Should I start preparing to retake the MCAT on April 2006?

  • Definitely start preparing to retake on April

    Votes: 29 17.8%
  • Don't retake you should get in

    Votes: 25 15.3%
  • hmm, I am not sure...

    Votes: 11 6.7%
  • Wait until January if no acceptances then prepare to retake

    Votes: 82 50.3%
  • Not enough information to give a good opinion

    Votes: 7 4.3%
  • I only looked at this post for I thought it would be more interesting, so no opinion for you sucker!

    Votes: 7 4.3%

  • Total voters
    163

truethat

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Hi everyone

old time lurker of SDN

my first post comes with this question...

Have 4 interviews (3 allopathic and one do), I am URM (but please no wars intended, I personally hate all the fighting about this. I genuinely seek a sincere opinion) MCAT 23 total 3.8 GPA 3.8 BPCM. I have my own opinion about what to do but wanted to see if anyone had some additional fresh ideas. Your help is appreciated. Thanks.


Truethat!

BTW: I have really good ECs (Mother theresa style and all)
August 2001 MCAT and half of BA degree P/F grading
All premed requirements taken for a grade <-- sorry
I didn't mention this before.
 

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truethat said:
Hi everyone

old time lurker of SDN

my first post comes with this question...

Have 4 interviews (3 allopathic and one do), I am URM (but please no wars intended, I personally hate all the fighting about this. I genuinely seek a sincere opinion) MCAT 23 total 3.8 GPA 3.8 BPCM. I have my own opinion about what to do but wanted to see if anyone had some additional fresh ideas. Your help is appreciated. Thanks.


Truethat!
i dont have anu advice but congrats on the 4 invites. you might have kicked some a**
 

chaeymaey

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I wouldn't retake. That test is a bi-otch. If you got the interviews, that means that number-wise you're okay. Now they just want to get to know you.
 
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I wouldn't retake it unless I didn't get in this application cycle. Clearly, schools are at least somewhat willing to look past your mcat scores because they're willing to interview you. Your gpa looks good, and you have 4 interviews, which isn't too shabby of a feat for anyone. With four interviews (and this is assuming you do well at them), odds are you'll receive an acceptance.
 

truethat

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Interesting,


The post showed up before the poll...
 

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23 is low, so what i would say is starting late december start studying for mcat and do the normal thing to take it in april. You may get in and they i guess you would loose $200 bucks for MCAT, totally worth it, looking at big picture.

you could wait and if you don't get in then you could take august one, but i personally don't think that's a great idea b/c it's august mcat.

you might get in b/c i know a URM with 25 and probably good GPa that got into top 20 school. not trying to start anything, i'm just saying you might be okay, so just start preparing for real for april MCAT, and wait.
 

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Hey, I would wait until mid February (not January, you'd kill the holiday buzz). If you get in it'll be as a late admission (I'd wager) so just relax for a bit. If you don't get in, you'll know exactly what you need to improve. Good luck, your poll choices made me chuckle, too.
 

Risa

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when can you expect to hear from the schools you've interviewed at?
 

truethat

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Thank you for all your advice
And thanks for participating in the poll too


Risa said:
when can you expect to hear from the schools you've interviewed at?
1st MD Maybe in 3 weeks if not decision held until march
2nd MD Mabe in 4 weeks if not decision held until some month next year I just can't remember which, most likely march.
3rd MD allegedly 5 to 7 weeks
DO mid february


Thanks
 

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are you an april or august mcater? 4 interviews is a lot for a 23 mcat!congrats!!! What are your EC's like? I think you should cover all bases and study for april's mcat. You never know until you get that acceptance letter. Good luck and keep us posted. :luck:
 

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Congrats on the interviews! However, I am not sure how well you interview...that will make or break you at this point...especially considering your MCAT scores (schools take everything into consideration after the interview).

Mother Teresa extracurriculars? Thats sounds a bit arrogant...I would not say things like that during your interviews.

I voted for you to start studying now. Take a prep course, or a different prep course. You are obviously smart based on your GPA, now you need to study hard for the MCAT again. You want to have a back-up plan. You will feel so much better that you are preparing in advance. You are definitely capable of getting a high score.

Good luck!
 

truethat

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dr_keki said:
are you an april or august mcater? 4 interviews is a lot for a 23 mcat!congrats!!! What are your EC's like? I think you should cover all bases and study for april's mcat. You never know until you get that acceptance letter. Good luck and keep us posted. :luck:
Thank you very much dr_keki
August 2001 MCAT
I will mention two ECs which I think are not common: many years developing relief efforts to provide health care for uninsured nationally and abroad.
Worked with foreign government high officials to administer primary care to 10K+ individuals.
 

MoosePilot

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It is a very low MCAT, but 4 interviews is very solid number. Get feedback on your interviewing skills from your pre-med advisor. If you interview well and don't come off as socially challenged, I'd say you're golden.
 
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truethat

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Elastase said:
Congrats on the interviews! However, I am not sure how well you interview...that will make or break you at this point...especially considering your MCAT scores (schools take everything into consideration after the interview).
I have had some decent ones and some average ones I think.

Mother Teresa extracurriculars? Thats sounds a bit arrogant...I would not say things like that during your interviews.
Sorry to sound arrogant, and no I do not use that phrase anywhere else, I used it here trying to exemplify the nature of the ECs not the "greatness".

I voted for you to start studying now. Take a prep course, or a different prep course. You are obviously smart based on your GPA, now you need to study hard for the MCAT again. You want to have a back-up plan. You will feel so much better that you are preparing in advance. You are definitely capable of getting a high score.

Good luck!
Thank you very much, your advice is helpful
 

truethat

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MoosePilot said:
It is a very low MCAT, but 4 interviews is very solid number. Get feedback on your interviewing skills from your pre-med advisor. If you interview well and don't come off as socially challenged, I'd say you're golden.
You have no idea, how much I wish I could get some interview feedback from someone like a premed-advisor. Unfortunately, I am far away from my undergrad now and thus can't really count on that resource.

My wife claims she is giving me as objective interview feedback as she can and she feels I am interviewing fine.

I spoke to my last interviewer about 2 days ago and told him I hoped I had left him with the impression that despite my MCAT score I am a hard worker and thus feel I could do well in med school. He said I had left him with that impression. He also said, however, that he will advocate my case, but his vote is only one of the votes at the admissions committee.
 

MoosePilot

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truethat said:
You have no idea, how much I wish I could get some interview feedback from someone like a premed-advisor. Unfortunately, I am far away from my undergrad now and thus can't really count on that resource.

My wife claims she is giving me as objective interview feedback as she can and she feels I am interviewing fine.

I spoke to my last interviewer about 2 days ago and told him I hoped I had left him with the impression that despite my MCAT score I am a hard worker and thus feel I could do well in med school. He said I had left him with that impression. He also said, however, that he will advocate my case, but his vote is only one of the votes at the admissions committee.
Well, that's the kind of qualified support that I've received everywhere, including places where I got in at the first chance. It's probably pretty good. If you have any more interviews, remember to concentrate on the positive. Don't dwell on your MCAT. Stress your work ethic, but don't make excuses, ya know? They'll ask about the test if they're worried about it. Did you get any of that?
 

truethat

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MoosePilot said:
Well, that's the kind of qualified support that I've received everywhere, including places where I got in at the first chance. It's probably pretty good. If you have any more interviews, remember to concentrate on the positive. Don't dwell on your MCAT. Stress your work ethic, but don't make excuses, ya know? They'll ask about the test if they're worried about it. Did you get any of that?

Only at my last MD interview it came up. My interviewer actually said he wanted to help me but he migh be asked about my score during review, so he asked me why I felt I got that score. The feeling I got was that he wanted to have an answer to the question should it arise.
 

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I am in the same exact situation as the poster. I am a URM and I have a 3.5 GPA, good LOR, good EC's, and a 23 MCAT. I also have 4 interviews from allopathic schools. I was thinking about retaking the MCAT but my pre-med advisor said I would be a shoe in this year.He said I should worry about where I want to go and how I should be paying for all these plane tickets because I would be getting offers left and right.

That is pretty much what he said and I am going to go and just finish off this cycle the best way I can.
 

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truethat said:
Only at my last MD interview it came up. My interviewer actually said he wanted to help me but he migh be asked about my score during review, so he asked me why I felt I got that score. The feeling I got was that he wanted to have an answer to the question should it arise.
Ok, my opinion is that if you got an interview, they already decided that your other credentials were good enough to be considered. The fact that you've got an interviewer actively on your side is good. I would wager you've got a great shot at that school, but preparing in January as a back-up is probably smart.
 

truethat

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DoctorC said:
I am in the same exact situation as the poster. I am a URM and I have a 3.5 GPA, good LOR, good EC's, and a 23 MCAT. I also have 4 interviews from allopathic schools. I was thinking about retaking the MCAT but my pre-med advisor said I would be a shoe in this year.He said I should worry about where I want to go and how I should be paying for all these plane tickets because I would be getting offers left and right.

That is pretty much what he said and I am going to go and just finish off this cycle the best way I can.
wow DoctorC it is refreshing to read your post. Have your interviews been mainly in-state for you or mixed? thanks
 

truethat

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MoosePilot said:
Ok, my opinion is that if you got an interview, they already decided that your other credentials were good enough to be considered. The fact that you've got an interviewer actively on your side is good. I would wager you've got a great shot at that school, but preparing in January as a back-up is probably smart.

Thanks Moosepilot and good wishes with your application as well.
 

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I am a resident of California and have received an interview from UC DAVIS and out of state interviews from Case Western Reserve, UIC, and UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson. My Case interview was Monday and I thought it went pretty well. My MCAT scores came up and it seemed like my reasoning made sense to my interviewer, I will let you know whethere I get in or not. Keep me posted also.
 

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Congrats on the UCD interview! Being an URM myself, I can sometime understand the animosity that other have against URM w/low mcat that are getting multiple interviews. However, I am sure that both of you have done some extensive extracurriculars with large time commitements etc. Your making up for your scores with something else in your application, such as extracurricular, GPA, etc.


Good luck both of you! Back on topic: I would start studying if you do not get an acceptance soon. Good luck again!!
 
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start studying for the april MCAT. A 23 is very low and if you dont get in this time youll definatley want to raise that score for next cycle. Its better to be prepared for the test in case u dont get in this time. Than to not be prepared, expecting/hoping to get in and then have to take again. There is nothing wrong with looking foward and having a plan in case things dont go the way you plan. Congrats with your interviews, would u mind saying at what schools they are at.
 

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truethat said:
I spoke to my last interviewer about 2 days ago and told him I hoped I had left him with the impression that despite my MCAT score I am a hard worker and thus feel I could do well in med school. He said I had left him with that impression. He also said, however, that he will advocate my case, but his vote is only one of the votes at the admissions committee.
I'm in a similar situation as you, but NOT a URM, so I am definitely planning a retake. Believe it or not I had an interview this week, but they never asked me about my scores, so I didn't have a chance to defend myself, which bummed me out cause I'm sure it will come up during decision time. Is it really okay to directly contact someone that interviewed you? They invited me to call or email, but I never really considered taking them up on it...Maybe I should!

BTW, I voted for waiting til January to start studying.
 

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Hey I too am in the same boat as you. I applied kind of late (a few days before the deadlines) to six schools and I have four of the six interviews. I just recieved them all over thanksgiving break actually. I am a URM 25 MCAT, 3.5 GPA and tons of research and volunteer experiences. I think that I will get in this cycle, but I will start studying in January for the April MCAT, just in case. I know I can do better. Congrats on the interviews and I'm sure you will get in. If not don't give up, you will eventually get in.
 

WhatUpDoc!

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Add another 23, URM Mcater to the list. Only got one interview, coming up in a couple days. I'm not planning on re-taking it, but then again others think I'm crazy, I call it faith. To the OP and DocC, I think we are all in good standings by the mere fact that we were considred for interviews. I'm planning on nailing mine through the wall so I know I gave it my best and truly feel that there are on other weaknesses on my application. God bless on the interviews and in the words of young jeezy... LET'S GET IT!!!!! :D

p.s. do have an acceptable explanation for the score (my parents grilled me over my score so I think I'll be alright in addresing this in my interview)
 

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Wow! Good luck guys but very discouraging for me....lol :( I do have one interview though so I am happy. :)
 

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Congratulations and good luck! Where are your interviews?
 

Elastase

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WhatUpDoc! said:
Add another 23, URM Mcater to the list. Only got one interview, coming up in a couple days. I'm not planning on re-taking it, but then again others think I'm crazy, I call it faith. To the OP and DocC, I think we are all in good standings by the mere fact that we were considred for interviews. I'm planning on nailing mine through the wall so I know I gave it my best and truly feel that there are on other weaknesses on my application. God bless on the interviews and in the words of young jeezy... LET'S GET IT!!!!! :D

p.s. do have an acceptable explanation for the score (my parents grilled me over my score so I think I'll be alright in addresing this in my interview)

YEAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

Thats whats Young Jeezy would say...I swear when he says that he sounds like Freeway.
 

mustangsally65

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I hate to be negative, but I really didn't know that schools would consider an MCAT score that was 4 years old. I thought they had to be 3 years old or newer. Did I miss something here? :confused:
 

truethat

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mustangsally65 said:
I hate to be negative, but I really didn't know that schools would consider an MCAT score that was 4 years old. I thought they had to be 3 years old or newer. Did I miss something here? :confused:

hey sally


It was an old post of yours that taught me about the few schools which accept older mcats.
 
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truethat

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Thanks to everyone who participated in the poll (if you still want to participate you very well may)

I have decided to retake and start preparing ASAP. It is a bit hard with interviews and finals but I really want to saran wrap my A%#@.

I was getting 31-33 on TPR practice exams (if these are predictive at all) before the actual exam, so with enough time, who knows, maybe I will do really well on the beast :mad:
Just hate having to wait if I don't get in this time (saying my prayers...)
 

TX515

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Just because you have received interviews does not mean you have made it past the number game. It means you are a competitive applicant. If you are not accepted this time around, you should retake the MCAT.
 

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If you find out before January, I'd wait to see if you hear any good news. If not, I'd start preparing by mid January. Judging from your practice scores, it seems that you are not bad in the test, but may have had anxiety or a bad day or a test which focused on the specific subjects you were not good at. I'd wait til mid January and then start preparing again, especially since it seems like you are not in school so would have a lot of study time for MCAT.

In any case, good luck.

P.S. While that is not the best score, it is at the very least, only 2 points below national average on the test. I had a friend who had a 23 and 25 and she got accepted. She was a partial URM in that she was latino, but she was not puerto rican or mexican. So she was semi-minority but not completely and she still got in.

At any rate, it seems like you might end up ok and get in with the grace of god. Let us know what happens if you hear anything from any of the schools you interviewed at. I would be interested in seeing the progress of your case. :luck:
 

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Improving your score shouldn't take that much more studying than the first time around, unless let's say...you bombed VR because of language barriers.

Good luck!
 

truethat

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TX515 said:
Just because you have received interviews does not mean you have made it past the number game. It means you are a competitive applicant. If you are not accepted this time around, you should retake the MCAT.
That is what I have been debating with. Thanks.
 

truethat

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gujuDoc said:
If you find out before January, I'd wait to see if you hear any good news. If not, I'd start preparing by mid January. Judging from your practice scores, it seems that you are not bad in the test, but may have had anxiety or a bad day or a test which focused on the specific subjects you were not good at. I'd wait til mid January and then start preparing again, especially since it seems like you are not in school so would have a lot of study time for MCAT.

In any case, good luck.

P.S. While that is not the best score, it is at the very least, only 2 points below national average on the test. I had a friend who had a 23 and 25 and she got accepted. She was a partial URM in that she was latino, but she was not puerto rican or mexican. So she was semi-minority but not completely and she still got in.

At any rate, it seems like you might end up ok and get in with the grace of god. Let us know what happens if you hear anything from any of the schools you interviewed at. I would be interested in seeing the progress of your case. :luck:

Thank you very much gujudoc, your advice was quite helpful :love: :luck:
 

truethat

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ok

The time has come and I am preparing to retake. I have one interview in a few days but I am definitely working on plan B.

With that in mind I started a poll on the MCAT subforum asking what test prep is more like the real mcat, I guess I need to buy some of this stuff and if you could please provide your opinion on my poll I would greatly appreciate it http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=251177 thanks.


Truethat
 

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I am in the same situation, and when asked by fellow SDNers there seemed to be a resounding yes. I have 4 interviews, 31 MCAT, which sucks for MD-PhD programs. I was told on two interviews to explain the low score and am discouraged too. I would go with the "see what happens" with these interviews. I am planning study for August if I don't get in, and submit amcas and secondaries early, to be complete in october when the scores are out if it comes down to that. Sorry to hear your dilemma. I feel you. .
 

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big_smiles said:
I am in the same situation, and when asked by fellow SDNers there seemed to be a resounding yes. I have 4 interviews, 31 MCAT, which sucks for MD-PhD programs. I was told on two interviews to explain the low score and am discouraged too. I would go with the "see what happens" with these interviews. I am planning study for August if I don't get in, and submit amcas and secondaries early, to be complete in october when the scores are out if it comes down to that. Sorry to hear your dilemma. I feel you. .

I know

having these interviews without any results (hopefully positive ones) is quite distressing. Thanks for the solidarity.
 

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Not to be an ass but 23 is barely 40th percentile...in my honest opinion baring extenuating circumstances such as ESL...a 23 should not be an acceptable score regardless of minority status...come on you are gonna have to pass the boards some day so you have to show you can hack it on these tests...i am a little scared that med schools are gonna waste spots on people who don't hit the 50th percentile because there is no track record you will be able to pass a standardized exam like the boards...your grades are great and im impressed you have four interviews but you got to be realistic and start preparing for the worst because that score is going to raise red flags when you are brought up for final review...
 

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snobored18 said:
Not to be an ass but 23 is barely 40th percentile...in my honest opinion baring extenuating circumstances such as ESL...a 23 should not be an acceptable score regardless of minority status...come on you are gonna have to pass the boards some day so you have to show you can hack it on these tests...i am a little scared that med schools are gonna waste spots on people who don't hit the 50th percentile because there is no track record you will be able to pass a standardized exam like the boards...your grades are great and im impressed you have four interviews but you got to be realistic and start preparing for the worst because that score is going to raise red flags when you are brought up for final review...

I see what your saying but the MCAT is not the be all end all. Obviously, he is a smart guy. I don't know how much valididty there is to not being able ot pass the boards but I can't say anything with a definitive answer.
 

stiffany

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Hmm. Others may have said this, but I don't fully get the addition to your post. Half of your BA is with pass/fail class grades? How does that work? (I think at Penn we were allowed to have only a few and nothing requirement oriented - including in one's major - could be pass-fail) so I don't get it. Also, if your MCAT is from August 2001, isn't it expired already?

I would say wait to see what happens. With 4 interviews, you're in a much better position than a lot of people. Why spend all the money and energy now? If you don't get in, I'd say try for the August MCAT. Not taking into consideration the P/F thing, your GPA rocks and you said you have great ECs. Just your MCAT needs help!
 

truethat

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snobored18 said:
Not to be an ass but 23 is barely 40th percentile...in my honest opinion baring extenuating circumstances such as ESL...a 23 should not be an acceptable score regardless of minority status...come on you are gonna have to pass the boards some day so you have to show you can hack it on these tests...i am a little scared that med schools are gonna waste spots on people who don't hit the 50th percentile because there is no track record you will be able to pass a standardized exam like the boards...your grades are great and im impressed you have four interviews but you got to be realistic and start preparing for the worst because that score is going to raise red flags when you are brought up for final review...

Hi thanks for your opinion. I did have some extenuating circumstances when I took the exam ESL and about two other far more impeding circumstances than ESL. I am sure I can hack the exams, all I need is for ADCOMS to believe it from the rest of my application. Thanks.
 

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USArmyDoc said:
I see what your saying but the MCAT is not the be all end all. Obviously, he is a smart guy. I don't know how much valididty there is to not being able ot pass the boards but I can't say anything with a definitive answer.

Agreed, I doubt one exam can determine standardized potential for all people, there are just too many factors in the "do well in MCAT" equation.
 

truethat

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stiffany said:
Hmm. Others may have said this, but I don't fully get the addition to your post. Half of your BA is with pass/fail class grades? How does that work? (I think at Penn we were allowed to have only a few and nothing requirement oriented - including in one's major - could be pass-fail) so I don't get it. Also, if your MCAT is from August 2001, isn't it expired already?

I would say wait to see what happens. With 4 interviews, you're in a much better position than a lot of people. Why spend all the money and energy now? If you don't get in, I'd say try for the August MCAT. Not taking into consideration the P/F thing, your GPA rocks and you said you have great ECs. Just your MCAT needs help!
I have a BA in a liberal arts major, so I chose for the sake of the ECs I was involved in to take most of what is not a pre-req as p/f. My mcat is expired for most schools but not all. Next appl cycle it will be expired for all except one school.


I would rather not wait 'till august seeing how many more people fare better on the appl. cycle when they apply very early as opposed to waiting for the august MCAT. Thanks for your words.
 

Orth2006

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I'm also in similar situation. I got 5 interview so far and on hold for interview at 2 schools. But I just got rejections post-interview from 2 of the 5 schools. I have already began preparations to re-take in April 2006. Hopefully I wont have to. I was quite surprised and grateful for the chances so far hopefully one turns into an acceptance.

Good luck to all
 

truethat

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Orth2006 said:
I'm also in similar situation. I got 5 interview so far and on hold for interview at 2 schools. But I just got rejections post-interview from 2 of the 5 schools. I have already began preparations to re-take in April 2006. Hopefully I wont have to. I was quite surprised and grateful for the chances so far hopefully one turns into an acceptance.

Good luck to all
Hi Orth2006, congrats on your interviews. Where did you interview and who rejected you if I may ask? thanks
 
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