Born of a grassroots movement by Northern Ontarians in need of health professionals, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) is a unique medical school. No other Canadian medical school is a joint initiative between two universities – in this case, Lakehead University in Thunder Bay and Laurentian University in Sudbury.
The first medical school in Canada with a social accountability mandate, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine has become a world-recognized leader in the field of health professional education. Its unique model of distributed, community-engaged medical education and research is producing highly sought-after physicians, residents, physician assistants, dietitians, and other health-care professionals. No other Canadian medical school provides training in more than 90 communities across a geographic expanse of 800,000 square kilometres. Rather than taking an off-the-shelf approach to delivering health professional programs modelled after traditional methods, NOSM has developed novel education strategies to meet the needs of Northern Ontarians.
Innovative Undergraduate Medical Education
If you can see the value of an innovative, non-traditional approach and are willing to commit to a demanding, powerful educational experience, then consider the Northern Ontario School of Medicine for your health professional education. You will engage with real patients. You will learn to provide care that is directly responsive to the needs of patients and communities across NOSM’s wider campus of Northern Ontario. The School offers you exposure to rural, remote, Indigenous, and Francophone communities. What does that mean for you? It means your path to becoming a health-care professional will be unique, exciting, and diverse.
NOSM medical students derive considerable benefit from the School’s distributed, community-engaged learning model, spending a full forty percent (40%) of their time in community placements:
Year One: four weeks in an Indigenous community.
Year Two: two four-week blocks in a Northern Ontario remote rural community.
Year Three: eight months in a Comprehensive Community Clerkship in one of 15 communities outside Sudbury and Thunder Bay.
Year Four: twelve month specialty clinical rotations in Sudbury or Thunder Bay.
This amount of time in “hands-on” experiences will:
- Increase exposure to a range of health-care delivery environments and an improved understanding of skill sets necessary to practice in multiple settings.
- Provide exposure to rural practice skills, as well as cultural and ethnic diversity.
- Improve understanding of community-based health issue assessment.
- Provide opportunities to examine possible practice environments prior to graduation.
- Provide opportunities to learn from multiple preceptors with diverse interests and professional backgrounds.
- Canadian citizen or permanent resident (landed immigrant).
- Four-year undergraduate degree.
- Mature applicants (25 years of age or older at the time of the application deadline) may apply with a three-year degree.
- Applicants may apply in final year of their program.
- Overall minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
- No MCAT required.
- No specific course prerequisites required. While there are no specific prerequisites required, a balanced undergraduate education is strongly recommended. We recommend that science majors complete two full courses in arts, social science, and/or humanities. For arts, social science, and humanities majors, we recommend completion of two full courses in science.
- Apply early and meet all deadlines.
- Submit all documents to the Ontario Medical School Application Service (OMSAS).
- Include verifiers for all activities mentioned, citing the corresponding verifier number for each activity.
- World Education Service (WES) evaluation is required for all courses completed at foreign universities outside of Canada. This does not, however, include exchange program of coursework, two semesters in duration or less.
- Choose your best referees. Follow-up with your referees prior to their submission deadline.
- Maintain a high GPA throughout university.
- Your autobiographical sketch and supplementary questions are just as important as your grades.
- Build a portfolio of experiences that will support the qualities we are looking for in our students.
- Thoroughly review all information about NOSM and our admissions process. This information is available on our website at nosm.ca, and in the OMSAS booklet.
The Faculty of Medicine offers the following academic programs:
Unparalleled Residency Training
NOSM understands that becoming a well-rounded physician requires residency training that provides variety in educational and clinical opportunities tailored to meet your training needs. Instead of offering almost exclusive opportunity for residents in hospitals and traditional teaching sites, NOSM nurtures not only resident presence in academic health sciences centres, but also extensive clinical placements throughout the communities of Northern Ontario, and offers opportunities in Francophone and Indigenous communities. NOSM offers residency training in: Family Medicine, Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, General Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Anesthesiology, Psychiatry, and Obstetrics and Gynecology. PGY3 programs include Emergency Medicine, Family Practice Anesthesia, and Enhanced Skills in Maternity Care, Self-Directed Enhanced Skills, and Care of the Elderly.
Ground-Breaking Physician Assistant Program
NOSM and The Michener Institute for Applied Health Sciences have joined forces with the University of Toronto’s (UofT) Faculty of Medicine to deliver the Bachelor of Science Physician Assistant (BScPA) professional degree program. Aligned with NOSM, the mission of the Consortium of PA Education is to help address the health human resources needs across Ontario. Physician Assistants (PAs) are trained to provide direct patient care under the supervision of a licensed physician. PAs can take medical histories, perform physical examinations, order and interpret tests, diagnose, perform minor procedures, and formulate management plans. The UofT BScPA program offers 24 months of training in a blended distance and face-to-face model including online University study and clinical placements in both Northern and Southern Ontario, in urban, rural, remote, Indigenous, and Francophone communities.
Unique Dietetic Internship Program
The Northern Ontario Dietetic Internship Program (NODIP) offers a unique, 46-week internship in which dietetic interns quickly learn that the needs of Northern Ontarians are unlike the needs of people in other geographic regions. With more than 100 clinical placement opportunities, including placements in rural, Francophone, and Indigenous communities, NODIP provides an array of professionally rewarding learning experiences in diverse practice settings across the North. Practical experiences are arranged for interns in regional hospitals, public health units, community health centres, long-term care facilities, and family health teams. With the variety of the program, one aspect is certain: NODIP offers an unparalleled system of support where interns learn much more than just ‘the basics’ of becoming a dietitian in and for the North.
What our Students Say
Medicine, Honours Bachelor of Science in PsychologyThunder Bay, ON Living and studying in northern Ontario allows me to continue to take part in outdoor activities (like competing with the Nordic Ski...
I chose the MD program at Lakehead University because the focus on clinical learning makes NOSM stand out from other medical schools. NOSM's unique social accountability mandate allows students the...