria enumerated in I. above, and appearing to have appropriate academic credentials, will then be reviewed by a special Transfer Committee made up of the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs, the Assistant Dean of Admissions, the Chair of the Admissions Committee, and two members of the Admissions Committee to be named by the Chair. Applications will be evaluated on the basis of academic qualifications, special achievements, the reason for requesting the transfer, and personal attributes only, without reference to race, color, creed, gender, ethnic background, disability, or economic situation. A recommendation by the Transfer Committee will be submitted to the full Admissions Committee for a final decision.
V. The number of places available to be filled by transfer students will be determined each year by the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs in consultation with the Dean. This number will be very limited. It would be very unusual for more than one or two transfer students to be accepted by the Admissions Committee in any given academic year.
VI. If an invitation for admission with advanced standing is extended to an applicant, the admission invitation will be contingent upon the applicant passing the USMLE Step 1 examination which must be taken by the end of July in the year the applicant is seeking admission and successful completion of the second year of the current medical school (if this was not complete at the time of application). If the applicant is unsuccessful in completing the second year of their current medical school with grades acceptable to the UAMS College of Medicine, or in passing the Step 1 examination, the invitation for admission will be withdrawn. No further attempts to pass the USMLE Step 1 examination will be allowed by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Medicine. If the applicant passes the Step 1 examination, he/she will enter the Junior year at UAMS following official notification of the College by the National Board that the student has passed. It will be the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that this notification occurs. Given the timing of our third year and the length of time it takes the NBME to report a score on the Step 1 examination, it may mean that the student will not be able to start until four or six weeks into the junior year. Since the junior year at UAMS is a full year long, the missed clerkship time will have to be made up at the beginning of the senior year and will somewhat limit flexibility in senior year scheduling. To begin the junior year at UAMS, the student must be certified in Basic Life Support by the American Heart Association.
VII. If the applicant is unsuccessful in obtaining admission to the UAMS College of Medicine for any reason, including failure to pass the Step 1 examination, all records concerning the application will be destroyed.