What qualifications does a competitive applicant need to have?

We seek people committed to earning their PhD in a biomedical science-related discipline (either from a PhD graduate program or an MD/PhD joint program). Applicants have a passion for science, demonstrated scientific inquisitiveness, a proactive drive, the ability to work hard, and the willingness to learn.

All applications will be reviewed in their entirety. The GPA is just one part of any application, even if it is lower than a 3.0. That being said, our program caters to individuals that need to expand their research experience/professional development in order to be competitive for graduate school admission. Course work in our program is very light, so our scholars don’t get the opportunity to show that they can excel in graduate level coursework to help offset a lower GPA. There are other PREP programs that do have many graduate level classes that PREP scholars take for a grade to improve their academic standing for graduate school.

I need research experience for my application to medical school. Is the PREP program for me?

No. The research experience provided by PREP is intensive and the program is designed to prepare individuals for PhD graduate programs centered on scientific research, not clinical medicine. Ohio State does have another postbaccalaureate program, called MEDPATH, designed to help a diverse pool of well-trained individuals gain admission into medical school. Selection for this program is done through the normal medical school application process as candidates are selected once they have applied to the MD program.

Can I apply to Discovery PREP as an international student?

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) eligibility requirements "individuals must be U.S. citizens, non-citizen nationals or permanent residents and must have obtained their baccalaureate degrees from an accredited U.S. college or university no longer than 36 months prior to their application to PREP."

Learn more about NIH requirements

Application Procedures

Application Procedures

When will I hear about my application?

Discovery PREP uses a rolling admissions process, with applications undergoing review as they are received. It is best to apply early as individuals are interviewed and accepted until all spots are filled. Final decisions are typically made by the beginning of April. Additional spots may become available, therefore, competitive applicants may be waitlisted through May.

You cannot track your application online. If you would like to check on the completeness of your application feel free to email discovery.prep@osumc.edu and ask for an update.

Program Details

Program Details

Living in Columbus

Living in Columbus


About Columbus

Ohio State is located near the downtown of Columbus, the nation’s 14th-largest city. Whatever your lifestyle — a warm and welcoming academic community, a picturesque campus or a vibrant city — it’s all within reach.

Learn more about Columbus