Medical Schools In California: Stats & Info (Full List)

Medical schools in California are some of the most popular in the country. They’re well-respected and located in a very appealing state, quite the combination!

In this resource, you’ll find an overview of each California medical school in addition to crucial application stats you’ll need to know. This will help you see where you stack up when it comes to your ideal school and plan your next move.

California Northstate University College of Medicine

  • Location: Elk Grove, CA
  • GPA: 3.67
  • MCAT: 512
  • Tuition: $59,231
  • Public/Private: Private

Located in Elk Grove, California, CNUCOM offers a four-year MD program. The school is focused on providing a practical education. The curriculum covers the foundations of clinical medicine while also presenting students with real-world examples to gain relevant experience.

As a student at the California Northstate University College of Medicine, you will be exposed to clinical presentations. Throughout the courses, the medical issues within the presentations are explored even deeper. Educators teach students how to think critically while using the scientific rationale to solve problems.

The unique thing about CNUCOM is that education goes beyond clinical observation or thought exercises. Weekly simulations allow you to tackle cases head-on and prepare for your careers ahead.

Clinical clerkships are also available. During this time, you work closely with licensed health practitioners to gain real-world experience. Not only will you see procedures being performed, but you are given the chance to interact with real patients.

California Northstate University College of Medicine has a relatively small student population. Thus, students can learn in a smaller classroom setting and receive personalized assistance from educators.

California University of Science and Medicine – School of Medicine

  • Location: San Bernardino, CA
  • GPA: 3.65
  • MCAT: 512
  • Tuition: $58,500
  • Public/Private: Private

The California University of Science and Medicine was first established in 2018. The goal of the medical school is to not just educate future physicians but to work with research organizations. It’s a research institute that focuses on advancing the art of medicine while improving the health of the community.

The school was initially formed to address a lack of healthcare professionals in the “Inland Empire” area of California. The San Bernadino and Riverside communities have a shortage of physicians. As a result, residents of those areas also experience health issues at a higher rate than the rest of the state.

The California University of Science and Medicine was created to address those health disparities and inspire a new generation of physicians. After receiving preliminary accreditation, the school accepted its first students in 2018. The institute offers both an MD program and a post-baccalaureate MBD program.

Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine

  • Location: Pasadena, CA
  • GPA: N/A
  • MCAT: N/A
  • Tuition: N/A
  • Public/Private: Private

The Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine is a new institution that focuses on small-group learning and cutting-edge technology. The school was first announced back in 2015. Since then, it has received preliminary accreditation by the Liasion Committee on Medical Education. The first group of students will be accepted in 2020.

As a student at this school, you will be a part of a small class. This medical school in California is committed to providing concentrated support for all students enrolled in the program.

From a technology standpoint, the Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine aims to be one of the most advanced schools around. Innovative training facilities, such as a simulation center and anatomy resource center, will be taken advantage of during your training.

The school will also provide you with hands-on education from the beginning. While most schools wait until the end of the program to start clinical clerkships, students at Kaiser Permanente will join a clinical care team during their first year of education. This helps to build important practical, social, and problem-solving skills early on while also building the foundation of your medical skills.

Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • GPA: 3.77
  • MCAT: 516
  • Tuition: $63,844
  • Public/Private: Private

Located in sunny Los Angeles, the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California offers several degree programs for prospective students. Beyond the traditional MD, the school also has a bevy of combination degrees, master’s programs, and doctoral degrees. Many research programs are available as well.

The Keck School of Medicine was established in 1885, making it one of the oldest healthcare educational institutions in the state of California. Throughout its long history, the school has produced thousands of accomplished professionals that have gone on to make strides in the world of medicine.

When you enroll at the Keck School of Medicine, your education goes beyond the confines of a classroom. Students are given the opportunity to interact with patients and learn alongside professionals fro the beginning. Thanks to the diverse population of the area, you will learn to solve a wide range of medical problems and work with patients from all backgrounds.

Loma Linda University School of Medicine

  • Location: Loma Linda, CA
  • GPA: 3.88
  • MCAT: 509
  • Tuition: $57,980
  • Public/Private: Private

The Loma Linda University School of Medicine is a long-standing medical school with a rich history. Originally founded in 1901, the school officially opened its doors in 1909. It was established by the Seventh-Day Adventist church.

Even today, the school continues to provide medical training and clinical education with a focus on Christian service. This Christian-based education provides opportunities for you to improve the community. The school even has an International Mission Service to deliver medical services to low-income patients who wouldn’t normally have access to healthcare.

Students begin their education at the Loma Linda University School of Medicine studying science-based curriculum. The core foundations of medicine are covered within the first two years. Ethics, human behavior, and religious topics are also covered to give you the tools you need to provide preventative care to your future patients.

During the final two years of your education, you will go through clinical rotations. Rotations cover a wide range of practices, allowing you to further hone your future path in medicine.

Stanford University School of Medicine

  • Location: Stanford, CA
  • GPA: 3.93
  • MCAT: 520
  • Tuition: $59,271
  • Public/Private: Private

The Stanford University School of Medicine is one of the leading research institutions in the country. It was founded back in 1908. However, the roots of the school reach back to 1855, when it was known as Cooper Medical College.

In the years since it was founded, the Stanford University School of Medicine has gained a solid reputation as being a leader in the biomedical field. In addition to providing budding physicians with the education they need to succeed in professional medicine, this California medical school continues to push the boundaries in terms of research.

Students here are taught to think critically. The ongoing research at the institution promotes innovation and novel treatment methods.

When you’re enrolled at the Stanford University School of Medicine, your time will not be spent in a lecture hall. The school follows a “flipped classroom” approach. Educators work collaboratively with students and provide plenty of opportunities for hands-on learning.

University of California, Davis, School of Medicine

  • Location: Sacramento, CA
  • GPA: 3.79
  • MCAT: 513
  • Tuition: $40,550 in-state, $52,795 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

As one of six medical schools under the University of California, the Davis School of Medicine offers a hands-on approach to your education. The school is located in Sacramento and works alongside the University of California Davis Medical Center. In fact, lecture halls and classrooms are located directly across the street from the medical center.

This close proximity to the research hospital provides ample opportunity for clinical studies. You can work with patients early on to develop real-world experience.

The school also focuses heavily on societal issues that plague the medical world. Educators work to help you develop strong communication skills, understand ethical dilemmas, learn clinical reasoning, and much more. These skills can help you become a well-rounded medical professional who can serve your patients and community.

The University of California Davis Medical Center offers several programs. In addition to the MD, the school has research programs, dual-degree programs, and professional development services to continue your education after you graduate.

University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine

  • Location: Irvine, CA
  • GPA: 3.84
  • MCAT: 516
  • Tuition: $35,928 in-state, $48,173 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

The University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine has 25 departments to provide you with comprehensive education and medical training. 19 of those departments are clinical. The school serves over 400 students and more than 700 residents.

This school is a research institution as well. Throughout your education, you will be exposed to the latest innovations and technology that will shape the future of healthcare. This access to research can prove to be helpful during and after your education.

To provide you with hands-on education, the school works with several facilities. The primary clinical facility is the University of California Irvine Medical Center. The medical center is a teaching and research hospital that gives you the chance to work with patients directly and shadow working healthcare professionals.

In addition to the traditional medical degree, UC Irvine School of Medicine dual-degree programs and masters programs. There are also a few mission-based programs.

University of California, Los Angeles David Geffen School of Medicine

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • GPA: 3.88
  • MCAT: 518
  • Tuition: $36,752 in-state, $48,997 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine is a medical education and research institute that’s located in Los Angeles. Originally, the school was started by the University of California to have a medical presence in the southern part of the state. Eventually, the school grew to become a renowned research institute across the globe.

The school focuses heavily on research in the fields of medicine and biomedical science. As a student here, you’ll be pushed to think outside of the box while using the foundations of medical science to solve problems. The research scientists are continually working to create innovations that could benefit patients.

Students are given plenty of opportunities to gain experience. Not only does the school have advanced facilities, such as the UCLA Brain Mapping Center, but students can gain clinical experience through the UCLA medical center.

The school is named after the media mogul David Geffen, who endowed $200 million in unrestricted funds. This allowed the institute to flourish and compete with some of the biggest medical facilities in the world.

University of California, Riverside School of Medicine

  • Location: Riverside, CA
  • GPA: 3.73
  • MCAT: 511
  • Tuition: $36,493 in-state, $48,738 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

The University of California, Riverside, School of Medicine is one of the newest University of California medical schools. The school opened its doors in 2008, with enrollment starting in 2013.

Before the school was founded, UC Riverside provided early medical education to students. Budding medical students could complete the first two years of their education in Riverside before completing clinicals at UCLA. After UC Riverside School of Medicine was launched, small classes could finish their education there.

Currently, the school offers small class sizes and intimate education in a single building. The School of Medicine Education Building houses a simulation laboratory, patient examination rooms, and a large lecture hall.

Of course, your education isn’t going to be limited to that building. Research and lab sites are located throughout the UC Riverside campus. Plus, clinical clerkships to provide real-world experience can be performed at medical facilities throughout the Riverside community.

University of California, San Diego School of Medicine

  • Location: La Jolla, CA
  • GPA: 3.84
  • MCAT: 517
  • Tuition: $35,951 in-state $48,196 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

Located in San La Jolla, California, the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine is the only medical school within the San Diego area. It’s a research and educational institutions that puts innovation at the forefront.

One of the school’s biggest claims to fame is translational research. The institute performs clinical trials every day to provide new treatment options for patients. Researchers utilize a patient-focused approach to provide customized care while developing new drugs and healthcare technology.

As a student at UC San Diego School of Medicine, you can get a front seat to this unique research method. Students also have the opportunity to learn about these breakthroughs to support their education.

During clinicals, you will work at one of the many facilities that the school has close ties with. For clinical experience and patient interaction, you can shadow healthcare professionals at UC San Diego Health.

University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine

  • Location: San Francisco, CA
  • GPA: 3.88
  • MCAT: 518
  • Tuition: $35,384 in-state, $47,630 out-of-state
  • Public/Private: Public

The University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine was founded in 1864. Back then, it was known as Toland Medical College. However, after less than a decade, Toland Medical College joined the University of California.

Throughout its long history, UCSF School of Medicine has spawned a long list of accomplished alumni. Many of the faculty members educating students at the school have experience treating patients throughout the state of California.

The school is relatively small, accepting only 155 new MD students in 2019. However, the facilities students have access to during their education is anything but small. As a student, you can gain experience in 28 different departments.

These departments cover a broad range of specialties, including medical research. In fact, the school has 8 organized research centers and 6 interdisciplinary research centers.

UCSF School of Medicine offers a wide range of programs. There are also programs to continue your education after graduation.

Osteopathic Medical Schools

The medical schools in California below teach osteopathic medicine. Because of this, we separate them from the rest of the list for the sake of clarity. California has some great schools that focus on this discipline.

California Health Sciences University

  • Location: Clovis, CA
  • GPA: N/A
  • MCAT: N/A
  • Tuition: N/A
  • Public/Private: Private

California Health Sciences University is a new school that is rapidly growing. It was first started in 2012. The institute’s goal is to provide high-quality education to future healthcare professionals while addressing a shortage of medical services offered in the valley.

Currently, the main campus of the school is located in Clovis California. However, the California Health Sciences University has plans to expand. A new 80-acre campus located near the Clovis Community Medical Center is planned to open in 2020. This expansion provides more labs, classrooms, and an Osteopathic Medicine facility for students to use.

Currently, CHSU offers two four-year programs for prospective students. These include a PharmD program and a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, or DO, program.

Thanks to the close proximity of the Clovis Community Medical Center, medical students will have the opportunity to complete clinicals locally. They can work alongside seasoned healthcare professionals to hone their skills and become a better physician.

Touro University of California

  • Location: Vallejo, CA
  • GPA: 3.52
  • MCAT: 507
  • Tuition: $55,000
  • Public/Private: Private

Located on Mare Island in Vallejo, California, Touro University of California is a post-graduate school that offers several programs. All of the degree programs center around Health Sciences and Public Health. Some of the programs available include osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, nursing, and more.

As a student here, you will benefit from student-focused education. The school is committed to providing an education that respects individual merits while promoting collaboration among the student community.

Touro University of California was first started in 1997. It’s a Jewish-sponsored institution that was originally established to enrich the Jewish heritage. While Jewish sponsorship continues, the school has a population that encompasses students from diverse backgrounds.

Western University of Health Sciences

  • Location: Pomona, CA
  • GPA: 3.63
  • MCAT: 506
  • Tuition: $56,000
  • Public/Private: Private

Western University of Health Science is a medical school in California that’s focused primarily on the principles of osteopathic medicine.

As a student at Western University of Health Science, you will be taught the guiding principles of osteopathic medicine as well as in-depth medical curriculum. The school teaches you how to work with patients to develop long-term plans to keep them healthy.

The thing that sets osteopathic medicine apart is the concept of overall wellness. To keep the body healthy and stave off disease, patients must keep the entire body in good shape. At this school, your education will encompass these principles, helping you become a patient-focused physician.

The school was first started in 1977 as the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific. It became known as the Western University of Health Science in 1996. Currently, the school is one of the largest graduate schools in California and offers 21 different programs.

What’s Next?

Now that you’ve had a look at the landscape of medical schools in California it’s time to start thinking about the application process. The included stats should prove useful for finding schools that are realistic.

If your ideal school seems a little out of reach, don’t worry! There are things you can do to overcome this. Getting some help on the application and MCAT are both options (depending on what you need) that can be a game-changer.

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