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Doing summer school?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by ravin, Apr 6, 2004.

  1. ravin

    ravin Senior Member
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    Hello. I went to a local university before my frehsman year to do gen chem. This year I am planning on going to a reputable university to study the premed bio requirement. The premed adviser at my school says that committees will not like me going to summer school twice to do my premed requirements. He says that it will decrease my chances of getting in. What do you think?
    ravin
     
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  3. DrMom

    DrMom Official Mom of SDN
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    It won't cause you any problems. Just be sure you do well. Maybe you can find another advisor.
     
  4. Nvr Ending Jrny

    Nvr Ending Jrny Senior Member
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    i've heard from my premed counselors and people that have gone through the application cycle that taking summer classes are a disadvantage sometimes. If you do poorly (perhaps because it is an accelerated learning process) or if you do poorly on that section of the MCAT. If you think u can do well in the class then more power to you. i wouldn't recommend taking all of them over the summer though.
     
  5. UCLAstudent

    UCLAstudent I'm a luck dragon!
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    I take summer school every summer at a school different from the one I attend during the year. I have not had any problems.
     
  6. terpgirl

    terpgirl Senior Member
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    I agree, get a new advisor. Mine said the same thing, and I just laughed at the chick. She went on and on and on about...

    Let's just say I know a doctor on Hopkins and Maryland's adcoms, and their response is that the advisors are full of ****. When I went in for surgery in February, I asked the same thing of several doctors at Hopkins there (sernior people, who deal with admissions as well)--got the same response. Do well in them, and that's all that matters.

    -Liz
     
  7. HooahDOc

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    My advisor told me the same thing, but I ignored her. I have spoken with some adcoms and they all say it doesn't matter as long as you do well in summer courses. Summer classes are very accelerated and require you to stuff a lot of knowledge into your head in a short period of time -- kind of like med school. Just make sure you do very well. Luckily, I've managed a 4.0 summer gpa. Too bad my fall/spring wasn't the same :(
     
  8. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    Yea I don't know why but advisors are so horrible, they don't seem to know jack shiit. They told my friend who has a 3.4 gpa that he should give up being premed and he has no chance at getting into a US med school. I don't know where they get their information from? I think aslong as ur not taking all of ur prereqs at a different school u should be ok.
     
  9. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much
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    Hi and welcome to SDN.

    I totally disagree with your advisor. What a stupid comment he made to you. You really have to take some things these adviosrs say with a grain of salt. I took summer classes every year I was in school. It was a great time to get in classes. I have never ever been questioned about the summer classes I have taken by any school where I have interviewed.

    I would caution taking the MCAT heavy classes though, unless you are a fast learner. Sometimes in summer, you can find yourself studying just for the test and then forgetting what you have learned. That would not be good for stuff you will need for the MCAT. Just keep that in mind.

    FYI the classes I took in the summers were:
    Intro chemistry (3 credits)
    Biology I with lab (4 credits)
    Genetics (3 credits)
    Drawing (2 credits)
    Bacteriology with lab (5 credits)
    Microbiology with lab (4 credits)
     
  10. Lion-O

    Lion-O Sight beyond sight.
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    I agree with everyone above. I took 3 terms of O chem during the summer, did fine, never got asked about it.
     
  11. Samus Aran

    Physician Moderator Emeritus 15+ Year Member

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    I don't see how it would put you at any disadvantage. This summer I plan on taking both physics 1 and 2 w/labs (part 1 in June and 2 in July) so I am expecting that it's going to take a lot of work each day to do well since I bet I'm going to have exams at least once a week, not to mention that I will be learning approx. 4 months of material in just one month...same goes for you. If you can do well, it really should not be a problem.
     
  12. HooahDOc

    Physician 15+ Year Member

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    My past summer schedules:

    Summer II
    General Chemistry II (4 hrs) A
    Fiction (3 hrs) B

    Summer II
    Contemporary Moral Issues (3) A
    Human Sexuality (3) A

    Summer I
    Psychology of Adolescence (or, "Why teens are dumb") (3)
    Latin-American Civilization (3)
    Organic Chemistry I Lab (1)

    Summer II
    Biochemistry* (3)
    General Physics II (3)

    So I was wrong about the 4.0; forgot about the English class. I may switch out biochem if I do well enough in organic II and find my last science LOR before we get out. Summer courses have a secondary benefit: really good LORs.

    Anyways, as a premed senior I have collected vast amounts of wisdom. One of the greatest lessons learned that I try to share with underclassmen premeds is this: advisors are full of ****. They take some classes and research the process and that's pretty much it. Most of them never went through the process. Hell, one guy who's teaching the premed section of a class works in freaking housing. :eek:
     
  13. PepperdineP-MED

    PepperdineP-MED Junior Member
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    I just got back from a pre-med conference at UCI. All of the med school deans were talking out of both sides of their mouths. First they said that it didn't matter if you took summer classes, then the next moment they said they knew the classes were easier. Go figure.
     
  14. Skaterbabe74

    Skaterbabe74 Senior Member
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    Personally I think it depends how long the summer session you attend is. Obviously if they are 5 weeks or shorter they are going to have to reduce the assignments, types of exams, etc but if you go to an 8 or 10 week session they really don't have to reduce much. All of the classes I've ever taken during the summer (with the exception of a Comparative religion class that was 3 weeks long) have been exactly the same difficulty or more difficult than a regular semester because of the reduced time. My suggestion for anyone contemplating summer classes (which I do every summer) would be to try and avoid taking the pre-med core during that time if possible. It doesn't always work (for example I'll be taking Orgo II + lab this summer) but whenever possible take the electives/core classes/minor classes during the summers since those won't make as much difference as taking the premed core then. If you do have to take a premed core during the summer try and find ones that have you in class for almost the same amount of time as a regular semester. My Orgo II class will be 4 days a week for an hour 15 minutes for 8 weeks and the lab will meet twice a week for 4 hours I think which works out to about the same time as a regular semester of 3 times a week for an hour and a half for lecture and 1 full lab/week (2.5 hrs) + a 45 min discussion for lab/week. I think the biggest disadvantage for the premed cores over the summer is MCAT prep vs. adcom impression but if you do well on the MCAT after taking the cores in the summer I think you'll cancel some of the mistaken impressions adcoms sometimes have about summer classes.
     
  15. 34140

    34140 Senior Member
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    Many of you say that you just "ignore your advisors".

    Of those that ignored, are you in med school now? If so , what advice would you say is the most IGNORABLE?
     
  16. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    Wow thats going to be tough, don't u need physics I for physics II?
     
  17. kelenaf

    kelenaf Member
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    Haha... the most ignorable advice I received: not to wear my engagement ring to my interviews.


    But taking summer school never hurt me - I took Orgo I and II during the summer and fared well on the MCAT. It really comes down to what you put into the class. If you're in summer school and you know you're going to take the MCAT, put a lot of time/effort into your studies. When you're only taking one class at a time, it is a WHOLE LOT EASIER to drill a concept into your brain - you don't have that luxury during the fall or spring semesters.

    Oh, and be sure to take your classes at your school and not a community college. You want course work that is on par with what you would take during the year.
     
  18. Samus Aran

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    I will have finished Physics 1 in June before starting Physics 2 in July. Each lecture is compressed from 4 months into 1 month...it sucks!
     
  19. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    O i see, that might be better, that way there are no long breaks between physics I and II and you are in the "physics mode" all summer long.
     
  20. lizzylu

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    My advisor wasn't that bad, however her advice of applying to over 30 schools (Cali resident) was silly. Oh, and yes I've gotten acceptances.

    About summer school:
    I've never heard of an advisor telling you that summer school is bad! Crazy!
    Soph summer I took Biology requirement +work
    Junior summer I TAed OChem and took the MCAT

    there's no reason to not take summer classes, as long as you can pull an A
     
  21. exmike

    exmike NOR * CAL
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    I dont see how taking the courses during summer school would be bad unless you're taking them at a community college or something rather than your own undergrad institution. I took several of my prereq's during the summer w/o problem.

    Whether or not to listen to your premed advisor depends on your advisor. I'd say that as a collective group SDN is by far the best advisor you can have.
     
  22. AlternateSome1

    AlternateSome1 Burnt Out
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    UVA's new Dean came to Virginia Tech last year and answered questions for people. He said that summer courses taken at your home university or an equivalent school were fine. The only thing that would looks suspicious would be to run home and take a lot of BCMP courses at a CC.

    To follow up with personal experience, I took Phys 1 & 2 plus labs, Chem 2 plus lab, and Entomology over the summer at my regular university (Virginia Tech) and it never came up in interviews.

    ~AS1~
     
  23. lizzylu

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    That makes sense. To the OP, you need to consider the reputation of the school you're taking your pre-med reqs at. The more competitive of a school the better those As look.
     
  24. AlternateSome1

    AlternateSome1 Burnt Out
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    I really don't think even taking a couple of courses at a CC is going to hurt you. You just need to be ready to explain why if asked in an interview. The CC courses may be just as difficult as any courses at your University, but it is really just going to come down to the perceptions of the admissions committee.

    ~AS1~
     
  25. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    Thats true, SDN is awesome. Especially since you get advice from other students who have and are going through the same situations as you are.
     

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