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M.D. with Distinction in Research

The MD With Distinction in Research Program was revised in July 2015. New requirements are listed below, please check back with this page often for important updates to the program.



The distinction acknowledges medical students who demonstrate a dedicated commitment to enriching their medical education with independent research while maintaining high academic standards during medical school. Students are strongly encouraged to consider applying for the distinction as soon as possible, as the distinction may support a competitive residence application. Requirements for achieving the distinction are designed to ensure objective evaluation of merit for the distinction.


  • Minimum 3.25 GPA during medical school
  • Mentor must be a UTHSCSA faculty member (contact Dean's Office for additional information)
  • Complete at least one Medical Student Research Elective course (INTD 4210, 4211, or 4212)
  • Complete an intent to apply form to document mentoring plan by September 1 of MS3 year (exceptions for late application in extenuating circumstances will be considered)
  • Present a poster at Passport Poster Day for Medical Students, Residents, and Fellows during medical school
  • Document at least 640  hours of research activity during medical school (may include work completed during breaks and as research elective hours). Acceptable documentation includes completion of a real-time progress log (available below) or a summary certified by the faculty mentor.
  • Produce and submit to the review committee a scientific manuscript based on the student's research that is suitable for a peer-reviewed journal; ideally this manuscript should be submitted for publication prior to submitting an application for the distinction. Publication of a manuscript does not guarantee the distinction.



The student should work closely with their mentor when developing all application documents.


The student is responsible for submitting the following:

  • Resume, including academic record
  • Personal statement, detailing how the distinction will benefit the student and the role the student has played in the research project
  • Project description
  • Hours log


The mentor is responsible for submitting the following:

  • CV
  • Letter of reference for the student
  • Mentoring plan


Students who wish to achieve the distinction MUST complete their application packet by September 1 of their MS4 year for inclusion of the distinction in their residency letter from UME OR by December 1 of their MS4 year for acknowledgement on their diploma only. After the committee reviews all projects and capstone presentations are complete, the committee will determine the students who have achieved the distinction.



The Medical Student Research Committee (an existing standing committee) consists of 8-12 UTHSCSA faculty members, one UME Dean-level representative, and 1 MD/PhD student with research and mentoring experience. The SOM Associate Dean serves as the committee chair.


Forms and applications available via SurveyMoneky Apply at:


Please direct any questions about the MD with Distinction in Research program to or 210-450-8392.