Visiting Medical Students

Thank you for your interest in pursuing fourth-year electives at UT Southwestern Medical School. Please follow the detailed instructions below to maximize your opportunity to be accepted for a visiting student elective and to minimize your processing upon arrival to start an elective.

*** Visiting students may only complete two rotations at UT Southwestern. ***

Additional Requirements for All Applicants
Additional Requirements by Department
Affiliation Agreement
Instructions for Students from International Schools


You must submit your application and all the following documents through the AAMC Visiting Student Application Service (VSAS) before we will review your application. If you or your institution has questions about VSAS authorizations or access to their system, then please contact AAMC-VSAS at

  • Application – VSAS 
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Essential functions form – Visiting students must attest to their ability to perform the essential functions before starting a rotation. If applying through VSAS, the form can be uploaded as a supplemental document.
  • Immunization record
  • Medical school transcript
  • Photo
  • Any additional department-specific requirements

If you are from an International Medical School, you must submit the following documents as a complete packet to the visiting student coordinator for the elective before they will review your application:

Note: For a list of departments that accept students from non-LCME accredited medical schools and international medical schools, see the special instructions section below.

Additional Requirements for All Visiting Students

Must be completed/verified before you will be allowed to start a rotation at our institution.

  • Good standing – Must be verified by your home institution.
  • Standard Precautions Training (recommended by CDC) – Must be completed within 12 months of the requested elective start date. If this cannot be completed at your home institution, then you may complete our online training and provide us with a signed "Attestation of Completion."
  • BLS and/or ACLS Certification – Must be completed within 12 months of the requested elective start date.
  • Mask Fit Test – Must be trained in proper mask fitting.
  • Professional Liability/Malpractice Insurance Coverage – Must be no less than the amounts provided by the University of Texas System (UT System) for its own students. Our coverage is currently:
    • $25,000 per claim
    • $75,000 per aggregate
    • $75,000 per participant
  • Immunizations – Must be current and cover the period of the clinical assignment.
  • Health Insurance Coverage – Must be covered by a health insurance plan for the period of the clinical assignment.
  • TB Skin Test – Must be completed within the last 12 months and cover the period of the clinical assignment.
  • Background Check– Must be completed within 12 months of the requested elective start date. This search must include a search of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General's List of Excluded Individuals/Entities.
    • If this was not part of the search criteria OR you have not completed a background check, you must complete one at Certified Background using the “Background Check Only Package” code.

      Note: If you need to complete a background check and drug test, use the “Background Check + Drug Test Package” code.
  • Drug Testing – Must be completed in the U.S. at least 4 business days prior to the requested elective start date and meet the minimum standard drug screen panel. The minimum standard drug screen panel is a Healthcare Professional 10-panel with integrity checks and Creatinine and PH levels. Acceptable and unacceptable test ranges will follow the 49 CFR Part 40 Federal Standards.
    • If your drug testing did not meet the minimum standards OR you have not completed a drug test, you must complete one at Certified Background using the “Drug Test Only Package” code.

      Note: If you need to complete a background check and drug test, use the “Background Check + Drug Test Package” code.
  • UT Southwestern HIPAA Training – Must be completed through the online UT Southwestern HIPAA Training program. 
    • The HIPAA requirement must be met before you are allowed to rotate at UT Southwestern. It is not a part of the visiting student application process. Once a visiting student accepts an offer and is set up in our student system, he/she will receive an email with login instructions for completing HIPAA.
    • Upon successful completion of the online course, you will be able to print out a certificate of completion.
    • Note: This certificate should be printed and provided to the department as proof that this training was completed. You will not be allowed to start your rotation without proof of this training.
    • If you have any questions about the online HIPAA training, please contact the HIPAA Office at 214-648-6003.

Additional Department Requirements for Visiting Students Applying to Specific Departments

The following documents are required in addition to the documents indicated above. These should be included in your packet of documents submitted to the sponsoring department's Visiting Student Coordinator.

Sponsoring DepartmentRequired Documents
Dermatology – DERM 4301 & 4304 USMLE Step 1 Score
Internal Medicine – IMED 1 Letter of Recommendation
USMLE Step 1 Score
Obstetrics and Gynecology – OBG 0808-0816 1 Letter of Recommendation
USMLE Step 1 Score
Curriculum Vitae
Pediatrics – PEDS  Additional Requirements
Radiology – Diagnostic - RAD 1501 Letter of Interest that includes: medical school name, address, Registrar's Office phone and fax numbers.
Surgery – Clinical Neurosurgery - SUR 1601 Letter of Interest
Surgery – Thoracic/Cardiology - SUR 1604* 1 Letter of Recommendation that includes: name, title, and institution of a physician faculty member who has supervised you in a medical or surgical rotation.
Surgery – Plastic - SUR 1605 1 Letter of Recommendation
Surgery – General - SUR 1609, 1612-1615, 1622-1625, 1627-1929 Dean's Letter
Surgery – Emergency Medicine – SUR 1616 Personal Statement regarding Emergency Medicine
USMLE Step 1 Score
Class Ranking
NOTE: Visiting Student electives must be same block periods as UTSW academic calendar

*For all non-U.S. medical school students wishing a four-week rotation in the Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, these additional requirements must be met:

  • Student applicants must have successfully passed the equivalent of a third-year medical school surgery rotation
  • Student applicants must have already had a successful rotation at an American medical school with a letter of recommendation (LOR) from that institution. There will be NO exceptions. No applications will be considered without this, including “contingency” LORs (for example, a student wanting to set up two back-to-back U.S. rotations with UT Southwestern as the second of two and the LOR will be provided to UTSW on the day they show up).

Affiliation Agreement Requirements

We do not require an affiliation agreement to rotate at UT Southwestern. If your institution requires an affiliation agreement before they will allow you to rotate at UT Southwestern, please provide us with the following:

  • Intake Form – To be completed by the visiting student coordinator at your institution – this includes: contact information, name, phone, email address, etc.
  • A copy of your Institution's Affiliation Agreement.
  • Once you are approved for a rotation, please forward these Affiliation Agreement documents to
    Do not send the other documents to this box.

Note: Ultimately, it is the student's responsibility to follow up with the sponsoring department's visiting student coordinator for the rotation to make sure all their required paperwork is received and completed. Visiting students cannot start a rotation until all the requirements are met.

Return to Top


***Visiting students may not complete more than two 4-week electives at UT Southwestern***

  • View the UT Southwestern Senior Electives
  • View the UT Southwestern rotation dates for 2013/14
  • View the UT Southwestern rotation dates for 2014/15

Return to Top

Special Instructions

For Students from International Medical Schools

Please note that only the following UT Southwestern Departments accept students from international medical schools:

  • Anesthesiology  Letter of recommendation from a UTSW faculty member, resident, or medical student is required.
  • Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery
  • Clinical Sciences – Biostatics
  • Clinical Sciences – Ethics
  • Pediatrics

All international students residing outside the U.S.:

  • Must pay $150 (U.S. Dollars, "USD") International Visiting Student NON-REFUNDABLE Application Fee – this must be submitted with the complete application packet via check or money order. (Make check or money order payable to UT Southwestern Medical Center) Your application will not be processed without this fee. The department will forward this fee to the International Office for processing.
    NOTE: This processing fee is in addition to the $25 (U.S. Dollars, "USD") per rotation elective fee.
  • Must enter on an F-1 visa sponsored by UT Southwestern. Within weeks of your acceptance by a UT Southwestern clinical department, you will be contacted by the International Office to begin visa arrangements.
  • May only complete two rotations at UT Southwestern.

Return to Top

We hope this page helps with the entire process. To learn more about the visiting student experience at UT Southwestern, contact the visiting student coordinator for the rotation you are interested in completing.

Thank you!

Tim Williamson
Associate Registrar and Visiting Medical Student Coordinator
Phone: 214-648-3606  

Return to Top