Aug 19, 2010
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Hello people, long time lurker here with a question.

I graduated a while back with a marketing degree, so naturally I've missed a few of the prerequisites needed for med school. I've enrolled in a local community college for Calc 1, Bio 1, and Chem 1. The first semester is coming to an end now, and this question happened to pop into my mind while I was daydreaming; does it matter that I'm taking all these courses at a community college?

I plan on doing well on the MCAT, and will be enrolling in a course in a addition to my regular studying once I complete Orgo II, but will this label me as a remedial student or something? The only reason I went to the local CC is because it's an (roughly) $16,000 price difference between taking those classes there and taking them at one of the local universities. My grades are solid, and my undergrad wasn't too bad either. Input?
 

FrkyBgStok

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*facepalm* seriously man, do a search. this has been discussed 150,000 times. i would give an answer but i am far too tired of discussing this.
 

fizzgig

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some people will say you need to take all at a 4 year uni. some will say it doesn't matter. people probably do get in taking all at CC but just cause some guy did doesn't mean it's the norm, and no one can tell you FOR SURE how much it might affect you.

the general feeeeeeling i get from this forum is a couple of CC might not be a big deal. you have a 4 year degree so you've shown you can handle upper level work in A field, but the issue here is that it's not in a basic science field that the adcoms may consider relevant. if you had a bio degree, had mad upper level bio classes and had taken almost all your prereqs in the course of your degree, i would say (based on, uh... my feeeelings) taking, say, your physics set at CC might not be a huge deal, or your english set, etc. but it seems having a non science ugrad degree, taking all your prereqs at CC, even if you kill the mcat with a stick, may be suspect. also look up your schools you particularly want to apply to. folk round these parts have said that some will not take CC credits at all, and others 'discourage it'. take this for what you will, DO do a search in these forums bc this gets discussed all the time, and do your research by speaking with schools directly. i know it's a load more money but you dont' want to pay half the money then get screwed so do the research.
 
Nov 13, 2010
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I'm at CC myself for another semester and also wondered about this. After contacting a couple schools via email I figured out that some highly frown upon CC classes while others seem not to care at all as long as you have a solid GPA and do well on the MCAT.

So in short, in all depends on the schools to which you plan to apply. Send out some emails and test the waters so you can make changes if need be.
 

md2bknox

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Would this be the same thing as a community college turning into a college?
 
Aug 30, 2009
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I think this really will depend on the school you are applying to, like Cornell (Weill) says that you shouldn't (they don't recommend it) do your reqs at a Community College.

Directly from their site:

Can I take my prerequisite courses at a Community College?
It is not recommended.
I know I'll be going to a community college for two years and I most likely will finish all of my reqs at a CC because of transfer reqs for a BS program at both of the schools I'll be applying to for transfer. I am undecided on which school I want to go to. University at Buffalo or Georgia Tech for Undergrad (BS in Chem and Atmospheric Science).
 

MiDoc2

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Your story sounds similar to mine. I graduated in 2006 with a Management degree. I had a pretty decent GPA and went to CC to take the traditional pre-reqs + biochem (at a 4yr institution). Thankfully, I have an acceptance but I received many rejections which could have been partly due to CC classes. I think it also depends on your EC and state residency.
 
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I'm in the a similar boat and I plan on doing all my premed prereqs at a cc.

But with that said, I keep forgetting that my local cc is held to a higher caliber because it's so closely associated with the University of Michigan and therefore we get lots very qualified people teaching our science courses. When I took anatomy and physiology, we had a fully functioning cadaver lab; another A&P instructor was an MD. My biochem instructor was a PhD graduate from UofM... so I can take my prereqs knowing that the quality of teaching will shine through in my MCAT scores.

I would recommend emailing your future instructors and let them know that you need to be MCAT-prepared. They'll at least be happy to forward a copy of the syllabus to you. I would think those of us nontrads who plan to take prereqs at cc's should do no worse than a 3.9 and at least average scores on the MCAT.... with a little extra research and/or clinical experience. :)
 

Pons Asinorum

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But with that said, I keep forgetting that my local cc is held to a higher caliber because it's so closely associated with the University of Michigan and therefore we get lots very qualified people teaching our science courses.
No one outside the state of Michigan knows or cares about that. They'll just see on your primary app that you took your prereqs at a CC and will form opinions on that simple fact. The consequences of that are why there are, as mentioned, 150,000 threads on this topic.
 

jl lin

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No one outside the state of Michigan knows or cares about that. They'll just see on your primary app that you took your prereqs at a CC and will form opinions on that simple fact. The consequences of that are why there are, as mentioned, 150,000 threads on this topic.


We have the same deal in many areas of the NE. . .so many schools associated or linked with strong 4 years or universities. I guess it depends on where you apply and the individual biases of those sitting on the admissions committee. Some will be OK with it; some may not be. There are profs that actually teach at both, so . . .

You have to do what you have to do. I guess the perspective is that there is so much of a numbers risk with the whole med school application process, people should do anything that will up their chances. Therefore, people say up your chances by completing your pre-med pre-reqs at a four year or university. To me the rigor has always depended on the individual that is actually developing and teaching the class. So, some in two years schools may have tougher courses than some in four years. It's all about perception more than reality.

And since people tend to fit things into various common biases, people will tell you to work it along with the perception/biases.

Again, sooo many, probably tooooo many times perception becomes the reality for too many people. Personally, I loathe this kind of rigid thinking, but it is the reality that you often have to work with.


It may be a risk, on the other hand, it may not be. If you are applying to Harvard, it probably will be.

But only you know all the particulars of your situation.

So if you think you can really kick butt on the MCAT and do all the other things that can make a great application, well, do what you have to do.

If, on the other hand, you need to work every possible, positive plug and angle (excuse the alliteration), then take the prereqs at a university to be safe.


I think it's a personal kind of thing that only the particular individual can answer, depending on his or her situation and needs.



And yes it has been discussed ad nauseum.
 
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