What You Need to Know About Medical Schools in New Jersey

October 11, 2023


Reviewed by:

Akhil Katakam

Third-Year Medical Student, Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University

Reviewed: 10/11/23

What You Need to Know About NJ Med Schools

How many medical schools are in NJ? And how do you ensure your application stands out? If you have your sights set on a New Jersey medical school, read on to learn more! 

If you’re looking at medical schools in New Jersey, the state has much to offer. 

NJ medical schools offer numerous research opportunities for aspiring medical students. We’ll discuss each medical school in New Jersey and provide tips to help you gain acceptance. We’re here to make your medical school journey a little easier. 

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Attending Medical School in New Jersey

New Jersey has five medical schools. The state also has 43 teaching hospitals, providing numerous potential career options for students after graduation. Whether you’re interested in small-town living or the bustle of city life, New Jersey offers both.

List of Medical Schools in New Jersey

There are five New Jersey medical schools and 43 teaching hospitals. Below you’ll find more information about each school in our New Jersey medical school list. 

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School

From neuroscience research to cancer oncology, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School offers several opportunities for future doctors. Located in Newark, this school provides an excellent medical education. 

Photo of spring blossoms at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
Source: Rutgers Today

As a bonus, you can enjoy the view of the cherry blossoms native to the state as you study. 

Mission Statement

“Our mission is to prepare students from diverse backgrounds to be collaborative physicians, educators and researchers with a focus on the health of underserved and vulnerable populations.”

Prerequisites (Semesters)

  • Biology (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Chemistry (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Physics (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Organic Chemistry 1 & 2 (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • English (2 semesters)

Other Recommended Courses

  • Biochemistry
  • Calculus
  • Genetics
  • Statistics
  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Sociology or Psychology

Rutgers New Jersey Medical School also requires an MCAT score for prospective students. Though the medical school doesn’t set a minimum MCAT score or GPA, the class of 2022 had an GPA between 3.8 and 4.2 and an average MCAT score of 512. This school also requires two letters of recommendation from science faculty members and one letter of recommendation from a non-science faculty member of the student’s choosing. 

Annual Tuition

Residents: $44,435

Non-Residents: $68,564

Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

With 34 hospital affiliates, as a student at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, you’re sure to obtain an exceptional medical education. This school offers a plethora of residency programs and offers 21 basic science and clinical departments. 

Mission Statement:

“Robert Wood Johnson Medical School is dedicated to transforming health care for New Jersey and the nation through innovation and excellence in education, research, patient- and family-centered care and addressing the health of our diverse community.”

Prerequisites (Semester Hours)

  • Biology or Zoology (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Inorganic or General Chemistry (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Organic Chemistry (1 semester) (lab required)
  • Biochemistry (1 semester) 
  • Physics (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • College Mathematics (2 semesters)
  • English (2 semesters)

While Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical school doesn’t have a set minimum GPA and MCAT score, the class of 2021 had an average of a 3.6 GPA and an average score of 512 on the MCAT. This school also requires students to submit three letters of recommendation. 

Annual Tuition: 

Residents: $45,878

Non-Residents: $69,768

Tuition may seem steep to you, but this school offers financial aid for students who qualify. 

Cooper Medical School of Rowan University

In 2012, the Cooper Medical School of Rowan University served as the first new medical school in New Jersey in over 35 years. Cooper Medical provides a wealth of research opportunities and is ranked number 10 in medical schools with the lowest acceptance rates, showing just how competitive the program is. 

Mission Statement:

“Cooper Medical School of Rowan University is committed to providing humanistic education in the art and science of medicine within a scientific and scholarly community in which excellence in patient care, inclusivity, innovative teaching, scholarly activity, and service to our community are valued.”

Prerequisites (Semesters)

  • Biology (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Chemistry (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • English (1 semester)

Other Recommended Courses

  • Biochemistry (1 semester)
  • Organic Chemistry (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Physics (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Ethics (1 semester)
  • Behavioral Science (1 semester)
  • Biostatistics (1 semester)
  • Humanities (2 semesters)
  • Spanish (2 semesters)

This school also requires an MCAT score from prospective students. Though they don’t have a minimum GPA or MCAT score requirement, they’re interested in accepting students who show a greater chance of success with their curriculum. Low GPAs or MCAT scores don’t necessarily count you out, but the admissions team is less likely to take on students with low grades and scores because these students are more likely to struggle. This school also requires a minimum of three letters of recommendation. 

Annual Tuition: 

Residents: $44,628

Non-Residents: $70,826

This school offers a variety of scholarship opportunities for students who qualify. For students in the armed forces, this school offers an Armed Forces Health Profession Scholarship Program that provides full-tuition coverage. This school also offers the National Medical Fellowship Program for students who qualify for this type of financial assistance.

Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine

For over 40 years, Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine generated a variety of competent and compassionate physicians. This university also offers a number of research opportunities for prospective students as well as residencies and fellowships. 

Mission Statement:

“Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine prepares future physicians and scientists who are committed to improving health in New Jersey and throughout the nation.”

Prerequisites (Semester Hours)

  • Biology (8) (lab required)
  • Organic Chemistry (8) (lab required)
  • Inorganic Chemistry (8) (lab required)
  • Physics (8) (lab required)
  • College-level Mathematics (6)
  • Behavioral Science (6)
  • English (3)

Other Recommended Courses

  • Science courses (6 additional semester hours)
  • Biochemistry, Anatomy and Physiology, and Microbiology are suggested.

This university has a GPA requirement of at least 3.4 and an MCAT score of 500 or higher. Students must also provide two letters of recommendation from any science faculty member of their choice. 

Annual Tuition:

Residents: $41,628

Non-Residents: $70,826

While tuition may seem high, this university offers both scholarship and loan opportunities to help cut the cost of tuition. This university also provides medical association scholarships and other scholarships for students who qualify for financial assistance. 

Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine

With an emphasis on medical education as well as the importance of community, the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine affords students an excellent medical education. This school also offers research opportunities for both medical education and the local community. 

Mission Statement:

“To develop our students, residents, faculty, and healthcare environment to deliver the highest quality care for all.”

Prerequisites (Semesters)

  • Humanities/Social and Behavioral Sciences (3 semesters)
  • Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Law, Religion, Performing Arts/Visual Arts, History, Education, Criminal Justice, Linguistics, or Classics. 
  • Must be from at least two different subjects.
  • Biology (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Chemistry (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Additional Science Course (2 semesters) (lab required)
  • Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physics, Anatomy/Physiology, Zoology, or Botany. 
  • English (1 semester)
  • Literature (1 semester)
  • Mathematics/Science-Related (1 semester)
  • Statistics, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Genetics, or Calculus

Other Recommended Courses 

  • Ethics (1 semester)
  • Spanish (2 semesters)
  • Cell Biology (1 semester)
  • Ecology (1 semester)
  • Leadership (1 semester)
  • Economics (1 semester)
  • Political Science (1 semester)
  • Engineering (1 semester)
  • Computer Science (1 semester)

Students must also take the MCAT and provide three letters of recommendation. One letter must come from a healthcare professional. One letter must come from a professor familiar with your academic performance. The final letter can come from a physician, another professor, or a supervisor familiar with your abilities. 

Annual Tuition

Residents: $70,962

Non-Residents: $70,962

Tips for Getting Accepted

Medical schools are known for their selectivity: med schools in NJ are no exception. 

If you’re ready to apply to any medical school in New Jersey, these tips can improve your chances of acceptance. 

Ensure Your GPA and MCAT Scores Exceed Requirements

While only New Jersey’s DO school sets minimum requirements, this doesn’t mean you can expect to get in with any GPA or score. Looking at the class profile data of every NJ med school, you should aim for a 3.7 GPA and 514 MCAT score to meet or exceed averages.

If you have a low MCAT score, consider retaking the test. A lower GPA can be remedied by retaking courses or enrolling in a post-baccalaureate program after graduation. 

Show Your Commitment to the New Jersey Community and Beyond

Two of the above mission statements directly reference commitment to the NJ community. Ensure you show your commitment to the NJ community in your application: don’t skip over your local volunteer activities or other ways you’ve gotten involved. 

You can show your involvement in your AMCAS activities section, personal statement, or secondary applications. 

Go Above and Beyond If You’re a Non-Resident 

Unless a school specifically states they give no preference to in-state students (and even then), residents are generally more likely to get accepted than non-residents with the same qualifications. If you’re an out-of-state student applying to a medical school in NJ, be sure to: 

  • Start the process early 
  • Put extra time and care into your personal statement and application
  • Complete secondary applications ASAP after you receive them
  • Ensure you show why you’re a great fit 

Although it may or may not be more challenging to get into these schools as a non-resident, spending more time on your application boosts your chances. 

NJ Medical School FAQs 

Do you still have questions about NJ medical schools? Then read on for answers!

1. How Many Med Schools Are There in NJ? 

New Jersey has five medical schools.

2. What’s the Best NJ Medical School? 

U.S. News World and Report ranks the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School as the best medical school in New Jersey for research. 

3. What New Jersey Medical School Should I Apply to? 

It depends on your goals and needs. Evaluate offerings and see which aligns best with your professional and educational goals. DO hopefuls should apply to Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine. Future MDs can apply to any of the other four schools. 

4. What GPA Do I Need to Get Into NJ Medical Schools? 

While most NJ schools don’t have a GPA cutoff, you should aim for a GPA of 3.7 or higher to be competitive at every school.

5. What MCAT Score Do I Need to Get into NJ Med Schools? 

Only one school has an MCAT cutoff. However, you should strive for a high MCAT score: 514 or higher makes you a more competitive applicant at any NJ med school. 

6. Is Rutgers a Top Medical School? 

Rutgers isn’t considered a top medical school, but it is one of the highest-ranked schools in New Jersey. 

7. What GPA Do You Need to Get Into Rutgers Medical School? 

There is no minimum GPA requirement, but you should aim for a GPA of 3.7 or higher to be a more competitive applicant.

Get Into the NJ Medical School of Your Dreams

Applying to medical school can be intimidating. Now that you know more about New Jersey medical schools, you can choose one (or more) to apply to. 

Each school has plenty of research and fellowship opportunities for aspiring physicians. Wherever you decide to go for medical school, work hard, study hard, and you’ll succeed. Good luck!

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