Admissions Requirements


International Applicants/Non-U.S. Citizens

An international applicant is any applicant who is not a United States citizen or permanent resident (green card holder) of the United States. The Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) program and online certificate programs require citizenship or permanent resident status (green card) for enrollment. International applicants are not eligible to enroll in any 100% online programs at PCOM.  

Requirements Specific to Non-US Citizens

  • Licensing Requirements

It is the sole responsibility of a Non-US applicant to determine that he/she will meet the eligibility requirements for national certification and state licensing. It is also the applicant’s sole responsibility to determine whether any particular country will allow the practice of the profession for which a PCOM degree is received and licensing in the United States is obtained.

  • Financial Responsibility

Once an international applicant is accepted and prior to matriculation in a program at either campus, he/she is required to deposit the necessary funds into a U.S. bank account selected by Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

  • Employment Authorization for International Applicants

It is the responsibility of the international applicant to ensure that he/she maintains all applicable terms and conditions of his/her period of stay in the United States, understands any employment-related requirement of the relevant PCOM program, and meets any requirements for receiving U.S. employment authorization.

PCOM’s DSO officer will assist students who currently have or are eligible for a Student Visa (F-1) status with all documentation required including applying approval of work hours that are required by the curriculum in which the student is enrolled and/or desired post-completion employment authorization. PCOM does not guarantee that an applicant, student or graduate will be eligible for or receive any particular immigration status.

PCOM’s assistance with employment authorization is limited to international applicants with Student Visa (F-1) status; all other international applicants who do not have or are not eligible for a Student Visa (F-1) status should secure private legal counsel at the international applicant’s own expense to assist with any immigration questions, concerns and/or filings.

  • Compliance with All Applicable Laws

Federal laws, regulations, processes and requirements relevant to international applicants are subject to change at any time. PCOM requires that international students adhere to all applicable federal laws regarding their period of stay and/or ability to work in the United States. PCOM will also abide by all applicable federal laws, including future changes that may limit or restrict an individual’s ability to remain in the United States.

PCOM urges applicants who have questions about their status or applicable immigration laws in the United States to seek private legal counsel.

  • International Coursework

If an applicant has completed any coursework or a degree(s) from institutions outside of the United States, he/she must request an official course-by-course evaluation from World Education Services ( to be forwarded to the following address for review along with the application for admission:

Office of Admissions
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
4170 City Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19131

All prerequisite coursework must be completed at a U.S. regionally accredited college or university. International coursework will not count towards meeting any prerequisite coursework.

English Proficiency Requirement

Proficiency in written and oral English appropriate to graduate and professional study is expected of all PCOM students. Any applicant whose native language is not English must demonstrate objective competency in English within the past two years by satisfactory performance on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The minimum required score for the IBT (Internet Based Testing) is 79 and a minimum score of 26 is required for the speaking component. General writing assistance is available for theses and dissertations, however, as an institution offering only graduate and professional programs, PCOM does not offer remedial ESL coursework.

Every applicant whose native language is not English, or whose undergraduate instruction was not in English, must provide an English proficiency test score. A score is considered too old, and will not be accepted, if it is more than two years old from the start of your enrollment term. Country of citizenship does not exempt applicants from this requirement. Language of instruction at the college or university level, and how recent it has been, are the determining factors in meeting this requirement.

Applicants are exempt if: English is the exclusive language of instruction at the undergraduate level; or they have earned a degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university not more than five years prior to the anticipated semester of enrollment; or they have completed at least two full-time semesters of graded course work, exclusive of ESL courses, in a U.S. college or university, or at an institution outside the U.S. where English is the exclusive language of instruction, not more than five years prior to the anticipated semester of enrollment.

Technical Standards

Each program has Technical Standards for Admissions that define the Physical Sensory and Cognitive Psychological requirements for enrollment. These standards are available at under Application Requirements and are required to be completed by an accepted student prior to enrollment.

Criminal background check requirement

To ensure that students accepted to PCOM will be permitted to perform clerkships and/or to ensure the safety of the PCOM community, PCOM requires all first year students to complete a criminal background check prior to matriculation using only the PCOM vendor of choice. This process must be completed by the student prior to the start of their first year classes by the posted deadline or the candidate will not be permitted to begin their course work. Directions for this process will be forwarded to accepted and confirmed students prior to matriculation.