Council on Selection

The intent of the Council on Selection is to identify and select those applicants who demonstrate the ability to fulfill the purpose of a UMKC medical education, to fully develop the core competencies of the School of Medicine:

  • further development of interpersonal and communication skills;
  • cultivation of professional behavior, including moral reasoning and ethical judgment;
  • expansion of medical knowledge to apply both basic and clinical science;
  • utilization of practice-based learning, to diagnose, manage, prevent, and provide continuing care, as well as develop further skills in self-reflection and self-improvement;
  • employ systems-based practice to actively incorporate psychological, social, cultural and economic factors into the practice of medicine;
  • and acquire the attitudes, knowledge and skills required for patient care.

These core competencies guide not only the education of a UMKC medical student, but the selection of those students, as well. The Council on Selection is responsible for selecting students for admission to the following programs:

  • B.A./M.D. Program
  • M.D. Program
  • Oral Surgery/M.D. Program

The Council is also responsible for reviewing candidates for readmission to the UMKC School of Medicine as well as candidates for transfer admission with advanced standing.

The Council on Selection must establish appropriate policies and procedures with regards to the selection of students for medical school. The admissions policies of the Council must guarantee a competitive review process, the individual review of applicants and an open assessment of what the applicant may potentially contribute to the medical community. This process must be applied equally and consistently.

The admissions process must provide a holistic review of all applicants. This review should focus on academic achievements and ability, but should also provide an open review of other talents and experiences that relate to potential success in medical school. It is necessary for the Council to review applicants in terms of their potential academic success in medical school, but also in terms of their potential contribution to the medical school community and to the learning experiences of others around them.

With a limited number of seats available in the incoming class, the Council on Selection faces the challenge of selecting future physicians from numerous applicants with strong combinations of academic performance, aptitudes and abilities. This challenge necessitates clear intentions from the Council.


The students who enter the School of Medicine shall be selected from three residency categories: in-state, regional and out-of-state. In-state students are those who are bona fide residents of the State of Missouri according to the residency rules of the Board of Curators of the University of Missouri. Regional students are those students who are classified as residents of Arkansas, Kansas, Illinois, Nebraska or Oklahoma. Out-of-state students are those students who are classified as residents of states outside of the state of Missouri or the regional states. Students from the State of Missouri will be given priority, with over half of the class selected from in-state applicants. Residency status is determined by the UMKC Office of Admissions.


Only students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States are eligible to be considered for admission.

Competitive Review:

All applications to the School of Medicine are considered equally in the admissions process. All applications are initially screened by members of the Council on Selection. All applications are screened in the same applicant pool, and the screening process determines which students will be offered the opportunity to interview.

Once interviews are complete, all interviewed applicants are reviewed equally by members of the Council on Selection. The Council on Selection considers each applicant individually within the appropriate applicant pool (in-state, regional or out-of-state), and all applicants are reviewed under the same criteria and expectations. Given the number of highly qualified applicants, both the screening and selection process are competitive.

The selection process for the School of Medicine provides an individual review of applicants in both the screening and selection process. It also provides a competitive review of all applicants. It does not adhere to strict requirements or standards, as the review of applicants is holistic. Also, the School of Medicine does not adhere to any quotas when considering and selecting students for admission to the Medical School.

The holistic process: The Council on Selection will utilize a holistic review process – a process that is a flexible and individualized way of assessing applicants. Balanced consideration will be given to the experiences, attributes and metrics as defined by the Council on Selection in alignment with the strategic plan and goals of the School of Medicine. The experiences, attributes and metrics will be considered in combination with how a student might contribute to the School of Medicine and to the profession.

The holistic review process utilized at the School of Medicine is defined by several key concepts:*

1. The criteria for selecting students are broadly based, but linked to the School of Medicine’s mission and goals, specifically promoting diversity as an essential element to achieving a vibrant health science learning community.

2. To evaluate applicants, a balance of experiences, attributes and metrics is used in order to create a diverse applicant pool, interview pool and student body. The use of experiences, attributes and metrics is applied consistently to all applicants when making admissions decisions.

3. In addition to the review of experiences, attributes and metrics, the Council on Selection gives individualized consideration to how each applicant might impact the medical school community and the profession.

4. Metrics of diversity, such as race, ethnicity, or geographic origin, are factors that influence admissions decisions only when aligned with the strategic plan and mission of the School of Medicine and only when considered among the broader mix of experiences, attributes and metrics.**

The review and selection process executed by the Council on Selection evaluates both cognitive and non-cognitive variables. Cognitive variables, such as grade point average, strength of high school curriculum and standardized test scores, are essential in selecting medical students. However, while such cognitive variables are factors in considering applicants, no academic accomplishment of whatever superiority constitutes an entitlement to admission to the UMKC School of Medicine.

Although cognitive variables are considered, it is also important to consider other non-cognitive variables such as passion for medicine, civic or community volunteer experience, and maturity. School of Medicine applicants are evaluated holistically using the following application components:

  • High school or university grade point average
  • Standardized test score
  • High school or university curriculum
  • Personal statement
  • High school or college activities and leadership
  • Health experiences
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Results of the medical school interview
Policy Review:

The admissions policies of the Council on Selection must be reviewed annually by the Council on Selection to ensure fair, equal and consistent evaluation of applicants. Regardless of policy changes, the admission and selection process must remain competitive with individualized and holistic review of applicants.

A Statement of Diversity

The Council on Selection intends to admit a class of students who can contribute to the diversity of the UMKC medical community, as well as to the profession of medicine. The School of Medicine believes that diversity among peers during medical education prepares students to effectively deliver health care within diverse communities upon graduation.

The Council intends to foster diversity through the selection of candidates for admission to medical school. This will include, but not be limited to, admitting students from different racial and ethnic origins, and socioeconomic and academic backgrounds. Students from both rural and urban communities, as well as students who can contribute to the experience of medical education through different personal experiences such as overcoming hardship, demonstrating extensive involvement within the community, possessing multilingual abilities, and/or exhibiting different life experiences that may contribute to achieving diversity.

*Definition and concepts taken from:
Association of American Medical Colleges: Holistic Review Project, 2011.

**Under federal law and as permitted by the State of Missouri
and the University of Missouri-Kansas City.