Where do you live? Lower tier MD is definitely within reach for you, especially if you live in an IS-friendly state.
Edit: depending on location and other application factors, I think a carefully crafted list of low and mid tiered schools could yield good results for you. DO would be a surer bet, but you know that.
I am extremely disappointed to report that I got a 507 (29 on old MCAT??)fairly balanced score. I have a 3.8 cGPA and a 3.7 sGPA. I am conflicted whether to plan on retaking or to take my chances at the low tier MD schools (not interested in DO schools for personal reasons). According to the AMCAS chart I am at about a 45% chance of matriculating. I have 500+ non-clinical volunteer, 150+ clinical volunteering, 200 research, 300+ teaching/leadership and 50 shadowing (more hours to come this year). I am confident that I am capable of scoring better. If I retook then I would push my plans back by a year to enroll in an intensive course before retaking the MCAT. In the worst case scenario: I am trying to understand if it would be worse to risk being a re-applicant or risk applying with two MCAT scores that don't show significant improvement.
Bottom line: Apply next cycle with a 507 or push plans back by a year and retake the MCAT?
I have the MSAR and have begun narrowing down the schools. My biggest concern is that many of the schools have a 29 as their 10th percentile which does not bode well with me. I am fully aware that beggars can't be choosy and for that reason I asked my original question of whether or not to toss my hat into the ring with the understanding that I will not have the luxury of any sort of confidence or to rebuild with a new MCAT where I could establish a better footing to start from. I mean no disrespect to DO programs nor do I hope to get into a debate about the best course as I stated, I personally believe the best route for me would be through an MD program while I can confidently say that for others the best route may be DO.With a 29, there are still a good number of MD schools you're competitive for. Invesdt in MSAR ONline and target schools whose median stats are closest to your score, and pay careful attention to the Acceptance Information page.
RE: the bolded: Beggars can't be choosy.
RE: blue text. See above.
"I have never particularly had lower tier schools in mind as my goal ...
I have never particularly had lower tier schools in mind as my goal nor have I gunned for Harvard, but upon consideration believe that the majority of the "top 100" MD schools would allow me to achieve my career goals.
Honestly, take everything people say on this site with the biggest grain of salt. Most of the people on this site have absolutely no clue what they are talking about when it comes to admissions. I fortunately had a few mentors t/o my undergraduate experience who gave me better information than SDN. I graduated with a 3.9 science GPA and scored a 507 on the MCAT (130 on the biology section). A little over a week after submitting my secondary application to the University of Rochester (a great medical school) I received an interview invite through email. Most people don't receive any interview options that early, especially submitting relatively late. The strength of my application though is not so much in my MCAT score (even though I was told the strong biology score helps and I didn't have the opportunity to study for an extended period of time) but in the diversity of my ECs. I've done research, volunteering, service to the homeless, worked as a CNA, but I also have a strong background in the arts, I played in a jazz band and played piano at the nursing home. That isn't the entire list of my ECs, but my mentors told me that having such a diverse and well-rounded background will help to make me a competitive candidate. Also, I was told that a 507 has the weight of about a 30/31 on the old MCAT, so it's not really a "bad" score. I'm just tired of seeing all the scare tactics and false information on this website. I agree that it's absolutely important to be realistic, but don't sell yourself short either. Who knows you might have written one hell of a PS and/or might have awesome LOR.
It kind of is my mission. I don't think the people that create forums like this get the best information. (Partly their fault for not going into detail about themselves). I understand that my arguments may sometimes border on the fallacy of false equivalency, but I also think there are so many factors that go into play that without enough information, meaningful advice really cannot be given.
W/o the kid listing his/her ECs (not just saying I did clinical volunteer, but what was the nature of that clinical volunteer) and going into detail about themselves, I can't wrap my head around how any real advice can be given. Maybe that's just me though.
We go by numbers, we know how to read numbers, we're not *****s, and it's not necessary for people to list their entire CV either. Between gyngyn, LizzyM, Hushcom, mimelim, gonnif and myself alone, we're looking at over a century of experience in medical school admissions.
Giving advice with the information available is what we do in medicine every day (with a lot more on the line than someone getting into medical school!).And before you accuse of me of solipsism again, I realize my case doesn't apply to everyone, but that still is not much of an argument b/c you are admitting you don't really know or seek to know the whole picture of each OP before you proceed to give them "advice".
Haha whatever man. Keep believing you guys can "read" the numbers. There's clearly no telling you otherwise and I guess it clearly has no effect on me. We'll just have to recognize the difference in opinion here. It's just funny b/c if I would have been one of these gullible OPs on here, you would have told me to remove Rochester or other upper mid tier schools. And before you accuse of me of solipsism again, I realize my case doesn't apply to everyone, but that still is not much of an argument b/c you are admitting you don't really know or seek to know the whole picture of each OP before you proceed to give them "advice".
Giving advice with the information available is what we do in medicine every day (with a lot more on the line than someone getting into medical school!).
Can we give more precise advice with better info, of course.
Is better info often unavailable, you bet.
I am involved in admissions and given what passes for pre-med advising I can at least give a counter-point to clearly bad advice (or no advice at all).If it were me (even though I would refer this kid to someone else, because I know I'm not involved with admissions and would not want to mislead him/her) I would definitely need to ask for more information before I could advise him/her. Those are just numbers! You mean to tell me, you're that good at admissions advice that you can guide him/her in the appropriate direction with no other info? I'm that's impressive if you can, but I highly doubt it.
You never asked for advice here, so you cannot just make up responses to fit your imagination.
Your MCAT (~29-30) is above the 10th percentile for Rochester, and your GPA is solid. Even just looking at the stats alone, one can conclude you have a reasonable chance, and not tell you to remove the school.
No one here can guarantee your II/acceptance/rejection without looking at everything, and @Goro admitted as much. The advice has been to apply broadly and smartly.
I am involved in admissions and given what passes for pre-med advising. I can at least give a counter-point to clearly bad advice (or no advice at all).
BTW, I think you need your own thread since you have only derailed every thread you have posted in today...
507, 3.8 GPA carries different meanings depending on the context.