Primary application

Many professional schools use an online centralized application service (CAS) for a primary application. The primary application is not tailored to individual schools and will be sent to every school that you indicate through the CAS. Not all schools use a CAS. For example, many programs in nursing use their own school-specific application system.  

Writing the primary application

Primary applications generally ask for such information as:

You should ensure that your application reflects:

  • Every aspect of your qualifications
  • Solid, consistent performance
  • Exceptional traits, personal experiences
  • That you have chosen this career through a thoughtful, fully-informed process
  • Enthusiasm, motivation, professionalism
  • Exquisite attention to detail

Common centralized application services

  • AMCAS – For MD-granting schools, except Texas public schools
  • AACOMAS – For DO-granting schools, except Texas public schools
  • AADSAS – For dental schools, except Texas public schools
  • VMCAS – For veterinary medical colleges in the U.S. except Texas public schools. VMCAS also accepts applications for several veterinary schools outside of the U.S.
  • TMDSAS – For Texas public schools with programs in human medicine (MD and DO), dentistry, and veterinary medicine
  • AACPMAS – For podiatric medical colleges
  • CASPA – For physician assistant programs
  • NursingCAS – Programs in nursing at all degree levels, including accelerated BSN and direct-entry MSN. Many nursing programs do not use NursingCAS, so it is important to go directly to each program’s website to learn about their application process.
  • OptomCAS – For schools of optometry
  • OTCAS – For programs in occupational therapy
  • PharmCAS – For colleges of pharmacy
  • PTCAS – For physical therapy programs
  • SOPHAS – For public health programs

When you register with any CAS, please select “advisor release.” Doing this enables us to assist you and track your application.