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10 Least Expensive Public Medical Schools for In-State Students

The average annual cost of tuition and fees among these 10 medical schools is about $17,000.

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The U.S. News Short List, separate from our overall rankings, is a regular series that magnifies individual data points in hopes of providing students and parents a way to find which undergraduate or graduate programs excel or have room to grow in specific areas. Be sure to explore The Short List: College and The Short List: Grad School to find data that matters to you in your college or grad school search.

While paying for medical school is rarely an easy or cheap feat, going the in-state, public school route in lieu of attending a private school could save students tens of thousands of dollars.

Of the 49 private medical schools that submitted tuition and fees data to U.S. News for the 2011-2012 school year, the average total cost was $45,870 per year. That average cost drops to $28,812 when looking at the costs of the 64 public schools that submitted in-state tuition and fees data.

The average cost among the 10 least expensive medical schools for in-state students was $16,937. Nine of the ten schools are among the top 75 programs in the U.S. News Best Medical Schools rankings, in either research or primary care.

Eastern Carolina University's Brody School of Medicine in Greenville, N.C., tops the list of least expensive public medical schools for in-state students, with a total annual cost of $12,644. Brody's cost is less than half the in-state average among public medical schools, and less than a third the average among private medical schools.

Texas residents have several options for attending an inexpensive medical school. Among the 10 least costly medical schools for in-state students, 5 are in the Lone Star State, at schools in Bryan, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, and Fort Worth.

[Check out the 10 least expensive private medical schools.]

The F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, a federal service postgraduate academy that charges $0 in tuition and fees in return for military service, was excluded from this list. Schools that were designated by U.S. News as Unranked also weren't considered for this report. U.S. News did not calculate a numerical ranking for Unranked programs because the program did not meet certain criteria that U.S. News requires to be numerically ranked.

Below is a table of the 10 least expensive public medical schools for first year, in-state students, based on tuition and required fees. The cost does not include room and board, books, and other miscellaneous costs:

Medical school (name) In-state tuition & fees (2011-2012) U.S. News research rank U.S. News primary care rank
East Carolina University (Brody) $12,644 RNP* 31
Texas A&M Health Science Center $15,037 83 71
University of Texas Health Science Center—Houston $15,713 55 RNP
University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill $15,844 21 2
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center $16,640 20 21
University of Texas Health Science Center—San Antonio $16,965 67 52
University of North Texas Health Science Center $18,490 RNP 35
University of Massachusetts—Worcester $18,593 48 7
University of New Mexico $19,294 83 31
West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine $20,150 RNP RNP

*RNP denotes an institution that is ranked in the bottom one fourth of its rankings category. U.S. News calculates a rank for the school but has decided not to publish it.

Don't see your school in the top 10? Access the U.S. News Medical School Compass to find tuition data, complete rankings, and much more.

U.S. News surveyed more than 140 medical schools for our 2011 survey of research and primary care programs. Schools self-reported a myriad of data regarding their academic programs and the makeup of their student body, among other areas, making U.S. News's data the most accurate and detailed collection of college facts and figures of its kind. While U.S. News uses much of this survey data to rank schools for our annual Best Medical Schools rankings, the data can also be useful when examined on a smaller scale. U.S. News will now produce lists of data, separate from the overall rankings, meant to provide students and parents a means to find which schools excel, or have room to grow, in specific areas that are important to them. While the data come from the schools themselves, these lists are not related to, and have no influence over, U.S. News's rankings of Best Colleges or Best Graduate Schools.