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how many is too many schools???

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by jp2004, May 4, 2004.

  1. jp2004

    jp2004 Senior Member
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    hello,

    i've been looking at the msar...i am trying to make a final list of med schools to apply for 2005 schoolyear. since i just took the mcat last april, i cannot make a final decision base on my scores...but right now, i have 35 schools on my list...is it too much...or just reasonable...i guess my reason for having this number of school is to increase my chances...
    any advice/feedback will be greatly appreciated\

    thanks!
     
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  3. fullefect1

    fullefect1 Senior Member
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    Do you live in Cali? That is an extreme amount of schools, but I guess it wouldnt' really hurt if you had the money to back it up. Remember that interviews are going to cost alot of money too.
     
  4. fullefect1

    fullefect1 Senior Member
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    What is your GPA? And do you have alot of good EC's?
     
  5. docjolly

    docjolly On Cloud Nine, Once Again
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    jp2004,

    I'm sorry..please don't think I'm hijacking your thread..but would someone please tell me: why are cali. residents in such a predicament about the number of schools to apply to? it seems like they're expected to apply to many schools..but why?
     
  6. nascentdoc

    nascentdoc Senior Member
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    If you have reasonably good scores MCAT/GPA, great LORs, and excellent experiences I would say apply to a few schools. You increase your chances by applying to 35, but the question is where do you want to be. Indentify that school and go totally out of your way to get in (nail the secondary and the interview). Have a backup or two but don't go bankrupt for no good reason. I applied to three schools, and got accepted. Good luck.
     
  7. jp2004

    jp2004 Senior Member
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    hello all
    im from ny...my cumulative gpa 3.4, taken honors classes; progressively improved my grades...
    publications(total 7)...work for 3 years in a research/diagnostic lab
    just started volunteer
     
  8. TheRussian

    TheRussian Life Size Mirror
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    I would say that 126 is too many :D

    But seriously the average number of schools is 12-15. 3 is one extreme and I wouldn't recommend it unless you only want to go to those schools and have no interest in persuing an MD at any other institution. Make sure you apply to about 4 or 5 "safety" schools, about the same number of reach schools and maybe twice that of middle of the road schools.
     
  9. hamhamfan

    hamhamfan internet fairy
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    Well, they don't have as many schools as other states do, relative to their populations. Also, many of these schools don't have as many open spots as some schools may have.
     
  10. flighterdoc

    flighterdoc Rocket Scientist
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    You're applying to about 25% of the schools in the US?

    do you really want to write that many personal statements and secondaries?
     
  11. vr4nut

    vr4nut Member
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    35 sounds like a lot, but that may just be what it takes. I know someone who applied to 49 med schools, and he's glad he did it too b/c he only got like 4 interviews and a couple of acceptances. He was even rejected at his undergrad state university, but got accepted to schools that he might otherwise not have considered. His amcas alone cost him $1500!!
     
  12. bosox03

    bosox03 Believe
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    Honestly, there is a lot of overlap in the type of questions asked on secondaries. I found myself using a lot of the same essays again (with some revising through the process). Also, there are some schools that don't have secondary essays, you just need to fill out info (like Jefferson, NYMC and others?)

    Over the next few months, you will read about people on this site that only apply to 5 schools and people that apply to 50. If you feel uncomfortable with your stats and want to apply to more schools, fine, you will be working on a lot of secondaries and spending a lot of money, but in the end if you get in its worth it. Just do what you feel the most comfortable with.

    Hope that makes sense. Good luck.
     
  13. Bones2008

    Bones2008 waiting for retirement
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    Statistically, your odds of being accepted to a school do not increase after 20. Don't waste your time and money on 35 schools.
     
  14. mackaikai

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    I applied to 31 schools. I am a california resident.
     
  15. UseUrHeadFred

    UseUrHeadFred Oh no! It's a Wumpus!
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    I'm applying to 8 or 9, depending on whether I decide to shoot for Mayo. May be a waste of $$. Depends on my MCAT.
     
  16. Entol

    Entol Senior Member
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    I applied to around 30 schools with a very high mcat and gpa combo. I didn't get interviewed at a lot of "safety" schools and also didn't get interviewed by Harvard. I think if you have either very low scores or very high scores, going with 20+ schools isn't totally crazy, since you never know what will happen if you apply to 2 safety schools and they turn you down.

    PM me if you want more info on my specific story. I don't claim my anecdote is the norm, but it is a word of caution for someone who didn't get into their school of choice because they didn't apply.

    When I give advice to friends, my guideline is this:
    top scorers: apply to 25-30 schools, lots in the top 10-20, at least 5 safety
    above avg: apply to 10-15 schools, you'll get in somewhere for sure
    avg: apply to more safety schools. 15-20
    low scorers: apply to 25-30, because you never know if some school on the other side of the country will overlook your 'D' in ochem and you end up not being forced into a year off.

    Good luck either way you decide :)
     
  17. SoCalOrBust

    SoCalOrBust Plays well with others
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    Aren't the Cali schools generally more competitive too? We have Stanford, UCSF, UCLA, and UCSD; all top 20 schools, and Loma Linda only really takes SDAs. Even though UC's generally show preference to Cali residents, there are so many in-state applicants that many of us have to go out of state.
     
  18. UseUrHeadFred

    UseUrHeadFred Oh no! It's a Wumpus!
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    The SoCal's not only have a lot of in state applicants, but most of the time, if they're accepted, they matriculate (to one of them).

    From reading here, I seem to have noticed that people from SoCal tend to REALLY want to stay in-state for school, much more than any other state.

    I'm from Missouri, and want to stay suburban-rural due to my hobbies. I don't care what state it's in so long as it's not somewhere I'd be miserable.
     
  19. SoCalOrBust

    SoCalOrBust Plays well with others
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    Oh and on the safety schools- I definately agree with people here on applying to 4-5. I applied to only 2 and 16 more selective schools and faced alot of rejections; although I am extremely happy to be going to USC, it's always nice to have more choice in the process. Try to get a range of locations too- get a feel for where you wanna be.

    Good Luck :thumbup:
     
  20. NonTradMed

    NonTradMed Perpetual Student
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    So what are these "safety schools" that people are talking about, fit for us mere mortals? :)
     
  21. UseUrHeadFred

    UseUrHeadFred Oh no! It's a Wumpus!
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    I, personally, don't believe "safety" schools exist. Kind of egotistical to call them that. I do it, too, so what does that tell you.
     
  22. Woatalk

    Woatalk Member
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    Wow 7 publications....impressive. That should give you something to talk at interviews.....

    Now, how to get there right? :) They're seems to be no concrete way. But these are my suggestions:

    1.Since you're from NY I'll reccomend applying to all your state's public schools, and some privates i.e. Albany, Einstein. If any of you relatives went or worked at a particular school (does not have to be for medicine), apply there.Also, with your research expericence, I suggested applying to research oriented schools. These factors indicate potential reasons why you would like to attend a school (should help on secondaries, and interviews).

    2.Outside of this apply to schools that that have a high waitlist movement trend...hmm,I don't exactly know why, but there seems to be some correlation with this and chance at eventual acceptance for the widest range of applicants.

    2.Another thing that might help is to apply to schools that screen for secondaries. This will limit your workload as well as boost your confidence when writing your secondaries ...cuz you know the school is intersted in you and not your money :laugh: :smuggrin:
     
  23. angstrom55

    angstrom55 plub plub
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    I'm from Cali and applied to 45-ish schools. Returned around 33 secondaries. Got 6 interviews. 2 post interview rejections, 3 waitlists, and waiting on one. Yes, 45 is a lot of schools, but I desparately wanted to get in and did not want to go through amcas again. Plus, I applied way too late (around sept) so I knew with rolling admissions, I was in deep water. My gpa was 3.79 and my mcat was 30, so my mcat had something to do with lower number of interviews.

    I'd say go with around 20 and spread your schools out so you have good schools, safety schools, and lower tier schools. My friends did around 20ish schools too and with decent to great scores, were able to pick and choose which schools they wanted. Plus, you always have to option of declining secondaries and interviews once you hear back from the schools you want.
     
  24. indo

    indo Feed me a stray cat
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    You might want to eliminate some of the public out of state schools since they only accept 10-20 out of state applicants each year.
     
  25. efex101

    efex101 attending
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    I applied to 32 schools on amcas returned 30 secondaries received interviews from all except Duke and Harvard went on 11 the rest is history. I would do it all over again, it was totally worth the $$$ and it gave me a glimpse of what is out there. So if you *can* afford it w/o going too much in debt go for it, if not you may want to apply to like 20 or so. I spent more than $5,000 just FYI
     

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