Cost of Applying to Health Professional School
The number of schools a student applies to determines the overall cost of applying. There is a great deal of variation, but, in short, applying to health professional school is costly. Typically, applicants must pay for test preparation (courses or reference materials), registration fees for admission tests, application fees for primary and secondary applications, travel to interviews, interview suit, etc.
Tuition varies considerably. Some state schools are very affordable, and most are considerably less expensive than a majority of private schools. Most private schools cost upwards of $30,000 a year. Students must also consider the special fees and living costs particular to each school, and whether or not they will need a car. Schools will provide applicants with a comprehensive overview of their costs. Although it is intuitive that state schools would be less expensive to attend than private schools, sometimes the difference is not so great because private schools are often able to offer more substantial financial aid packages than state schools. When researching the cost of different medical schools, applicants should consider the Average Student Indebtedness for each school which can be found in the MSAR.
Financial Assistance for Application Expenses
Some test prep courses discount their fees for students who demonstrate financial need. Application services also offer fee waivers for those students who demonstrate need. If the application service waives the initial application fee, many schools will waive the secondary application fee.
Although financial aid will be offered at health professional school, students often do not receive as much aid as during the undergraduate years. Students should expect to emerge from professional school with considerable debt. However, students should also expect to earn enough as a health professional to pay it off. Nonetheless, it is important for students to review their financial concerns with the financial aid offices of the schools to which they have been accepted before making a final choice. The Office of Financial Aid and Educational Financing web site is a good financial aid resource.
Required Financial Information
Students must submit their financial histories and income tax returns. Applicants and their parents must file their taxes on time during the application year, as a late tax return may significantly delay a student's financial aid package and make it difficult for students to decide on a medical school.
The Association of American Medical Schools provides some excellent advice about managing your finances both while in college and then transitioning on to medical school. Much of this information can also be applied to students applying to other health professions.
This online resource offers self-paced educational modules designed to help student achieve strong financial literacy.