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2nd bachelor's degree beneficial??

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by jayel, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. jayel

    10+ Year Member

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    I'm a post-bacc, taking the required courses for medical school, and have a B.A. in economics. We have mandatory advising at my university, and my advisor told me it's possible to get a B.S. in Biochemistry in 3 semesters. Three semesters is good timing, because after next semester, I am going to apply, so right after I get my degree, theoretically I'll be entering medical school.

    I only have one more class to take to satisfy my medical School prerequisites, so I was planning to stop taking classes and find a job after the upcoming semester, since I'm utterly broke now. God bless my parents for helping me out, but I told them to only help me financially until I am finished with my pre-req's.

    Is it beneficial to complete the B.S. in biochemistry? Even though the timing is good, I won't be able to write that I have a bachelor's in biochemistry on my application...only that I'm pursuing it.

    I guess in a nutshell, I'm asking, will a bachelor's degree in biochemistry enhance my chances to enter medical school?
     
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  3. DrMidlife

    DrMidlife has an opinion
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    Completing a second degree is only marginally interesting on an app. What you want to be careful of is that if you say on your app that you're completing it, then you have to complete it.

    If there's no financial, registration or advising benefit to taking this on, then in my view there's no point. The stereotypical reason to do a 2nd bachelors is to get eligibility for federal loans, to get registration priority, and to get access to whatever the school offers in premed advising support & activities.

    That said, any upper div science coursework is GREAT. But still it's all about your grades.

    Best of luck to you.
     
  4. wepio

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    This is a question I've mulled over for a while also. Based on the information I gathered from other posts, I came to the conclusion that a second bachelor's degree is equivalent to an EC. The exception that I've seen with second degrees is an SMP which is geared specifically toward the health professions. In anycase, back to your situation, what I think is more important is how the additional classes required for a biochem degree will contribute to your pursuit of a career in medicine. A case in point is my situation. I have only two more classes to complete a degree in biology; ecology and some other plant life-type class. They really don't do me any good, aside from completing a second degree in biology. Taking these classes will prohibit me from taking other molecular biology classes I'd rather take, which'll prepare me for medical school. In your case, if you are planning to go into some sort of bio-organic/biochem type of research when you enter medical school, I can see it as being useful to your application. However, if they only serve as a means to obtaining a biochem degree that'll have no relevance toward your future as a researcher or physician, then it's sort of your call.

    To play devil's advocate, I think it always seems better to say you have a second degree. If for nothing else, it just looks better on paper Given the option of saying, "I took a whole lot of molecular biology and chemistry classes" vs "I got a second degree in biochemistry", I'd certainly go with the latter. But then again, I could be wrong. I'm learning this as I go along too.

    Sorry if I didn't help too much, but that's just my two cents.
     
  5. njbmd

    njbmd Guest
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    There is no "preferred" major or course of study for medical school. If you have solid grades in your economics major, you will be fine once you have completed your pre-med pre-reqs. On the other hand, if being able to write down that you have a bachelor's degree in biochemistry is something that is of importance to you personally, then complete the degree. Having one major or another is not important in terms of making you more competitive for entry into medical school.

    If you need the grades (your uGPA is low and it needs to be raised) then the course credit hours will be helpful as long as you are achieving no grades lower than B+. If you don't need to do undergraduate GPA "damage-control" then don't spend the extra time or money on coursework that you don't actually need in the long-run. You would be better served preparing for the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) and working on your application.
     

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