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Advice

Discussion in 'Underrepresented in Healthcare' started by bballgirl11, Mar 25, 2007.

  1. bballgirl11

    bballgirl11 2+ Year Member

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    Mar 21, 2007
    I'm planning on applying to medical school for fall 2008 and I'm also applying for a couple of post bac programs for this upcoming fall. But if I submit my application by July or at least the end of July, I won't know my status as far as acceptance to post bac programs in time to include it in my application. I just want to know if I receive a 27 or greater on the MCAT w/ a science G.P.A. 3.3 and an overall of 3.06, do I stand a chance of acceptance for fall 2008 or should I just do the post bac and increase my GPA then apply for the fall 2009. This is my dream and I really believe that in the end it will work out for the best! I just want to be the best applicant possible.:confused:
     
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  3. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

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    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    Since you didn't like the "advice" that people gave you in the other "What are my Chances" thread that you started consider this threadhttp://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=233319 from Pre-Allo.

    The numbers are dated because this tread is from 2004 (the numbers needed for both GPA and MCAT are higher for current applicants) but the gist of the post should answer your questions. Good luck.
     
  4. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Administrator Physician PhD Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    You already know that if you're applying to allopathic schools, your GPA is on the low side and will almost certainly be a major impediment to your competitiveness as an applicant. If you really want to be "the best applicant possible," it doesn't make sense to apply before doing some damage control. It's more important to get your GPA up into an acceptable range (or at least showing a major upward trend) than it is to apply as quickly as possible. Also, you should not play the "if" game with the MCAT; until you take the test, you do not know what kind of score you can expect. Multiple practice test scores are helpful to give you an idea of what range you'll hit, but they're not definitive. I've been teaching MCAT classes long enough to know that very few people can accurately predict their MCAT scores, including yours truly. :)
     
  5. bballgirl11

    bballgirl11 2+ Year Member

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    Mar 21, 2007
    :oops: Thanks for the advice...it wasn't that I didn't like the advice. The advice caused me to re-evaluate myself and what I need to do. I've been through a lot even and unfortunately my GPA shows it and I'm suffering from it. I really want to go in fall of 2008 because I'm already sitting out for the fall 2007 and I don't want to wait another year, but if that's what I have to do then I'll do just that.
     
  6. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

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    Gone Walkabout!
    The question that you have to ask yourself is are you willing to spend the time and money only to end up with no acceptance versus optimizing your GPA/MCAT and greatly increasing your chances of acceptance? Medical school application is quite expensive and you might make better use of that money by doing a couple of post bacc classes that will help you increase your knowledge base/testing skills for MCAT and raise your GPA.

    If you are not accepted, you are sitting out anyway. As it looks now, you need a bit of work with first your GPA and then a solid MCAT score. No one is telling you that you won't get in with your current numbers but your chances are very low compared to folks who are successful. You are well below the averages for matriculants regardless of color. Figure out what you need and take the steps to get yourself there.

    If it takes you a couple of year and you get in, then those two years are worth it. It isn't about how many times you get knocked down, it's how you get up and prepare yourself for what you want. If you put a bit of time between those earlier poor grades and show some recent excellent ones, you greatly make the case for being ready to take on a very demanding medical school curriculum.
     
  7. bballgirl11

    bballgirl11 2+ Year Member

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    Mar 21, 2007
    Thanks for the advice! I want to do a post bac but with most of them requiring a high MCAT I can't apply without taking the MCAT before the deadline but I don't want to shortchange myself by taking the test in hopes of gaining a high enough score to gain admittance for the post bac as well as for medical school. Maybe I can apply to graduate school for the time I'm sitting out.I really want to get in and it seems like I'm taking two steps back for every step forward. I thought with a second chance at the MCAT I could get in, but now I'm just lost because things aren't going the way I planned.:confused:
     
  8. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

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    Gone Walkabout!
    Graduate school is NOT going to help raise a poor undergraduate GPA. You don't have to do a "formal" postbacc program. You can take classes outside of a postbacc (on your own) and get excellent grades. These courses will still add to your undergraduate GPA.

    You can work on your study skills and prepare for the MCAT while you are taking informal post bacc classes. You can take the MCAT again when you are ready and your GPA will be higher at the same time too.

    The other problem with entering a graduate program is that you will be expected to complete a graduate degree if you start. Are there some upper division courses that you didn't take as an undergraduate? If so, then sign up for them. Get A's in them. Hone your study skills and shore up any test-taking weaknesses that you have.

    Any course that is outside of a formal graduate program and taken after you graduate from undergrad is considered "post bacc".
     
  9. bballgirl11

    bballgirl11 2+ Year Member

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    Mar 21, 2007
    Again, thanks so much. Your words of wisdom have been very insightful. I do have some other questions as well. Should I take the post bac courses at my home institution or can I take courses at another school and if I choose the latter will it count towards my GPA? Which classes will be of the most benefit for me in the long run as far preparing for medical school. I'm starting to accept that I'm going to have to sit 2 years as far use this upcoming school year to take courses and study for the MCAT then apply next spring. I'm going to have to roll up my sleeves and just do it because this is what I want.
     
  10. melissainsd

    melissainsd 2+ Year Member

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    You can absolutely do your post bac at another institution. AMCAS will compile all courses taken at various schools into one GPA. As far as what to take, I believe some people have already posted specific programs (I never did a post bac so I can't help you there). I do know there are programs designed for pre-meds. You have to apply to these programs, and they may be competitive. Try looking in the nontrad forum, people there have done a lot of post bac work. :luck:
     
  11. QofQuimica

    QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Administrator Physician PhD Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    You can take the classes at any school; AMCAS will just have you submit multiple transcripts. (I had to submit five last year.) As for which classes to take, go for challenging ones, but don't take on more than you can handle. It is very important for you to make high grades. There are lots of things you can take; I think I can suggest enough classes to last you another four years. :p Consider any or all of the following:

    Mathematics:
    -Calculus I and II (some schools require this as a pre-req)
    -Statistics (useful for a lot of upper level bio classes)

    Biological Sciences:
    -Genetics (important subject for the MCAT as well as in med school)
    -Human or Vertebrate Anatomy (with or without lab)
    -Human or Mammalian Physiology
    -Neurobiology or Neuroanatomy
    -Pharmacology or Toxicology (these require a good background in organic chem as well as bio)
    -Histology
    -Epidemiology
    -Immunology
    -Microbiology
    -Molecular Biology

    Physical Sciences:
    -Physical Chemistry (would help you show your mettle in both physics and gen chem, but only take it if you have a strong mathematical background that includes calculus, differential equations, and linear algebra)
    -Bioinorganic Chemistry (studies how the body uses trace elements like iron; it's fascinating stuff, but don't take this without a good background course in upper level inorganic chem first)
    -Medicinal Chemistry (studies the properties of compounds that make them drugs; requires a strong organic chem background)
    -Radiology or other imaging physics (MRI, CT, US, etc.)
    -Bioinformatics or other medically relevant computer science courses
    -Biochemistry (some schools require this as a pre-req anyway)
    -Protein Chemistry or Bioorganic Chemistry (don't take this without a strong background in organic chem and biochem)

    Non-Science:
    -General Psychology (some schools require this anyway)
    -Psychophysics (covers how the senses work)
    -Human Sexuality
    -Philosophy of Science or Philosophy of the Mind
    -Medical Ethics
    -Medical or Cultural Anthropology
    -Medical Spanish (sure to be useful nearly everywhere in the country)
    -Public Health courses
    -Business courses (could be useful if you plan to have your own practice some day)
    -History of Medicine (useful for a more general perspective about your chosen field)
     

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