If you were to ask the average person on the street to identify the best medical schools in the United States, they would likely think of one of the coastal schools.
On the east coast, they’d identify Ivy League schools like the Harvard Medical School or the Yale School of Medicine.
On the west coast, there are schools such as Stanford School of Medicine or the Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles.
But any serious medical student would also consider the College of Medicine at Baylor University in Houston, Texas.
While Baylor may not have the appeal of a coastal city or the name recognition of an Ivy League school, it does have everything a future doctor would want: top-rate faculty, resources for rigorous research and study, and a history of producing excellent physicians.
Founded in 1900, Baylor Med partners with the Texas Medical Center. A 2.1 sq. mile medical district in Houston, the Texas Medical Center is the world’s largest medical center.
As such, it gives students at Baylor ample opportunity to work with a wide range of patients and cases.
For those interested in research, Baylor Med houses some of the most innovative centers and programs in the world, including the Human Genome Sequencing Center and the Epigenomics Data Analysis and Coordination Center.
While it may not be the first place that comes to mind for many people, there’s no question that the Baylor College of Medicine is an excellent choice for any serious medical student.
Baylor Medical School Acceptance Rate
Most years, Baylor Med accepts approximately 5.3% of its applicants.
But in 2021, only 84 of the 402 people who applied to the school received interviews with college staff, and only 12 received offers of admission. That’s an acceptance rate of a mere 3.5%!
Believe it or not, that low number is par for elite schools. For example, the Stanford School of Medicine accepted a mere 2.2% of its 2021 applicants. Harvard takes only 3.4%, and Princeton accepts only 4.3%.
But as normal as the percentage may be, there is one key difference to keep in mind. These schools tend to get thousands of applications each year, which means that the low percentage still refers to many students.
For example, Stanford Med received 6800 applications in 2021, which means that their 2.2% application rate brings in 153 students.
Baylor Med receives far fewer applications, just over 400. For that reason, the school’s low percentage rate indicates that they bring in no more than 14 students each year.
Baylor Medical School Tuition
Some people may have read about the low acceptance rate at Baylor School of Medicine and decided to apply elsewhere, assuming that it may not be worth the work with such low odds. While Baylor is certainly more restrictive than many of its peers, it does stand out in one great way.
It costs significantly less to study at the Baylor School of Medicine than it does at many other schools. Students who come from outside of Texas pay no more than $41,192 each year in tuition, fees, and insurance. In-state students pay even less, only $28,092 per year.
To be sure, that is a lot of money. But when looked at in the context of the costs to attend schools of similar quality, the value of Baylor becomes clearer.
For example, at the University of California at Los Angeles’s Geffen School of Medicine, students pay $45,306 each year for tuition.
The Stanford University School of Medicine costs even more in tuition, charging over $62,000 each year.
Furthermore, there are other elements to keep in mind that can alter the total cost. Where the cost of living in California, the home of Geffen Med and Stanford Med, is very high, Baylor’s home state of Texas has a relatively low cost of living.
If you add in practices such as living with a roommate and carpooling or biking to school, your overall costs can go down by quite a bit.
Baylor Medical School Requirements
We’ve already seen how difficult it is to enter the Baylor School of Medicine. Hundreds apply every year, and no more than fourteen students make it in. If you want to be among that 3.5% of accepted applicants, you need to understand their requirements and standards.
Baylor Med does not have a minimum grade point average (GPA) requirement. However, successful applicants tend to have a GPA of at least 3.9 on a 4.0 scale. In other words, students who get accepted into the school tend to get straight A’s in their classes.
On average, students entering Baylor Med scored 518 on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). With the MCAT, med schools can assess a student’s readiness for advanced education.
The test’s four sections cover the major competencies a student needs in medical school, including behavior foundations, reasoning skills, biochemistry, and biological systems.
Additionally, Baylor Med requires a score on the Computer-Based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics (CASPer) test. The CASPer test consists of 12 sections, which examine students’ personality traits, helping the admissions counselors determine a student’s potential for success in school.
Additionally, applicants must provide letters of recommendation and complete an application form. Both of these elements will demonstrate to the school a student’s other abilities, which go beyond mere test and grade scores.
Baylor Medical School Notable Alumni
As one of the country’s most respected medical schools, the Baylor College of Medicine has trained numerous influential physicians.
Carolyn Huntoon earned her Ph.D. from Baylor College of Medicine in 1966 and joined NASA in 1970. By 1994, Huntoon became the first woman to hold the position of director at the Johnson Space Center.
Throughout her career, Huntoon won several prestigious awards, including the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal, the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, and the NASA Distinguished Service Medal.
After earning her MD from Baylor Med in 2005, Monica Verduzco-Gutierrez became the medical director of TIRR Memorial Hermann’s Brain Injury and Stroke Program.
She currently serves as the chair of the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Texas Health Science Center’s Long School of Medicine. The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation gave Verduzco-Gutierrez the Distinguished Member Award.
Indian medical researcher and pulmonologist Anurag Agrawal did his residency at Baylor Med before earning his Ph.D. in 2007 from the Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute.
Agrawal has earned several awards for his work, including the 2015 National Bioscience Award for Career Development of the Department of Biotechnology and the 2014 Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology from the Indian government.
Baylor Medical School Rankings
As the alma mater of the physicians listed above, Baylor has developed a reputation for excellence. That excellence has been measured by many outlets that research and rank institutions of higher learning.
According to nearly every outlet in the world, Baylor College of Medicine belongs among the top fifty medical schools in the country. Every site gives the school high praise for its faculty, the contributions it makes to medical research, and the aforementioned alumni it produces.
These elements put Baylor high on the lists compiled by U.S. News & World Report. Out of all the outlets covering American higher education, U.S. News is the most trusted.
No other magazine puts as much attention into its research, nor do any others have such comprehensive evaluation data.
According to U.S. News, Baylor Med is the 22nd best school in the nation for medical research, tied with the School of Medicine at Emory University. Baylor does even better on the primary care rankings, coming in at 17th place, tied with Midwestern University.
If one looks outside the country to the larger world, Baylor still receives high ranks. According to the global ranking outlet topuniversities.com, Baylor College of Medicine is the 47th best medical school in the world, tied with the University of Glasgow in Scotland.
Baylor earns this ranking thanks to its very high research output, which is often cited by a wide range of journals.
Should You Attend Baylor Medical School?
There are many reasons that a future doctor may not want to study at the Baylor University College of Medicine. After all, some people prefer the glamour of west coast states like California or the prestige of New England schools like Harvard and Yale.
Baylor Med doesn’t have quite the same name recognition outside of the field and doesn’t appear in nearly as many television shows or movies.
But for anyone interested in a first-class medical education, with all of the resources they need to become excellent physicians, then Baylor Med is an excellent choice.
Not only is the school extremely affordable, especially compared to many of its top-tier peers, but it has a long history of excellence, training some of the most influential medical minds of the world.
However, Baylor Med is among the more challenging schools to enter. Where many elite schools take in at least 100 students every year, Baylor only accepts twelve or fourteen, a small percentage even compared to its relatively low number of applicants.
Furthermore, Baylor Med has standards as high as any other elite-level medical school, demanding the best in GPA and MCAT scores. There’s very little room for error when applying to Baylor, and even less once you’re in and part of the program.
Is that right for you? No one can answer that question for you. You have to decide for yourself.
If you want an excellent medical education in the great state of Texas, then the answer should be a resounding, “Yes!”