Washington University School of Medicine


The St. Louis Medical College was established as an independent school in 1842 and became the medical division of Washington University in 1891. In 1899 the Missouri Medical College became part of Washington University as well. The Medical Center is located on the eastern edge of Forrest Park in St. Louis and includes the School of Medicine and a number of teaching hospitals.


4-year modern. The goal of the curriculum is to provide students having diverse backgrounds and interest with the basic knowledge and skills essential for further professional development. The education is through lectures, small group sessions, problem-based exercises, and self-directed learning. Students must learn the interrelationship between the basic and clinical sciences and how old knowledge is reevaluated and new knowledge acquired. The curriculum includes a core experience based upon a sequence of courses during the first and second year that introduce the panorama of medicine. The major medical disciplines are presented in the third year in a way that allows all students to select the career most suited for them. The fourth year consists of electives. It provides students an opportunity to expand their knowledge in a wide range of specialties. The extent of their exploration into specific areas is determined by their depth of interest.

Unique Programs

Recruitment of underrepresented minority students is facilitated by the school’sAssociate Dean for Diversity Programs. Other degree programs: 5-year MD-MA program offering a year of research training, and 8-year combined MD-PhD program in various basic sciences.


Required courses include the basic premedical sciences and differential and integral calculus. Transfer and advanced standing: Third-year class positions are available to well-qualified individuals enrolled in U.S. medical schools who have compelling personal reasons for transfer.


A Pass/Fail grading system is used for the first year. Thereafter, the grades are Honors, High Pass, Pass, and Fail. In the third and fourth years, grades are accompanied by comments characterizing each student’s performance. Promotions are made by committees on academic evaluation of students. Taking Steps 1 and 2 of the USMLE is recommended. Teaching: The Farrell Learning and Teaching Center provides state-of-the-art facilities introducing formal lecture halls and wet and dry labs. Every workstation in the Center is equipped with power and data connections, and for after-hours learning, the building also includes computer rooms and study carrels. Enclosed walkways connect Farrell to the Medical School-affiliated hospitals Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s Hospital, which together provide 1624 hospital beds. Patient-centered outpatient care takes place in the multispecialty Center for Advanced Medicine. Library: The 8-level Library and Biomedical Communication Center houses more than 290,000 volumes including more than 5400 journal titles, and provides on-line links to more than 2600 journals. Housing: Available in the Olin Residence Hall for approximately 250 students; abundant, reasonably priced apartments are within easy walking distance.

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