Calling those with high MCAT, low GPA

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Whyamionhere

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How did you guys construct your school list? I already have mine and submitted but just curious to hear others' takes on this situation and maybe help future applicants.

It's a predicament because a high MCAT may make lower stat schools wonder if you have better options, while at the same time higher stat schools may not want a lower than average GPA.

Did you guys apply to a mix of high and lower "tier" schools, or stick to somewhere in the middle? Did you apply to places where your GPA matched, or your MCAT?

This could also apply to high GPA, low MCAT folk.

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How low and how high? This is very subjective.
 
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There are certain schools that seem to have higher favorability towards applicants with higher MCATs and lower GPAs (assuming like a 3.4/36 or something like that). These include Hofstra, USC-Keck, Virginia Tech, a few of the NY state schools, and some of the schools that most recently opened.

If you want a general strategy, find schools where your MCAT is not above the 90th percentile and your GPA is not below the 10th percentile and use those schools as the base for your application.
 
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There are certain schools that seem to have higher favorability towards applicants with higher MCATs and lower GPAs (assuming like a 3.4/36 or something like that). These include Hofstra, USC-Keck, Virginia Tech, a few of the NY state schools, and some of the schools that most recently opened.

If you want a general strategy, find schools where your MCAT is not above the 90th percentile and your GPA is not below the 10th percentile and use those schools as the base for your application.

Would you mind detailing recently opened medical schools that are taking apps for this current cycle? I keep getting conflicting info (heard of Roseman and Henricopolis but not sure if they're taking apps yet).
 
Would you mind detailing recently opened medical schools that are taking apps for this current cycle? I keep getting conflicting info (heard of Roseman and Henricopolis but not sure if they're taking apps yet).

There are recent threads about this that you will likely find if you do a search - I'm not 100% which schools are open this cycle.
 
As an above poster said, I would be interested to hear what you mean by high MCAT and low GPA. I may be the type of person you're talking about, but I don't really know. My GPA was definitely below average, but not like barely above 3.0 kind of low. My MCAT was above average, but it wasn't in the 40s or anything.
 
I guess I was envisioning something roughly like GPA<3.5ish MCAT>35 but it wasn't concrete, and anyone who viewed themselves as high MCAT low GPA when crafting a school list was welcome to provide input!
 
3.0 GPA, 39 MCAT

I didn't apply to many schools last cycle (I wanted to wait until after my SMP year to go crazy). I was going to apply to just a lot of schools this cycle if I hadn't got in - mostly schools that typically strongly value higher MCATs though. Because of the screening process, I felt that I would have to cast a wide net.
 
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How did you guys construct your school list? I already have mine and submitted but just curious to hear others' takes on this situation and maybe help future applicants.

It's a predicament because a high MCAT may make lower stat schools wonder if you have better options, while at the same time higher stat schools may not want a lower than average GPA.

Did you guys apply to a mix of high and lower "tier" schools, or stick to somewhere in the middle? Did you apply to places where your GPA matched, or your MCAT?

This could also apply to high GPA, low MCAT folk.
<3.2 gpa → 3.3 gpa after postbacc, 40 MCAT

You can check out my WAMC thread...I put in explanations for most of my list. I crafted a reinvention narrative for my app, so I targeted schools that matched that. I also targeted states I had ties to, and places with good financial aid because I am poor.
http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/3-2-ugpa-4-0-postbacc-40-mcat.1101555/

Now that the cycle is over, I will say that middle-of-the-road seems to be the most responsive. I received 7 interviews, and only one of those was from a place that 'matched' my lower stat (and there were other factors that I think affected my app at the one outlier). The ones that matched only my MCAT also did not get back to me. However, I heard from a lot of great schools in the range near my LizzyM, and am going to be attending an awesome place this year!
 
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3.4/3.2 + 35 (~516 I think?)

Shoot for schools where your MCAT is around their 75th-ish to 90th percentile. Couple that with cGPA/sGPA around the 10th to 25th-ish percentile.

Specific schools? VA Tech, Tulane, and Hofstra come to mind. You state school will consider you even if your MCAT is much higher than their average since they still have a shot at getting you (because it's likely your cheapest option).

Be sure to submit early. Having most of my apps complete by July was a huge help IMO
 
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My focus was primarily on the tier containing schools like Albany, VTech, and TCMC. I am a CA resident so I also applied to a few UCs as well as Keck. Considering the crapshoot nature of this process, I thought it would be well worth my money and time to apply to some reaches as well, such as Pitt, UCSF, and UCSD. I have a 3.4 and a 519 MCAT.
 
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I'm going to my state school with a 3.3, 37
 
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I'm applying now with a 3.4 and 518 MCAT. Mostly the schools that have been listed in here previously. I say we create some kind of "2017 MD Applicants low GPA high MCAT sanity support club"
 
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I guess I was envisioning something roughly like GPA<3.5ish MCAT>35 but it wasn't concrete, and anyone who viewed themselves as high MCAT low GPA when crafting a school list was welcome to provide input!
I guess I probably fall into this, then. My thought process while crafting my school list was kind of two-fold. The first was to go for schools that had lowish GPA ranges, but not necessarily super low. I figured that if they were super low, my MCAT might make me seem like the kind of applicant who wouldn't attend if accepted. On the other hand, when I saw schools that had a 10th percentile GPA of 3.73, I decided that those were not the best schools to apply to. The other part of making my school list was making sure to apply to schools whose preferences in non-metric qualifications seemed to match my qualifications (such as research, service, diversity, etc.)
I'm applying now with a 3.38 and 518 MCAT. Mostly the schools that have been listed in here previously. I say we create some kind of "2017 MD Applicants low GPA high MCAT sanity support club"
Sounds great! Beware, though, that a few similar threads were started last application cycle, and most of them resulted in a whole bunch of fights about whether some specific poster was actually low GPA or if they were humble-bragging...
 
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Sounds great! Beware, though, that a few similar threads were started last application cycle, and most of them resulted in a whole bunch of fights about whether some specific poster was actually low GPA or if they were humble-bragging...

All the more reason to define what constitutes "low GPA."
 
3.2 cGPA, 3.0 sGPA, 519 (39) MCAT

Is there a nails-biting emoji?

[I've been corrected that a 519 is by most conversion charts actually a 37.]
 
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Low GPA high MCAT checking in.

I mainly applied to schools where the 90th percentile MCAT was a 37+.
 
Low GPA high MCAT checking in.

I mainly applied to schools where the 90th percentile MCAT was a 37+.

Welcome, brother / sister. Anybody have thoughts on BU and those applicants in our situation?
 
<3.2 gpa → 3.3 gpa after postbacc, 40 MCAT

You can check out my WAMC thread...I put in explanations for most of my list. I crafted a reinvention narrative for my app, so I targeted schools that matched that. I also targeted states I had ties to, and places with good financial aid because I am poor.
http://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/3-2-ugpa-4-0-postbacc-40-mcat.1101555/

Now that the cycle is over, I will say that middle-of-the-road seems to be the most responsive. I received 7 interviews, and only one of those was from a place that 'matched' my lower stat (and there were other factors that I think affected my app at the one outlier). The ones that matched only my MCAT also did not get back to me. However, I heard from a lot of great schools in the range near my LizzyM, and am going to be attending an awesome place this year!

Sorry if this seems unrelated, but as a "reinvention" applicant myself, can I ask if you focused your app more on your experiences after undergrad or during? I noticed a lot of your research and leadership occurred during undergrad. A lot of my ECs also happened during undergrad but I'm not sure if I should focus on that or what I learned working in the real world instead
 
gyngyn, I was curious as to your thoughts about how to select schools for this type of candidate. Thanks in advance!
In most situations, your state school and any mission-based school for which you fit the mission are the best choices. After that, it will depend to some degree on the apparent reason for the dissonance.
 
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High GPA, low MCAT checking in. Do schools typically look at a combination of GPA & MCAT or merely have hard cut-offs for both?
 
Thank you!

Being a CA resident, it seems the IS advantage is almost null. Would you attest to that? I'm just finding it difficult to find that sweet spot where the school believes I will attend, and also can overlook some less than stellar grades in the past in light of my entire app.
 
Thank you!

Being a CA resident, it seems the IS advantage is almost null. Would you attest to that? I'm just finding it difficult to find that sweet spot where the school believes I will attend, and also can overlook some less than stellar grades in the past in light of my entire app.
In CA, the "IS advantage" is overshadowed by 6,520 IS applicants and only two (small) schools with a professed preference for IS applicants. Other states are different.
 
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Sorry if this seems unrelated, but as a "reinvention" applicant myself, can I ask if you focused your app more on your experiences after undergrad or during? I noticed a lot of your research and leadership occurred during undergrad. A lot of my ECs also happened during undergrad but I'm not sure if I should focus on that or what I learned working in the real world instead
I focused on my post-undergraduate activities. Yes, my research and leadership came during undergrad, but those are things which mostly speak for themselves. I did select my research and my best leadership as 2 of my Most Meaningfuls, but my secondaries and PS were all about post-undergrad. What *I* needed to speak about was how I turned the negatives around, and what I had learned from being in a clinical setting a LOT during that reinvention. That let me focus on communicating my passion for medicine, and my newly developed academic discipline.
 
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I just got verified. My AMCAS (C and S respectively) are 3.64 and 3.59, with an MCAT of 516. Is this in the titled category?
 
Were you successful, or do you mean right now?

Applied a few days ago. I'm really nervous about how it will go. Congratulations on your acceptances, where did you ultimately get in?
 
Applied a few days ago. I'm really nervous about how it will go. Congratulations on your acceptances, where did you ultimately get in?
Wayne and Case Western...attending Case Western in <1mo!

I'd throw in a range of schools if I were you, not just the high MCAT places. You can look at my thread (linked above) for an idea of how I built my list. However, as I said, I didn't hear much from the schools which matched my MCAT, nor those that matched my GPA. The range I heard most from was closer to my LizzyM, those who are known for more holistic reviews of apps. This meant that yes, usually my gpa was below the range and my MCAT was above it.
 
I am a reapplicant at a couple schools. I have read conflicting information about whether those schools will look at my old application. Do schools look at old applications, or throw them out?
 
I am a reapplicant at a couple schools. I have read conflicting information about whether those schools will look at my old application. Do schools look at old applications, or throw them out?
Assume that we look at them.
 
Had a 3.5/3.3/523.

I applied to schools which I liked which matched my LizzyM, plus 2-3 reaches/safeties for a total of 22. I knew I'd be miserable at any rural/suburban school, so I ruled those out at well.

I'm going to my state school with a pretty hefty scholarship.
 
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3.4/3.2/518 here. Applying very broadly.
 
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3.47/519 here. Targeting mid-tiers with a couple reaches/low-tiers.
 
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Reapplicant
2011 MCAT: 35
2016 MCAT: 521
cGPA/sGPA: 3.45 / 3.35
CA Resident ORM
2 years research with some pubs, 3rd and 4th author
1 year scribing
200 hours hospital volunteering
25 hours shadowing
Did a 25 credit Post-Bacc with a 4.0, GPA above is after Post-Bacc
Applying broadly but still trying to build a list, not sure if any top 20s or higher tier schools will want me.
 
Reapplicant
2011 MCAT: 35
2016 MCAT: 521
cGPA/sGPA: 3.45 / 3.35
CA Resident ORM
2 years research with some pubs, 3rd and 4th author
1 year scribing
200 hours hospital volunteering
25 hours shadowing
Did a 25 credit Post-Bacc with a 4.0, GPA above is after Post-Bacc
Applying broadly but still trying to build a list, not sure if any top 20s or higher tier schools will want me.


If you don't mind me asking, what do you think went wrong the first time you applied? Anything you wish you did instead? Your stats are very similar to mine...
 
Well I hadn't done the post-bacc or scribing yet. Before the post-bacc my sGPA was a 3.1ish. I just wish I had done my post-bacc sooner instead of being stubborn and avoiding it to do full-time research. That and I wish I had done a bit better on my previous MCAT to make-up for my GPA. I know it was pretty high already, but with a low GPA any additional points on the MCAT help to convince them that you deserve a spot.
 
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Well I hadn't done the post-bacc or scribing yet. Before the post-bacc my sGPA was a 3.1ish. I just wish I had done my post-bacc sooner instead of being stubborn and avoiding it to do full-time research. That and I wish I had done a bit better on my previous MCAT to make-up for my GPA. I know it was pretty high already, but with a low GPA any additional points on the MCAT help to convince them that you deserve a spot.


I see...I'm sure the 4.0 will show schools you can handle their courseload! Good luck this cycle!
 
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