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Admission perspectives?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by BobJD, Apr 7, 2007.

  1. BobJD

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    Hi,
    Firstly, I'm sorry if I'm posting this in the wrong place..
    A couple of questions..

    Stats:
    Northeastern University
    B.A. History Cum GPA 3.4
    Current Science GPA 3.8
    MCAT Lets Assume 30

    1) I need to finish up taking the required science courses before I can even
    apply to Med Schools, how is it going to look that I'm taking them post-bac at a different school?

    2) If I wanted to retake some courses at Northeastern (say that I got a b- in) would that even make a difference? (the original grade would be on the transcript but would not be factored into the cum gpa)

    3) I've been accepted several law schools for the fall, if I wanted to apply to med schools post J.D. degree what kind of impact would this have on my med school applications?

    4) And I know I'm getting greedy now..but what are some suggestions on where I should apply as far as med schools go..would I be anywhere near competitive anywhere if I keep my science GPA around where it is and my cum the same?

    Thanks in advance,
    sorry for the long post,
    --Bob
     
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  3. desidr

    desidr Member
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    all your grades are factored in your cum gpa when you fill out amcas, which calculates your cum gpa and science gpa and that is all med schools will see as far as gpa is concerned. if you retake both grades will be shown and both grades will be factored into your gpa.
     
  4. SupergreenMnM

    SupergreenMnM Peanut, not chocolate
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    Okay, just an FYI so you don't get flamed on this board, never "assume" a certain MCAT score. You are forgiven for this time, however, as you assumed a 30 instead of say 38.

    1) I doubt they will care if you take your science pre reqs post bac at a different school, as long as that school isn't your local community college.

    2) Any grades you get make a difference as AMCAS calculates your cum. GPA based on every course you've taken, not based on your schools GPA calculation. Best case would be if your school erased your old grade, but if they don't both will be used to calc your AMCAS gpa.

    3) Have you thought of combined MD/JD programs? If you have impressive LSAT scores that should help you a bit in the MD app too...otherwise if you go to law school first I dont think having a JD would at all hurt you (other than the general dislike of Lawyers ;)

    4) Its hard to say about competiveness since we can only see some of your 'story'. You seem to fit in pretty well though with the groups that apply to middle of the road schools, just don't abbreviate cummulative on your apps ;)
     
  5. AnEyeLikeMars

    AnEyeLikeMars Member
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    1) It's not going to look bad if you take them post-bacc if it's because you decided to pursue medicine late. That's not a problem.

    2) I wouldn't retake B-'s, it's just not worth it. Your AMCAS GPA (which is the one that counts) factors in both the old grade and the new grade, regardless of what your institution does. So a retake probably wouldn't help you much.

    3) Why med school at all? What are you going to do with both a JD and an MD? You are going to need very good answers to these questions, otherwise you're going to look like a serial grad student who can't settle down.

    4) I think cutoffs use overall GPA and MCAT, but I'm not sure how rigid these cutoffs are. The GPA isn't going to be competitive anywhere, but it'll be acceptable at most places. But you'll need to make up for this low GPA somehow (solid MCAT, excellent ECs, unique life experience, etc.)
     
  6. somemaybedoc

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    I haven't read the rest of the thread so these are just my opinions unenhanced by others insights.
    1. Nothing wrong with post bac's.
    2. Retakes count less than you'd think because schools include the original grade in the GPA calculation too.
    3. If you don't start law school, no effect. If you finish, positive (interesting, more experiences, more background on a different aspect),just have a cohesive reason for why. If you quit half way through law school, negative, who is to say you won't quit med school.
    4. I think this is too MCAT (primarily) and EC (secondarily) dependent to say, especially with more to go in the post bac.
     
  7. BobJD

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    Thanks for the very quick responses, very much appreciated.
    In regards to why a JD and an MD, I scored very well on the LSAT
    and was offered admission to some great schools here in NY, with
    scholarships the cost would be very low and I think a legal education
    is a good foundation regardless of where my life might lead me. I don't know if it is what I want to practice as a career however..

    Any thoughts ?
     
  8. somemaybedoc

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    If you can afford the opportunity and direct costs of going to law school I think you should be able to pull off the explanation in a positive way, especially with the law school experience.
     
  9. Tired

    Tired Fading away
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    Yes, let's.

    You wouldn't be the first.
     
  10. koennen

    koennen Lend Me An Ear
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    First, never assume any score on the MCAT, even if you have taken dozens of practice tests that lead you to beleive you'll achieve that score. The real thing is a whole different story.

    Second, why would you want to bust your ass for three years in law school if you want to become a physician? While I don't believe it is as academically rigorous as med school, law school is no walk in the park either. And I don't know if I agree that a law degree would be of any benefit to you in applying to/attending med school. There a few folks on these boards who made the law to medicine swith - Law2doc posts frequently - who may disagree.

    I think you need to figure out which way you want to go and go for it. Medical training is long enough. Why do you want to delay it for three years to obtain a degree that will be of little, if any, benefit to you in practicing medicine?

    Just my two cents ...
     
  11. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Agree with the other posters that you cannot "assume a 30" on the MCAT -- it is an often repeated cardinal sin around here to make such assumptions and all too often a flawed assumption. Until you take the MCAT, you have a zero on the MCAT and that's all people can assume.

    As to your third point, I have to say that it is going to be a bit of a hurdle for you, but a surmountable one. You will have to have an awfully good reason why you want the second degree and a better idea of what you plan to do for a living than most applicants. Going straight from degree program to degree program is, IMHO, considerably harder than changing career from practicing lawyer because it will be perceived that you are bailing on a career without having given it a try, and you won't have had the opportunity to obtain skillsets marketable to medicine. You cannot give a serious answer as to why you decided not to practice as a lawyer until you have given it a try, and if you truly know it at the onset you probably have no good reason to launch into a JD program. To some it will come across as degree hopping, and lack of focus. You will have to overcome the label of "career student". It will also seem like you don't think through decisions particularly well, such as why did you want to rush into law school only to decide to practice medicine, and why should we believe you now, when you say you want to be a physician. They will wonder, "What's to keep you from changing your mind again and doing business school right after med school?" Med schools have a mandate to generate practicing doctors for the state/country, not just let someone get a degree they never plan to use. You will also have to overcome concerns that you are getting the MD to better sue doctors.

    So the bottom line is that you need to be really well thought out and have really good reasons for all of the moves you are making, more so than the traditional applicant does. Spend the time to think things through, figure out what you want to do for a living.
     
  12. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    I don't really disagree, see my prior post. Having had a successful prior career can be advantageous. Jumping right from one degree program to another unrelated one is disadvantageous.
     
  13. pillowhead

    pillowhead Senior Member
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    Getting the JD before the MD may actually be a disadvantage in the long run. It possibly signifies a lack of commitment to medicine or that you're in it for the wrong reasons (really, the only similarities between the two are a guaranteed good income at the end). You may come across as a degree collector or permanent student who cannot figure out what he really wants to do. If you get a JD and never practice law, who is to say you'll actually practice medicine after getting the MD?

    Just think long and hard about getting the JD. If you seriously can see yourself practicing law, it may be worth it. But it's not something to do to improve your med school application or because you didn't get into med school.
     

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