For international students, choosing a medical school is the first step to studying medicine. This choice shapes the journey they must take to earn a degree and practice medicine.

It’s essential to find a medical school that will unlock your potential. Moreover, it must house state-of-the-art facilities to carry out medical training.

There are a myriad of medical schools all over the world to choose from, which can be overwhelming. Narrow down your options with these factors to keep in mind:

Study Destination

It shouldn’t come as a shock that attending medical school is expensive. With such a hefty financial investment, choosing a study destination is vital. Study destinations dictate the price of education and the quality of delivery.

For example, the average annual tuition fee in the US is $64,494 for 2020–2021. Meanwhile, if you study in a public university in Germany, you will only pay a semester fee (except in Baden-Württemberg). On top of tuition fees, you must also consider extra expenses such as living costs. Study destinations such as Australia and Malaysia have a considerably lower cost of living.


The curriculum varies per medical program. Some are rigid while others are more flexible. Other curricula make students go into clinical placements early on.

Find a curriculum where the bodies of knowledge are well-organized. There must also be a combination of lecture-based knowledge and clinical training. Don’t forget to check if there are opportunities to concentrate too.

Admission Requirements

Every medical school in the world evaluates candidates based on certain tests. For example, countries such as the UK, New Zealand, and Australia use the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT). In the US and Canada, they use the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). It’s important to know what admission test they use to gauge your competition ratios.

Some medical schools also include the minimum number of credits per subject (chemistry, physics, etc.). Other medical schools also require lab experience or have standards in math subjects.

Medical School Costs

As mentioned, a medical degree comes with a big price tag. Even if you have the means to cover the tuition, you still have other expenses to mind. You still need to pay for your food, transportation, and so on.

One thing that heavily influences these costs is the type of medical school you’ll apply for. A public medical school is cheaper, and attending a private one will cost double or triple. Location influences the cost as well. Schools in major cities would cost more than those in rural towns. 

Campus Atmosphere

Don’t forget the culture and atmosphere of the campus too. Studying medicine is a challenging feat and never easy for anyone. A terrible campus atmosphere may further put you off.

If you have the time (and money), tour around the campuses on your list. Get a feel of what it’s like and assess if it’s right for you.

Attending a medical school costs plenty of money, but choosing the wrong one can cost you even more. To find the best medical school for you, browse here at MSM Unify to read more related stories.