Significant impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic can be felt across the education landscape, including the medical admissions process.
While many components of the medical school application can be completed virtually, the Medical College Admissions Test — also known as the MCAT — is typically taken in-person. COVID-19 has caused widespread cancellations of MCAT testing dates this spring, posing a disruption to the application process. New for the 2020-2021 application cycle, ICOM will not be requiring a letter of recommendation from a physician due to challenges presented by COVID-19, however it’s encouraged.
As a member of the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM), the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine (ICOM) is following AACOM’s guidelines in adapting its application review process. This allows for greater flexibility in accepting online coursework, accepting pass/fail/satisfactory/unsatisfactory coursework, and reviewing applications prior to receiving MCAT scores.
As the situation evolves, updates regarding the application and admissions process can be found on AACOM’s COVID-19 Resource page at the following link: https://choosedo.org/coronavirus/
Additionally, please refer to AACOM’s newly released letter to future applicants for details regarding these changes at the following link: https://choosedo.org/osteopathic-medical-schools-adapt-admissions-processes/
Frequently Asked Questions
Will ICOM evaluate my application without an MCAT score?
Yes, your application will be evaluated without an MCAT score if you have a “planned MCAT” date listed on your AACOMAS application. If you have a high GPA (3.75 +) you may be invited for an interview prior to taking your MCAT. If your GPA is around a 3.2 and your MCAT score may make your application more competitive, ICOM may wait for that MCAT before inviting you for an interview. We will continue to look at your experiences, personal statement, research, letters of recommendation, extracurricular activities, etc., that may help strengthen your application.
Can I receive an offer of acceptance before I take the MCAT?
No, the Admissions Committee will not make a determination until your application is complete with a verified MCAT.
Will ICOM accept P/F grades?
Yes, we will accept P/F grades. If the P/F grade is for a prerequisite course the transcript must state if a “D” is included in the passing grade. Your previous semester grades will weigh heavily in our evaluation.
Will ICOM accept online courses?
Yes, ICOM will accept online courses for Spring of 2020 and possibly for Fall 2020.
Will ICOM offer virtual interviews?
ICOM is continually assessing the COVID-19 risks and safety of our students, faculty, staff, visitors and community. We hope to have in-person interviews, but will follow state and federal mandates. We will communicate with our applicants if there may be a need for a virtual interview.
What if I couldn't shadow a physician like I had planned?
We understand that many jobs, experiences and schools were affected by the pandemic. There is an opportunity in the AACOMAS application to fill out an optional essay to explain how the virus has impacted you. New for the 2020-2021 application cycle, ICOM will not be requiring a letter of recommendation from a physician due to challenges presented by COVID-19, however it’s encouraged.
- Considering that the MCAT will be offered in a shortened time period due to COVID19, will we review the scores differently from tests taken prior these changes?