Gap Year: Should I Do a Post-Bac Program or Gain Additional Clinical/Work/Research Experience?

Sep 2, 2020
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  1. Pre-Medical
Current senior at 4-year university with a 3.5cGPA and 3.2sGPA. Planning on taking MCAT in January of 2021 (been preparing since May) and taking gap year to bolster resume and increase my chances of getting into medical school.

Extracurriculars include 100 hours of clinical shadowing experience in hospital setting, 1 year of research work in a university laboratory with the hopes to get published (not guaranteed though). 200+ hours of community service working with differently-abled persons in local community through university club and fraternity philanthropic efforts. President of fraternity for a year now, leadership team member for campus ministry for 2 years. Member of undergraduate healthcare club.

Told by pre-health advisor to consider 1 year post bac program for “academic enhancement”. Understand this is a lot of time, money, and additional schooling and only want to consider it if it will significantly improve my chances of acceptance into md program as opposed to gaining more clinical or work experience (my original plan for the gap year).

I also understand this means my MCAT score is going to be of utmost importance to my application. My goal is to get a 515. If I hit this score and don’t do a post-bac program, but rather gain additional clinical/work experience would I still be competitive for md programs?
 
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KnightDoc

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  1. Pre-Medical
Current senior at 4-year university with a 3.5cGPA and 3.2sGPA. Planning on taking MCAT in January of 2021 (been preparing since May) and taking gap year to bolster resume and increase my chances of getting into medical school.

Extracurriculars include 100 hours of clinical shadowing experience in hospital setting, 1 year of research work in a university laboratory with the hopes to get published (not guaranteed though). 200+ hours of community service working with differently-abled persons in local community through university club and fraternity philanthropic efforts. President of fraternity for a year now, leadership team member for campus ministry for 2 years. Member of undergraduate healthcare club.

Told by pre-health advisor to consider 1 year post bac program for “academic enhancement”. Understand this is a lot of time, money, and additional schooling and only want to consider it if it will significantly improve my chances of acceptance into md program as opposed to gaining more clinical or work experience (my original plan for the gap year).

I also understand this means my MCAT score is going to be of utmost importance to my application. My goal is to get a 515. If I hit this score and don’t do a post-bac program, but rather gain additional clinical/work experience would I still be competitive for md programs?
Depends on whether you are shooting for MD or would be happy with DO. Your numbers are low for MD, hence the need for "academic enhancement." It need not be a budget buster, though, since you can "do-it-yourself" by just taking classes on an ad-hoc basis rather than enrolling in a formal program, but you need to demonstrate a capacity to earn As in upper level science classes to offset your sub par sGPA.
 
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