How many hours a week do you spend doing EC's, and how many hours a night do you sleep and study?

streampaw

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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?

4. How many credit hours are you taking?

Thanks. Just trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
 
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1) 2-4 hours a week
2) 8-10 hours a night
3) 4-6 hours a week
4) 14 credit hours
 
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streampaw

streampaw

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Hmm. It seems that I am doing about 17-20 hours of EC's every week. 10 hours of tutoring work, and 7-10 hours of volunteering at a research lab. If I add hospital volunteering+shadowing on top of that it would be like 25 hours a week. Is this normal?
 
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streampaw

streampaw

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But, is 25 hours a week of EC's normal for a pre-med? It seems like the people who responded here only do 4-5 hours of EC's each week, which I find kind of surprising. I thought the typical pre-med has a weekly schedule that is something like this:
4 hours a week volunteering at hospital
10 hours a week doing research in a science lab
2-3 hours a week doing non-clinical volunteering (such as soup kitchens or whatever)
2-3 hours a week being in a leadership position
So that's an average of 18-20 hours a week at least, for pre-meds. Those who are working part-time have more EC hours obviously. That's why I'm a little surprised by the previous answers, I thought people will be answering that they do an average of 20-30 hours a week of EC's.
 

Planes2Doc

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Certain ECs, like volunteering in the ED, are like Vegas minus the fun. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, just like what happens in the ED stays in the ED. Therefore, you can squeeze your schoolwork and other things into that time while still racking up those hours for your application. I think far too many applicants are guilty of this, whether they like it or not.
 

Omppu27

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That thread got locked.
Well, to seriously answer you question... I do about 2hr clinical, 3-4hr non clinical, 5-10 club/leadership, about 5-10 lab which is about 20 on average a week. However, I legitimately enjoy all of the ECs I do which is more important than how often i do them.
 

Ambitionista

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For me:

1. 40-45 hours
2. 6-8 hours
3. variable
4. normal course load

If its not obvious, I like to be involved and thrive off of being busy. I know other premeds who participate in ECs only a few hours per week and still have amazing experiences. It's all based on you!
 

Omppu27

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Also, IMO, volunteering at a hospital can be a waste of time. The only meaningful experience i've heard of people volunteering at hospitals is people tutoring kids at children's hospitals (i don't know if this would even be considered clinical though) or people passing out art/toys to kids at children's hospitals. Besides that, i think you could get a much better experience at free clinics where your time will actually be useful (possibly taking vitals/weight/heights, checking in/checking out patients, translating if you have the skills to do so, etc.).
 

Omppu27

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Ah, i forgot some of your other questions. I don't know how many hours a week i spend on school work. It depends on the week (exams or not). i get probably 6hr of sleep of night. I am taking 14 hrs this semester.
 
Nov 6, 2013
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I agree with the above… You just have to do what you can and make it count.

1. 5-6 hours for working on my senior thesis, doing the orientation stages of lab research, and bi-weekly club meetings, and sitting in seminars...

2. 5-6 hours of sleep on average, but my schedule has me staying up a couple nights a week pretty consistently… More like 8 on the nights I sleep.

3. Around 28-30 hours studying, including reading. Maybe more. I'm honestly just meeting deadlines because my study schedule hasn't been the way I planned since week 2. I'm having a reading and writing intensive semester…

4. 24

Out of necessity I'm focusing on schoolwork this semester, but I'm also setting up lab positions for the following semesters I will have lighter course loads. Keeping an eye out for shadowing opportunities too. The rest of my time is spent keeping my life in order haha
 

Omppu27

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I agree with the above… You just have to do what you can and make it count.

1. 5-6 hours for working on my senior thesis, doing the orientation stages of lab research, and bi-weekly club meetings, and sitting in seminars...

2. 5-6 hours of sleep on average, but my schedule has me staying up a couple nights a week pretty consistently… More like 8 on the nights I sleep.

3. Around 28-30 hours studying, including reading. Maybe more. I'm honestly just meeting deadlines because my study schedule hasn't been the way I planned since week 2. I'm having a reading and writing intensive semester…

4. 24

Out of necessity I'm focusing on schoolwork this semester, but I'm also setting up lab positions for the following semesters I will have lighter course loads. Keeping an eye out for shadowing opportunities too. The rest of my time is spent keeping my life in order haha
Why in the world are you taking 24 hrs?
 

mvenus929

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The fall of my last semester looked something like this:

10 hours working/week
5-6 hours with other ECs (more like 10 when we had events)
Probably studied 10-15 hours per week, mostly spent researching and writing papers/lab reports
15 credit hours
 

Aerus

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1) 40-50 hours a week
2) 5-7 hours per night (never pulled an all-nighter in my life, but rarely get a full night's sleep either)
3) 5-8 hours a week (varies if there are midterms or not)
4) 17 units
 
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streampaw

streampaw

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Hmm, it seems like anything over 20 hours of ecs is uncommon. That just really surprises me, considering how many applicants have 8+ ecs when they apply. How can you do so many ecs but only spend 10-15 hours a week on ecs. Heck, i spend 15-20 hours on two ecs alone, while adding clinical volunteering, non clinical volunteering and shadowing, would put me over 30 hours a week. It seems like most applicants have all those ecs, but how do you fit them all in 10-15 hrs a week?
 

Aerus

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Hmm, it seems like anything over 20 hours of ecs is uncommon. That just really surprises me, considering how many applicants have 8+ ecs when they apply. How can you do so many ecs but only spend 10-15 hours a week on ecs. Heck, i spend 15-20 hours on two ecs alone, while adding clinical volunteering, non clinical volunteering and shadowing, would put me over 30 hours a week. It seems like most applicants have all those ecs, but how do you fit them all in 10-15 hrs a week?
EC's are cumulative. Many people don't start getting busy until their third or fourth year. Also, volunteering like 100 hours only takes like 6 months. Some people do different EC's at different times, only keeping a few throughout.
 
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ciestar

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Before I graduated UG:
1. 10-12 probably (TAing took a lot of time)
2. 6ish, probably
3. hahah, not a lot, it depends (more around exam time, maybe like 10 a week, up to like 15 before exams)
4. On average, i took about 15 credits a semester

But to clarify...
many of my ECs happened at different times. My honors society and TAing had some overlap. I was in the pep band (like...6-9 hours a week, probably) for freshman year.

I worked at a pharmacy the entire summer of my sophomore year, at around 40 hours a week so that added up quickly.
I was also a nursing student at one point, so all that clinical experience was built into my schedule.
 
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ciestar

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But, is 25 hours a week of EC's normal for a pre-med? It seems like the people who responded here only do 4-5 hours of EC's each week, which I find kind of surprising. I thought the typical pre-med has a weekly schedule that is something like this:
4 hours a week volunteering at hospital
10 hours a week doing research in a science lab
2-3 hours a week doing non-clinical volunteering (such as soup kitchens or whatever)
2-3 hours a week being in a leadership position
So that's an average of 18-20 hours a week at least, for pre-meds. Those who are working part-time have more EC hours obviously. That's why I'm a little surprised by the previous answers, I thought people will be answering that they do an average of 20-30 hours a week of EC's.
I doubt most pre-meds do them all at the same time.
 
Nov 6, 2013
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Why in the world are you taking 24 hrs?
It's a combination of being impatient and having to work with my school's system to double major. I'm taking 9 lower division prereqs at a community college to keep my units down at my university because they have a unit cap for graduation. I wanted to get everything out of the way in one semester so I don't have to commute between two schools again. I thought it wouldn't be too bad since I am not working this semester. I wouldn't have done it if I had realized how much reading many of my classes required, tbh. lol
 
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streampaw

streampaw

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It's a combination of being impatient and having to work with my school's system to double major. I'm taking 9 lower division prereqs at a community college to keep my units down at my university because they have a unit cap for graduation. I wanted to get everything out of the way in one semester so I don't have to commute between two schools again. I thought it wouldn't be too bad since I am not working this semester. I wouldn't have done it if I had realized how much reading many of my classes required, tbh. lol
Lol I would have never been able to handle anything upwards of 17 crdits.

Btw, do any of you work part time while doing pre med ecs?
 

mvenus929

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Lol I would have never been able to handle anything upwards of 17 crdits.
Using the traditional 1hr of classtime per week = 1 credit, my med school does about 20 credits per semester. Probably slightly more because we start before the undergrads do and end after they do. Granted, most people have a different attitude in med school than in undergrad (P=MD).

You don't really know what you can handle until you actually try to handle it. Most people I've seen flounder a bit in the beginning, but rebound pretty well when faced with something more difficult than what they've done before.
 

chillaxbro

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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)
55+
2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?
4-8
3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?
0
4. How many credit hours are you taking?
0
Thanks. Just trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
I'm taking a gap year so no classes or studying for me :p
 

nOchemallday

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1. All extracurricular activities: 31 hours + extra on tournament weekends
4 (hospital) + 3 (soup kitchen) + 15 (research) + 3 to 4 (tutoring) + 5/wk plus 16 at tournaments every other weekend not including driving time (Ultimate Frisbee Club team)

2. Sleep: 6-7 hours a night.

3. Studying + Homework: 15 hours or so

4. Credits: 18 (most terms are 17-20)
 
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1. 30+ since I'm working on my thesis
2. 6-7, more on weekends.
3. 20ish, more during midterms and finals
4. 19-20 per semester
 

rain4venus

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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?

4. How many credit hours are you taking?

Thanks. Just trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
when I was in college:

1. 30ish

2. 4-6 during the week - more on weekends. You gotta train yourself to operate on less sleep, although it's easier when you're young

3. Maybe 4 hours apiece? Maybe less. I tended to not do much studying outside of homework and test prep. I just paid attention in class.

4. I probably averaged around 18, though it was 20+ a couple semesters and only 12 one semester, although there were pretty serious extenuating circumstances

5. You didn't ask about this, but probably half of the remaining hours were spent socializing. One of the great things about living on campus (and a very small campus at that) was that I didn't have to waste hardly any time on the commute/parking/etc...
 
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thegypsyqueen

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My worst semester was
1. ~60 (That was 40 hours working, 18 hours TAing between two classes, and 2-3 hours medical volunteering).
2. 6-7 hours (sometimes as few as 4-5 but I found that to quickly be unsustainable).
3. ~20 hours (I was taking Ochem, Physics, Genetics, and some teaching course).
4. 16 (The teaching course was pretty much a no effort needed course though).

Somehow I still managed to keep my girlfriend and friends. I had fun on Fridays and Saturdays as well but I would not want to do that semester again. I hope medical school isn't too much harder than that semester.
 

The_Bird

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I'm suspicious about this thread because the questions are semi legit.

10+ hrs
≈ 7 hrs
8+ hrs
17 credit hours :scared:
 
Sep 5, 2013
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1. ~25
2. 8-9
3. 15 or more, depending on the week and how many exams I have
4. 15, but 2 are labs so that's 19 hours of class a week
 

sworzeh

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1. 25/week
2. 6-8/day
3. 0-6/week
4. 15 credits (3 studio art classes)
 

mehc012

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1. 70ish (48 f/t in hospital, 20 p/t in biotech, 3 volunteer in hospital)

2. Really variable...anywhere from 4-12 depending on my hw and shift schedule that week.

3. 2-4/wk

4. 6/wk

5. bonus points: I spend 8-12hrs/wk commuting. Ugh. But I've been listening to spanish audiobooks and some medical spanish podcasts to try and make it less of a time sink.
 
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mehc012

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5/wk plus 16 at tournaments every other weekend not including driving time (Ultimate Frisbee Club team)
Haha, oh man, if anything you're underestimating. Plus it's completely unfeasible to do any work after 5 straight games while sharing a hotel room with 8 other people! God I miss those days...gotta find a club team (and y'know, some time to play in one!)
 

SnakeOilForSale

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1. ~23 hours/week, I don't currently have any steady volunteer gigs.
(research: 3 hours; working: 12 hours; tutoring: 8 hours)

2. 2-5 hours/night. I have insomnia and wake up early, it's not due to my schedule.

3. Very little. Probably 3-8 hours depending.

4. 16 credits
 

cinnalyn

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1. About 34 hours/week (Work - 20, research - 10, club positions - 4, two for each club)
2. Maybe 4-5 hours/night? I try to get at least 7 but that hasn't been the case.
3. 25 hours/week
4. 19 credits.
 

nOchemallday

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Haha, oh man, if anything you're underestimating. Plus it's completely unfeasible to do any work after 5 straight games while sharing a hotel room with 8 other people! God I miss those days...gotta find a club team (and y'know, some time to play in one!)
Very true. At the end of the first day all you want to do is go to an olive garden and sleep for a week...but after a night of sleeping on a hotel floor with 6 other guys you have to wake up at 7 and do it all again. The worst (or best depending on how you look at it) commute was from Philly to Lexington, KY in a weekend. 9 hour drive each way to play in the brisk February air.
 

mehc012

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Very true. At the end of the first day all you want to do is go to an olive garden and sleep for a week...but after a night of sleeping on a hotel floor with 6 other guys you have to wake up at 7 and do it all again. The worst (or best depending on how you look at it) commute was from Philly to Lexington, KY in a weekend. 9 hour drive each way to play in the brisk February air.
I was in Massachusetts, so we had some tournaments in the snow, no joke. My first tournament as a frosh was called "Get Ho Ho" (all of the teams bring something to donate to kids for the tourney fee)...it rained, THEN it snowed, then it hailed. By the end we were soaked through with ice water, sliding through slush and mud, and getting pelted by little ice bits. I was so blue that the other team (we had no subs) huddled around me for warmth and offered me some of their sideline rum. First sip of hard alcohol I ever had...
 

BlueLabel

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1. ~23 hours/week, I don't currently have any steady volunteer gigs.
(research: 3 hours; working: 12 hours; tutoring: 8 hours)

2. 2-5 hours/night. I have insomnia and wake up early, it's not due to my schedule.

3. Very little. Probably 3-8 hours depending.

4. 16 credits
I <3 <3 your username


1) 2-4 hours a week
2) 8-10 hours a night
3) 4-6 hours a week
4) 14 credit hours
10 hours of sleep per night?! As good as that must be for you to sleep so much I wonder if it's kinda a handicap. I used to have a roommate like that, but whenever he got less (like just 6-7 hours) he could barely function. Of course, maybe my roommate just had sleep apnea/a really uncomfortable mattress or something. We called him the sloth machine because he slept so much & one time when we were in Vegas for a bachelor party he fell asleep at a slot machine.
 

sunflower18

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1. 40-50
2. 3-9 ( really varies....)
3. This semester? Like 10-15. Last semester? 40+
4. 16-18, depending on how you count credits
 
Jun 6, 2013
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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)
As I am in the clinical rotation part of my curicculum, I work 40 hours/week, volunteer/organization 8 hours/week

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night? 7-9

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class? 0

4. How many credit hours are you taking? Full time w/ rotations.

Thanks. Just trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
 

Flashfan

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1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)
Volunteer 5-8 hours weekly in clinical, 4 -7 hours on fraternity stuff, 15 hours week paid work study, 5-10 hours research this semester, 4 hours singing, 3 hours on other clubs, 10 hours tutoring and 2-4 hours on weekends of extra stuff that comes up.

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?
5-8 hours, a nap on the weekend if not doing something or gf is not here

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?
Every other waking minute (10-30) depends on O-Chem homework

4. How many credit hours are you taking?
Equivalent of 17, but one one credit or each class
 

asw98

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1. 20
2. 9-10
3. 40+
4. 24
 
Oct 19, 2013
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10 hours of sleep per night?! As good as that must be for you to sleep so much I wonder if it's kinda a handicap. I used to have a roommate like that, but whenever he got less (like just 6-7 hours) he could barely function.
I can function on less, but I definitely feel better overall when I've had at least 8 hours. 10 is a luxury....usually on weekends.
 

neurotroph

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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?

4. How many credit hours are you taking?

Thanks. trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
1. 20-25, most of which is my research position.
2. 6-8. On weekends I get like 10 to 12...
3. Maybe around 10. That increases a ton near an exam since I'm one to cram.
4. 4 non-lab classes. My school counts credit differently.
 

mehc012

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1. 20-25, most of which is my research position.
2. 6-8. On weekends I get like 10 to 12...
3. Maybe around 10. That increases a ton near an exam since I'm one to cram.
4. 4 non-lab classes. My school counts credit differently.
I feel your pain...may as well get used to converting them over now, though. You're going to have to eventually, may as well know where you stand along the way!
 

Bbroush

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I am really interested in how many hours a week you do the following things:

1. All extracurricular activities (including volunteering, WORK, research, involvement in clubs/organizations, professional sports, etc)

2. How many hours of sleep do you get per night?

3. How many hours a week do you spend studying and doing homework outside of class?

4. How many credit hours are you taking?

Thanks. Just trying to get an idea of how many hours a week I need to spend on EC's.
I'm a non-trad I guess because I'm married with a kid on the way.

1. ~33 (25 work, 3 volunteer at hospital, 5 research)

2. ~6-7

3. 4-6 on my classes 20-30 on studying for MCAT

4. 12 (because I'm studying for the MCAT) normally 16-18