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M.D. Program

M.D. Program

Prospective students

Prospective Students

The Physician Scientist Training Program (PSTP) seeks applicants who have demonstrated excellent academic performance and significant research experience.  Students are required to have at least one reference letter written by a mentor of the their research experience.

Prospective PSTP students are encouraged to begin investigating early which graduate group would be most appropriate for their Ph.D. research and more specifically identifying faculty whose research aligns with their own.  Prospective PSTP students should initiate their application to Graduate Studies once they are invited for a medical school interview. 

It is the responsibility of each prospective PSTP student to complete applications to both the M.D. (School of Medicine) and Ph.D. (Graduate Studies) programs at UC Davis (see below).

The PSTP does not accept international students and does not accept students who are, or have been, enrolled in a doctoral (Ph.D.) program.

Please note:  The deadline for PSTP applications is September 1 which is earlier than for regular M.D. admissions.  The deadline for Graduate Studies varies from December 1 to January 15, depending on the graduate group.

Further information in this area can be obtained at the following site:

Application Process

M.D. Application:  Prospective PSTP students will apply to the M.D. program at the UC Davis School of Medicine and proceed through the regular admissions process. This includes completing the AMCAS application and specifying interest in the M.D.-Ph.D. program (PSTP) at UC Davis.  Applicants will need to complete the M.D.-Ph.D.-specific essays as part of their AMCAS application.  Some applicants will be asked to complete a secondary application.  Top applicants will receive interview invitations.  PSTP applicants invited to interview will choose one of three interview dates in September, October, or November and will participate in both a standard M.D. interview (MMI) as well as a PSTP-specific interview during their visit to UC Davis.  All standard M.D. interviews (MMI) occur on Fridays whereas the PSTP-specific interview will occur in the afternoon of the preceding Thursday.

 Ph.D. Application.  In addition to applying to the UC Davis School of Medicine, prospective PSTP students must also complete an online application to UC Davis Graduate Studies.  As mentioned above, this application should be initiated once the student has been invited for a medical school interview.  The online admissions application system for Graduate Studies begins accepting applications in early-to-mid September.  During this online application process, applicants will specify their graduate group choice and list the names of at least three references.  These referees will enter their letters of recommendation directly using the online admission application system.  These references will typically be the same as those used for your UC Davis School of Medicine application; hence the referees will need to submit letters through both AMCAS and UC Davis Graduate Studies.  Transcripts must be forwarded to the respective graduate group.  It is important for PSTP applicants to be in touch with the PSTP throughout the Graduate Studies application process as the PSTP has formed close liaisons with the graduate groups and will help coordinate your graduate admissions process.

NOTE:  most graduate groups will permit the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) to be substituted by the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT).  Students should self-report their MCAT scores as "other" scores.

Students who are not admitted to the PSTP will still be considered for the regular M.D. program and will still have the opportunity to pursue a research pathway once in medical school.  Specific research pathways include the Medical Student Research Fellowship Program and various NIH T32 training fellowship programs.