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March 31, 2022

The 'Best Medical Schools,' according to US News

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    U.S. News & World Report this week released its annual Best Medical Schools rankings, which include separate lists recognizing leading schools for research, primary care, and each of eight specialties.

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    Methodology for research rankings

    For the research rankings, U.S. News assessed each school's performance based on a weighted average of the following indicators:

    • Quality assessment, including peer assessment scores from medical and osteopathic school deans, deans of academic affairs, and heads of internal medicine or directors of admissions and residency directors on a five-point scale. This indicator comprises 30% of a school's overall ranking.
    • Research activity, including total dollar amounts of federal research grants and dollar amounts of federal research grants awarded per total full-time faculty members. U.S. News reallocated the weight of two indicators to place greater weight on the schools' total research and less on research per faculty member. This indicator comprises 40% of the overall rank for schools considered in the research medical school ranking model.
    • Student selectivity, including median MCAT scores, median undergraduate GPA, and acceptance rate. This indicator comprises 20% of the overall rank for the research medical school ranking model.
    • Faculty-to-student ratios. This indicator comprises 10% of the overall ranking in the research medical school ranking model.

    Harvard University tops the research list

    The top 10 medical schools for research (including some ties), according to U.S. News, are:

    1. Harvard University (Cambridge, Mass.)
    2. New York University Grossman School of Medicine (New York)
    3. Columbia University (New York)
    3. Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore)
    3. University of California-San Francisco (San Francisco)
    6. Duke University (Durham, N.C.)
    6. University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine (Philadelphia)
    8. Stanford University (Stanford, Calif.)
    9. University of Washington (Seattle)
    10. Yale University (New Haven, Connecticut)

    Click here to see the full list.

    Methodology for primary care rankings

    For the primary care rankings, U.S. News assessed each school's performance on a weighted average of the following indicators: 

    • Quality assessment, including peer assessment scores from medical and osteopathic school deans, deans of academic affairs, and heads of internal medicine or directors of admissions and residency directors on a five-point scale. This indicator comprises 30% of a school's overall ranking.
    • Primary care production, including the proportion of medical school graduates practicing in primary care specialties and the proportion of medical school graduates entering primary care residencies. This indicator comprises 40% of the overall rank for schools considered in the primary care ranking model.
    • Student selectivity, including median MCAT scores, median undergraduate GPA, and acceptance rate. This indicator comprises 15% of the overall rank for the primary care medical school ranking model.
    • Faculty-to-student ratios. This indicator comprises 15% of the overall ranking in the primary care medical school ranking model.

    University of Washington tops the primary care list

    The top 10 medical schools for primary care (including ties) are:

    1. University of Washington (Seattle)

    2. University of California, San Francisco (San Francisco Calif.)

    3. University of Minnesota (Minneapolis)

    4. Oregon Health and Science University (Portland)

    5. University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (Chapel Hill, N.C.)

    6. University of Colorado (Aurora, Colorado)

    7. University of Nebraska Medical Center (Omaha, Neb.)

    8. University of California-Davis (Davis, Calif.)

    9. Harvard University (Boston)

    10. University of Kansas Medical Center (Kansas City, Kan.)

    11. University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School (Worcester, Mass.)

    12. University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh)

    Click here to see the full list.

    Best schools for 8 specialties

    U.S. News also ranked hospitals within eight medical specialties. These rankings were based on votes by medical school deans and senior faculty from the 130 responding schools. Respondents were asked to identify up to 15 schools offering the best programs in each specialty.

    Here is the top school listed in each specialty:

    (Morse et al., Methodology: 2023 Best Medical Schools Rankings, 3/28;  U.S. News & World Report research rankings, 3/28; U.S. News & World Report primary care rankings, 3/28)

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