Visiting students

Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) utilizes the AAMC Visiting Student Learning Opportunities (VSLO, previously known as VSAS) to receive visiting MD and DO student applications. For more information regarding VSLO, please visit the VSLO website or contact 202-478-9878.

To apply for an OHSU visiting rotation please complete and send us a VSLO application for your preferred electives and dates. 

OHSU AY2023/24 Rotation Dates

OHSU AY2024/25 Rotation Dates

OHSU students always have priority for available rotations, but please be assured that once you are scheduled for a rotation, you will not be bumped out for an OHSU student. Visiting students are eligible to enroll in a maximum of one four-week rotation. OHSU does not process applications based on a first come first serve basis, but rather on merit. Acceptance is contingent on an Affiliation Agreement in place between our two schools prior to the start of the rotation. 


If you do not meet these requirements, you are NOT eligible for a visiting student rotation at Oregon Health & Science University. Third year students are not accepted.

Requirements to apply

  1. Students must be in good academic standing and currently registered for their fourth year in a M.D. or D.O. degree program at a school accredited by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) or American Osteopathic Association (AOA).
  2. Students must have passed the USMLE/COMPLEX Step 1 Exam. If your school does not require you to take the Step 1 until after your third year, upload a letter from your school that states that you have not taken the Step 1 due to a change in your school's curriculum. 
  3. Students must have completed the following core clerkship requirements before the rotations begins:
  • Surgery
  • Medicine
  • Psychiatry
  • Family Medicine
  • OB/GYN
  • Pediatrics
  1. Students must have passed a background check upon matriculation to their home school. If your school cannot verify this, then you must submit one successfully completed within the last 12 months. We do not have a specific vendor that we prefer, but we do ask that a state (where your school is) and a federal check have been done and cleared.
  2. Completion of the AAMC Immunization form
  3. Students must have their home school verify the student has health insurance applicable through the desired rotation dates. If the school is unable to verify this, the student must provide documentation of personal health insurance.
  4. Upon acceptance to an OHSU visiting rotation the student will be billed a $200 non-refundable processing fee per rotation.
  5. Letter of recommendation uploaded by home institution.
  6. Letter of intent. If you are applying to multiple departments at OHSU, combine all letters of intent into one document to submit through VSLO.
  7. Copy of USMLE Step 1 or Comlex 1 passing score.
  8. CV/Resume
  9. Transcript
  10. Copy of current BLS certification card.
  11. Visiting students must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to rotating at OHSU.

15. Please refer to OHSU’s offering on the VSLO website for any department-specific requirements.

16. OHSU SOM only accepts students from institutions that are listed in the NC-SARA directory. If your school is not listed in the NC-SARA directory, check to see if it’s listed on the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) website. The only exception to this will be if you are an Oregon resident. If so, OHSU can submit an exception request to the State of Oregon HECC.   If you have any questions regarding NC-SARA and HECC, be sure to contact your school (do NOT contact the OHSU SOM MD Program).

Requirements upon acceptance

  1. An affiliation agreement between OHSU and the student’s home school must be in place prior to the start of the scheduled rotation. Upon acceptance, a representative from the student’s home school must contact to initiate the affiliation agreement process as soon as possible. The OHSU School of Medicine will not initiate an affiliation agreement until a student has been officially accepted for a rotation.

    OHSU’s Visiting Student Training Affiliation Agreement

    If an affiliation agreement is not executed prior to the start of the scheduled rotation, student will not be able to complete the visiting rotation at OHSU.

  2. Students must be covered by malpractice/liability insurance at a level at $2,000,000 primary/$4,000,000 aggregate by their home school.
  3. Current BLS or OSHA certification. If student’s BLS or OSHA certification requirements expire before the accepted rotation dates, student will be required to update certification and provide corresponding documentation before the date of the rotation.

General questions

  1. Do you accept students from international medical schools?
    The School of Medicine only accepts students from LCME or AOA accredited medical schools. Canadian students from LCME accredited schools may contact us at for more information.
  2. When will I hear back regarding my application?
    Do not call to check the status of your application, you will be notified via VSLO once a decision has been made.
  3. Are applications processed on a first come first serve basis?
    No, departments receive the applications and they process the applications based on merit.
  4. Are there resources available for visiting students in regards to housing/transportation?
    No. Visiting students are responsible for securing their own housing and transportation.
  5. Do you have scholarships for visiting students?
    Please see the Scholarship Opportunities for Visiting Students section below. We do not offer any additional financial assistance to visiting students.
  6. Can a student apply to multiple departments?
    You can apply to as many departments as you would like, just be sure to rank your choices.
  7. What are the odds I will be selected?
    Last year we had over 475 visiting students apply to OHSU and we were able to place approximately 200 of those students. It is important to apply to multiple rotations and to rank your choices.
  8. Can I receive extra malpractice coverage through OHSU?
    We do not provide extra malpractice coverage for visiting students if they do not have the level of coverage that we require. Talk with your home school officials to see if they can help you secure additional coverage.

Supplemental document questions:

  1. Are supplemental documents accepted via email?
    No. All documents must be uploaded to VSLO. 
  2. I have never had a background check.
    You must submit a background check that has been successfully completed within the last 12 months. We do not have a specific vendor we prefer, but we do ask that a state (where your school is) and a federal check have been done and cleared. Once completed, upload the documents to VSLO.
  3. Do you have any recommendations for vendors to use for background checks, liability insurance, etc.?
    No. Please contact your home school for recommendations.
  4. Should I send hard copies of my supplemental documents or should I upload them to VSLO?
    All documents must be uploaded to VSLO. We will no longer be accepting documents that are not submitted through VSLO.
  5. I do not have a hard copy of my Step 1 scores, what should I do? 
    Have your school submit a letter on letterhead documenting that you have passed your boards.
  6. What is the cut off score for Step 1?
    OHSU just requires that you have passed the boards.
  7. My school requires we take our Step 1 after our third year.
    Have your school submit a letter stating that your Step 1 is taken after your third year due to a curriculum change.
  8. Are there any additional requirements/documents besides those listed on VSLO?
    Individual programs may require additional information and they will contact you.
  9. Do I need to have a BLS certification?
    Yes, it needs to be completed before starting a visiting rotation at OHSU.

Letter questions

  1. Who should my letter of recommendation be addressed to?
    Letters may be addressed to the Visiting Student Coordinator.
  2. I waived my right to see my LOR, how am I supposed to upload it?
    Have your letter writer send it to your coordinator who will upload it into VSLO.
  3. What goes into my letter of interest?
    Your letter should explain why you are interested in coming to OHSU and why you are interested in being placed in the department you are applying for.

Rotation questions

  1. What can I do to increase my chances of getting the rotation I want?
    The best strategy to being selected for an away rotation is to apply to multiple rotations and to have a completed application.
  2. My school’s rotations are staggered and do not match the rotations at OHSU, can you accommodate me?
    We will be unable to accommodate you.
  3. The rotation I am interested in is not listed on the VSLO website, is that a mistake?
    No, departments close particular blocks and we are unable to place you in a closed block. Departments may be closed for the academic year due to the capacity being taken by OHSU students.
  4. Can I do a two week rotation at OHSU?
    No, we cannot accommodate two week rotations.
  5. Can I get a description of the rotation I am interested in?
    Please refer to our visiting student elective catalog listed on VSLO for a description.
  6. How many electives/rotations can I participate in at OHSU?
    Visiting students can participate in a maximum of one four-week elective rotation.
  7. I want to make sure a rotation is available before I apply, who should I talk to?
    Availability of rotations cannot be confirmed by telephone or email.

The following information pertains to accepted visiting students.

  • You will receive an email from the OHSU Registrar’s Office once you have been accepted for the rotation. Once you receive this email, you have one week to pay a $200 non-refundable processing fee. Failure to submit this fee will result in the withdrawal/expiration of the offer. If you have trouble paying your fee online via the information listed on this email, please call OHSU’s Cashier’s Office at 503-494-8243.
  • If you can no longer attend an elective which you have been accepted, you must notify the Visiting Student Coordinator via email no later than 4 weeks prior to your start date. The Visiting Student Coordinator will then notify the department that you cannot attend, and you will need to drop the elective in VSLO. No rescheduling of electives is permitted. If you fail to notify the Visiting Student Coordinator at least 4 weeks prior to your start date, OHSU will withdraw you from any future scheduled electives and your home school will be notified.
  • Information for Visiting Students Rotating at OHSU
  • OHSU has a Pass/No Pass grading policy and course directors may not be able to assign any other grades such as 3 or 5-tiered grading.
  • OHSU has a 6-week evaluation due date which aligns with LCME requirement. If we do NOT submit an evaluation by end of 6th week from ending of the VSLO rotation, you can send us a reminder email at