ACCESS Pathway Applicants

Photograph of a pathway on campusSchulich Medicine is committed to respect for diversity, inclusion, and equity. We seek to admit well-rounded, mature, motivated, and caring students with outstanding cognitive and non-cognitive abilities who have genuine empathy for others.

ACCESS Pathway

We recognize that some applicants may have faced barriers on their path to applying to medicine. As part of our commitment to inclusivity and equity, we wish to mitigate barriers for these applicants, where possible, while ensuring fairness for all applicants.

The ACCESS Pathway is for applicants who have been potentially adversely impacted by circumstances that created a disadvantage. These may include medical, financial, and/or socio-cultural barriers.

Applicants through the ACCESS Pathway may be considered for MCAT flexibility using the same criteria as for Southwestern Ontario applicants. The MCAT criteria are re-set annually based on the competitiveness of the applicant pool. All other admission requirements are the same as for applicants in the general stream.

How to Apply

All applicants through the ACCESS Pathway must provide:
  • a description of why they are applying through this pathway.
  • supporting documentation regarding their barrier(s).
  • a written statement about how they have adapted to and/or overcome their barrier, as well as their potential for success in medical school.
  • additional documentation (outlined below) if applying via a medical and/or financial barrier.

Medical Barrier

A medical barrier is defined as a disability and/or life-threatening illness affecting you during your university education. Individuals with medical barriers are encouraged to apply if they have the skills and abilities to successfully meet the essential requirements of a medical degree.

As well, applicants must have the skills and abilities to ensure their own safety, and the safety of the patients they interact with and care for during their medical training.  These skills and abilities are outlined in Essential Skills and Abilities Required for the Study of Medicine, a document approved by the Council of Ontario Faculties of Medicine (COFM).

Applicants with a medical barrier must provide the following additional documentation:

  • official documentation on whether accommodations were provided, and the nature of these accommodations, for writing the MCAT. If no accommodations were provided for writing the MCAT, please state this.
  • official documentation on whether accommodations were provided, and the nature of these accommodations, for university learning. If no accommodations were provided, please state this.
  • official documentation by a licensed professional on how the illness and/or disability impacts/impacted your learning and/or the learning of others. (Although disclosing the name of a diagnosis is not required, the committee will require sufficient information about the impact of the illness and/or disability on your educational experience.)

Financial Barrier

We recognize that many students work part-time. However, to be considered as having a financial barrier, you must have been working at least 20 hours/week during the academic year (September to April) for at least two academic years. During at least one of these two years, you must also have been engaged in full-time studies with the appropriate course loads and course levels as outlined in our GPA requirements.

Applicants with a financial barrier must provide the following additional documentation:

  • a description within your essay that clearly outlines how your circumstances meet the definition of a financial barrier as described above, including a relevant timeline.
  • an official letter from your employer(s) clearly outlining the hours worked and dates employed, as they relate to the above definition of financial barrier.

Consideration & Assessment

Documents submitted in support of an application through the ACCESS Pathway will be reviewed holistically.

Applying through the ACCESS Pathway does not guarantee the granting of MCAT flexibility, nor admission to the Doctor of Medicine Program.

There are no fixed seats or quotas for the ACCESS Pathway.

Please Note:

It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all relevant documentation is provided. Schulich Medicine reserves the right to verify supporting documentation. Falsification or misrepresentation of information will result in removal of an application from consideration and may be considered in any future application to the University.

For questions about applying via the Access Pathway, please contact the Schulich Admissions Office by email at or by phone at 519-661-3744.

Applicants to Schulich Medicine who have disabilities and wish to discuss requests for accommodations should contact Accessible Education at or 519-661-2147.