Difference between studying MD program in Caribbean vs the USA

There are some similarities and some differences when it comes to studying medicine in either the US or the Caribbean. If you are a med school aspirant and want to know what basic differences exist between studying in either of these places, then read this article to know the difference between medical school in the Caribbean vs the US.

1. Evaluation of medical school application

Most medical schools in the US and the Caribbean have similar prerequisites from the students. Each student is required to fill out applications and go through different processes of evaluations to be considered for admission as a medical school student. Due to the high competition in this field, medical schools in the United States depend on MCAT (Medical College Admission Test) and GPA grades to evaluate candidates. In the US, the rules are quite definitive and clear while it is not the case for Caribbean medical schools. Schools in the Caribbean use a more comprehensive lens while considering students – such as a student’s entire background, volunteer or job experiences, life experiences, association with the medical profession, extracurricular and more. 

2. Date of admission

Most medical schools in the Caribbean accept admissions of studies two to three times per year, usually in the months of January and August. This is different in the case of medical schools in the US as they allow only one entry every year, during the Fall. If you do not get acceptance the very first time of application, you cannot reapply until one year has passed. This is different for Caribbean medical schools. You are usually needed to get off the waitlist to be considered for admission. 

3. Interview in-person

An invitation for an interview arrives after a medical school has reviewed your application. For most students, attending an in-person interview is easier in the US than in the Caribbean. However, keeping that in mind, most med schools today offer virtual tours to the students. Once accepted as a student, students can attend events and be part of important groups on Facebook. The interviews have been virtual ever since the start of the pandemic keeping into consideration all the necessary protocols.

4. Cultural experience 

Going to a medical school is attainment and experience and while you can reside in another part of the country with US med schools, attending a Caribbean school come with a more multicultural perspective and offers a unique opportunity for cultural learning which will be unattained if the training and practice are both done in the US. If cultural experiences are important to you then you might consider studying medicine outside of the US. 

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