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Guide to the Cost of Medical School

Guide to the Cost of Medical School
Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman
Sulaiman Abdur-RahmanUpdated June 24, 2022
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Editor’s note: Lantern by SoFi seeks to provide content that is objective, independent and accurate. Writers are separate from our business operation and do not receive direct compensation from advertisers or partners. Read more about our Editorial Guidelines and How We Make Money.
Editor’s Note: Since the writing of this article, the Biden administration has extended the pause on federal student loan repayment through Dec. 31, 2022. The typical medical school cost in the United States is tens of thousands of dollars per year. The annual cost of medical school can exceed $100,000 for some students. The cost of medical school may include tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, transportation expenses, and medical insurance.The annual cost of attending medical school can vary based on a student’s year of study and whether the student is a resident or nonresident. Medical schools may accept students from different states and countries, but out-of-state residents attending public medical schools generally pay higher tuition costs than in-state residents.Medical schools can be public or private, and private med schools, on average, cost more than public schools. The average cost of attending private medical school stood at $61,023 for residents and $62,539 for nonresidents as of March 2022, according to the nonprofit Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The United States hosts some of the most prestigious medical schools in the world. Below we highlight some of those schools and their annual costs of attendance.

Medical School Tuition Cost

As mentioned above, the cost of medical school may include tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, transportation expenses, and medical insurance. Tuition alone can cost tens of thousands of dollars per year, while some medical schools have tuition-free programs.Below we highlight medical school tuition costs, according to AAMC data:

Private Medical School

  • Private medical school tuition can range from $0 to $68,788 per year for some students
  • The average cost of tuition at U.S. private medical schools is $55,399 for residents and $56,868 for nonresidents in their first year of study

Public Medical School

  • Public medical school tuition can range from $0 to $87,150 per year for some students
  • The average cost of tuition at U.S. public medical schools is $33,384 for residents and $56,136 for nonresidents in their first year of study

Resident

  • The average cost of public medical school tuition for in-state residents is $33,384 
  • The average cost of private medical school tuition for in-state residents is $55,399

Nonresident

  • The average cost of public medical school tuition for out-of-state residents is $56,136
  • The average cost of private medical school tuition for out-of-state residents is $56,868
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine total cost by year and residency statusUniversity of Michigan Medical School total cost by year and residency statusUniversity of Washington School of Medicine (Seattle) total cost by year and residency statusAverage used car loan rate
Resident year 1 (MS1): $87,750Resident year 1 (Scientific Trunk): $71,785Resident year 1 (MS1): $89,623undefined
Nonresident year 1 (MS1): $90,052Nonresident year 1 (Scientific Trunk): $90,700Nonresident year 1 (MS1): $130,507undefined
Resident year 2 (MS2): $89,746Resident year 2 (Clinical Trunk): $76,254Resident year 2 (MS2): $81,720undefined
Nonresident Year 2 (MS2): $92,048Nonresident year 2 (Clinical Trunk): $95,169Nonresident year 2 (MS2): $116,742undefined
Resident year 3 (MS3): $95,198Resident year 3 (M3 Branch): $73,695Resident year 3 (MS3): $89,394undefined
Nonresident year 3 (MS3): $97,500Nonresident year 3 (M3 Branch): $92,610Nonresident year 3 (MS3): $130,278undefined
Resident year 4 (MS4): $90,388Resident year 4 (M4 Branch): $49,162Resident year 4 (MS4): $88,749undefined
Nonresident year 4 (MS4): $92,690Nonresident year 4 (M4 Branch): $62,024Nonresident year 4 (MS4): $129,633undefined

Average Cost of the Top 10 Medical Schools in the US

The annual cost of attending medical school can vary based upon a student’s year of study and whether the student is a resident or nonresident.Here are the top 10 medical schools in the United States based upon their research performance in medicine as of May 2022, according to EduRank:
SchoolAnnual cost of attendance (first-year students)Annual cost range (all students)
1. Harvard Medical School$101,218 (pathways)$100,466–$107,050
2. Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science (Alix School of Medicine)$99,396$99,396+
3. Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine$93,043$88,382–$98,137
4. University of California San Francisco School of Medicine$55,878 (nonresident)$43,633–$55,878
5. University of Washington School of Medicine$130,507 (nonresident)$81,720–$130,507
6. University of Michigan Medical School$90,700 (nonresident)$49,162–$95,169
7. Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania$98,783$96,234–$105,281
8. University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine$90,052 (nonresident)$87,750–$97,500
9. UCLA School of Medicine$86,304 (California resident)$65,170–$98,549
10. Stanford University School of Medicine$137,888 (four quarters)$137,888–$145,468

Most Expensive Medical Schools in the US

The following schools have some of the highest medical school tuition costs in the United States:
  • Stanford University School of Medicine: The Stanford School of Medicine’s tuition for the 2022–23 school year is $84,996 for students enrolling in the autumn, winter, spring, and summer quarters. That amounts to $21,249 per quarter. 
  • Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania: Penn Medicine’s tuition and fees for the 2022–23 school year is $69,263.
  • Harvard Medical School: Harvard’s tuition for the 2022–23 school year is $67,610 for most of its med school students, and mandatory fees range from $1,376 to $1,901 depending on year of study.

Other Costs of Medical School

Below, we highlight some of the additional costs of medical school outside of tuition: 

Room and Board

Room and board refers to on-campus living expenses. It typically includes the cost of rent and food. Room and board at Stanford Medicine for the 2022–23 school year is $40,940 for rent, food, and personal on-campus expenses for students enrolled in the autumn, winter, spring, and summer quarters. That amounts to $10,235 per quarter.

Books and Supplies

Students have to buy specific books and supplies during the course of their studies. Books and supplies at Stanford Medicine for the 2022–23 school year is $2,000 for students enrolled in the autumn, winter, spring, and summer quarters. That amounts to $500 per quarter.

Fees

Fees can include any mandatory expenses an enrolled student has to pay outside of tuition. The campus health services fee at Stanford Medicine for the 2022–23 school year is $241 per quarter.

Average Total Cost of Medical School

The average total cost of public medical school in terms of tuition, fees, and health insurance is $38,947 for in-state residents and $62,505 for nonresidents as of March 2022, according to AAMC data.The average total cost of private medical school in terms of tuition, fees, and health insurance is $61,023 for residents and $62,539 for nonresidents as of March 2022, AAMC data show.

Strategies for Paying for Med School

Consider the following strategies for paying for med school: 

Medical School Student Loans

Banks and other financial institutions may offer private student loans to help you pay for med school. Students may also be eligible for federal student loans. The difference between private and federal student loans is that federal student loans are provided exclusively by the U.S. Department of Education. Banks, credit unions, online lenders, and select state-based or state-affiliated organizations may offer private student loans.

Financial Aid

Most U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens are eligible for financial aid for college, including medical school, according to Federal Student Aid, an office of the U.S. Department of Education.You may apply for financial assistance under the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, better known as the FAFSA® form. The way how FAFSA works is you complete and submit the FAFSA form to apply for federal student aid options, including federal student loans. Med school students may be eligible to receive federal student loans and school aid.

Scholarships for Medical School

Nonprofit and private organizations may offer medical school scholarships to help students pay for med school. Some organizations may award scholarships based upon academic merit. Medical schools may offer scholarships on the basis of financial need or academic merit.

Refinancing Undergraduate Student Loans

Refinancing undergraduate student loans in some cases may lower your monthly payment and save you money over the life of your loan. Minimizing the cost of your undergraduate loans may help you pay some of the costs of going to med school. Borrowers may refinance federal student loans with a private lender. This will cause you to forfeit your federal student loan benefits.

Student Loan Refinancing Rates

Med school student loans can be federal or private, and borrowers may refinance both. Refinancing federal student loans can allow borrowers to replace their existing federal loans with the terms and conditions of a private loan agreement. Private lenders can set their own underwriting standards, but some may require applicants to have steady income and good credit. For subprime borrowers, it might be difficult to refinance student loans with bad credit.To refinance your student loans, you may submit a student loan refinancing application with a private lender and see whether you qualify.You can review refinancing a student loan pros and cons before submitting any refi applications. You may get a lower interest rate (pro) while losing federal benefits (con) if you refinance federal student loans. Reviewing the pros and cons can help you decide whether refinancing is right for you.One of the advantages of refinancing student loans is it may provide you with a lower interest rate. One of the big disadvantages of refinancing student loans with a private lender, however, is you’ll be forfeiting federal benefits, including income-driven repayment plans and federal student loan forgiveness programs.Your personal circumstances may dictate whether student loan refinancing is right for you. Some may ask, how long does it take to pay off student loans? It can take borrowers between 10 to 30 years to pay off federal student loans and five to 25 years to pay off private student loans.Some borrowers may never finish repaying a student loan during their lifetime. What happens to student loans when you die is the debt might be discharged, although some private lenders may demand repayment from your estate.The federal government in March 2020 suspended student loan payments in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. After a number of extensions, the moratorium on student loan payments is scheduled to be lifted on August 31, 2022. Borrowers can make more than the minimum payment when paying off a student loan.Student loan refinancing might be right for you if you can lock in a lower interest rate. Average student loan interest rates among all existing borrowers as of April 2022 stood at 5.8%, according to the Education Data Initiative.If you’re burdened with education loan debt and are interested in student loan refinance opportunities, Lantern by SoFi can help. Explore your options today and consider applying with a lender of your choice.Find and compare student loan refinance options with Lantern.

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About the Author

Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman

Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman

Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman writes about personal loans, auto loans, student loans, and other personal finance topics for Lantern. He’s the recipient of more than 10 journalism awards and currently serves as a New Jersey Society of Professional Journalists board member. An alumnus of the Philadelphia-based Temple University, Abdur-Rahman is a strong advocate of the First Amendment and freedom of speech.
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