macfan101

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What counts more towards an application: GPA or MCAT? Would Sam or Teddy, considering the fact that both go to same undergraduate schools and both have exactly same personal statement and extracurricular.

Sam: 3.86 Gpa and 27 Mcat score

Teddy: 3.0 GPA and 37 Mcat score
 

Thego2guy

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What counts more towards an application: GPA or MCAT? Would Sam or Teddy, considering the fact that both go to same undergraduate schools and both have exactly same personal statement and extracurricular.

Sam: 3.86 Gpa and 27 Mcat score

Teddy: 3.0 GPA and 37 Mcat score
Sam would obviously win out; 37 doesn't nearly carry enough "oomph" as say a 41 would to try and compensate for that crappy 3. Go look at statistics charts.

A 27 is not too far off the average, which puts it into the acceptable range. That accompanying GPA is also above average.

Meanwhile, a 3.0 is wayyyyyy below averagge compared to that 27, it is definitely not within the normal range of acceptancees. A 37 is within that range, hence no 'oomph'. So its not a big deal.

Sorry folks, a 5 hr test is not going to make up for all the fuk ups you did in the last 4 years, SHOCKER. :eek:
 

circulus vitios

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Sam would obviously win out; 37 doesn't nearly carry enough "oomph" as say a 41 would to try and compensate for that crappy 3.
37 is a 97.6-98.4th percentile score
41 is a 99.7-99.8th percentile score



macfan101, there's no point in obsessing over hypothetical situations. Do the best that you can do and let the cards fall where they may.
 
Jul 4, 2009
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What counts more towards an application: GPA or MCAT? Would Sam or Teddy, considering the fact that both go to same undergraduate schools and both have exactly same personal statement and extracurricular.

Sam: 3.86 Gpa and 27 Mcat score

Teddy: 3.0 GPA and 37 Mcat score
Comparing 2 candidates purely by those 2 numbers is worthless. You are leaving out too many other factors.
 
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Once you get closer to average ranges for actual accepted applicants, I would say MCAT matters more because I think in general there are more unsuccessful applicants that have high GPA/low MCAT than have low GPA/high MCAT... few people can make an amazing score on the MCAT without a lot of studying, and if they were willing to study that much for the MCAT, their GPA is probably pretty good too. On the flip side, plenty of people with near perfect GPA's just struggle with the pressure and format of the MCAT.

As an example.. the national average GPA for applicants is like a 3.5, if you are an applicant with a 4.0, schools will say 'wow, that's good!'.. but GPA's are not standardized and majors differ etc.. The national average MCAT for applicants is like a 29, if you have a 38 MCAT most schools nationwide will keep you on their desk for a long time (It's standarized.. and they see your test score and think those will carry over to boards, etc. and this probably holds more weight than a 90th percentile undergrad GPA) . I realize that this is totally theoretical as EC's, experiences, and the combination of the two scores is really what matters.

These two cases are not realistic because a 27 MCAT in sam and a 3.0 GPA in Teddy will pretty much get them filtered out from the beginning.
 
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Knocked Up

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What counts more towards an application: GPA or MCAT? Would Sam or Teddy, considering the fact that both go to same undergraduate schools and both have exactly same personal statement and extracurricular.

Sam: 3.86 Gpa and 27 Mcat score

Teddy: 3.0 GPA and 37 Mcat score
please stop trolling

And Teddy wins day in and day out, assuming everything else is the same (which it never is).

Realistically, they both loose because both numbers get screened out at most schools (as eluded to above) unless the applicant is a URM.
 

flatearth22

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high MCAT + low GPA = bright but lazy
high GPA + low MCAT = dumb but hardworking (aka a Striver)

While SDN fawns over the MCAT because it is standardized and puts people on a level playing field normalizing for UG, courseload, major, etc., the AAMC acceptance matrices actually show that with the same LizzyM scores, Strivers win out over the smart, lazy kids. This makes a lot of sense for a field like medicine which is more work-ethic driven as opposed to brain-power driven (like computer science or finance are). On a slightly related note, an excerpt from Atul Gawande's "Complications":




So keep on striving, Strivers.
 
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high MCAT + low GPA = bright but lazy
high GPA + low MCAT = dumb but hardworking (aka a Striver)
Teddy is smart but doesn't work hard. Sam is decently intelligent and seems to work hard over time. I'd take Sam.
ugh. I think the MCAT is far from an intelligence test and measure's no practicality or personality factors in regards to being a great doctor. I hate that so much rests on it honestly..

IMO Sam is probably very intelligent, but didn't read enough books as a kid (because the entire MCAT is passage based, even the physics) or could have easily been affected by the pressure of it all. I understand your point, but I could not disagree more with you saying that people with around 3.86/27 are all dumb but hardworking.

Everyone legitimately applying to medical school is bright, while their specific strengths vary.
 
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TheKDizzle

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ugh. I think the MCAT is far from an intelligence test and measure's no practicality or personality factors in regards to being a great doctor. I hate that so much rests on it honestly..

IMO Sam is probably very intelligent, but didn't read enough books as a kid (because the entire MCAT is passage based, even the physics) or could have easily been affected by the pressure of it all. I understand your point, but I could not disagree more with you saying that people with around 3.86/27 are all dumb but hardworking.

Everyone legitimately applying to medical school is bright, while their specific strengths vary.
I like this post. What you say is definitely true. MCAT != intelligence. It's a combination of testtaking ability, composure, preparation, and analytical thinking.

EDIT: And since when was GPA all about hard work? Lots of science classes reward innate analytical thinking ability more than effort.
 

armybound

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I like this post. What you say is definitely true. MCAT != intelligence. It's a combination of testtaking ability, composure, preparation, and analytical thinking.

EDIT: And since when was GPA all about hard work? Lots of science classes reward innate analytical thinking ability more than effort.
analytical thinking isn't a sign of intelligence? talk to a mentally ******ed person and see how much analytical thinking they demonstrate.
 

TheKDizzle

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analytical thinking isn't a sign of intelligence? talk to a mentally ******ed person and see how much analytical thinking they demonstrate.
Did you read the other three factors I listed?

I'm assuming not.
 

Knocked Up

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I could not disagree more with you saying that people with around 3.86/27 are all dumb but hardworking.
There are only three types of people in the world who will say that this person is stupid.

1. The type of people who post on SDN
2. Adcoms (well certain adcoms)
3. The people who have no idea what they are talking about.
 

TheKDizzle

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There are only three types of people in the world who will say that this person is stupid.

1. The type of people who post on SDN
2. Adcoms (well certain adcoms)
3. The people who have no idea what they are talking about.
Well, looks like we just witnessed #1 in action :laugh:
 

Thego2guy

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37 is a 97.6-98.4th percentile score
41 is a 99.7-99.8th percentile score



macfan101, there's no point in obsessing over hypothetical situations. Do the best that you can do and let the cards fall where they may.
Tens of thousands of applicants take that exam. Those percentiles mean nothing in this situatiion. I recently hung around a bunch of people from a top ivy school here in nyc, LITERALLY every other person had 36, 37, 38 (lots of these), 39 or 40. Someone had a 43. Granted this is an ivy school, I still know plenty of 35+'s at a much lower ranked school (UMDNJ), so while these may be high when viewed as percintiles of TEST TAKERS, high 30's are certainly not a rare occurance among medical school classes

And lastly if that argument fails, lets not pretend what would we do in this situation, but look at legit statistics from past experiences:
 
Jan 17, 2011
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What counts more towards an application: GPA or MCAT? Would Sam or Teddy, considering the fact that both go to same undergraduate schools and both have exactly same personal statement and extracurricular.

Sam: 3.86 Gpa and 27 Mcat score

Teddy: 3.0 GPA and 37 Mcat score
The graph above clearly shows that the most probable outcome is that Sam gets in first cycle and Teddy gets rejected and applies for an SMP to prove work ethic..... Since either candidate is far from "safe", they would both increase their chances by applying DO.
 
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armybound

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Did you read the other three factors I listed?

I'm assuming not.
Oh you're right, I read from right to left and just stopped after analytical thinking.

Prioritize those 4 in the order you think matters. For me it's like this
analytical thinking (~intelligence)
preparation (~intelligence + hard work)
testtaking ability (~intelligence)
...
composure (doesn't matter at all imo, or is the same as test taking ability)
 

TheKDizzle

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MCAT != intelligence. It's a combination of testtaking ability, composure, preparation, and analytical thinking.
analytical thinking isn't a sign of intelligence? talk to a mentally ******ed person and see how much analytical thinking they demonstrate.
Did you read the other three factors I listed?

I'm assuming not.
Oh you're right, I read from right to left and just stopped after analytical thinking.

Prioritize those 4 in the order you think matters. For me it's like this
analytical thinking (~intelligence)
preparation (~intelligence + hard work)
testtaking ability (~intelligence)
...
composure (doesn't matter at all imo, or is the same as test taking ability)
Seriously, take 5 seconds to reread these. Then take 2 to reconsider your definition of intelligence and to consider why you're either wrong or irrelevant in everything you've said thus far.

I, too, can expand vaguely defined terms to encompass vastly more than the term normally does, therefore completely changing and validating my original flawed argument.
 

dd128

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ugh. I think the MCAT is far from an intelligence test and measure's no practicality or personality factors in regards to being a great doctor. I hate that so much rests on it honestly..
I would agree with you, but regardless of whether it is or not, the goal of the test is to make sure you can handle standardized tests, because lets face it, you will be doing this FOREVER once you take that acceptance. Schools need to make sure you can take one of theses tests and pass it, and find this out now and not when you get to second year and can't pass step 1. The MCAT, and while I don't particularly agree with the fact that step scores and mcat equate, is a standardized test and the best approximation of how you can do on other standardized tests. Your GPA shows you can handle a med school curriculum and MCAT that you will hopefully be able to pass licensing exams.
 

0kazak1

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Just my two cents, but a good score or GPA will not get you into med school (it may help get you pass the cursor glance), but a low GPA or MCAT score can definitely keep you out.
 
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[YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuEIsqeRR1o[/YOUTUBE]
 

armybound

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Seriously, take 5 seconds to reread these. Then take 2 to reconsider your definition of intelligence and to consider why you're either wrong or irrelevant in everything you've said thus far.

I, too, can expand vaguely defined terms to encompass vastly more than the term normally does, therefore completely changing and validating my original flawed argument.
How about actually engaging in discussion instead of acting like an ass and deflecting? Having spent the 5 seconds rereading your initial post, I still see, as I have all along, that you say the MCAT is not about intelligence, but rather a combination of several factors that are (in my opinion) reflective of intelligence.

So would you like to take 17 seconds to reread everything and tell me why you say the MCAT is not about intelligence, but rather is about various aspects of intelligence? Which part do you disagree with?
 

0kazak1

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My favorite analogy to use is applications are like finding a girlfriend/boyfriend. No ONE thing will make the person perfect for you, its a combination of factors, however if one trait is undesirable then that person is no longer in the picture. Likewise, different people/committees put different weight on to different factors so it really a moot point trying to figure out what is best for you given a certain set of characteristics.