Resources for Applying to Professional School

Please review the sections below to find flyers and other helpful information to guide you through the application process.

Who Does What?

As an applicant, you need to be aware of what the committee responsibilities are and what your responsibilities are.The committee receives and submits letters of evaluation to all medical/dental schools on behalf of all committee applicants. The applicant must request official transcripts from each college or university attended. Review the drop down menus below and read the Frequently Asked Questions section for further information on your responsibilities as an applicant.

  • Collects and submits letters of evaluation to the professional schools on student's behalf
  • Writes a committee evaluation letter and submits it to professional schools on student's behalf
  • Forwards copies of ALL letters of evaluation received AND the letter from the committee electronically via AADSAS/AMCAS/etc. to the appropriate professional school

  • Submit all necessary materials to the LSU Committee by the deadline dates.
  • Take appropriate admissions test by committee deadline.
  • Complete online application for prospective professional school (AMCAS/ACOMAS/AADSAS/TMDSAS/OPTOMCAS) and submit by the deadline dates set at each school.
  • Release information to your premedical advisor to allow them to see your application information. If you choose not to do this, provide an email of your letter ID information to
  • Send Official Transcripts from the Registrar's office of each college attended to the appropriate application service(s). Most application services have a transcript request form which can be downloaded and turned in to the Registrar's office at each university.
  • Submit all secondary applications received from individual professional school(s) by the deadline date established by each school.
  • Notify the committee ( in writing of changes to your application, including new test scores, additional schools to which you are applying, etc.
  • Inform the committee in writing if you decide not to complete the application for admission or if you decide to apply on your own without a committee evaluation. You will be reviewed unless you inform us in writing, and this will count as your one time review opportunity.

Basic Steps in Applying to Medical School

Students should check with individual professional schools to obtain specific admission requirements, however the following courses are typical core course requirements for most medical/dental schools in the United States:

8 semester hours of biological sciences with labs (BIOL 1201/1208, 1202/1209)

LSU Medical School-Shreveport requires 12 semester hours of Biological Sciences, 12 semester hours of Chemistry, including 1 semester of Biochemistry, and 12 semester hours of humanities. The LSU medical schools in New Orleans also requires one semester of biochemistry. The recommended course at LSU is BIOL 4087. Please keep in mind that genetics (BIOL 2153) is a prerequisite for this biochemistry course. The LSU Medical school in New Orleans also requires a course in statistics (EXST 2201 is the typical course at LSU). They will accept Calculus II in place of statistics for students who are in a major which requires two semesters of calculus (i.e. biochemistry, chemistry, engineering, etc.). The LSU Dental School requires Microbiology (BIOL 2051) and Biochemistry (BIOL 4087).

8 semester hours of general chemistry with labs (CHEM 1201, 1202 & 1212 lab)

8 semester hours of organic chemistry with labs (CHEM 2261, 2262 & 2364 lab)

8 semester hours of Physics with labs (Any 8 hours of Physics, including the new sequence for Engineering and Physics majors)

6-9 hours of English

A minimum of 90 hours is required to enter medical/dental schools, however admission is highly competitive and the vast majority of accepted students have completed undergraduate degrees at the time of matriculation to medical/dental school

In order to be eligible to use the LSU Review Committee, the admission test must be taken at least once by the posted deadline. The Medical College Admission Test is given on 30 dates ranging from January to September each year. Seating for each test date is limited. You are encouraged to reserve your space for testing as early as possible for the spring dates. Information about the MCAT, including testing dates and content information may be obtained here. The Dental Admission Test (DAT) and Optometry Admission Test (OAT) are given on most days throughout the year. Information on the DAT is available here. OAT information may be found here.

The LSU Premedical/Predental Review Committee is composed of faculty members and premedical counselors who write letters of evaluation for LSU students applying to medical/dental school. While use of the committee is not required, most professional schools strongly encourage applicants to use the committee at their university. Informational meetings about the committee and the application process are held each November for students who will be applying the following year.

AMCAS is a national application service for allopathic medical schools in the United States. Information about this service may be obtained from

AACOMAS is the national application service for osteopathic medical schools in the United States. Information about this service may be obtained from

AADSAS is the national application service for dental schools and information is available from

TMDSAS is the application for Texas Medical and Dental schools. Information is available at Please note that Baylor University School of Medicine participates in the AMCAS application and not the state application for Texas. Dental school applicants who are Texas resident and plan to apply to dental schools in Texas, must complete the TMDSAS application. Non-Texas residents may apply to the Texas dental schools using the AADSAS application.

OPTOMCAS is the national application service for optometry schools and is available at

AACPMAS is the national application service for podiatry schools and is available at

Early Decision Applications

Some professional schools have an "Early Decision Program" (EDP) for applicants. This program is an agreement between the medical school and the applicant that an acceptance decision will be made "early," and the student is notified of the decision no later than October 1 of the application year.

The online application and all documents must be submitted to the admissions office of the selected professional school by August 1 of the application year. Applicants may only apply to the one school to which they are seeking early acceptance until October 1 of the application year, or until they have been denied acceptance through the EDP process. Generally, students who are accepted through an EDP program are very strong candidates who exceed the averages of the overall acceptance class, or applicants who have special circumstances that make attendance at one school a necessity.

The LSU Premedical/Predental Review Committee only guarantees that the LSU committee packet will be submitted by the EDP deadline date if you have submitted your committee application packet and we have received your two required letters AND you have taken the MCAT by the early decision deadline. (Test scores must be uploaded to the committee website immediately upon released). 

The committee cannot review you until we have received your MCAT score. Given that it takes a minimum of 30 days to receive the scores, April 30 is the latest testing date that allows us to guarantee you that we can have your letters submitted by the August 1 deadline in place at most schools. If you are applying EDP and have not submitted all your materials/scores by the deadlines above, we will make every effort to meet the August 1 deadline, but we cannot guarantee this.

Please use this link for more information regarding the Early Decision program, including its advantages and disadvantages.

Writing Your Personal Statement

Each application service sets its own character limit for the personal statement. It is imperative that you do not exceed this limit.

You want to be as concise as possible, while allowing the admissions personnel to have a sense of your motivation for medicine/dentistry and the personal characteristics that make you suitable for the field.

Character limits for each application service:

  • AMCAS: 5300 characters
  • AACOMAS: 5300 characters
  • TMDSAS: 5000 characters
  • AADSAS: 4500 characters
  • AACPMAS: 4500 characters
  • OPTOMCAS: 4500 characters

Please note that these are "CHARACTER" limits and not word limits. Characters include spaces, punctuation marks, etc.

This link contains tips on composing your personal statement. The LSU Olinde Career Center provides assistance with writing a personal statement for graduate and professional schools including individual appointments for critiques. Visit their website for information about dates for these presentations.

Obtaining Letters of Evaluation

Letters of evaluation from faculty members are among the most important aspects of your application. Deans of Admission place heavy emphasis on the comments of the people who have taught you in the classroom. The choice of evaluators is extremely important. You should give serious thought to whom you select to provide evaluations. While the LSU committee will accept letters from faculty from any discipline, medical/dental schools strongly prefer that you include evaluations from faculty members who have taught you in science courses, preferably upper-level courses. You must have a minimum of two letters from faculty/research mentors at LSU (this includes Pennington, the School of Veterinary Medicine, Agricultural Research Center, etc.). You cannot submit a letter from a lab instructor; it must be from the instructor of the lecture course.

Well before the Committee's registration deadline, you must contact the faculty members that you plan to ask to write letters of evaluation and be prepared to meet with them to discuss the request, providing them with your coursework, GPA, and resume information. You should not list a letter writer on your registration form until they have agreed to write you a letter. When meeting with the faculty member, you must make sure you obtain their preferred email address, as they will use that address to log in to upload your letter. Be sure to make the evaluator aware of the letter receipt deadline that is applicable for you, and ask them to submit your letter as early as possible, since students are placed in rounds to be reviewed based on the date/time of all materials received, including letters.

Documenting your letters on the application services

Each application service (AMCAS, AADSAS, AACOMAS, TMDSAS, etc.) will have a section where you will list the letters that you will be submitting as a part of your professional school application. Please read the instructions for the letters of evaluation section carefully. Some applications require that you "attach" the letter to each professional school to which you are applying. So be very careful to follow the instructions precisely.

The application services (AACOMAS/AADSAS/OPTOMCAS) use a common letter collection service to collect letters for the participating professional schools. The LSU Review Committee uploads the Committee Letter directly to this service via an electronic link that is sent once you complete the Letters of Evaluation section of the application. The letters are then attached to your application (AMCAS/AADSAS/AACOMAS/OPTOMCAS) and made available to each school to which you applied. The letters are processed and available for download at the admissions offices of the professionals schools typically within 24 hours.

Here are the steps for listing your LSU Committee letter on the Professional School Application Services

  1. When completing the "Colleges Attended" section of your professional school application (AMCAS/AADSAS/AACOMAS, etc.), you are asked if you wish to authorize the application service to release information to the premedical advisor at your undergraduate institution. It is very important that you select "YES" to this prompt. This provides the committee with the ability to access identification numbers and letter matching ID numbers that we must have to upload your letter. Not answering "YES" to the prompt to share information with the advisor at your undergraduate institution may postpone the submission of your committee letter. You attend Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College. Please be sure to choose Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College as your institution and not another listed LSU designation.
  2. In the Letters of Evaluation Section of the application, select the option for "Committee Letter" as the type of letter. This may be referred to in slightly different ways depending on the application service. DO NOT select letter packet or individual letter.
  3. Enter the Following information as "Primary Author/Contact for the Committee letter:

    Mr. Robby Bowen
    College of Science
    124 Hatcher Hall
    Baton Rouge, LA 70803

    This one entry will cover all the letters that were submitted to the LSU Review Committee as a part of your application. You do not need to list the individual faculty letters or optional letters that were sent to the LSU Committee. Please do not submit the review committee email address. That address is for questions and assistance with the committee application only.
  4. If you are submitting additional letters that WERE NOT sent to the LSU Committee, you will select "Individual Letter" as the type and enter the contact information for each letter writer. Each application will have a limit to the number of individual letters that you can submit.
  5. For medical applicants using AMCAS and TMDSAS, a Letter Matching ID number will be assigned to each letter you list, including the Committee Letter. We MUST have this letter ID in order to upload your committee letter. If you selected "YES" about sharing information with your premedical advisor (see #1 above), we will have access to this ID number and you do not need to take any further action. If you do not release the information, you must submit a Letter Matching ID form to the committee in order for us to submit the letter. This could delay the submission of your letter. If we do not have your letter matching information, your letter submission will be delayed. To avoid delays in submission, please ensure that you chose the correct institution and release your information to us/submit your letter request for to via email.
  6. For dental, optometry, Osteopathic (DO), podiatry applicants, when you complete the letter section of your application, you will enter the author/contact information listed in #3 above. Once you enter the information and submit, an electronic email is forwarded to Mr. Bowen's email with a link which allows us to upload your letter directly to AADSAS/AACOMAS/OPTOMCAS. The committee letter is then available to any professional school which uses that application service. Some applications will prompt you to enter a deadline date for the submission of the letter. Please select September 30 as the deadline. This does not mean that it will be that late when your letter is submitted. However, this will prevent you from receiving auto-generated emails that the deadline listed has expired. The committee submits letters in the order that the committee applications are completed and strives to have all letters sent no later than September 30.
    Should you decide to withdraw from the committee process but continue with your application, you will need to make arrangements to have faculty letters submitted to the appropriate application service. They will be listed as individual letters. MD applicants will need to provide each author with the Letter Matching ID number assigned by AMCAS. Emails will be sent directly to the letter writers by AACOMAS/AADSAS and other services. It is our understanding that LSUHSC Medical School in Shreveport is participating in the AMCAS Letter Submission service so all letters will need to be sent via AMCAS.

    The LSU Review Committee takes responsibility for submitting the evaluation letter to any professional school to which you apply. We guarantee that all letters will be submitted by the established deadlines for all professional schools. This includes international medical schools and schools that do not participate in the national application services (Caribbean medical schools, Queensland Ochsner, etc.). Letters to these schools will be submitted based on each school's policy.

Calculating Your Science GPA for the LSU Review Committee

The science grade point average is often referred to as your "BCPM" GPA on the medical school applications and "BCP" on the dental school applications. These abbreviations stand for Biology, Chemistry, Physics, and Math, and only grades in these subjects are used to calculate this GPA.

Please note that this is the formula used for the LSU Premedical/Predental Review Committee. Some application services or individual medical/dental schools may not include all of these courses. The LSU Dental School does not include mathematics in their calculation of science grade point average. Each application service should have an explanation of what courses are included and how they calculate the science GPA.

Use the dropdown below to assist in calculating your Science GPA.

Basic Sciences:

  • ASTR
  • BIOL
  • CHEM
  • MATH
  • PHYS

Additional Courses:

  • KIN 2500/3500
  • HUEC 2010/2020
  • EXST 2201


# of science quality pts


# of science hours attempted


* Please note:  These are the courses included in calculating your science GPA for the LSU committee, however AMCAS/AADSAS may not include all listed courses in their BCPM GPA.  Many dental schools (including LSU) do not include math in their science GPA. The science GPA is often referred to as the BCPM average (B-iology; C-hemistry;  P-hysics; M-ath).  The decision of what can be included in the BCPM has to do with the content of the course topic. For example, anatomy is considered to be science content by AMCAS/AACOMAS/AADSAS even though at LSU human anatomy is taught in the Kinesiology department. It still would be considered part of the BCPM average.  Consult the instruction manuals of the application service for your particular professional school for a list of course content that is included in their definition of science courses. The application services will calculate their own BCPM/BCP grade point average based on the course titles you provide on the application.

Maintaining Professional Behavior During the Application Process

You should be aware that medical/dental schools begin evaluating you the moment you make contact with their office. Please be aware of this when you correspond with, telephone, or visit them in person. Use this link to access a document that contains some helpful information about applying to "professional schools." This was prepared by a Director of Admissions at one of the most prestigious medical schools in the country. This behavior applies to your interaction with the LSU Premedical/Predental Committee as well.

Helpful Website Links