boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Including a F and a bunch of Cs. No As. It's not pretty. I was not a science major but took a bunch of sciences and got some Bs and Cs and one F (in higher calc).


I am in a post-bacc program right now, and so far I have a 3.9 (all As, one B+). At the conclusion of this program, I will have a 3.3 sci. GPA. I plan to do another year of undergrad courses after the post-bac, and if I keep my GPA trend up, I will get up to a science GPA between 3.5 and 3.6 (perhaps I can actually reach a 3.6, we'll see).

My overall was a 3.4 at graduation, and it should also be up to a 3.5 overall GPA after my post-bac year and a 3.6 overall GPA after two years of close-to-full science only workload.

How much is my undergrad going to hurt? Note: My overall GPA at the end of my sophomore year was a 2.92, and my science at 1.6 or something like that.

Over the last three years, I have worked very hard and maintained a 3.8 overall and a 3.9 science. But I am afraid of my first two years of many Cs, an F, and no As.

Unfortunately, after two years, when my overall is a 3.6 and my science is at 3.5-3.6, I will have so many credit hours (around 300), that taking more undergrad courses will not be possible (e.g, no increase in grades).

I really want to get into a MD school, and would rather not take the risk of a SMP. Is it possible with the horrible start I gave myself or should I be looking at other options?
 

Mobius1985

10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
3,484
1
If you get your undergrad GPA up to a 3.5-3.6 range, you will be competitive with an MCAT of 32+. Don't worry so much about your bad early start. It's clear from looking at your record that you are a completely different person than you were as a teen student, that you've worked hard, and that you really want what you're working toward. You've proven yourself to be med-school worthy. You will not be screened out due to low stats when the time comes. When your transcript is evaluated in-depth, and the steep recent upward grade trend appreciated, you will not be discriminated against. You will be asked about it at interviews, or given an opportunity to explain on secondary essays, so have a good answer which includes what you learned, and how you changed.

Assuming a compelling personal statement, good Letters of Recommendation, appropriate extracurriculars, and good interview skills, you will get an MD acceptance. Your academic issues will not hold you back.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Thank you for the help. Am I going in the right track, e.g, continuing to take undergrad credits instead of grad work or other options?
 
About the Ads

Mobius1985

10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
3,484
1
Yes, you're on the right track, and made the best decision to improve your overall undergrad GPA with a post-bac. The second best choice would be an SMP, which is risky, and which you said you'd prefer to avoid if possible. The next part of your plan's success is to do well on the MCAT.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Thanks! I plan on taking an online prep course, and treating the MCAT like it is my full time job for two months or so from mid march to mid may, and then another month of steadier preparation while I start my summer term (and taking it MCAT in June). I won't take the MCAT until I am scoring at least 32-33 on the practice MCAT, even if it takes me a whole another year. I won't be applying next year as I am doing more undergrad as you can see, unless I somehow ace (36+) the june MCAT (I'm no genius, so it's very unlikely that'll happen unless my backup strategy of picking 'C' succeeds spectacularly), in which case I'll apply while taking more undergrad next year. So assuming I reach my target goal of a 33, and all the things I mentioned above: 3.6 overall, 3.5 science (maybe 3.6 science).

And average/decent everything else, I should be OK?
 

HeatherMD

Queen of Passiveagressiva
10+ Year Member
Oct 29, 2008
348
0
Canada
Status
Pre-Medical
Honestly, when I read the title of this I LOL'd and was getting ready to type out "no, you have a long way to go" blah blah blah the same thing we all say to those that screwed up early -- but you've already done the legwork, and props to you, you did very very well.

I think admissions can look past your earlier GPA, because you've proven that you can handle the medical school course load. I think you'll be fine. You have a bit of an uphill battle and some explaining to do, but you're turn-around is so drastic & positive, I'm sure you'll get an acceptance somewhere.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
I spoke to a counselor at my undergrad, and she said she has never seen anyone get into a medical school with an F and my other grades in science classes (referring to the 1.6), and I should perhaps look at other careers.

I'm glad to see that may not be the case. Going from 1.6 in science (1 F, 3 Cs, some Bs) to a 3.6 isn't easy, but its nice to hear your words of encouragement.

I appreciate all of your help.
 

Mobius1985

10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
3,484
1
I spoke to a counselor at my undergrad, and she said she has never seen anyone get into a medical school with an F and my other grades in science classes (referring to the 1.6), and I should perhaps look at other careers.
You will help students coming after you with a polite note to the undergrad counselor about your admissions success despite a poor academic showing in your early years, so she will leave room for hope along with her cautionary words in the future.
 

ktal4haider2015

Future UCR/UCLA Student
10+ Year Member
Jan 7, 2009
24
0
Status
Pre-Medical
I am part of a pre-medicine community at UC Riverside. Here we receive LOTS of support, advise and stuff to get into med school.. and here they have told us over and over again that as long as you show an upward trend on grades, and you have a good MCAT (30+), then, you should have no problem getting into med school. So there you go.. worry no more.. and just do your BEST on the MCAT..
I'm kinda in the same boat as you.. low GPA.. but I have 2 more years to go..
i'll be a super-super-senior by the end of this mess..
:)
 

RecyclingBinh

Class of 2014 hopeful!
10+ Year Member
Apr 8, 2008
878
0
Status
Pre-Medical
I am part of a pre-medicine community at UC Riverside. Here we receive LOTS of support, advise and stuff to get into med school.. and here they have told us over and over again that as long as you show an upward trend on grades, and you have a good MCAT (30+), then, you should have no problem getting into med school. So there you go.. worry no more.. and just do your BEST on the MCAT..
I'm kinda in the same boat as you.. low GPA.. but I have 2 more years to go..
i'll be a super-super-senior by the end of this mess..
:)
yup! very true indeed. I was told that many times as well. I messed up freshmen year, sort of, but my grades have been increasing every semester with no decrease.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
You will help students coming after you with a polite note to the undergrad counselor about your admissions success despite a poor academic showing in your early years, so she will leave room for hope along with her cautionary words in the future.
Will do :) - after I actually get in. :p
 
About the Ads

Vihsadas

No summer
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 17, 2007
5,469
54
An Igloo
Status
Medical Student
I spoke to a counselor at my undergrad, and she said she has never seen anyone get into a medical school with an F and my other grades in science classes (referring to the 1.6), and I should perhaps look at other careers.

I'm glad to see that may not be the case. Going from 1.6 in science (1 F, 3 Cs, some Bs) to a 3.6 isn't easy, but its nice to hear your words of encouragement.

I appreciate all of your help.
Your advisor is simply wrong. You absolutely can get into Medical school with an F. I have something like 1 F, 1 D, a few Cs and countless B-s. It's possible...hard, improbable, difficult: yes. But possible.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Well, you did have a 40 MCAT :p. I'm not exactly expecting that, though my GPA will be higher than yours. Although I am not sure how much difference 3.55-3.60 makes from a 3.38 - nowhere near to make up the difference me and you will likely have on the MCAT. :D
 

Vihsadas

No summer
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 17, 2007
5,469
54
An Igloo
Status
Medical Student
Well, you did have a 40 MCAT :p. I'm not exactly expecting that, though my GPA will be higher than yours. Although I am not sure how much difference 3.55-3.60 makes from a 3.38 - nowhere near to make up the difference me and you will likely have on the MCAT. :D
I think you'd be surprised, a 3.5-3.6 is a marked improvement over my GPA. I'm not saying it's likely or should be expected, just that it's possible to get in with some bad grades. Be the outlier. :p
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
I think you'd be surprised, a 3.5-3.6 is a marked improvement over my GPA. I'm not saying it's likely or should be expected, just that it's possible to get in with some bad grades. Be the outlier. :p
Really? It's .2 at most. I would think even a 2-3 point MCAT improvement (not that I'd get even a 37) would be much highly regarded. If I get a decent score, say 33-34, I think you'd have to be crazy to take me over you. I certainly wouldn't.

Note to future admission committees: You're not crazy, please forgive me.
 

SourKsRevenge

10+ Year Member
Nov 26, 2008
2
0
Status
Dental Student
Its nice that you are trying to improve your grades; however, there is a loophole. In fact this is happening to one of my friends right now. You can have a stinky ass gpa in undergrad (well at least a 3.0) and then get a 2 yr masters degree.... the school will actually look more towards that post-graduate gpa. My friend has a 3.24, he is on track for a 3.8 in grad school; however, our school would not take the 3.8 into consideration until the graduate was official.

It doesn't sound like you are taking that path, but I thought you should know about it if you are really that interested in going med. Honestly, I'd go dental; its harder but you get out earlier and malpractice insurance is much less. I wish that's what I woulda done; in fact, after med school I'm going to dental school.
 

Vihsadas

No summer
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 17, 2007
5,469
54
An Igloo
Status
Medical Student
Its nice that you are trying to improve your grades; however, there is a loophole. In fact this is happening to one of my friends right now. You can have a stinky ass gpa in undergrad (well at least a 3.0) and then get a 2 yr masters degree.... the school will actually look more towards that post-graduate gpa. My friend has a 3.24, he is on track for a 3.8 in grad school; however, our school would not take the 3.8 into consideration until the graduate was official.

It doesn't sound like you are taking that path, but I thought you should know about it if you are really that interested in going med. Honestly, I'd go dental; its harder but you get out earlier and malpractice insurance is much less. I wish that's what I woulda done; in fact, after med school I'm going to dental school.
I'm just curious where you heard that. At the vast majority of medical schools a graduate GPA will not help you at all. Most medical schools looks very strongly on the Undergraduate GPA, but not the graduate GPA.
The exception is if you are in an SMP program specifically tailored to improving your med application clout.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Well, part one is done.

I just finished my post-bac of 39 credits (science only, all prerequisites plus pathology, and physiology) with a 3.95 GPA.

So at this point, my science GPA is a 3.38, and overall GPA is a 3.54.

One more year, and my overall will go to a 3.6, and my science to a 3.5 (at this point I will have 250 credits, so further improvement will not be feasible). And I'll also have a second degree.
 
Last edited:

airca12

Thread killer
10+ Year Member
Jan 9, 2009
107
0
Status
Well, part one is done.

I just finished my post-bac of 39 credits (science only, all prerequisites plus pathology, and physiology) with a 3.95 GPA.

So at this point, my science GPA is a 3.38, and overall GPA is a 3.54.

One more year, and my overall will go to a 3.6, and my science to a 3.5 (at this point I will have 250 credits, so further improvement will not be feasible). And I'll also have a second degree.
Congratulations on the huge improvement you've made. It's inspirational.

Did you take the MCAT already? Have you considered applying this cycle to your state school(s) with those stats? It couldn't hurt if the rest of your app is ready, could it?
 

drizzt3117

chick magnet
10+ Year Member
Oct 29, 2006
14,647
31
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Well, part one is done.

I just finished my post-bac of 39 credits (science only, all prerequisites plus pathology, and physiology) with a 3.95 GPA.

So at this point, my science GPA is a 3.38, and overall GPA is a 3.54.

One more year, and my overall will go to a 3.6, and my science to a 3.5 (at this point I will have 250 credits, so further improvement will not be feasible). And I'll also have a second degree.
Are you going to apply this year? Or do another year for sure? I think you'd get in if you got a good MCAT score this year.
 

RoadRunner17

Fleet of feet
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
May 12, 2007
2,802
3
Status
You're halfway there. Just destroy the MCAT. I hope you've been keeping up with your volunteer activities and other life experiences, as well. You're in a better position than I was applying to schools this year, GPA-wise.
 
About the Ads

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Congratulations on the huge improvement you've made. It's inspirational.

Did you take the MCAT already? Have you considered applying this cycle to your state school(s) with those stats? It couldn't hurt if the rest of your app is ready, could it?
Are you going to apply this year? Or do another year for sure? I think you'd get in if you got a good MCAT score this year.
Well, I am starting MCAT study now. If I am scoring 33 or above on practice exams, I will take the MCAT. If not, I will keep studying until I am getting that 33+ consistently. If I do take it, and do get a good score, I will apply while still taking courses. If I don't take it, or don't do well, I will keep taking courses and apply the following year. Either way, I think I will take courses. I really want to try to get to that 3.6 overall and 3.5 science. At least that puts me into the 'below average, but within posibility' range.

You're halfway there. Just destroy the MCAT. I hope you've been keeping up with your volunteer activities and other life experiences, as well. You're in a better position than I was applying to schools this year, GPA-wise.
Yes, I've been doing research and volunteering every week. I am nontrad so I don't have as much as I'd like, but I will continue doing volunteering and add in some shadowing for the rest of this year, as well as all of next year.
 

drizzt3117

chick magnet
10+ Year Member
Oct 29, 2006
14,647
31
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Well, I am starting MCAT study now. If I am scoring 33 or above on practice exams, I will take the MCAT. If not, I will keep studying until I am getting that 33+ consistently. If I do take it, and do get a good score, I will apply while still taking courses. If I don't take it, or don't do well, I will keep taking courses and apply the following year. Either way, I think I will take courses. I really want to try to get to that 3.6 overall and 3.5 science. At least that puts me into the 'below average, but within posibility' range.
I don't think 3.6/3.5 is below average, I think that's pretty close to the average for applicants. If you get above 32 you'll definitely be above average. I applied with ~3.6 cumulative and did well with the top tier. I had similar postbac performance to you (~53 units @ 4.0) but I was a non-science major so that represented the entirety of my science GPA, which I guess make things a little different (although i dunno why it should matter)
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
I think the average was a 3.67 and a 3.6 or something. In any case, I am hoping my 3.9 overall and science over something like the past 100 credits shows that I am not the student I was and hopefully that trend puts me in the average range GPA wise.
 

drizzt3117

chick magnet
10+ Year Member
Oct 29, 2006
14,647
31
Status
Resident [Any Field]
I think the average was a 3.67 and a 3.6 or something. In any case, I am hoping my 3.9 overall and science over something like the past 100 credits shows that I am not the student I was and hopefully that trend puts me in the average range GPA wise.
I think you'll do better than the average applicant, personally, good luck! :luck:
 

Vihsadas

No summer
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 17, 2007
5,469
54
An Igloo
Status
Medical Student
Wow, good job man! That's some solid evidence of your improvement. Now you just have to convince them that who you have become is more important than who you used to be! Keep motivated, keep dedicated to some meanigful and worthwhile causes (community, volunteering, whatever you are really interested in contributing to) and kill that MCAT! I'm sure you can do well on the exam. You've got it goin' on now!
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Thanks. I did not do well on the KAPLAN MCAT diagnostic I took. I have 86 days to get a high score, and I'll try to study an average of 4 hours per day for that duration. I got VR 13, PS 6, BS 8. I never memorized any of the formulas, so that hurt me a lot, but still, 27 is pretty crappy. I need at least a 33 to be competitive :(.

I am aiming as high as possible, but it's going to be a tough road.

So I am freaking out right now. I don't want to have worked hard over the last three years and maintained a 3.9+, and a 3.95 in my pre-reqs in the last year, all to have it crashing down because I can't do well on the MCAT. Argh!
 
Last edited:

RoadRunner17

Fleet of feet
Moderator Emeritus
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
May 12, 2007
2,802
3
Status
Thanks. I did not do well on the KAPLAN MCAT diagnostic I took. I have 86 days to get a high score, and I'll try to study an average of 4 hours per day for that duration. I got VR 13, PS 6, BS 8. I never memorized any of the formulas, so that hurt me a lot, but still, 27 is pretty crappy. I need at least a 33 to be competitive :(.

I am aiming as high as possible, but it's going to be a tough road.

So I am freaking out right now. I don't want to have worked hard over the last three years and maintained a 3.9+, and a 3.95 in my pre-reqs in the last year, all to have it crashing down because I can't do well on the MCAT. Argh!
Wow, you're in good shape. VR is by far the hardest section to actually raise your score in. The science sections are much more malleable, once you have finished reviewing and learned how to think for the test. That requires practice, of which you are just about to start doing, so I think you are in good shape.
 

Vihsadas

No summer
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 17, 2007
5,469
54
An Igloo
Status
Medical Student
Thanks. I did not do well on the KAPLAN MCAT diagnostic I took. I have 86 days to get a high score, and I'll try to study an average of 4 hours per day for that duration. I got VR 13, PS 6, BS 8. I never memorized any of the formulas, so that hurt me a lot, but still, 27 is pretty crappy. I need at least a 33 to be competitive :(.

I am aiming as high as possible, but it's going to be a tough road.

So I am freaking out right now. I don't want to have worked hard over the last three years and maintained a 3.9+, and a 3.95 in my pre-reqs in the last year, all to have it crashing down because I can't do well on the MCAT. Argh!
If you got a 13 on VR on your diagnostic, you should be fine in 86 days lol. Your diag is comparable to mine (8PS 12VR 8BS). Study your butt off, have a solid plan, do all the content review, a massload of practice problems, and a crapload of practice exams and I think you'll be great. :)
 
About the Ads

Sporknife

10+ Year Member
Mar 3, 2009
16
0
Houston, TX & Boston, MA
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
boggvir, you are going to be my model. I am so rooting for you! I had similar #s upon my graduation and now I am about to embark on a post-bacc and then get a 2nd degree in bio (~1 yr).

your perseverance is inspiring. go boggvir! keep us posted!
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Thank you for everyone's help. Took two days off after my post-bac, and my MCAT studies starts tonight! Wish me luck :).
 

Mobius1985

10+ Year Member
Apr 4, 2007
3,484
1
I think the Kaplan diagnostic is deliberately difficult so they are less likely to have to honor their guarantee if you don't do better on the real test. Don't be anxious, and instead use it as a spur inspiring you to stick to your study plan.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Yea, that's what I've been reading. So hopefully that was it, and we'll see in a couple months.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
So I couldn't apply last year due to family problems. I got a 33 on my MCAT (all 11s) and my final cGPA and sGPA are now both 3.54 and 3.51 respectively.

Over the last 90 credits, I have a 3.96 GPA. In my last 50 credits of science, including all post-bac and some upper level science, my GPA is a 3.94. I really can't do much better than that in my GPA, and now I have too many credits for any change to be worth it. If I don't get in - it's Georgetown or other SMP for me.

But I am about to submit my app and I'm applying broadly. Keeping my fingers crossed and hoping I didn't ruin my dream in the first two years of school :).
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Thanks :).

Just submitted - I hope I don't have to do a SMP next year :).
 

Catalystik

The Gimlet Eye
10+ Year Member
Sep 4, 2006
34,009
13,428
The Other Side of the Portal
Status
Attending Physician
With a 3.54/33, besides appropriate state and regional schools, consider screening these for "fit" with an MSAR:

( )=%OOS matriculating

Loma Linda (49%), Loyola (55%), RFU (53%), UKentucky (30%), Creighton (89%), Albany (62%), SUNY Downstate (18%), Hofstra (new), Jefferson (60%), MCW (~65%)
UIllinois (27%), Wayne (17%), Buffalo (29%), Toledo (34%), Drexel (71%), Temple (52%), Vermont (72%), VCU (44%), Virginia Tech Carilion (new),
GWU (96%), FIU (21%), Louisville (25%), Tulane (83%), UNevada (24% from region and [W]WAMI), NYMC (67%), MUSC (22%), SCarolina (18%), EVMS (39%),
Rush (19%), Michigan State (26%), Oakland (new),
Commonweath MC (PA) (29%)
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Unfortunately I come from a state as bad as California. I'll apply to most of those OOS schools - thank you!
 

Crisco

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Mar 31, 2009
149
3
Status
So I couldn't apply last year due to family problems. I got a 33 on my MCAT (all 11s) and my final cGPA and sGPA are now both 3.54 and 3.51 respectively.

Over the last 90 credits, I have a 3.96 GPA. In my last 50 credits of science, including all post-bac and some upper level science, my GPA is a 3.94. I really can't do much better than that in my GPA, and now I have too many credits for any change to be worth it. If I don't get in - it's Georgetown or other SMP for me.

But I am about to submit my app and I'm applying broadly. Keeping my fingers crossed and hoping I didn't ruin my dream in the first two years of school :).
I'm in a similar boat:

Freshman: 1.79
Sophomore: 3.27
Junior 1st Sem: 1.55
-Leave-
Junior 2nd Sem: 4.08
Senior: 3.70 (3.78 science)

SMP: 3.91

MCAT: 38Q

It is always an inspiration to see others who have gone through what I had to and then pull through. I'm applying now as well and I hope you get into many wonderful places! :)
 
Last edited:

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Man, SDN and mdapplicants is making me VERY jittery.
 

boggvir

Sunny California
10+ Year Member
Dec 24, 2008
675
1
Status
Medical Student
Assuming I don't get in this year - what would be my next option? SMP?

My GPA is 3.55c/3.51s, and MCAT 33, so I think my MCAT is OK but my GPA is probably slightly higher than the average SMPer. I don't see that as an issue but I am deathly afraid of spending $50k from loans on an SMP and then not getting in even if I do well. I can't take any more undergrad courses (I have like 300+ cr, moving from 3.5 to 3.6 science would take 40 credits in science of straight As). And undergrad wise, if the last 100 credits worth of 3.9+ is not good enough, I don't think much else would be.

My last grade lower than a B was in 2003, and my last grade lower than a B+ was in 2005. And since 2005, I've had only two B+ grades, and all of the others have been A- or As.

So I guess now I have to hope that they look closer at my year-to-year breakdown and not screen me out, I suppose :(.
 

Crisco

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Mar 31, 2009
149
3
Status
Assuming I don't get in this year - what would be my next option? SMP?

My GPA is 3.55c/3.51s, and MCAT 33, so I think my MCAT is OK but my GPA is probably slightly higher than the average SMPer.
your GPA is definitely higher than your typical SMPer who probably hovers around a 3.3 or even lower. It is a possible route but I am gonna say it is unnecessary. You should be able to get in with those stats.
 
About the Ads