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GPA 3.1 URM CA State univ. attending CMB masters program

Discussion in 'What Are My Chances?' started by Mr.Brown, 05.15.14.

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  1. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    I have an upward trend, graduated in six years first four years other than two semesters were 2.45-2.54 (other semesters were 3.85 w/16 unit 4.0 w/17 units). after that steady climb 3.11 3.13 3.56 3.6. I'll be attending an informal post-bacc in the fall (edit: first 12 units at 4.0). Will be volunteering at a hospital for the next 2 years. I have about 1 year of research experience in CMB. I have volunteered with my org for the last couple of years reaching out to hispanic youth. I was wondering what you guys think my best options would be for trying to gain acceptance to an M.D. program. I am also open to the possibility of D.O. I plan on taking the MCAT next summer and i'm a pretty good test taker.

    (edit: Attending an informal post-bacc)
    I was a little worried about taking graduate level courses as Ive read on here that graduate level courses are a waste of time as they are viewed as being inflated. At my university most of the grad courses, other than the primary literature/ research based classes, are taken with the undergrads and are held to a higher standard than undergrads and take the same exams as them. Kinda weird that the undergrad class is viewed as "better" when the graduate version was, in actuality, more difficult. For that reason I was planning on taking many of my courses during my MS program as undergrad courses. What are your thoughts on this?

    Please, feel free to be honest
     
    Last edited: 03.30.15
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  3. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist 2+ Year Member

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    What is your cGPA and sGPA? Depending on how low your GPA is, DO might be your best option. If you're taking the MCAT, be prepared to study for it A LOT and do not rely on the fact that you may think you are good at taking tests.

    If you're doing an MS anyways, take whatever courses you want. If you still need GPA repair, an MS might not be the best option. It doesn't matter what happens at your own specific institution. Graduate classes tend to be grade inflated in many places, so that's the stigma that they will usually hold.
     
  4. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    So if i take classes during my MS that are undergrad courses does amcas count those toward my undergrad GPA?
     
  5. wiggitywack12

    wiggitywack12

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    No, your undergraduate GPA is the GPA on your undergraduate degree transcript. After you graduate that does not change.


    I've noticed that MD admission committees do still weigh undergraduate GPA pretty heavily. I've seen applicants with 3.1 undergrad GPAs with 3.9 grad GPAs + solid MCAT scores still get rejected from schools they would have at least interviewed at with a good undergrad GPA.

    Some have mentioned a bias against grades from most Master's programs because they're considered inflated (i.e., too easy to do well in). If you do well on the MCAT (at least 30) there are plenty of DO programs that might not count you out, but a lot of MD programs will still hold the undergrad GPA against you a bit. I would aim for a good MCAT, apply to plenty of DO schools and apply earlier in the cycle.


    Also the MCAT is a different beast entirely from your average college exam and I wouldn't take it lightly. No offense but you had a 2.45 in undergrad....that wouldn't qualify as "good test taker" especially not by MCAT standards; the exam is massive and covers physics + ochem+ gen chem + biochem + anatomy + microbiology + genetics + verbal + social and biological foundations of behavior

    If you struggled in undergrad its likely that your knowledge base of these courses needs to be brushed up on, a lot. If you bomb the MCAT along with having a 3.1 undergrad GPA your application will be thrown out by most schools (both MD and DO) and you'll waste a lot of money and time.

    If anything, I would have suggested a 2 year masters program + another year research (or at least try to get something published) while you study long and hard to ace the MCAT.
     
  6. mmmcdowe

    mmmcdowe Duke of minimal vowels Gold Donor SDN Moderator 7+ Year Member

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    moving to WAMC
     
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  7. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    Calculate your gpa's using the AMCAS and AACOMAS calculators with the link found in the sticky entitled "Please read before posting" on the first page of this forum.

    Which community do you represent?

    Graduate grades do not remediate a weak undergrad gpa.
     
  8. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    I am a Mexican-American from rural central valley. Well i posted this a while ago but i am now attending a post-bacc program and in my first semester with hematology, human anatomy, psychology and sociology i got a 4.0. Well on to next semester because i know i have to do the same thing again.
     
    Last edited: 03.26.15
  9. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    Yeah those years when i got a 2.45 i never even opened my book, never took notes and still managed to pass but i no longer do that and i read all of the material/books. like i stated above i am attending a post-bacc now and got a 4.0 in my first semester. i didn't close my undergrad becuase of this so i technically don't have a diploma yet. Do you think it would be better to add my classes to my undergrad to have an uGPA of 3.3 or have a 3.12 Ugpa with a 3.9-4.0 post-bacc? I am URM btw hate to use that but seems like my only way to MD at this point.DO is also a great option that I am also planning on applying to.
     
  10. wiggitywack12

    wiggitywack12

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    Post bacc stands for post baccalaureate (AFTER your undergrad/baccalaureate degree)....so how are you in a post bacc program without graduating from undergrad? Post bacc classes are not going to be added into your undergraduate gpa because they aren't undergraduate courses. Masters programs are masters programs, they're not going to count as undergraduate courses. You need to see a pre-med advisor ASAP. You can't "add" masters program classes to your undergrad GPA...the fact that you're in a masters program means your undergrad GPA is already finalized, I'm a bit alarmed that you don't understand this, please see a pre-med advisor at your school as soon as you can.

    The reason why your grad grades aren't going to cover up or make atonement for your undergrad grades is because adcoms will be comparing you to traditional pre-meds who succeeded in undergrad, so in fairness, they take your graduate courses into account, but they still have to evaluate you on your undergrad performance as well. The MCAT is still your chance to shine though, because everyone has to take that.

    URM isn't going to help that much, the URM applicant pool is steadily getting more competitive (which is a good thing)...in essence you'll still need to do all of the same things every one else does and the school adcoms will still have to feel you are a fit. If you do apply, most MD adcoms want to see a masters GPA of around 3.8 and they usually don't bite unless the undergrad GPA was at least 3.3 and your mcat will still need to be 30+. DO schools are known to be more accepting so if I were in your position I would spend most of my app money there. You could apply to the lower ranked MD schools but they tend to be state schools that are extremely loyal to their in state residents. So its hit or miss there too. I'd say DO is the best bet for you. Good luck!
     
  11. Doug Underhill

    Doug Underhill 2+ Year Member

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    He can definitely get into a good MD program with a good MCAT. Hispanic applicants with a uGPA of 3.3 and a MCAT of 30-32 have a 60% chance of at least one acceptance to a MD program. You mentioned adding those grades to your uGPA somehow, so you should probably do that.
     
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  12. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    Post bac grades are added into undergrad grades, Master's grades are not.
    Did you calculate your AMCAS gpa yet?
    There are so few applicants from the SJV that someone like OP (if they can show evidence that they will succeed) will get a lot of attention in CA schools, esp. UCD.
     
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  13. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    Yeah i chose not to attend my CMB Master's program because i knew i couldn't get classes like hematology, or physics 2 so i decided to do a post-bacc. There are open post-bacc programs where you dont need to have a diploma. There are people in the formal post-bacc and i take classes with them and i did well compared to them. Maybe i should just apply for the letters of rec they give? but i think to be in the formal post-bacc i would need to close out my undergrad. good advice though i probably am going to talk to a pre-med advisor now that i have a 4.0 gpa in my first semester of post-bac because in all honesty i didn't want to show up to a pre-med advisor with ONLY a 3.12 GPA and dreams.
     
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  14. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    So i should just close out my undergrad already and just receive my diploma because my post-bacc grades will be added to my uGPA?
     
  15. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    Yes, they will be added, and they will be seen in a separate line (by year).

    Master's grades (even SMP's) are not included in undergrad gpa.
     
  16. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    @gyngyn Thanks for your replies. I have a ton of units from my undergrad so after this semester if i manage to pull off a gpa >3.85 i would have a 3.22 cGPA and a 3.23 sGPA with a total of 24 post-bacc credits. After that every 12 units of >3.85 would only increase my gpa by .04. Given my lackluster undergrad GPA, is my post-bacc gpa more for improving the number or should i try to reach 36-48 units to show that I can sustain a high GPA?

    Im asking this because after next semester, if i do well, i will already be in the 3.2 range or if i complete 36 units with a 3.85 I will have a cGPA of 3.29 and a sGPA of 3.33. I know i shouldn't count my chickens but its what gives me hope. I'm 1/3 of the way there though with 4.0 in my first 12 units. Also would it look better if i took more than 12 units?
     
  17. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    A sustained period in which you maintain high scores along with a strong MCAT will go along way in calming nervous admissions committee members. How long and how many units will vary in the eye of the beholder.
     
  18. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

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  19. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    Yeah i thought as much. At 3.3/3.35 with a strong MCAT (32+) I'm hoping to be a at least be attractive to some schools. DO would serve me just as well as i really just want to do primary care/family practice because i would be of most help to my community in that capacity. With a 3.3/3.5 and a 27-29 MCAT i should be relatively competitive for DO right?
     
  20. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    Yeah during my shadowing today i met a lot of hispanics who would tell me about the lack of hispanic doctors in the area. thanks for the info and reply. Im hoping UCD will give me a chance with a 3.3/3.35 and a 32+ mcat. still a lot of work to do before then though
     
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  21. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

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    I really wish you the best of luck. I can't emphasize how important it is!

    Also if you are looking DO I believe that AT Still SOMA has a 3rd/4th year site in the greater Delano area - something I am interested in also.
     
  22. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    Here's a phrase I've never seen before!
    Perhaps like the greater Goshen area I'm from!
     
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  23. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

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    Haha!

    It is funny looking back at it. :) I double checked and it is in Porterville anyways!
     
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  24. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    lol thats basically where i live and im definitely not in the greater delano area lol
     
  25. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

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    Of course. I had thought the program was based out of DRMC, I was mistaken.
     
  26. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    are you from the area?
     
  27. Cawolf

    Cawolf 2+ Year Member

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    No, but I worked out of Bakersfield for a couple years. I lived there last a few years ago.
     
  28. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    @gyngyn
    I wanted to get your honest opinion on my situation. Mexican-American from the central valley who also worked in the fields if that matters. currently my stats are AMCAS: cGPA 3.18 sGPA 3.16. AACOMAS: 3.25 3.36. I have two options, take one more semester of 13-15 units of upper level science courses (micro, virology etc) and then take the mcat the following spring and apply for the 2016-17 cycle. I would then have, assuming >3.8 , AMCAS: cGPA 3.23 sGPA 3.24 and an even better AACOMAS ~3.3 and 3.5

    or

    skip that cycle entirely and wait for the 2017-18 cycle to be able to attain a AMCAS cGPA 3.31 and 3.35. by that time i would be 27 years old though. I just turned 25 and feel like im getting a bit old to BARELY be applying. Would i have a much better chance at an MD with a 3.3 as opposed to a 3.24? because i would lose a year of my life for that change in GPA. this is also assuming an MCAT >30. I know there are "what ifs" in my plans but i need to make the decision in the next 4-5 months
     
  29. gyngyn

    gyngyn Professor Gold Donor 5+ Year Member

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    My challenge in advising you is predicting the MCAT. You only want to take it once and get >502. If you did this the first plan would work. You really need a good prep for the test. Have you gone over to the MCAT forum?
     
  30. Mr.Brown

    Mr.Brown

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    @gyngyn
    thanks for your reply. Yeah after spending countless hours on here I've come to the realization that your uGPA is pretty useless in trying to predict anything because the mcat is a big part of the picture. I know that this test will make or break my application at this point. I am planning on focusing on only the mcat for a few months and will take a course to supplement my studying.
     
    Last edited: 05.26.15

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