2023-2024 Case Western Reserve

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

chilly_md

Full Member
Staff member
Administrator
Volunteer Staff
2+ Year Member
Joined
Mar 3, 2021
Messages
4,292
Reaction score
4,508

2023-2024 Case Western Reserve Secondary Essay Prompts: **If you already submitted your secondary before July 10, don't worry!**

Required Short Answer Responses:​

Intrinsic Motivation and Self-Directed Learning: The most successful medical students at our school are generally those who are intrinsically motivated, self-directed learners. Think of a time when you had to pursue a goal without clear external direction. Describe your approach and any new knowledge, perspectives, or skills that you acquired. (1,000 character limit) (Changed as of July 10, 2023 See Admin note below #13 )

  1. Greatest Challenge Essay: The admissions committee is interested in gaining more insight into you as a person. Please describe a significant personal challenge you have faced, one which you feel has helped to shape you as a person. Examples may include a moral or ethical dilemma, a situation of personal adversity, or a hurdle in your life that you worked hard to overcome. Please include how you got through the experience and what you learned about yourself as a result. (2,000 character limit) **Updated July 10, 2023**
  2. Based on your current maturity and wisdom, reflect upon an experience from the past few years that you would handle differently today. (1,000 character limit)
  3. Gap Year(s) if applicable: If you are taking time off between college graduation and medical school matriculation, please tell us why you made this decision and what you will be doing or have done during this gap time. (1,000 character limit)

Optional Responses:

  1. Research/Scholarly Work: One of the four pillars of the Western Reserve2 Curriculum is Research and Scholarship. Although research is not a prerequisite requirement for the University Program, if you have participated in research or another scholarly project, please tell us about it. Describe your experience, including the question you pursued and how you approached it, your results and interpretation of the results, and most importantly, any thoughts about what this experience meant to you. Remember that research is broad-based and can include such projects as a senior capstone or a thesis and can include both medical and non-medically-related investigations. If you have not completed research/scholarly work, you will be able to indicate this in a radio button embedded within this response. (3,500 character limit)
  • Note that if you are applying to both the University Program and the CCLCM, the research response will default to the CCLCM required response.
2. Additional Information Response: Is there any further information that you wish to share with the Admissions Committee that may not be captured in the rest of your application? (2,000 character limit)

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

CCLCM (5 yr. MD) Applicants (this is a separate program/different application than CWRU MD app)

Required Responses: **You can use your same greatest challenge essay if you are applying to both programs!**

  1. Greatest Challenge Essay: The admissions committee is interested in gaining more insight into you as a person. Please describe a significant personal challenge you have faced, one which you feel has helped to shape you as a person. Examples may include a moral or ethical dilemma, a situation of personal adversity, or a hurdle in your life that you worked hard to overcome. Please include how you got through the experience and what you learned about yourself as a result. (2,000 character limit)
  2. Research Essay: Please tell us about ONE research project to which you made a significant contribution. In your essay, describe your role on the project, the hypothesis of your research and whether you contributed to hypothesis generation, why the methods were selected to answer that hypothesis, your results, and interpretation of your results with respect to future findings. In addition, please briefly share your motivation for pursuing this research project and reflect on how this experience affected your future career goals. (3,500 character limit)
  3. Intrinsic Motivation and Self-Directed Learning: The most successful medical students at our school are generally those who are intrinsically motivated, self-directed learners. Think of a time when you had to pursue a goal without clear external direction. Describe your approach and any new knowledge, perspectives, or skills that you acquired. (1,000 character limit)
  4. Career Essay: What does your ideal career entail fifteen years after medical school graduation? (1,000 character limit)
  5. Gap Year(s) if applicable: If you are taking time off between college graduation and medical school matriculation, please tell us why you made this decision and what you will be doing or have done during this gap time. (1,000 character limit)

Optional Responses:​

  1. Additional Information Response: Is there any further information that you wish to share with the Admissions Committee that may not be captured in the rest of your application? (2,000 character limit)

Good luck to everyone applying!

Interview feedback:


Members don't see this ad.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Case Western has this secondary question about research: "Research Response: One of the four pillars of the Western Reserve2 Curriculum is Research and Scholarship. Although research is not a prerequisite requirement for the University Program, if you have participated in research or another scholarly project, please tell us about it. Describe your experience, including the question you pursued and how you approached it, your results and interpretation of the results, and most importantly, any thoughts about what this experience meant to you. Remember that research is broad-based and can include such projects as a senior capstone or a thesis and can include both medical and non-medically-related investigations. If you have not completed research, please indicate that in the text box below. "

I did research in multiple labs in undergrad and am in another lab in my gap year. My gap year role is the most impactful. Can I just talk about my gap year research role here or do I also have to talk a bit about my undergrad labs?
 
Case Western has this secondary question about research: "Research Response: One of the four pillars of the Western Reserve2 Curriculum is Research and Scholarship. Although research is not a prerequisite requirement for the University Program, if you have participated in research or another scholarly project, please tell us about it. Describe your experience, including the question you pursued and how you approached it, your results and interpretation of the results, and most importantly, any thoughts about what this experience meant to you. Remember that research is broad-based and can include such projects as a senior capstone or a thesis and can include both medical and non-medically-related investigations. If you have not completed research, please indicate that in the text box below. "

I did research in multiple labs in undergrad and am in another lab in my gap year. My gap year role is the most impactful. Can I just talk about my gap year research role here or do I also have to talk a bit about my undergrad labs?
I would focus on the most impactful experience with your gap year research as/if you are best able to cover the breadth of the prompt. I don't think it is asking for a full inventory.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Members don't see this ad :)
But if your gap year is just starting, you might be better served by starting out by stating, "I had experiences in [number] labs during undergrad and I am currently pursuing research [describe]. In each instance, I approached the experience as an opportunity to.... In my first assignment, I .... Moving to the ... lab, I explored.... My experience at [lab #3] culminated in a [presentation, grant proposal, poster, paper, whatever outcome you had]. Finally, I am using all I've learned in prior assignments to make a contribution to the ... lab at [location]. Here I am ....

It looks like MadLibs but I think it works to show the breadth of experiences you've had in research which is clearly a topic of great importance to Case Western. I think you'd do a disservice to leave out the prior experiences.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 3 users
  • Like
  • Love
Reactions: 7 users
For the gap year and additional info prompts, which are common to both programs, should we write two separate responses for each? Or will the CCLCM reviewers see our answers to those questions for our Case responses, and that'll be enough? Just wondering, since I plan to use the additional info prompt as a mini 'why I am interested in your program' and need to know if I should craft two separate ones, one for each program.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
For the gap year and additional info prompts, which are common to both programs, should we write two separate responses for each? Or will the CCLCM reviewers see our answers to those questions for our Case responses, and that'll be enough? Just wondering, since I plan to use the additional info prompt as a mini 'why I am interested in your program' and need to know if I should craft two separate ones, one for each program.
The required essays that are shared will be seen by both programs. You won't have to write separate essays for each program when they are shared. Make sense?
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
But what about the optional essays? What if I want one optional essay to cover something different for CCLCM vs Case?
There is one optional essay that you write and your response will be seen by each program that you apply to. In the past, it has not been uncommon for applicants to make comments about the programs to which they are interesed in. It won't be viewed negatively. Remember, we're the same school - we just happen to have more than one MD pathway. Just don't call us Northwestern (hehe).
 
Last edited:
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: 7 users
Does anybody know if the character limits include spaces? I haven't received the formal secondary yet.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 4 users
Members don't see this ad :)
In light of the recent Supreme Court decision, we have decided to change one of the essays in our secondary application and revert back to the "challenge" essay that we've used in the past. To those that have already drafted essays for the "self-directed learner," our sincere apologies. This hasn't been fun for us either. Secondary Application Questions | MD University Program | Case Western Reserve University
Will it be the same as the “Greatest Challenge” essay for CCLCM? Like how the gap year and additional information is seen by both programs?
 
Hi! When will secondaries for CW begin going out?
Working on it today. We're going to send out a very small set of invites today to test things. Then a slightly larger batch tomorrow. If everything goes well, we'll get all the others out shortly after. We want to make extra sure that everything works so that we don't get blasted on here on SDN. ;)
 
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: 10 users
+1 OOS Secondary Invite Received.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
They added back the self-directed learning prompt for CCLCM btw!
 
Last edited:
"The most successful medical students at our school are generally those who are intrinsically motivated, self-directed learners. Think of a time when you had to pursue a goal without clear external direction. Describe your approach and any new knowledge, perspectives, or skills that you acquired."

Is it okay if I write about teaching myself a sport or hobby? Or should this be more academic?
 
Can you use the same greatest challenge essay for both programs?
 
I received emails that the application is complete but I have not submitted LORs yet. Is this normal?
 
2. Additional Information Response: Is there any further information that you wish to share with the Admissions Committee that may not be captured in the rest of your application? (2,000 character limit)
If I need more space to talk about the challenge from question 1, can I use this space here?
 
If I need more space to talk about the challenge from question 1, can I use this space here?
I did something like this for another school. I think it's probably fine as long as you make sure each essay works by itself standing alone.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
I did something like this for another school. I think it's probably fine as long as you make sure each essay works by itself standing alone.
Thanks! yeah thats a good point. I mostly wanted to talk about my success in school despite the challenges I mentioned above so hopefully that works.
 
For CWRU's research essay, how in depth are you guys going with the methodology of the independent studies you have conducted? They don't really ask for methodology so I'm wondering if I should talk about it. For reference, my research is in psychiatry and I don't think someone unfamiliar with my work would be able to understand it if I didn't elaborate on methodology.

With 3500 characters, I feel like there's a lot of room to address what their question is asking
 
For CWRU's research essay, how in depth are you guys going with the methodology of the independent studies you have conducted? They don't really ask for methodology so I'm wondering if I should talk about it. For reference, my research is in psychiatry and I don't think someone unfamiliar with my work would be able to understand it if I didn't elaborate on methodology.

With 3500 characters, I feel like there's a lot of room to address what their question is asking
I'm touching on my methodology for a few sentences because they give you so many characters, but kind of the bare minimum as technical details go. Mostly why we chose those methods/my role in performing them
 
I'm touching on my methodology for a few sentences because they give you so many characters, but kind of the bare minimum as technical details go. Mostly why we chose those methods/my role in performing them
Got it, thanks. I think I'm probably going to do a few sentences and just really dumb it down so its easier to read.
 
Got it, thanks. I think I'm probably going to do a few sentences and just really dumb it down so its easier to read.
Yeah I didn't go too technical, and instead focused on my role in data analysis, determining future directions, and experiment planning/design.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Yeah I didn't go too technical, and instead focused on my role in data analysis, determining future directions, and experiment planning/design.
I interviewed here last year, I was decently detailed (used about 3500 characters). Assuming you interview you will probably be matched up with someone who is knowledgeable in the field. My research was pretty heavy on histology and I was subsequently interviewed by a pathologist who asked me about some specific details.

Although I didn't get in soooo yeah.
 
  • Like
  • Haha
Reactions: 1 users
Hey all, MS3 in the 4-year University Program here. Now that the secondaries have gone out to most, I thought I'd stop by and say hi.

I've been very happy with my decision to come here and firmly believe CWRU has one of the best communities + lifestyle of any medical school in the country.

Happy to answer any questions about case med and my experience here or over pm. Also, I remember how stressful and grueling the application cycle is, so be sure to always put your mental and physical health first during this marathon!
 
  • Like
  • Love
Reactions: 2 users
  1. Based on your current maturity and wisdom, reflect upon an experience from the past few years that you would handle differently today. (1,000 character limit)
Man this question is so hard to answer without outing myself lol
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
I'm sorry this happened. It looks like you were one of 12 applicants that received this errant message. Our developer has resolved the issue. If you want me to confirm your status, please email me: [email protected].
Wish other schools also had real people from their committees hanging out on these forums, I almost wrote about how much this impacted my perception of Case on the additional info session lol.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 users
for the self-directed learning question would it be appropriate to write about an experience from high school? or is that too long ago and a more recent example would be stronger?
 
for the self-directed learning question would it be appropriate to write about an experience from high school? or is that too long ago and a more recent example would be stronger?
that's no longer a prompt on the secondary. Look at post #13.
 
Top