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How does an SMP help you on the boards?

Discussion in 'Postbaccalaureate Programs' started by LooKing4Ward, Dec 14, 2005.

  1. LooKing4Ward

    LooKing4Ward Member
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    I've been reading that going through an SMP or any other Masters (with med school courses) will help you to be (extremely) successful on the boards, med school, and/or mcat? med school and mcat ... ok. but the boards ... how so? i guess besides time and money why don't more people go this route especially if it will help your boards/career in the long run.
     
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  3. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    You'll have to show us what you are reading - I find it highly unlikely. And from what you have written, you may be misinterpreting the findings. If it was a study suggesting that people with science masters do well on the boards, that would be very different than saying that going through a "premed" masters program will help a given person, because it may really be a retrospective study about the kind of students who have masters rather than the value added by the course of studies itself. I have no doubt that true scientists (i.e. people who get MS, PhDs etc. for unrelated reasons, and then perhaps veer into med school) do better on largely science based tests, so if this is what the study is correlating, then you are misreading the implications.
     
  4. silverdime

    silverdime Member
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    While I've never heard about the direct board correlation before, here's what post-bacc programs with genuine med school courses (GT, RF, BU, Drexel) tell you:

    -Taking med school courses in a post-bacc means you'll either get credit for them in med school (depends on the program and the eventual school) or will re-take them in med school.

    -If you retake, you learn the material twice over. Your solid preparation leads to better grades and better retention of the knowledge. Better board scores would be the logical conclusion.

    -If you get credit for these classes, you have a lighter schedule than the average M1 but the knowledge of how to handle the M1 schedule. You have more time to study for the boards plus a head start on the study methods the M1 year teaches you. Again, better board scores would likely result.

    While I've never heard a program director claim better board scores (and certainly never read a study to the same effect), I have heard them claim a significantly higher % of AOA members, top GPAs, and hard-to-get residencies among their graduates. I'd assume increased board scores are plausible.

    As for why more people don't do it: money and time. Why spend an extra 40-50k in loans and an extra year in school when you're already accepted to med school? The point of these programs is to get into med school. The time and expense of the grade/score/residency bonus just isn't feasible if you already have an acceptance.
     
  5. Fantastik19

    Fantastik19 Member
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    Stupid Question... but what is SMP?
     
  6. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Special Masters Program -- basically a masters program geared toward getting students into med school. Gtown has the best known one. Students in them generally have already taken the prereqs and MCAT, and often have a GPA or scores just shy of what is needed for med school. It's another premed alternative to postbac programs. You end up with a masters degree, of sorts, but it's not a super useful one.
     

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