MBBS in the USA

MBBS in the USA

MBBS in the USA
Ujjwal DhunganaTue Jan 18 2022

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) is considered to be one of the most crucial, challenging yet most rewarding courses around the globe which involves intensive learning as well as hands-on training opportunities. 

In the USA, the MBBS degree is a postgraduate program, unlike some other countries where it is undertaken as a bachelor’s degree.

Every year, more than 40,000 students sign up for entrance preparation to get scholarship opportunities in the top colleges in the US. However, only a limited number of students can crack the opportunity.

There are many universities, who stand themselves in the top-notch depending on their specialization, placement rates, graduation rates, acceptance rates, teaching approaches and so on.

To understand all about MBBS in the US below highlights some important aspects for students considering this jumpstart.

Why study MBBS in the USA?

  • Pursuing an MBBS degree in the USA, the country stands out in terms of its top-notch education system, infrastructures, resources as well as consists of leading institutions in the world.
  • The education system in the US is thriving so high due to its continuous improvement in terms of research and developments, advancement in technology and constant focus on innovation.
  • The degree from the US is globally recognized and students holding this degree are given preferences across the world.
  • Most importantly, students can get to experience multiculturalism, diversity, a healthy lifestyle, and state-of-the-art technologies.

This is why the US is considered the best fit for the students to continue their education with an exceptional experience.

Top Colleges and Universities for MBBS in the USA

The universities in the US stand in an indisputable position with state-of-the-art teaching infrastructures, a comprehensive and updated curriculum, and advanced technologies in terms of medical studies.

Some of the leading medical schools in the US based on 2021's ranking has been presented in the following table. 

College/ University

Ranking in Best Medical Schools

Acceptance rate

Total Tuition Fee

Harvard University




New York University (Grossman)




Duke University




Columbia University




Stanford University




The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)




Johns Hopkins University




University of Washington




University of Pennsylvania (Perelman)




Yale University




Course Duration of MBBS- How many years does it take to study MBBS in the US?

Since MBBS in the US is equivalent to an MD degree, it can be a great opportunity for students to acquire both degrees with a single program, unlike any other MBBS degree. Generally, the admissions take place in the fall and spring sessions. The MBBS academic course lasts for four years along with a residency program of 3-4 consecutive years.

The program is divided into two stages, namely a theoretical stage and a practical stage, with each stage requiring 2 full dedicated years.

  • The theoretical stage in MBBS involves the study of physiology, ethics in medical aspects, anatomy, pathology, and clinical science.
  • The practical stage in MBBS involves clinical rotation, externships.

To qualify for the second stage, students must appear for the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE 1) and opt for USMLE-2 at the end of the second stage. 

How do International Students apply for MBBS in US?

International students applying for MBBS must enrol in a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree for 1.5 years, which is a pre-medical course from an accredited university in the US.

 The BS degree is considered to be a foundation course and can be specialized in chemistry, physics, biology or any other related field. 

However, the duration of the program offered by medical schools may vary, depending on the chosen specialization.

What is Residency Program under MBBS in USA? Duration of Residency Program

  • After 4 years of academic sessions, students can apply for a 3-5 years’ residency program to practice their learnings over the period.
  • During this period, students can get to practice and become an expert in their chosen specialization.
  • After this, students must appear for USMLE-3, which is also recognized as a Licensee Examination, which can allow them to practice as a Doctor in the USA or anywhere in the world.
  • The entire MBBS along with the residency program takes from 7 to 9 years to fully complete the program. 

Admission Process for MBBS in the USA

The admission process for MBBS or MD in the US requires an eligibility check in terms of academic history. 

To apply, students should possess a pre-medical course or BS degree in any medical field, along with a satisfactory Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) Score. 

The following table offers a quick look at the admission requirements and eligibility.



Admission Requirements

  1. MCAT Exam to apply for medical schools in the USA. (MCAT Scores above 510 have higher admission possibility).
  2. Bachelor of Science (BS) in any medical-related field. (1.5 years)
  3. IELTS/TOEFL or any other proof of English Proficiency.

Documents required

  1. Official Transcripts of previous academics.
  2. 2-3 Letters of recommendations.
  3. A clear Statement of Purpose.
  4. Resume.
  5. English version of native-language Transcripts.
  6. Evaluation of transcripts by an accredited agency.

It is to be noted that the international students must secure 6.5 to 7 points in IELTS, and 90 to 100 points in TOEFL. However, some universities can also waive English proficiency tests where students’ native language is English. 

Total cost to study MBBS in the USA

Since the program involves intensive learning and rigorous practice, the tuition fees for MBBS in the US vary from $18000 to $65000.

The total cost is divided into two stages, i.e. BS degree and MD/MBBS Program. The tuition fee for a BS degree varies from $20000 to $50000 per year, whereas the MD/MBBS program can take from $18000 to $64000 per annum.

For international students pursuing MBBS in the US, the living cost generally takes around $15000 per annum, which covers accommodation, food, groceries, transportation, study materials and other miscellaneous expenses. 

MBBS Scholarship Opportunities in the US

Depending on the university, academic history of students and financial need, students can secure themselves for various scholarships in the USA.

 Some external educational agencies facilitate students to waive off some percentage of their tuition fees, which can aid students to complete their program without any financial hurdles.

College/ University

Scholarship and Financial Aid


Harvard University

Harvard Medical School Scholarship

Waiver in Tuition fees

New York University (Grossman)

Federal Scholarship Programs

Full-tuition scholarship and other merit-based scholarships

Duke University

Michael R. Nathan Memorial Fund, The Eva J. Salber Award

Financial support and tuition fee waiver

Columbia University

Vagelos Scholarship

Covers tuition fees along with living costs.

Stanford University

Stanford Institutional Financial Aid

Depends on students’ needs and academic history.

The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)

Various internal and external scholarships are available

Scholarship on the basis of community work and educational research

Johns Hopkins University

Research scholarships and other awards

Need-Based scholarship

University of Washington

SOM scholarship

Need-Based scholarship

University of Pennsylvania (Perelman)

30 full-tuition scholarships annually.

Based on outstanding academic performance and achievement.

Yale University

The Baim scholarship

50% Tuition fee waiver- Based on Financial need and clinical drive.

Placement/Job opportunities and Salary Range after MBBS

After the completion of the MBBS program, the students can jumpstart their career as a physician or surgeons in any specialization of their interest. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Report, the salary of MBBS graduates ranges from $200,000 and above.

Likewise, the job employment rate for physicians and surgeons is expected to increase to approximately 7% by the year 2028.

The salary range along with the specialization is presented in the following table. 

Positions in the Medical field

Average Salary (per annum)

General physician

$211,000 approx.


$267,000 approx.


$238,000 approx.


$220,000 approx.


$255,000 approx.


$183,000 approx.

The careers prospects for medical students seem to be equally promising, rewarding along with higher financial incentives. To be more precise, psychiatrists will be the highly sought-after job, followed by general physicians or practitioners by 2028.

Students can choose to be at private hospitals or government hospitals after the completion of the course. 

Since it is considered to be one of the noblest professions, the academic life of students pursuing MBBS in the US is equally challenging and rigorous. It requires constant dedication and commitment to enrol in the top medical schools in the US.

The four years’ curriculum will be an enriching experience to facilitate students to become exceptional professionals in the world.

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