I have to take an extra semester for Calculus, should I go for a second degree?

Jul 14, 2012
37
4
Status
Pre-Medical
My BS in bio degree needed calculus and I had to take the placement exam to get into it. Unfortunately, the placement exam only allows you to sign up for classes next semester.

So now I will be graduating in 4.5 years. How bad does this look?

Should I just go for my psychology BA as well (I only need 3 more classes) to make this look better.

Graduate with 2 degrees vs. 1 in 4.5 years?
 

eteshoe

.......
2+ Year Member
Jan 4, 2016
2,261
2,570
Tethys, Saturn
Status
MD/PhD Student
4.5 yrs is nothing to worry about. If you can do both degrees w/o hurting your GPA, might as well go for it
 
Nov 17, 2013
29
3
Status
Pre-Medical
I agree, I graduated in 4.5 years as well. Most important thing is your GPA. If you can handle the additional course/work load, go for it. Being a double major is definitely a plus on an application
 

gonnif

Only 389 Days Until Next Presidential Election
Lifetime Donor
10+ Year Member
Jul 26, 2009
20,506
31,268
The Big Bad Apple
Status
Non-Student
I agree, I graduated in 4.5 years as well. Most important thing is your GPA. If you can handle the additional course/work load, go for it. Being a double major is definitely a plus on an application
Not as much as a plus as premeds tend to think. Most adcoms dont really notice it much nor give you that much for it
 

Matthew9Thirtyfive

*breathes in* boi
Moderator
2+ Year Member
Jan 11, 2016
15,110
22,391
Status
Medical Student
I hope 4.5 years isn't bad. I started college in 2004 and just finished in June.
 

Doctor-S

Grand Rounds
Lifetime Donor
2+ Year Member
Jun 9, 2016
2,033
4,364
My BS in bio degree needed calculus and I had to take the placement exam to get into it. Unfortunately, the placement exam only allows you to sign up for classes next semester.

So now I will be graduating in 4.5 years. How bad does this look?

Should I just go for my psychology BA as well (I only need 3 more classes) to make this look better.

Graduate with 2 degrees vs. 1 in 4.5 years?
If you want a second bachelor's degree, and you're going to be enrolled as a continuing UG student anyway, feel free to complete your psychology degree. Maybe it will be a degree you use sometime in the future - e.g., if you choose to pursue research related to psychopathology or decide to apply to PhD program in psychology, etc.

However, I definitely agree with @gonnif: most medical school adcoms do not pay too much attention to a second bachelor's degree in psychology, if any attention at all.
 
  • Like
Reactions: eteshoe and Goro

Goro

7+ Year Member
Jun 10, 2010
53,700
79,037
Somewhere west of St. Louis
Status
Non-Student
It doesn't look bad.

So now I will be graduating in 4.5 years. How bad does this look?

Adcoms don't care if you have dual degrees or not. Just that you do well, period.
Should I just go for my psychology BA as well (I only need 3 more classes) to make this look better.
 
  • Like
Reactions: eteshoe and gyngyn

RangerBob

7+ Year Member
Sep 16, 2012
1,343
1,145
Status
Attending Physician
I double-degreed (BA & BS like the OP is talking about--that's different than a double major some other posters refer to). I had a minor too. Programs weren't that interested in the fact I was a double degree (and non cared about the minor). They were more interested in the fact one of those degrees was in art--it gave an interesting topic to discuss.

I bothered for the second degree because I really love art and the only way to register for art classes as an underclassman was to be a major, since then you got to pre-register for them. So I was a double-major and that let me taking an art course every quarter, including over the summer. Then I realized I was on track to meet the minimum number of units for the second degree (I think we needed 20 or 40 additional units in addition to the minimum for a single degree to get the second degree)

If you think there's a possibility you may want to use that psychology degree in case you don't get into medical school, that's where having that second degree would come in handy. Though I'm not sure what a bachelors in psych will actually let you do--serve pizza? Everyone I know that majored in psych and wanted to go into the field went on for a master's or PhD/PsyD.

If you're stuck there for an additional semester anyway, I think it really comes down to what would would you want to do with that extra time? If you want to take those psych classes anyway, you may as well get the second degree. But, think about what courses you'd like to take before you graduate--whether for fun (acting, music, p-chem...) or because you want to learn more (additional upper-division bio, etc.)

Or just take only calc and pay part-time tuition.
 

Dagrimsta1

Current Representation of MS-3
5+ Year Member
Sep 14, 2014
798
906
New York
Status
Medical Student
That escalated quickly lol. Trust me dude if your goal is Med school and you don't care about anything else, drop that nonsense. 3 classes cost money and a lot of time. Unless you get some personal gratification from having 2 degrees, I recommend not doing it. Remember in EVERY class you the run the risk of dropping your gpa. If you wanna do it to raise it, then do it.

Personally I would do it because More degrees keep me warm at night. (Kanye west reference)
 
Mar 4, 2015
36
9
Status
Pre-Medical
It doesn't look bad.

So now I will be graduating in 4.5 years. How bad does this look?

Adcoms don't care if you have dual degrees or not. Just that you do well, period.
Should I just go for my psychology BA as well (I only need 3 more classes) to make this look better.
I'm in the same boat as the OP.

I believe the general consensus here is that graduating in >4 years with one degree looks exactly the same as graduating in >4 years with two degrees? I have a hard time believing this. Lets say an ADCOM looks at a student and notices that they took >4 years to graduate. They realize that it is because they were taking up a second degree so the ">4 years" doesn't look so bad? They needed extra time to take the second degree.

What do you think, Goro and all? Does what I said hold any water?
 
Last edited:

Goro

7+ Year Member
Jun 10, 2010
53,700
79,037
Somewhere west of St. Louis
Status
Non-Student
We told you, we don't care.

Life sometimes intrudes on people's plans...this does mean that they cannot handle medical school, nor do we compare person X to Y in this regard.



I'm in the same boat as the OP.

I believe the general consensus here is that graduating in >4 years with one degree looks exactly the same as graduating in >4 years with two degrees? I have a hard time believing this. Lets say an ADCOM looks at a student and notices that they took >4 years to graduate. They realize that it is because they were taking up a second degree so the ">4 years" doesn't look so bad? They needed extra time to take the second degree.

What do you think, Goro and all? Does what I said hold any water?