7+ Year Member
May 19, 2009
IF a student were to have a 3.8 cGPA, 3.7 bcpm - and MCAT ~ 32
with the following extracurricular activities how would they fair at a variety of medical school levels? (upper, middle, and lower tier schools)

Volunteer once a week for over a year playing sports with children with disabilities
TA for a lab science course
TA for a non-science course - grading papers mostly.

and that's it....
Will possibly be volunteering over the summer, but is also applying over this cycle, this summer?

Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated!!

And i know this may seem an odd post - but a friend of mine is applying with these stats and thinks they'll have no problem getting into medical school. Whereas I'm pretty certain more is needed, including clinical hours, research, leadership experience, etc. I just want to see what others think about these stats and ECs.
Last edited:
Sep 4, 2006
Inside the tesseract
Your friend's stats are slightly above the average (3.65 and 30.9) for those getting acceptances. They would be unlikely to appeal to the more selective allopathic med schools.

Playing sports with kids who happen to have disabilities is a good community service, but it is not clinical experience.

The teaching responsibilities that might come with TA are viewed positively.

60% applying have a research experience. The average involvement is a year or so.

Physician shadowing is important to most med schools (though some disregard it). It is wise to meet the expectations of as many schools as possible with 60-80 hours of shadowing split among a few different specialties.

Clinical experience is essential. Most have 1.5 years of this. I'd consider a year the minimum. A few folks each year report getting in with less. Starting this type of activity after applying suggests little chance of gaining an acceptance for the cycle, even with perfect stats. Even MD/PhD applicants who don't ever expect to practice clinical medicine are expected to have some. Clinical experience can be acquired through work, volunteering, clinical research, or classroom requirement. Personal interaction with sick people and experience in a clinical environment are important to testing one's fitness for a medical career. Adcomms don't want their students discovering after they matriculate that foul smells, the sight of blood or vomit, inability to relate to patients, or a germ phobia will prevent them from completing the curriculum requirments.

Yeah, leadership is good to have too.


Nov 20, 2009
Boston, MA
Medical Student
Your are right that clinical and research experience is required. His GPA is a average for a top-20 school, but his MCAT scores is 3 points lower. All the kids in those schools would also have significant research, leadership and clinical experiences. He might fare well in middle and lower tier schools, but he would still need to show his commitment to medicine in his PS and at interviews.