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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by agirl, Jan 1, 2009.
you should take the organic before you take the MCAT.
So my strategy was to minimize unnecessary pain (aka: premed courses). So I saved biochem and my last ochem because 1) not everyone requires biochem, 2) many only require part of ochem, 3) there was no way i was going to ace either. and low and behold EVERY school waived it. So I didn't have to take either. PHEW! Not that this works for everyone, but at least then you have the opportunity to take it if you need, and if you get into a school that makes you happy that doesn't require it, you're home free! And the saved cost, if that matters. Oh, and the schools that say they require them to be completed before you apply - that was untrue - at least in my case, I got interviews at 3 schools that required them to be completed before. They didn't notice, and when I got accepted, they didn't care either.
A friend of mine just did this - taking the MCAT while finishing up her premed courses (and was not done). It sounds like you would end up taking both organics at the same time - just about impossible since you would have no idea what is going on in organic II without organic I.
The short version of the story is - my friend ended up bombing the MCAT even though she studied a TON before it. She just didn't have the classes complete yet... and she realized that she rushed it. So wait to take the MCAT after you have completed the classes (or at the VERY LEAST are finishing them up). Just my opinion !
Hope this helps!
I disagree emphatically with the above posters. I believe one could take the MCAT and score well on the biology section without a day of organic chemistry (it constitutes about 15% of that one section of the test). If you think your biology background is strong, or could be with extensive preparation, then I would go ahead and take it. If you are an otherwise decent test taker, prep courses will give you all the orgo you need to ace it. Will classes make the studying easier? No doubt. Are they necessary? Probably not.
As far as missing pre-reqs at the time of application, I was missing three of my pre-req courses at the time of application and still got many great interview invites. Again, this depends on the overall strength of your application: personal statement, where you took your pre-reqs, in state status, etc.
Organic Chem definitely makes up a smaller portion of the Biological Sciences section than straight Biology, but with that said, you shouldn't assume that it's going to be tested in X amount. I've heard that it's roughly 75-25 in favor of Bio, but that can be higher or lower depending on which test version you take. I've seen Bio sections with 3 out of 7 Orgo passages which is roughly ~40%. Could you theoretically score well with just prep classes and a favorable test? Sure, but the bottom line is that you will likely be less prepared if you don't complete all your pre-reqs before you take the MCAT.
Besides, what's the rush? As another post-bacc, I had to hustle to make it for this application cycle (completed Physics II in July, MCAT in early August) but that made some of my secondaries later than I would have liked. Applying early is crucial, but not at the expense of a better MCAT score.