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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by DaveC, Nov 28, 2002.
Is Calculus needed as a prereq to apply to med school. I would like to avoid it if I can.
i think a lot of schools require it...
even if there are those that don't require calculus, it's helpful to take it especially if your physics course is calculus-based!
go ahead and take it... grin and bear it!
Very few schools actually require it though Harvard comes to mind
Actually a lot of schools require one semester of calc, which is no big deal. If you can hack non-calculus physics you would have no problem. Calc II is a lot harder, but if I remember correctly the only school that requires two semesters of calc is Harvard, and I think they require math through diff eq if you want to apply HST.
Granted i applied to few ivy's, but
out of 15 schools that i did apply to, not one school required it.
I'm taking it now in my senior year just for S&G and it's a joke, and very boring. Unless you are really into math, it's kinda dry.
So if you don't want to take it, don't, unless some school you're dying to go to requires it.
Whether or not taking calculus is an option does not depend entirely on how many medical schools require it. Almost all science majors require calculus for the major, including computer science and engineering. Students majoring in disciplines not requiring calculus have an option, but if calculus is not included in their premedical preparation they remove themselves as candidates for the medical schools that do require it for admission.
College is supposed to be an educational experience, not a narrowly defined curriculum directed only to what medical schools require. This not just my opinion, but that of all professional schools as well. Why else do they accept students from any major, including art, music, home economics, you name it.
Why else are proportionally fewer biology majors accepted than most non-science majors? Why else do almost all medical schools require the completion of the baccalaureate degree before enrolling in medical school?
i cannot remember which one, but one (of the 20 schools i applied to) did require.
if you do run across a school you're interested in that requires it, i've got two words for you: community college. as long as amcas and/or the med school will recognize the credits, take it at the easiest place possible if calc isn't your thing.
like gower said, if you're a science major you really cant around it though......
Of all the courses you'll ever take, Math courses would probably be the easiest, next to Physics... this is because if you think about it, they're logical.
Understand underlying concepts, and I can ask you a problem in any way, and you'll be able to respond correctly.
Not so with Biology courses--these are tougher in my opinion. You have to know everything... have to memorize or understand most things separately.
According to the 2003-2004 MSAR (Table 3-A on p. 12 for those who care), only 23 out of 119 US med schools require any calc. Also, you can still apply to a school that does require it even if you haven't taken calc, and if accepted you would just need to take it before matriculating (I know several people who have done this with various reqs). If it's not required for your major and you don't want to take it, my vote is don't bother- take another class (philosophy, english, whatever) that interests you instead, and make the most of your undergrad years. I dislike math in general and took statistics instead of calc, which I found to be more interesting and useful in my everyday life. I have done fine in my pre-med classes, and I don't think not taking calc has substantially affected my understanding of physics or other subjects, although maybe I just don't know what I'm missing. Anyway, take calc if you want to, but if you don't (and it doesn't sound like you do), don't feel like you have to for med school, as it probably won't matter to the schools you apply at (over 80% have no calc requirement).
It doesn't matter what schools you're applying to, TAKE CALCULUS! It is the BASIS of a lot of stuff which you will encounter... rates of reactions, pharmokinetics, biology stuff, etc. Sure you'll never take the integral of some extreme problem like in the course... but the skills you take from the class you will indirectly apply forever. It gives you an intimate familiarity with rates and graphs... instantaneous rates, acceleration, etc. Just take it.. it's not a "high level math" at all, it's basic BASIC stuff in the whole realm of it
if you are not a "math person" (like me) skip calc and take physics without calc. this will get you into 90% of the medschools out there. unless you are intent on research and/or md/phd do your gpa a favor and skip this worthless class.