2021 AMCAS Guide

Please use the 2022 AMCAS Applicant Guide to navigate through the application process.  There are many useful tutorials and information that will help answer your questions. Williams-specific information may be found in the FAQ section of the website.

COVID-19 and AMCAS Updates
2021 AMCAS Cycle Update

Timeline Snapshot

*See Application Process for more detailed information and forms to be completed.

Date Description
1/13/2021 Required Applicant Information Meeting
2/1/2021 Deadline: Intent to Apply Form
2/19/2021 Letters of Recommendation & Outside Transcripts
3/1/2021 Deadline for Pre-health Self-Assessment Guide & Resume
3/15/2021 Deadline for Biographical Report
3/18 – 5/1/2021 Schedule Interview
4/15/2021 Letters of Recommendation & Finalize Testing
Early June 2021 Health Professions Committee Review Period
May-June 2021 Finalizing Your School List
6/1/2021 Final Deadline for HPC Materials
Summer 2021 Committee Letter
July, August, September 2021 Secondary Applications
Fall 2021-Spring 2022 Interview Period
Mid-Fall 2021 – Spring 2022 Admissions Decisions

AMCAS Application Sections

    • After you enter the name of every school that you have attended, note that there is an *Advisor Release" paragraph to which you must select YES. This means that you release your application information to your school's designated advisor (Rebecca Counter).
    • Transcript request forms may be completed for every school that you list.
    • There are FOUR tutorials to watch before entering the following: Coursework, AP coursework, Current and Future Coursework, and Study Abroad. You cannot mess this up if you watch these tutorials(!)
    • In the Williams curriculum, each course is worth "1 credit," except music courses, which are ".5 credit."
    • After a reaccreditation self-study, the Williams Registrar has changed the conversion of course credits to semester hours. Every course is worth 3.75 semester hours. Every lecture and lab course is worth 3.75 + (# hours x .25). 
    • Any course prior to 2020/21 should be calculated on 3.75 and this year on 4.0 (including thesis coursework)
    • Thus BIOL 101 & Lab will be worth 4.5 hours (3.75 + .75). CHEM 151 & Lab will be worth 4.75 hours.
    • However, you need only designate a "1" in the credit hours column. AMCAS will make the conversion (and they have the new values); you should check these entries after you receive your verified AMCAS.
    • Have a copy of your transcript(s) in hand as you complete this section.
    • Refer to the "AMCAS Course Classification Guide org/applying-medical-school/article/course-classification-guide/for information on what courses go under what heading. For example, Neuroscience is BIOL; astronomy is PHYS; Biochemistry is either CHEM or BIOL depending on your Williams transcript.
    • The Work/Activities section of the application is designed to give you the opportunity to highlight your work experience, extracurricular activities, awards, honors, or publications that you would like to bring to the attention of the medical schools to which you are applying. You may enter a maximum of 15 experiences, and you may enter four separate date ranges for recurring experiences. This section cannot be edited or updated after the original submission of your application.
    • Work and activities will appear on your application in chronological order and may not be rearranged. However, please be aware that medical schools sort your entries and view them in a variety of different orders to suit their specific review processes. Medical schools receive your Work/Activities descriptions as plain text. Therefore, formatting options such as bulleted lists, indented paragraphs, and bold/italic fonts do not appear for reviewers and are not available.
  • Select the first option, "Committee Letter." Williams sends out a committee letter with all supporting letters of evaluation via Virtual Evals (e.g. veCollect) for AMCAS applicants.

    • Enter your VE packet once in the AMCAS.
    • Enter my name, Rebecca Counter, as the "primary author/contact."
    • Send Allisa Miller ( the AMCAS Letter Request Form that contains the AMCAS Letter ID. Allisa needs both the AMCAS Letter ID and the AAMC/TMDSAS ID. Attach to an email as a PDF.  (You receive an AAMC ID when you sign up for MCAT or sign into AMCAS for first time.)
      • In mid-May, I will begin to write committee letters. The following conditions apply:

        • All your letters of recommendation must be in your veCollect quiver. The letter record you created for the Williams Committee letter (aka "Rebecca Counter") will be empty.
        • You must email Allisa Miller ([email protected]that your quiver is complete. This is a useful step for us if you have decided not to use all of your letters or one letter writer flaked out. DO NOT LOCK YOUR QUIVER.
        • Your file will be placed in a queue (first-come, first-served) for committee letter writing.
        • The committee letter and all other letters will not be transmitted until you send Allisa Miller a copy of your processed AMCAS, AACOMAS, or AADSAS application. This is not the application you submit, but the final processed (and verified) application report you receive. [Note: On the AMCAS, it will have "Processed Date" on the upper right corner.]
        • Then Allisa will instruct you to LOCK YOUR QUIVER via email if you are applying via AMCAS.***
        • Once the quiver is locked, Allisa uploads the entire packet to the application service. She will email you to let you know that your letters are on their way.
    • You are required to submit an essay in the Personal Comments Essay section. You must complete two additional essays if you apply to an MD-PhD program: the MD-PhD Essay and the Significant Research Experience Essay. You also need to enter your total hours of research experience.

      Personal Comments Essay

      Use the Personal Comments Essay as an opportunity to distinguish yourself from other applicants. Consider and write your Personal Comments Essay carefully; many admission committees place significant weight on the essay. Here are some questions that you may want to consider while writing the essay:

      Why have you selected the field of medicine?
      What motivates you to learn more about medicine?
      What do you want medical schools to know about you that hasn’t been disclosed in other sections of the application?

         In addition, you may wish to include information such as:

      Unique hardships, challenges, or obstacles that may have influenced your educational pursuits
      Comments on significant fluctuations in your academic record that are not explained elsewhere in your application

      • TRANSCRIPTS (AMCAS): Download your Transcript Request Form(s) as you complete "Schools Attended" section. You will need to upload it/them (so the service can match this form with your AMCAS ID) at
    *sourced by AMCAS Guide [source:]