Post-Baccalaureate Linkage Program FAQs

Considering a Linkage Program?

If you think you may be interested in a linkage program, here are a few things to consider before making plans. A linkage can be an excellent way to save time and take advantage of a streamlined application process. However, a linkage isn’t necessarily a good fit for every student.

What is your timeline to apply to medical school?

Linkages are best suited to students who plan a two-year post-baccalaureate program. We must see a year of academic performance here at Washington University in St. Louis to be able to recommend a student to a linkage. Linkages are also binding, meaning that a student who pursues a linkage may only apply to that one medical school in that application year. Because of this, some students who may only need a year to be ready for application would be better served by applying broadly rather than focusing on a single linkage opportunity.

What is your prior academic background?

Applicants often ask if our linkage programs are open to both career changers and enhancement students. The answer is yes, but every applicant must meet the GPA requirements of the linkage program to which they are applying. The Case Western linkage specifies an overall GPA requirement (3.6) that is calculated by combining the student’s undergraduate and post-baccalaureate course work. Some students may begin their post-baccalaureate work with an undergraduate GPA that is sufficiently below this requirement that it would be difficult or impossible to reach in the time allotted for the program. The University of Michigan linkage does not specify a combined GPA; rather it requires a 3.2 GPA in undergraduate work completed before entering a post-baccalaureate program.

Is one of our partner medical schools a good fit for you?

It is important to investigate the medical school you are interested in to determine whether it would be the right place for you to begin your career in medicine. Consider what kind of environment and opportunities you’re looking for, and weigh that with what you know about the linkage school. Do you have experience that they would value and appreciate? Would you be likely to meet other like-minded student there? Are they training the kinds of physicians that you aspire to be one day?

When should you decide?

You’ll need to get settled in the post-baccalaureate program and establish a good record here before making firm plans, but we suggest you speak with your academic advisor early on about your interest in a linkage. Typically, students who plan to apply for the linkage will visit the medical campus in the summer or fall of their second year, prior to application. This allows prospective applicants a chance to tour the campus, meet current students, and get a good feel for both the culture and curriculum.

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine Linkage Criteria

  • This linkage does not require applicants to take the MCAT exam. In fact, students who have taken the MCAT previously are not eligible to apply to the linkage program with CWRU.
  • An overall GPA of 3.6 or better and post-baccalaureate program GPA of 3.8 or better are required.
  • Any grade below a B in a math or science course (whether in undergraduate or post-baccalaureate work) will disqualify a student from this linkage program.
  • Any grade of D or F in any course (whether in undergraduate or post-baccalaureate work) will disqualify a student from this linkage program.

Learn more about our linkage program with Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine.

University of Michigan Medical School Linkage Criteria

  • An undergraduate GPA of 3.2 or better and Post-Baccalaureate program GPA of 3.7 or better are required.
  • Any grade below a C in a math or science course (whether in undergraduate or post-baccalaureate work) most likely will disqualify a student from this linkage program.
  • Any grade of D or F in any course (whether in undergraduate or post-baccalaureate work) will disqualify a student from this linkage program.

Learn more about our linkage program with University of Michigan Medical School.