sunflwr85

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Throughout this process, I've noticed that many schools "recommend" but do not require calculus (although a few do) and I'm starting to think that I've made a mistake. I started college as a Psych major planning on going into counseling. My major required 2 semesters of math, so my advisor told me that, even though I'd taken through Calculus in high school, I should just take college algebra and trig and get the math over with easy, since I'd never really use it anyway. After my freshman year, I decided for sure I was going to pursue medicine (but stick with my psych major). I went to the premed advisor with some questions, one of which was whether or not I should try to tack on Cal, even though I'd already fulfilled my math requirements. He quickly dismissed the idea, saying that few schools required calculus and he wouldn't bother with it if it were him.

Now that I'm applying, though, I'm beginning to think I will be a step behind those applicants who have taken cal, especially since my mcat isn't the shining spot on my application - my GPA is. I've already submitted my AMCAS for 2007, so I can't do anything to change that, but I was wondering if maybe now I should add it onto my schedule so at least med schools will know that I am going to take it. Am I severely hurting my chances by not? Am I going to look like a slacker because I took the easy way out in my math courses?

Thanks in advance for any advice :)
 

_ian

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At this point, it's not worth worrying about. Not having calculus will not keep you out of most medical schools, but a poor GPA, poor MCAT, or poor ECs will. If you're fine in those categories, I wouldn't worry about it.
 

Vox Animo

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so, you took it in high school and did not get college credit?

All the people i know who took it in HS recieve credit. Some got it from the AP test, and so said the class just transferred. I would see if HS credit means anything, call a school admissions office of a school that requires Calc.
 
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seadizzle

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Everyone calls it calc, not cal.

But I agree with ian - it's not even worth worrying about now unless a school you are applying to and are very interested in requires it.
 

NCPreMed85

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At my school, a BS in bio requires calculus 1 and EITHER calculus 2 or statistics. I personally believe that stat would be much more benificial. Ive yet to see any real use for calculus within biology (except ecology, which i dont care for..) or medicine. Im sure there is one, somewhere, but everyone ive spoken with said take stats, itll help where calc won't.

UNless, of course, one of the schools you want to go to require it, then, obviously, its worth it. Luckily for me, none of the ones I am applying to require it.
 
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sunflwr85

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Vox Animo said:
so, you took it in high school and did not get college credit?

All the people i know who took it in HS recieve credit. Some got it from the AP test, and so said the class just transferred. I would see if HS credit means anything, call a school admissions office of a school that requires Calc.
Hm, I'll have to check into that. Unfortunately my class wasn't AP, it was just regular calculus, but I guess it can't hurt to ask :) Thanks!
 
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sunflwr85

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NCPreMed85 said:
At my school, a BS in bio requires calculus 1 and EITHER calculus 2 or statistics. I personally believe that stat would be much more benificial. Ive yet to see any real use for calculus within biology (except ecology, which i dont care for..) or medicine. Im sure there is one, somewhere, but everyone ive spoken with said take stats, itll help where calc won't.

UNless, of course, one of the schools you want to go to require it, then, obviously, its worth it. Luckily for me, none of the ones I am applying to require it.
Thanks for your input :) I had actually forgotten that I have taken statistics, though it wasn't through the math department. For my psych major I had to take Behavioral Statistics, plus Experimental Psych which relied heavily on stats.

None of the schools I've applied to require calc, but a few of them do recommend it. I guess I'm just getting a little freaked out as I'm not terribly pleased with my less than stellar MCAT and have, for a variety of reasons, chosen not to retake in August. I feel like everything else on my application has to be perfect to make up for it. But I guess at this point there's not too much I can do!
 

TMP-SMX

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sunflwr85 said:
Thanks for your input :) I had actually forgotten that I have taken statistics, though it wasn't through the math department. For my psych major I had to take Behavioral Statistics, plus Experimental Psych which relied heavily on stats.

None of the schools I've applied to require calc, but a few of them do recommend it. I guess I'm just getting a little freaked out as I'm not terribly pleased with my less than stellar MCAT and have, for a variety of reasons, chosen not to retake in August. I feel like everything else on my application has to be perfect to make up for it. But I guess at this point there's not too much I can do!
Unless you are doing MSTP or are applying to a school that requires it you have nothing to worry about.
 

novawildcat

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NCPreMed85 said:
Ive yet to see any real use for calculus within biology (except ecology, which i dont care for..)

take a class on computational biology/bioinformatics- they use rediculous math. the topological math properties of protein folding is really quite interesting.
 
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