Applying to Medical Schools

The American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) will ask you to declare academic and criminal records. Minor infractions that you learn from will not keep you out of medical school, but inconsistencies can be very damaging. Therefore, the guiding principle you should keep in mind as you respond to these questions is that you be completely forthcoming and honest. Any misrepresentation will hurt you far more than the underlying offense.

It is clear from the wording in the common application services' instruction guides that the intent is that you report ANY action, regardless of whether or not the record has been expunged. It is a matter of personal responsibility and integrity how you choose to answer this question. See the exact wording from AMCAS below: 

Institutional Action
Medical schools require you to answer this question accurately and provide all relevant information. Medical schools understand that many individuals learn from the past and emerge stronger as a result. Full disclosure will enable the medical schools to more effectively evaluate this information within the context of your credentials. You must answer "Yes" to this question if you were ever the recipient of any institutional action resulting from unacceptable academic performance or a conduct violation, even if such action did not interrupt your enrollment or require you to withdraw. You must answer "Yes" even if the action does not appear on or has been deleted from your official transcripts due to institutional policy or personal petition.

If you are not certain whether or not you have been the subject of an institutional action, contact the registrar, student affairs officer, or other appropriate party at the institution for confirmation of your record.

Applicants who become the subject of an institutional action after certifying and submitting the AMCAS application must inform their designated medical schools that an action has occurred. If you answer Yes, you may use the provided space beneath the question to explain; this space is 1325 characters or approximately one-quarter of a page in length. You will receive an error message if you exceed the allotted space.

Failure to provide accurate information in answering this question or, if applicable, in completing the form provided by the school, will result in an investigation.

Our experience is that when you acknowledge a disciplinary record on a medical school application that school will contact you and request that you obtain an official statement from Emory University on what you disclosed. The Office of Student Conduct provides letters of disciplinary standing to students and alumni at their request. To make a request please contact the Office of Student Conduct by phone (404.727.7190) or email ( Before making your request please check the information on our website about requesting the release of disciplinary information.

For More Information

We recommend you contact an advisor in the Pre-Health Mentoring Office before submitting your application to medical school.