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Boomer7200

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Hey guys, so most likely I'm going to end up with a 3.3-3.4 GPA for freshman year. I started off really bad with not really studying, and the second semester I stepped it up. I've taken Bio 1 and currently taking molecular genetics and have taken both gen chem 1 and 2. Calculus 1 and 2 I've taken. I was just wondering if I am screwed for medical school or not. I have seemed to find out my studying routine now and this summer is doing an internship at a hospital for patient experience and also getting my EMT license. I'd really appreciate the help!
 
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No, get 2 years of 3.7+ and you will show you are Good’nuff. Remember, the goal is to get in somewhere, not just top schools.
 
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Boomer7200

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No, get 2 years of 3.7+ and you will show you are Good’nuff. Remember, the goal is to get in somewhere, not just top schools.
No, get 2 years of 3.7+ and you will show you are Good’nuff. Remember, the goal is to get in somewhere, not just top schools.
Would you say if I don't get a 3.5+ sophomore year, should I call it quits for MD school?
 
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candbgirl

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Work hard. Find out about DO schools. Do your ECs and have some fun too. Why are you getting an EMT license? Find some way to show your altruism- find a way to serve the underserved in your community. Shadow, do research if that appeals to you. Good luck.
 
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Would you say if I don't get a 3.5+ sophomore year, should I call it quits for MD school?
Not at all. If you get a 3.5 sophomore year, a 3.7+ Junior and senior year will make MD still possible. However, if you maintain a 3.5 until you apply, a >518 MCAT would show you as MD material at middle to low tier schools. >508 would be good for DO.
 
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This is assuming standard cookie cutter ECs and the average MCATs to continue to rise.
 
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Boomer7200

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Work hard. Find out about DO schools. Do your ECs and have some fun too. Why are you getting an EMT license? Find some way to show your altruism- find a way to serve the underserved in your community. Shadow, do research if that appeals to you. Good luck.
I'm getting my EMT license because I want to have a job that is related to the health field. I can do that in the summers and on weekends after summer. I also just want to do that. I/m doing research at my university next year as well. I'm in a pretty neat club that goes around to local high schools and performs science experiments with the kids and stuff like that. I guess I'm just going to have to work my a** off in the next coming years, which is fine with me! Thank you guys.
 

cantankerous

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Not at all. If you get a 3.5 sophomore year, a 3.7+ Junior and senior year will make MD still possible. However, if you maintain a 3.5 until you apply, a >518 MCAT would show you as MD material at middle to low tier schools. >508 would be good for DO.
If they maintain 3.5 for the next three years, they'll have around a 3.45 GPA. 3.45 with a >518 MCAT (96+% percentile) would be an application that would not need to apply for low tier med schools and could apply for even upper tier med schools with exceptional ECs. I understand that the upper end of matriculant scores went up but the mean for all matriculants is not so far off from before. I think you're overeacting.
 
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Boomer7200

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If they maintain 3.5 for the next three years, they'll have around a 3.45 GPA. 3.45 with a >518 MCAT (96+% percentile) would be an application that would not need to apply for low tier med schools and could apply for even upper tier med schools with exceptional ECs. I understand that the upper end of matriculant scores went up but the mean for all matriculants is not so far off from before. I think you're overeacting.
I was going to say... a 518 MCAT is an incredible score.
 
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Wahkoon

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Personally, I got a 3.3, 3.5, 3.7, 3.9 in undergrad and did fine. The important thing is to recognize this early and take steps to improve your performance in the future. Also, remember that GPA is just 1 piece of your application. Keep at it and you will be just fine.
 
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Boomer7200

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Personally, I got a 3.3, 3.5, 3.7, 3.9 in undergrad and did fine. The important thing is to recognize this early and take steps to improve your performance in the future. Also, remember that GPA is just 1 piece of your application. Keep at it and you will be just fine.
Oh, I've recognized it alright but thanks for your advice, I'm for sure going to keep at it!
 
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If they maintain 3.5 for the next three years, they'll have around a 3.45 GPA. 3.45 with a >518 MCAT (96+% percentile) would be an application that would not need to apply for low tier med schools and could apply for even upper tier med schools with exceptional ECs. I understand that the upper end of matriculant scores went up but the mean for all matriculants is not so far off from before. I think you're overeacting.
Sorry, finger went the wrong direction on the 9-key pad. I meant >512. Sorry, OP, you don’t have to be perfect like that.
 

Angus Avagadro

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Not at all. If you get a 3.5 sophomore year, a 3.7+ Junior and senior year will make MD still possible. However, if you maintain a 3.5 until you apply, a >518 MCAT would show you as MD material at middle to low tier schools. >508 would be good for DO.
Agreed, demonstrating continual improvement with upper level courses will be in your favor.
 
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@Boomer7200 It seems like you're piling yourself with more ECs to cover for your disappointment with your freshman GPA. Honestly, I think it's more important to lock in a 4.0 GPA next semester rather than doing EMT-B, hospital internship (probably CNA type work), and shadowing. It's far easier to course correct ECs than it is to course correct a bad GPA once you start piling on more credits. I think that students underestimate the process and how much course correction is needed before they develop the process needed to lock on to a high GPA.
 
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2.9GPA

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Find a studying system and the work ethic to get that 4.0 next semester. I started off bad (2.9), but then followed it up with 3.7, 4.0 and 4.0. I didn't dive deep into my extracurriculars until I found my rhythm and was confident I could get A's in the rest of my courses going forward. You have summers and gap years for EC's so don't feel like you need to pile them on; I would wait until you find the right routine that will let you get the 4.0.
 

Boomer7200

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@Boomer7200 It seems like you're piling yourself with more ECs to cover for your disappointment with your freshman GPA. Honestly, I think it's more important to lock in a 4.0 GPA next semester rather than doing EMT-B, hospital internship (probably CNA type work), and shadowing. It's far easier to course correct ECs than it is to course correct a bad GPA once you start piling on more credits. I think that students underestimate the process and how much course correction is needed before they develop the process needed to lock on to a high GPA.
I'm dropping the internship after all. I want to get the EMT-B license as it is once a week over the summer with clinical hours and also it'll provide me with a job for later, and I'll just shadow of the summer since my mom has many connections to doctors, so that'll be easy. My plan was to pile EC's during the summers and going hard at school during the school year.
 
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I'm dropping the internship after all. I want to get the EMT-B license as it is once a week over the summer with clinical hours and also it'll provide me with a job for later, and I'll just shadow of the summer since my mom has many connections to doctors, so that'll be easy. My plan was to pile EC's during the summers and going hard at school during the school year.

Let me help you think about things one degree further. I think your heart is in the right place, but with your current approach you may not get the results you want in time for application. What classes gave you the most trouble last year? Are there summer sessions being held for those classes and are the classes big enough that you can "drop in" during the days you aren't doing your EMT related tasks? Can you grab a syllabus for those classes so you can prepare earlier on assignments so you can work smarter at the start of September rather than being bogged down by balancing having to balance homework with studying for exams? If this was a system that essentially stated you were only good enough to earn a 3.4 then what would you be willing to do in order to change your current philosophy towards education and approach towards the material to show that the grading system is flawed?

There are students in your classes who are taking Organic Chemistry for the second or possibly the third time. They will drag you down because they will come in with a very specific approach and strategy. Kline's Organic as a Second Language, notes from the same professor, and having failed the same exam. Certain fraternities/sororities & premed specialty groups basically had carbon copy test banks that they gave their pledges to help their brothers/sisters. I've never been a big fan of the philosophy of trusting the outdated educational process to teach you all you need in order to do well on the actual exam. When the exam questions are determined as a collective process, it is a frighteningly political process of which professors have what say and the provost (if they care) presiding over the entirety of it. This has led some schools to adopt ACS exams which can also be frightening if professors have no idea and make no attempt to format their approach towards such an exam.

The professor on a pulpit model is convenient for administrators to place one professor in front of 300 students and to rake in the dough while leaving them with a subpar experience that isn't tailored towards facilitating their growth. In my honest opinion, I think that students do best when they treat schools like being little more than diploma mills and use their own savvy to understand how to get what they want from what is offered.
 
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Boomer7200

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Let me help you think about things one degree further. I think your heart is in the right place, but with your current approach you may not get the results you want in time for application. What classes gave you the most trouble last year? Are there summer sessions being held for those classes and are the classes big enough that you can "drop in" during the days you aren't doing your EMT related tasks? Can you grab a syllabus for those classes so you can prepare earlier on assignments so you can work smarter at the start of September rather than being bogged down by balancing having to balance homework with studying for exams? If this was a system that essentially stated you were only good enough to earn a 3.4 then what would you be willing to do in order to change your current philosophy towards education and approach towards the material to show that the grading system is flawed?

There are students in your classes who are taking Organic Chemistry for the second or possibly the third time. They will drag you down because they will come in with a very specific approach and strategy. Kline's Organic as a Second Language, notes from the same professor, and having failed the same exam. Certain fraternities/sororities & premed specialty groups basically had carbon copy test banks that they gave their pledges to help their brothers/sisters. I've never been a big fan of the philosophy of trusting the outdated educational process to teach you all you need in order to do well on the actual exam. When the exam questions are determined as a collective process, it is a frighteningly political process of which professors have what say and the provost (if they care) presiding over the entirety of it. This has led some schools to adopt ACS exams which can also be frightening if professors have no idea and make no attempt to format their approach towards such an exam.

The professor on a pulpit model is convenient for administrators to place one professor in front of 300 students and to rake in the dough while leaving them with a subpar experience that isn't tailored towards facilitating their growth. In my honest opinion, I think that students do best when they treat schools like being little more than diploma mills and use their own savvy to understand how to get what they want from what is offered.

Thank you very much for your input. I do want to note that this second semester I’m likely going to end up with a 3.5-3.6. It was my first semester which really got me as I did not know what I was doing. Saying that, I don’t think I need to retake any classes other than Calculus 1 as I got a B in the class. I just didn’t study enough, but this semester I’ve really tried much harder and it’s paying off. I do think I’ve found my ruthenium and method of studying, obviously it’s not perfect, but with time it’ll come. I am at a small school so I don’t think any of that “cheating” is going on. For example my freshman class is 1100 and only 17 in biochemistry including me.
 
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One of my advisees had a 3.15 freshman year. Then went on to get 4.0, 4.0 and 4.0. He got into 5/8 of the T20 schools to which he applied. It did make it so that he really had to do a gap year so that he had a full year of senior year grades on his AMCAS transcript GPA, as he was pretty sure that he would be able to get a 4.0 in senior year as well. Consider taking summer classes as well, at your current school if possible, to help pull up your GPA. If you really want to be a physician, do all of the other things that you need to do in terms of EC's, research, volunteerism and do well in your courses. There is a bit of gamesmanship involved too. If you really want to take a course out of your comfort zone, like Medieval Art or Slavic Languages, consider taking an occasional course P/F if allowed by your school, if you predict you may struggle in that course. Obviously, you can't do this for too many courses, but you do not want to chance getting low grades in your elective coursework.
 
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Boomer7200

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One of my advisees had a 3.15 freshman year. Then went on to get 4.0, 4.0 and 4.0. He got into 5/8 of the T20 schools to which he applied. It did make it so that he really had to do a gap year so that he had a full year of senior year grades on his AMCAS transcript GPA, as he was pretty sure that he would be able to get a 4.0 in senior year as well. Consider taking summer classes as well, at your current school if possible, to help pull up your GPA. If you really want to be a physician, do all of the other things that you need to do in terms of EC's, research, volunteerism and do well in your courses. There is a bit of gamesmanship involved too. If you really want to take a course out of your comfort zone, like Medieval Art or Slavic Languages, consider taking an occasional course P/F if allowed by your school, if you predict you may struggle in that course. Obviously, you can't do this for too many courses, but you do not want to chance getting low grades in your elective coursework.

It’s going to be a bit hard for me since I go to college in California and live in the eat coast, but I understand what you’re saying. I really don’t want to take a gap year, but if I have to I will. Thank you so luck for your advice!
 
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