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Visiting Medical Students

Application Process

In accordance with the recommendations of the Coalition for Physician Accountability, the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine will not accept applications for onsite clinical electives from visiting medical students for the 2020-2021 academic year, except for students from medical schools located in the state of Maryland who do not have access to clinical experience with a residency program in their desired specialty at their school. All onsite research electives for visiting medical students have been cancelled through at least July 1, 2021.

Effective July 17, 2020, applications from visiting medical students will be accepted for Virtual Research Electives beginning on or after August 17, 2020 and for Virtual Clinical Electives beginning on or after September 7, 2020. Virtual electives will be conducted entirely via remote instructional modalities, either synchronously or asynchronously depending upon the course, and will not require students to be physically present in order to participate. Visiting medical students will not be permitted to enter any School of Medicine research or clinical facilities.


Questions about the application process should be directed to the visiting student coordinator at


Elective Application

A limited number of clinical electives are available to final year medical students who are attending either LCME approved schools (U.S. and Canadian medical schools) or schools with which Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine has a formal affiliation. If you are uncertain if your school has a formal affiliation with JHUSOM, check with a school official before submitting your application.

Research experiences are offered on a space available basis to U.S. and internationally trained medical students.

To apply, please submit an application through our online application portal:

How soon can I begin the application process?

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and students are encouraged to apply up to 6 months before the start of the elective.

What is an official transcript?

An official transcript is a transcript generated by your school for use by our institution to support your application. Electronic transcripts sent to us directly from your home school are strongly encouraged and should be sent to as the recipient address when ordering. 

A personalized cover sheet must be included with your transcript to assist in matching it to your application.  Please provide the cover sheet when placing your order with your home school. See the download link located in the Documents section of the application to print your personalized cover sheet.

Can I fax or email my application?

Applications are ONLY accepted via our online portal:

What is the duration of an elective?

Clinical electives are typically scheduled for 4 - 4 1/2 weeks with a maximum of two allowed per academic year. Research electives are typically scheduled for 9 weeks.

Do I need to follow the JHUSOM academic calendar for my elective choices?

All visiting medical students applying for clinical electives at JHU are required to adhere to the academic calendar.

Elective applications for research electives can be submitted for any time period as long as that period covers 9 weeks.

Why can't I take a core clerkship course?

Core clerkship courses at JHUSOM are only offered to our medical students due to space limitations.

Which electives are available?

Not all electives are available to visiting medical students, click here for eligible electives and their descriptions.  Electives not available to visiting medical students are indicated in the general electives book. Visiting medical students will only be placed in electives that take place at Johns Hopkins Hospital, the Bayview Medical Center or Johns Hopkins Greenspring because those locations are serviced by the Johns Hopkins transportation system. Some electives are offered at other hospital locations, but are not available to visiting medical students due to transportation constraints.

The entire JHUSOM Electives Book is available for review.

Are there prerequisites for electives?

Some electives have prerequisites; do not apply for electives for which prerequisites have not yet been met. Your application will not be considered unless your official transcript contains proof of completion of the prerequisite courses.

Can you tell me if space is available for an elective before I apply?

A determination cannot be made until your completed application is received. Acceptance of your application for an elective is made jointly between the Office of the Registrar and the course director in the department in which the elective takes place.

I've spoken to a faculty member who has already accepted me for an elective. What do I need to do next?

Having had communication with a faculty member does not guarantee acceptance for an elective. All scheduling is done on a space-available basis and processing is the same for all students. You may include a letter of support from the faculty member with your application. However, all application processing initiates with the Visiting Student Coordinator in the Registrar's Office and offers of acceptance can only be extended by the Office of the Registrar in conjunction with the course director.

What are my chances of acceptance?

Visiting students are placed only after JHUSOM students are scheduled. Summer months, in particular, are extremely full. To maximize placement, you may include 3 elective choices on your application.

Can I apply for more than 3 electives?

You can apply for a maximum of 3 electives per application and we will accept one application per semester. If we are unable to place you for an elective, you will be notified by email. If you choose to do so, you can reapply with a new completed application for another semester.

How will I know if my application has been received?

You will receive e-mail confirmation from when your application is received and has been reviewed. Please do not contact the office for an update.

How will I know when my application is being reviewed by the departments to which I have applied?

Completed applications are sent to departments for review in the order they were received. When your application is sent for departmental consideration, you will receive an email notification. The Visiting Student Coordinator will follow up with the department on a bi-weekly basis regarding the status of your application and will let you know when a decision has been reached.

What communications can I expect from JHUSOM?

The Visiting Student Coordinator will notify you by email regarding the following:

  • once your application is complete and is under departmental review
  • once your application is accepted or denied (Acceptance emails come directly from the Visiting Medical Student Coordinator only)

The University Health Service (UHS) Office will notify you if there are any outstanding requirements for immunization based on the immunization record form submitted with your application.

How can I find out about the status my application?

Application status is available by viewing the Applicant Status screen.  Please allow a minimum of 30-60 days for your application review by the department(s) to which you applied. Please do not call the Visiting Student Office to check your application status. You may contact the office at no earlier than 30 days after receiving email notification that your application is under departmental review to inquire about its status. DO NOT contact course directors, coordinators or faculty regarding the status of your application.

The Visiting Student Office will only discuss your application with you.

The Visiting Student Office will not discuss applications with anyone but the applicant; please do not have friends, parents or siblings inquire on your behalf.

If I am accepted for an elective, are there any additional requirements that need to be met before I begin?

All students accepted for an elective are required to complete the Johns Hopkins HIPAA training courses. In addition, students accepted for clinical electives are required to obtain or show proof of training in blood borne pathogens and universal precautions. Instructions for these requirements are provided at time of acceptance.

What housing options are available?

A limited number of furnished units adjacent to campus are available from $1200-$1500 per month. Housing information for options off campus and adjacent to campus will be provided if you are accepted for an elective.

Can I have a copy of the application and supporting documents submitted to JHUSOM?

All documents become the property of the Office the Registrar. Copies cannot be given nor can materials be returned.