Vanderbilt University School of Medicine


Vanderbilt University was established in the late 1800s. The School of Medicine has been part of Vanderbilt University since it opened. This private university is located 11/2 miles from the business center of Nashville; it consists of 10 schools. The School of Medicine is part of theVanderbilt University Medical Center whose affiliated hospitals provide students with an opportunity for comprehensive, diversified clinical training.


4-year semitraditional. First year: The introductory basic medical sciences plus microbiology, ecology of healthcare, a clinical preceptorship, and electives. Second year: Advanced basic sciences with additional courses in laboratory diagnosis, preventive medicine, epidemiology, psychiatry, and electives. Exposure to patients takes place during an interdepartmental course, introduction to clinical science, wherein history taking, physical examination, and laboratory study of patients are taught. Third year: Clerkships in the major clinical areas, including neurology. Fourth year: Selectives in medical and surgical areas and ambulatory emergency medicine plus electives. The curriculum is divided into required courses and elective courses. The former constitute the core of the academic program, while the latter are an integral part of each students’educational experience. This arrangement provides considerable flexibility for individual programming. The format for electives includes a lecture or seminar series, specialty clinics, clinical rotations, or research opportunities. Students are also encouraged to participate in summer research or community service work.

Unique Programs

Minority admissions: The school conducts an active recruitment program matriculating increasing numbers of minority applicants. Other degree programs: Combined MD-PhD degree programs are offered in the basic sciences and biomedical engineering. A number of dual degrees are available including, MD-MBA, MD-JD, MD-MPH, and MD-Divinity.


The basic premedical science courses and 6 semester hours of English are required. Advanced Placement (CLEP) and pass/fail credits are not considered for required courses. A bachelor’s degree is required/ acceptable. The present student body comes from a wide variety of states. Transfer and advanced standing: Only for the third year. Selection is a 2-step process.The first involves screening AMCAS applications with a focus on a candidate’s educational background and potential for a medical career. Favorable individuals receive supplemental applications and an invitation for an interview, preferably on campus. Regional interviews, however, are possible.


A pass/fail system is used in the first year. The second year is Honors/Pass/Fail and the third and fourth years are Honors/High Pass/ Pass/Fail. Promotion is considered by a committee composed of the faculty at the end of each academic year. Teaching: The basic sciences are taught at the Medical Center and clinical teaching takes place primarily at the Vanderbilt University Hospital, the Nashville VA Medical Center, The Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital, and the Psychiatric Hospital. Library: The Medical Center Library contains more than 201,000 volumes.

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