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Best way to raise GPA after graduating

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miketheghost19

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So I just graduated with my bachelors with a 3.45, I have taken all the pre-med requirements. What would be the best way to raise my GPA. SMP's seem really expensive. Are Post Bacs special programs or are they any classes you decide to take after graduating? Would taking a few upper level science courses be a good idea? Would it be alright to take them at a community college?
 

plumhill

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So I just graduated with my bachelors with a 3.45, I have taken all the pre-med requirements. What would be the best way to raise my GPA. SMP's seem really expensive. Are Post Bacs special programs or are they any classes you decide to take after graduating? Would taking a few upper level science courses be a good idea? Would it be alright to take them at a community college?

Well the only way you can raise your GPA is by continuing to take classes. Regarding community college courses, some med schools are OK with them and some aren't. As far as postbaccs go, a lot of them are specifically for completing the pre-reqs, although there are a few programs that are for students in your position (UPenn, Harvard Extension, or you could DIY at a university close to you).

Either way it's going to cost money. As far as SMPs go, given your GPA that might be your best bet because you'll be proving that you can handle the med school curriculum. Certain SMPs tend to have many of their graduates attend that particular med school (such as Cincy).
 

miketheghost19

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Well the only way you can raise your GPA is by continuing to take classes. Regarding community college courses, some med schools are OK with them and some aren't. As far as postbaccs go, a lot of them are specifically for completing the pre-reqs, although there are a few programs that are for students in your position (UPenn, Harvard Extension, or you could DIY at a university close to you).

Either way it's going to cost money. As far as SMPs go, given your GPA that might be your best bet because you'll be proving that you can handle the med school curriculum. Certain SMPs tend to have many of their graduates attend that particular med school (such as Cincy).

So I can pick and choose random upper level science courses at my undergrad university?
 

goodguygreg

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I'm going to bump this old thread and see of anyone has anything to contribute.
 

lazyindy

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bumping this thread. I am in an extremely similar situation as the OP was in at this stage. Would a post-bacc be the best bet or SMP for a gpa of ~3.4-3.5?
 

Gunslingerneckbeard

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Well, depending on your institution and how liberal they are on stacking double majors, you can make the case that you went back to school for another major, and take classes for those, while deciding to "minor" in something interesting that may have a specific bias to having higher grade distributions.

Here's an example. At my institution, if you qualify for one full degree, all you need is 25 hours in another discipline (there is a list of acceptable disciplines to do this with, some are allowed with this 25 rule, some aren't), and you also get the degree for that discipline as well.

I have a friend that qualified for a full BA in Biology. She took 25 extra hours in Psychology, as well as 12 more hours in Sociology (she split the 37 hours into 6 hours over the summer, 15 hours in the fall, 3 hours in the Winter session, and 13 hours in the Spring). She made a 4.0 in that part of her major and it raised her GPA as she claims from 3.63 to 3.82. As a result, in 5 years, she got a BA in Biology, BA in Psychology, and minors in Sociology and Spanish (her BA in Biology gave her flexibility to choose Spanish classes as her liberal arts electives under her BA in Biology). Her sGPA stayed the same though because those classes weren't Biology, Chemistry, Physics, or Math as made standard as science GPA qualifiers by what I believe to be (don't hold me on this) the AAMC.

However, since Chemistry is an acceptable list of those majors, it gives you an opportunity to simultaneously raise the science GPA as well as the Cumulative GPA. It can also decrease it though, so beware.

Check with your institution if they offer any remotely similar to this.

Also, I don't know if taking those classes at community colleges is advised. It makes it look like you regressed in the academic hierarchy with no direct benefit (considering after you graduated, those CC classes aren't explicitly applied via transfer in hopes of achieving a secondary degree) and only chose those classes for self gain in terms of GPA, unless it was in some field like say, Art History or Math or something that you just wanted exposure to for self learning and enjoyment without paying big bucks at a university, and could take maybe a 4-5 class stretch or sequence at a CC. Then you could possibly justify with an adcom or something on why you took those classes.
 

MDforMee

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bumping this thread. I am in an extremely similar situation as the OP was in at this stage. Would a post-bacc be the best bet or SMP for a gpa of ~3.4-3.5?

Depends on a few things. What's your MCAT? Where did you go to school, and what is your degree in? What state are you in?
 

lazyindy

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Depends on a few things. What's your MCAT? Where did you go to school, and what is your degree in? What state are you in?

I'm in NY and I attend a SUNY, majoring in biochemistry. I'm sitting for the MCAT in april. Also I am Indian which is possibly the worst position one can be in.
 

knv2u

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The only way to raise your undergraduate AMCAS GPA is to enroll is a formal post bacc program or other university undergraduate program (e.g. second bachelor's, informal post bacc without degree, etc.) and enroll in undergraduate classes. A SMP program is a masters program, and it will not increase your undergraduate GPA, but will be reported as a separate, graduate level GPA. In my opinion (and others may differ), SMPs should be reserved for students with an extremely low GPA (<3.2) and one in which there are enough college credits that raising the GPA significantly becomes nearly impossible even with a normal post bacc program. I don't think you need a SMP. I say post bacc all the way if you want to make your GPA higher. If you receive a solid MCAT score, I wouldn't rule out acceptances with your current GPA if you elect not to pursue additional coursework.
 

touchpause13

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If you are interested in DO schools, retake courses you got a C or lower in. This can increase your GPA significantly. Also they don't have to be from the same institution, just have the same number of credits and similar course description.
 

MDforMee

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I'm in NY and I attend a SUNY, majoring in biochemistry. I'm sitting for the MCAT in april. Also I am Indian which is possibly the worst position one can be in.

Your school is okay, your major is alright, and your state of residence isn't doing you any favors. I don't know about the Indian thing.

But, as it is, you're not coming out of the page to an application reader. Why haven't you taken the MCAT, yet? Why have you waited until now to pursue medical school? You don't have to answer these.

If you have nothing better to do than trying and figure this stuff out, start scouring the post baccalaureate forum for posts from people in similar positions as you (GPA, state residence, MCAT [guess what your score will be]) that applied to allopathic schools before and after attending SMPs or doing informal post baccalaureates (e.g. taking upper division sciences at the local University). I have similar stats to yours (3.42 from a big UC in Biochemistry, 30 MCAT, California resident), and after doing what I suggested, above, I found that a lot of people that went to SMPs didn't see much of a return on their investment. There were better results for people that took upper division sciences and worked on their ECs.

Since I'm still talking here, I'm actually doing an MS in Pharmacology and Toxicology at a UC, currently. It's not to boost my chances; I think that research and pharmacology exposure are a lot more important than people give them credit for. Plus, I may want to teach, and I have an interest in applied chemistry. It may help my chances at an allopathic acceptance, but I'm not banking on it.
 
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