495 MCAT, where to apply

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bigblubba

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Do you have any in person physician shadowing hours ? What clinical and non clinical experiences do you have (and hours) ?
 
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I am creating a school list w a 495 mcat, 3.6 gpa. I cant retake and I am applying this upcoming cycle (2024 -2025). I am IL, nontrad and have great experiences. Any advice about my school list (DO only) would greatly be appreciated. Thank you so much


Gonna apply:

ACOM
ARCOM
BCOM
BCOM-FL
BUCOM
VCOM
KansasCOM
KCUCOM-KC
KCUCOM-Joplin
all LECOM
LUCOM
LMUDCOM(both)
MUCOM
MSUCOM (all)
NYITCOM both
NOORDACOM
NOVA both
PCOM all
RVUCOM all
rowan all
touro Yes to all
UIWSOM
UNECOM
UPKYCOM
WVSOM
WesternU
WCUCOM


not sure about applying:

ATSUKCOM (?)
ATSUSOMA (?)
CUSOM (?)
DMUCOM (?)
DUQCOM (?) heavy instate?
ICOM (?)
MDCOM (idk anything)
OUHCOM (?) all locations
OSUCOM (?)
OCOM (?) under min MCAT (500)
PNWUCOM (?)


wont be applying:

CHSU (NO) (heavy instate)
AZCOM (NO)mcat too high
CCOM (NO) mcat too high
SHSU (NO) low OOS
TCOM (NO) low OOS
Why can’t you retake it? It would really benefit you to retake the MCAT with that score.
 
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Why can’t you retake it? It would really benefit you to retake the MCAT with that score.
There are lifetime limits of how many times you can take (7), and you can take it a max of 3 times within one calendar year or 4 times across 2 calendar years. Maybe that’s a factor?
 
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There are lifetime limits of how many times you can take (7), and you can take it a max of 3 times within one calendar year or 4 times across 2 calendar years. Maybe that’s a factor?
When I first read the post I assumed that is what may be the issue, but I’ve come across a couple of people that just don’t want to retake because they want to try applying. Wasn’t sure if OP actually literally can’t retake it or simply doesn’t want to cause of the application timing.
 
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Do you have any in person physician shadowing hours ? What clinical and non clinical experiences do you have (and hours) ?
Yes I do. Over 2k non clinical volunteer (religious teacher, crisis text line )hours and clincial hours (hospice volunteer, scribe, free clinic volunteer)
 
When I first read the post I assumed that is what may be the issue, but I’ve come across a couple of people that just don’t want to retake because they want to try applying. Wasn’t sure if OP actually literally can’t retake it or simply doesn’t want to cause of the application timing.
I would retake if I could, but my family is super unsupportive and I don't have it in me to take it again. Basically if I tell them I want to retake, they will cut all ties with me. 495 was my 3rd attempt (albeit my highest). ( I also voided 2 attempts so I think I have only 1 or 2 exam I can take lifetime)
 
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There are some DO schools that have MCAT medians in the 498 to 502 range so those are where your best chances are as well as any new schools.
I suggest these schools from your list:
ACOM
ARCOM
BCOM
BCOM-FL
BUCOM
VCOM
KansasCOM
all LECOM
LUCOM
LMU-DCOM(both)
MU-COM
NYIT-AR
NOORDACOM
PCOM all
UIWSOM
UNECOM
UP-KYCOM
WVSOM
WCU-COM
ATSU-SOMA
DUQCOM
ICOM
OCOM
You could add these schools:
TUNCOM
RVU-Montana
Touro-Montana
D'Youville (if it opens)
Meritus (if it opens)
 
I am creating a school list w a 495 mcat, 3.6 gpa. I cant retake and I am applying this upcoming cycle (2024 -2025). I am IL, nontrad and have great experiences. Any advice about my school list (DO only) would greatly be appreciated. Thank you so much


Gonna apply:

ACOM
ARCOM
BCOM
BCOM-FL
BUCOM
VCOM
KansasCOM
KCUCOM-KC
KCUCOM-Joplin
all LECOM
LUCOM
LMUDCOM(both)
MUCOM
MSUCOM (all)
NYITCOM both
NOORDACOM
NOVA both
PCOM all
RVUCOM all
rowan all
touro Yes to all
UIWSOM
UNECOM
UPKYCOM
WVSOM
WesternU
WCUCOM


not sure about applying:

ATSUKCOM (?)
ATSUSOMA (?)
CUSOM (?)
DMUCOM (?)
DUQCOM (?) heavy instate?
ICOM (?)
MDCOM (idk anything)
OUHCOM (?) all locations
OSUCOM (?)
OCOM (?) under min MCAT (500)
PNWUCOM (?)


wont be applying:

CHSU (NO) (heavy instate)
AZCOM (NO)mcat too high
CCOM (NO) mcat too high
SHSU (NO) low OOS
TCOM (NO) low OOS
I can't recommend applying anywhere with that MCAT score. You are in the risk zone for failing Boards and/or out of medical school.
 
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I would retake if I could, but my family is super unsupportive and I don't have it in me to take it again. Basically if I tell them I want to retake, they will cut all ties with me. 495 was my 3rd attempt (albeit my highest). ( I also voided 2 attempts so I think I have only 1 or 2 exam I can take lifetime)
Why? What if you don't get in this cycle and schools recommend you retake?
 
What were your other 2 attempts? And can you maybe give better details for your shadowing/clinical experiences?
 
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I can't recommend applying anywhere with that MCAT score. You are in the risk zone for failing Boards and/or out of medical school.
Sadly, I must agree. That's an MCAT score that simply raises red flags, and the fact that this person is not retaking, is another red flag when it comes to their judgment

As for the list of schools, I can tell you that WesternU campuses definitely have a cutoff for what they're willing to interview. The MCAT of 495 is definitely below that. When I went to school back in the day, the equivalent of 499 (a 24 in the old scale) was the cutoff. I wouldn't be surprised if the cutoff is now higher

My suggestion is to apply into podiatry programs. The fact that there's already 3 attempts with a 495 being highest, is basically someone screaming not to do medicine. Even if there was a school that would give a chance, failing boards and having to drop out after 2 or 3.5 years (I've seen people fail level 2 who had a low MCAT when admitted and get kicked out) will be economically devastating. Podiatry can allow the opportunity to still practice medicine with a short residency resulting in a surgical career if that's desired
 
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The GPA-MCAT grid for DO applicants shows that ~40% of applicants matriculated to a DO school with your stats. That percentage will be higher for the 2025 class since there have been at least 8 DO schools that have opened since that data was released 5 years ago. The schools do need to fill their classes.
 
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The GPA-MCAT grid for DO applicants shows that ~40% of applicants matriculated to a DO school with your stats. That percentage will be higher for the 2025 class since there have been at least 8 DO schools that have opened since that data was released 5 years ago. The schools do need to fill their classes.
40% matriculation is insane when there are credible studies/statistics that show poeople with MCAT <500 are at high risk of failing out or not passing boards. Is comlex easier to pass? It kind of make sense when 60% of DOs take Steps and the other 40% stick with comlex.
 
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The GPA-MCAT grid for DO applicants shows that ~40% of applicants matriculated to a DO school with your stats. That percentage will be higher for the 2025 class since there have been at least 8 DO schools that have opened since that data was released 5 years ago. The schools do need to fill their classes.
Yes, and that also means the risks increase for not graduating.
 
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40% matriculation is insane when there are credible studies/statistics that show poeople with MCAT <500 are at high risk of failing out or not passing boards. Is comlex easier to pass? It kind of make sense when 60% of DOs take Steps and the other 40% stick with comlex.
I looked at the AAMC data for students who pass Step 1 (may have more than one attempt) and it is 99% for those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+. Surprisingly, for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ it was 90% and for STEP 2 it was 98%. The graduation rate (within 5 years) for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ is 88% (2017 and 2018 matriculants). For those with MCAT scores in the 490 to 497 range and GPAs between 3.0 and 3.6 the 5 year graduation rate is 78%. For comparison, those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+ the 5 year graduation rate is 97%.
 
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Go for podiatry! That's the only recourse I can suggest if you really want to make it... but only if you shadow a podiatrist and it really is what you want to do. Otherwise, I would rack up clinical experience go for PA or similar.
 
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I looked at the AAMC data for students who pass Step 1 (may have more than one attempt) and it is 99% for those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+. Surprisingly, for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ it was 90% and for STEP 2 it was 98%. The graduation rate (within 5 years) for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ is 88% (2017 and 2018 matriculants). For those with MCAT scores in the 490 to 497 range and GPAs between 3.0 and 3.6 the 5 year graduation rate is 78%. For comparison, those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+ the 5 year graduation rate is 97%.
Does the national data from AAMC on gpa-MCAT 5-yr graduation rate apply to MD only? it would be interesting to see gpa-MCAT 5-yr graduation grid for DOs.
 
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I would retake if I could, but my family is super unsupportive and I don't have it in me to take it again. Basically if I tell them I want to retake, they will cut all ties with me. 495 was my 3rd attempt (albeit my highest). ( I also voided 2 attempts so I think I have only 1 or 2 exam I can take lifetime)
None of this is a good reason to make career-impacting decisions. You have literally the entire summer to study for an August mcat, and still be early for DO. Applying with a 495 imo shows poor judgment, and will make re-applying even more difficult.

Get your stuff sorted and apply once, with a good score. Medical school should be meticulously planned for, not something you do to get away from family under the gun or because you are tired.

You dont have it in you to take it again, how are you planning to get through medical school which will be much more difficult? Especially if you have another year of your family to get through?

I don't mean any malice in this but it sounds like you are really stressed out and it's not the time to to set yourself up for disappointment and an even further, harder road. The only people I know who got in with 495's were URM. It is possible, especially if you have extensive service / mission match, but I'm just worried about what your plans would be if you didn't get in this cycle, and the possible devastation of then being even further behind and still facing needing to retake the mcat.

It's possible that your home issues are what's holding you back, and you really do need a new environment to thrive. You can do a lot to change your life in a year and give yourself the best chances to succeed.
 
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My MCAT was <500 in 2015-2016 so after applying 2 cycles and rejected both times, I went to linkage program and accepted at the same school and graduated in 2022. I'm a 2nd year resident now...almost done with 2nd year. It's doable with linkage program if you have the passion. With 495 MCAT it will be a miracle. All the best!!!
 
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I looked at the AAMC data for students who pass Step 1 (may have more than one attempt) and it is 99% for those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+. Surprisingly, for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ it was 90% and for STEP 2 it was 98%. The graduation rate (within 5 years) for those with a MCAT of 490 to 497 AND a GPA of 3.6+ is 88% (2017 and 2018 matriculants). For those with MCAT scores in the 490 to 497 range and GPAs between 3.0 and 3.6 the 5 year graduation rate is 78%. For comparison, those with a MCAT of 510+ AND a GPA of 3.6+ the 5 year graduation rate is 97%.
This data is always somewhat frustrating. For passing Step 1 on the first attempt, for example, the total data set is 58.168 takers over three years of matriculants. But MD schools annually matriculate about 24,000 students. So there are approximately 14,000 matriculants "missing" from the numbers. A chunk of them do not permit their score data to be used for research purposes, but how many does that account for? How many simply never make it to Step 1 in the first place? What are the GPA/MCAT profiles of those who leave medical school early for academic reasons?
 
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None of this is a good reason to make career-impacting decisions. You have literally the entire summer to study for an August mcat, and still be early for DO. Applying with a 495 imo shows poor judgment, and will make re-applying even more difficult.

Get your stuff sorted and apply once, with a good score. Medical school should be meticulously planned for, not something you do to get away from family under the gun or because you are tired.

You dont have it in you to take it again, how are you planning to get through medical school which will be much more difficult? Especially if you have another year of your family to get through?

I don't mean any malice in this but it sounds like you are really stressed out and it's not the time to to set yourself up for disappointment and an even further, harder road. The only people I know who got in with 495's were URM. It is possible, especially if you have extensive service / mission match, but I'm just worried about what your plans would be if you didn't get in this cycle, and the possible devastation of then being even further behind and still facing needing to retake the mcat.

It's possible that your home issues are what's holding you back, and you really do need a new environment to thrive. You can do a lot to change your life in a year and give yourself the best chances to succeed.
You're 100% right.
 
If your family is not understanding of retaking the MCAT, they sure as hell won't be understanding once you get in and have weekly exams, 2 major boards exams that require 2 months of prep, and rotations that have you in the hospital 50 hours a week. This isn't to deter you, on the contrary, I believe you can do it, but you have to set yourself up for success.

You could apply this year, but you have a great GPA, and your MCAT is likely going to relegate you to schools that have poor/or new curriculums, bad rotation options, and are probably very expensive. KansasCOM, VCOM, are decent schools if you must apply this year.

An option would be to re-take it in August or September. Which is not at all too late for most DO schools, given most DO programs interview well into April. I know you said your family would cut ties if you retook it, which is so bizarre of them, but perhaps don't even say anything. While I don't think this is something you should have to hide, if it's going to bring about family drama, I simply wouldn't say anything.

You have another option, and this is what I would do; take some stress off by not applying. Find a job, perhaps one that allows you to gain some clinical experience (MA or something) and gain your independence from your family so that if you piss them off by retaking a test, that's on them and it won't affect you and your life. Use a free Anki deck, to get a good foundation in MCAT content over the next year. Journal between now and then, this will be helpful when it comes time to write your PS. Then next year, do 6-8 weeks of intense practice questions, and take it in early May or June.

All this to say, take my advice with a grain of salt, to be honest I won't pretend I know what it is like to have my family weaponize retaking a test. Use what you can, ignore that which you know isn't feasible.
 
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I would retake if I could, but my family is super unsupportive and I don't have it in me to take it again. Basically if I tell them I want to retake, they will cut all ties with me. 495 was my 3rd attempt (albeit my highest). ( I also voided 2 attempts so I think I have only 1 or 2 exam I can take lifetime)
If you don't mind me asking, why the 2 voids? and how did you prepare for your high scoring test? My initial advice is to retake, but perhaps not.
 
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Your school list is great. As someone who also had a 495 after 3 tries, I got 5 interviews invites from DO schools and acceptances from all 3 schools I interviewed at. These schools are all on your list! Keep your head up and make sure to submit your apps ASAP for best chances! I would suggest keeping podiatry on the radar, however. I shadowed a podiatrist while applying as a backup and seriously considered it as a plan B.
 
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If you don't mind me asking, why the 2 voids? and how did you prepare for your high scoring test? My initial advice is to retake, but perhaps not.
Sorry for late reply. 2 voids was because I signed up for the test with the intention of taking, but with low FL and not feeling confident I just voided. How I studied was doing all jacksparrow anki and uworld. I didn't go through every uworld question but at least 50 percent. I also did a bit of aamc qb. My highest FL was FL 5 with 498 (124, 123, 125, 126
 
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