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Anyone majoring in a non-science and applying to med school?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by MohMan, Nov 25, 2005.

  1. MohMan

    MohMan Junior Member
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    I was wondering if there was anyone who is a non-science major applying to med school. I was contemplating why people major in (some type of) Bio to go to medschool and the reason I could think of is because "its the thing to do" more than "I'm really interested in it". Do any of you know how successful the non-science majors are once they get into medical school because honestly, science majors are A LOT harder than non-sci majors...
     
  2. DrBowtie

    DrBowtie Final Countdown
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    Percentage wise acceptance rates for Bio is on the lower end of the spectrum.

    Bio is also the degree that requires the least electives to complete the pre-reqs.

    Check this out and you can calculate the percentages yourself:
    matriculants / applicants

    http://www.aamc.org/data/facts/2005/mcatgpabymaj1.htm
     
  3. MrBurns10

    MrBurns10 Excellent, Smithers
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    I majored in philosophy in college and honestly, I think it's actually helped me get into med school. I've talked about it in virtually every interview I've had and it's a good lead-in to talking about my interest in Bioethics. Schools who particularly want a diverse class seem to especially like this. I really doubt it'll hurt me once I'm in med school because I've taken upper level bios and I know how to study for them (in fact I despise writing papers...it's amazing I survived 4 years of philo classes), and if you don't know how to study already I'm sure you'll learn quickly.
     
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  4. CerealBox

    CerealBox Senior Member
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    i did math & economics. from what i've heard, others who have majored in these areas have had no problems at all with med school course work. and as far as the mcat goes, i think i saw somewhere that math majors have some of the highest overall scores. ...but i don't necessarily think that these majors are easier than bio majors. probably you will do best in something really interests you. and if its theater or art or history, don't worry. I have met people with all of these majors at my interviews.

    i have also heard from numerous people who did study bio related things that their undergrad coursework either minorly helped them in medschool, or provided no advantage at all.
     
  5. jebus

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    I majored in Biochem because I was really interested in it and I wanted to get a PhD in some basic science discipline and pursue a career at like Merck or at a university or something. It wasn't until my Senior year in college after I did research for years that I realized I wanted to a career that was more satisfying, where my work is more constructive and I get to care for people. And I don't want to spend my career competing for funding and simply writing papers and grants - which is what happens after you get tenure, let's face it. With an MD there are opportunities for research - although, without the rigorous training and education that doctoral programs provide, MDs are at a distinct disadvantage. That's all.
     
  6. MadameLULU

    MadameLULU Saucy
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    Major in what interests you, not what you *think* will get you into med school. My classmates majored in all sorts of disciplines: music, psych, engineering, econ, math, the list goes on and on....
     
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  7. Legacy

    Legacy DbagFolkGuitarMajor4Life
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    The Biology Majors (Pre-Medi) and the Latin and Greek majors (Classicith) are identical in every way but one. The classicists are passionate about what they memorize because they can translate the discipline, organization, and insight of what they do into any venue of work pending completion of the five core sequences. The biology majors, on the other hand, use their memorizations for the sake of themselves and what they plan to continue.

    Forgive the horrid Star Wars metaphor, but the Arts Side is indeed stronger. It can even stop GPAs from dying.
     
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  8. NapeSpikes

    NapeSpikes Believe, hon.
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    Why do people always say this? Many science majors I've met could not get an A in an upper-division Literature class for the life of them. Granted, I'd probably have a hard time with upper-division Bio, but then again, I'm not claiming science majors have it easy.
     
  9. CerealBox

    CerealBox Senior Member
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    I absolutely agree that Lit classes are harder. I avoided them like the plague. I am MUCH better at math. I would stress out so much if I had a lot of books to read and analyze an write about in a meaningful way. That is so time intensive and so difficult to do well.
     
  10. Herman Bloom

    Herman Bloom Member
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    "Hard Science" classes are ten times easier than upper-level humanities courses, especially History, English, Philosophy, etc. You can't hide behind facts when you are forced to think and reason.
     
  11. Overeducated

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    I have both a non-science and science degree and I can tell you, that's completely untrue. There are easy and hard science majors just as there are easy and hard non-science majors--mostly it's a school specific determination.
     
  12. Indryd

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    I am a lit major and am already accepted at Hopkins and interviewed at Cornell AND have an interview at Harvard.

    I had to take many upper division bio courses and also took a year of biochem to be competitive. All A's in those courses, and my lit courses (upper-division) took way more time and effort and thinking to get A's in.
     
  13. MohMan

    MohMan Junior Member
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    Hmm I guess i was misinformed. Its just that when I see the sci majors all theyre do is have a head in their book and when I see the lib arts majors, theyre so much more "free". I was also surprised to hear that a lot of you non-sci majors took bio classes as upper divs.
    I am a third year at UCLA and majoring in MOlec Bio. I'm seriously banging my head against the wall and getting decent grades (but not what I think is optimal). I see my friends who are Poly Sci, Eng and History majors and these guys are pulling A's like nothing and dont seem to study as hard as I do. I asked one of my friends who is majoring in Eng what her classes require her to do and I realized that what her classes require her to do is what I tend to do for fun --read, analyze, write. I dont know if I'm too far ahead to switch into English as a major or if I even should. I'd have to take a lot of the lower divs (5 classes...quarter system). What do you guys think is most practical for me? Also, I have the impression that my GPA would be a lot higher if I was a non-sci major...because I tend to do better in classes where one is graded on papers rather than mechanisms and what not. The whole non-sci being easier than sci statement originated from that--sorry to offend anyone.
    What do you guys think I should do?
     
  14. SeventhSon

    SeventhSon SIMMER DOWN
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    humanities majors get a bad rap for the following:

    Grading in them suffers from severe grade inflation, but only on the BOTTOM end of the curve.

    You can just go to lecture, hardly ever read anything outisde of class and get a gentle B- if you've showed you can spit back facts from lecture.

    Taking the time to put together an A-quality paper takes a huge amount of thinking, and time. I took a huge 5-class writing sequence and man, did it ever help me learn how to think.

    Bottom line... due to severe grade inflation you can get B's in lit classes without learning how to write, or even think. If you really put your heart and soul into your papers to get the A's (which DO have to be earned) then you will find that it takes as much effort to get A's in these classes as anything.

    The only caveat I would issue is that once you've pushed yourself down a Lit path you can pretty much kiss goodbye any possibility of doing something intensely quantitative. I know plenty of engineering/physical sciecne majors who could write bomb papers, and i know plenty of lit majors who could torch upper division bio classes, but as a lit major (who takes writing seriously) and carries the pre-med courseload there is no way you can ever learn the strong math/computational skills you need for some arms of research medicine (harvard hst type stuff).
     
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  15. BooMed

    BooMed Optomist
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    Spanish and Sociology, I think the Spanish is really helping. Of course, so far all of my interviewers only wanted to talk about my yoga/belly dancing/rock climbing courses, so what do I know? :laugh:
     
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  16. ahumdinger

    ahumdinger Senior Member
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    I majored in linguistics because it was fun and interesting. Don't do a non-science just because you think it'll make you stand out. If you studied what you love, it'll be apparent on paper and in person.

    the only thing is, if you end up excelling in the non-science, and being mediocre (at least on paper) in the sciences (like me), you'll face the inevitable question of "Why not just pursue [whatever non-science you excelled at]?" The question "Why medicine?" will be especially important.
     
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  17. QuikClot

    QuikClot Senior Member
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    I don't buy that. I have not one, but three degrees in English (BA and 2 MAs -- don't ask). And I love math, did fine in Physics and Calculus, and dig into some of the gritty statistics stuff with pleasure.

    I would line up the causality the other way; math geeks tend to start in the sciences. But if you have the interest and a smigen of talent, you can pick up math when you need to.

    On the long-term success thing: from what I hear, English majors beat bio majors on the MCAT, and the best predictor of your board scores is . . . your verbal MCAT.

    Also, for me, science classes were harder. Right through grad school, I could read, think, and gear up for the end-of-term paper a couple of weeks out. O. Chem wasn't like that. Every week was like finals used to be. But every person's going to be different.
     
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  18. ChuckRock

    ChuckRock Senior Member
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    Finance Rox! :horns:
     
  19. mdforlife

    mdforlife Senior Member
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    I majored in Finance for first bachelors, and then instead of doing pre-req sciences in a postbac, I applied to a cool school and they transferred a huge amount of credits for me towards my second bachelors, so now I am getting a second B.S. in Neuroscience in the same amount of time as would be doing the postbac.
    I must say that my finance classes and work experience at i-banks is really helping me right now in my classes and I know will help during the interviews. The bio class at my school requires pure logic.

    But point is, major in anything you want, science, non-science, it doesn't really matter as long as you have your pre-reqs and do well in them. I think it's more of a plus to major in something other than bio- have more to talk about during interviews+ adds to diversity.

    To all the humanities majors- you're geniuses. I am a very concise writer and it is pure hell for me to put out 10 page papers on a single subject.
     
  20. masterMood

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    It's probably better in my opinion to be a nonscience major because it helps you develop the critical thinking/analysis of articles. This is seen on the MCATs where everything is in passage format --- a format that science majors aren't used to. Science majors are used to question and answer format, whereas in passages you have to actively think/dissect/whatever. This means that nonscience majors tend to score higher on the MCATs (because verbal is the hardest section to score well). Also, it looks favorable to be a nonscience major because it adds to the class's diversity.

    The main reason why I like the biology major is that I feel like I have a lot more control over my GPA than does a nonscience major since the answers you give are not completely subjective. If a particular professor is biased towards a particular opinion or idea and you are not, I feel like it stifles creativity when you are forced to write what the professor wants.
     
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  21. SanDiegoSOD

    SanDiegoSOD Milk was a bad choice
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    I majored in Political Science. I've only been to one interview so far, but it was a focus of the faculty interview. He was actually very impressed by it. :thumbup:
     
  22. Jon Davis

    Jon Davis I killed the bank.
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    Elwood: It's 106 miles to Chicago, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses.
    Jake: Hit it.

    The Blues Brothers was a sweet movie.
     
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  23. kdburton

    kdburton Ulnar Deviant
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    I'm business major (with a finance concentration), and according to many doctors I've talked to that work in private practices they all wish they had taken some basic buisness classes. Some of the hardest classes I've taken have been upper division accounting classes, so I wouldn't say that science majors are WAY harder... especially since I've gotten top 5 scores in all of my med school prereq courses - which isn't the same scenario in all of my business courses.
     
  24. Orthodoc40

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    "Should do" is a trap of a concept in this regard. Study what makes you happy. That will make you a much more interesting person & candidate. And most importantly, you'll have no regrets later on.
    Its all available to you right now. Last thing you want to do is land up 65 years old wishing you had studied "X" back when you had the best chance to do so....
     
  25. Saluki

    Saluki 1K Member
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    I'm a triple major: Middle East Studies, History, and Biochem. I don't think the humanities stuff has helped or hurt my application, but I think my lack of research in the sciences (just started this year) has hurt my app at the top schools. So, I would say major in what you want, but make sure to get some research experience...
     
  26. chaeymaey

    chaeymaey 1K Member
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    Cool! Mid East studies! I wish we had that at my school. I'm Persian and very interested in it.

    I'm an English major and it's more for good conversation at my interviews. It does set you apart, but make sure you have an explanation for why you're an X major.
     
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