Cheapest Medical Schools in the U.S

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According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the average cost of attending a public medical school for the class of 2023 was $37,556 per year for in-state students and $62,194 for out-of-state students. For private medical schools, the average cost was $60,665 per year, regardless of residency status. And that’s not even counting the fees, health insurance, and cost of living expenses that can add up to thousands of dollars more.

In this article, we will help you to find the cheapest medical schools in the U.S. that still offer excellent academic programs, faculty, facilities, and alumni networks. We’ll also explain the difference between public and private medical schools, the criteria for selecting the cheapest medical schools, and the list of the cheapest medical schools in the U.S. By the end of this article, you’ll have a better idea of how to achieve your medical dreams without going broke.

Public vs Private Medical Schools

One of the first things you need to consider when looking for the cheapest medical schools in the U.S. is the difference between public and private medical schools. Public medical schools are funded by the state government, while private medical schools are funded by tuition, fees, donations, and endowments. This means that public medical schools are generally cheaper than private medical schools, especially for in-state students who qualify for lower tuition rates. 

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For example, some public medical schools charge the same tuition for in-state and out-of-state students, such as the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and the University of Michigan. Some private medical schools offer generous financial aid packages that can reduce the net cost of attendance, such as Harvard Medical School and Mayo Clinic School of Medicine. Some medical schools have different tuition rates depending on the year of study, such as the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and the University of Washington. And some medical schools have regional agreements that allow students from neighboring states to pay lower tuition, such as the University of Nebraska and the University of Vermont.

Criteria for Selecting the Cheapest Medical Schools

In order to select the cheapest medical schools in the U.S. for this article, we used a set of criteria and methodology that we’ll explain in this section. We also used various sources and data to support our selection, such as U.S. News, AAMC, Student Loan Planner, and others. We defined the terms and measures that we used, such as tuition, fees, health insurance, cost of living, return on investment, and others. We also clarified the scope and limitations of our selection, such as the year, the ranking, the accreditation, the availability of data, and others.

1. The tuition cost of the medical school. Tuition is the amount of money that students pay to attend the medical school, usually per year or per semester. Tuition can vary depending on the type of medical school (public or private), the residency status of the student (in-state or out-of-state), and the year of study (pre-clinical or clinical).

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2. The fees cost of the medical school. Fees are the additional charges that students pay to cover the costs of services and facilities that are not included in the tuition, such as student health services, library services, technology services, student activities, etc. 

3. The health insurance cost of the medical school. Health insurance is the coverage that students need to have in case of illness or injury while attending medical school. Health insurance can be provided by the medical school, by the student’s parents, or by the student’s own plan. Health insurance can also vary depending on the type of medical school, the residency status of the student, and the year of study.

4. The cost of living of the medical school. Cost of living is the amount of money that students need to spend on their basic needs, such as housing, food, transportation, utilities, etc. Cost of living can vary depending on the location, the lifestyle, and the personal choices of the student. 

5. The ranking of the medical school. Ranking is the measure of how well a medical school performs in terms of academic quality, reputation, research, outcomes, etc. Ranking can vary depending on the source, the methodology, and the criteria used. 

Top 3 Cheapest Medical Schools in the U.S.

These are the medical schools that offer the lowest cost of attendance (tuition, fees, health insurance, and cost of living) and the highest return on investment (median salary divided by total cost of attendance minus median debt) among the accredited medical schools in the U.S. These are also the medical schools that have high rankings and excellent academic programs, faculty, facilities, and alumni networks. These are the medical schools that prove that you can get a quality medical education without breaking the bank.

1. Baylor College of Medicine

  • Tuition: $19,425 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Fees: $4,551 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Health insurance: $3,420 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Cost of living: $22,692 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Total cost of attendance: $50,088 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Return on investment: 6.5% (median salary of $242,000 divided by total cost of attendance of $200,352 minus median debt of $100,000)
  • Ranking: #22 in best medical schools for research and #4 in most popular medical schools
  • Academic program: Offers a four-year MD program with various tracks and concentrations, such as the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP), the MD/MBA program, the MD/MPH program, the MD/JD program, the MD/PhD program, etc.

2. University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine

  • Tuition: $19,292 per year for in-state students and $32,762 for out-of-state students
  • Fees: $2,500 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Health insurance: $2,400 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Cost of living: $16,200 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Total cost of attendance: $40,392 per year for in-state students and $53,862 for out-of-state students
  • Ranking: #93-123 in best medical schools for research and #10 in most popular medical schools
  • Academic program: Offers a four-year MD program with a focus on serving the diverse and underserved communities of the Rio Grande Valley, with opportunities for dual degrees, such as the MD/MPH program, the MD/MBA program, the MD/MS in Bioethics program, etc.

3. Texas A&M University College of Medicine

  • Tuition: $19,412 per year for in-state students and $32,882 for out-of-state students
  • Fees: $5,598 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Health insurance: $2,550 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Cost of living: $18,000 per year for in-state and out-of-state students
  • Total cost of attendance: $45,560 per year for in-state students and $58,930 for out-of-state students
  • Ranking: #75 in best medical schools for primary care and #93-123 in best medical schools for research
  • Academic program: Offers a four-year MD program with a curriculum that integrates basic science, clinical science, and humanities, with options for dual degrees, such as the MD/PhD program, the MD/MBA program, the MD/MPH program, the MD/MEd program, etc.

Conclusion

You’ve made it to the end of this article, and we hope you’ve learned a lot about how to find the cheapest medical schools in the U.S. without compromising the quality of education. We’ve shown you the difference between public and private medical schools, the criteria for selecting the cheapest medical schools, and the top 3 cheapest medical schools in the U.S. These are the medical schools that offer low tuition, fees, health insurance, and cost of living, as well as high return on investment, ranking, and academic quality.

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