If I apply early in the '24 cycle, is it possible to take a summer course?

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Jul 18, 2022
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Hi all, quick question- assuming that I submit as early as possible (May 30th, 2024), and that I will be applying to ~25-30 schools (mixed MD/DO), is it possible to take a summer course that runs 06/24-08/03? Timeline-wise, will I be receiving secondaries and have to focus completely on them in that window or is this doable? After submitting my application, is there anything else I should rather be doing during this time (pre-writing secondaries, maybe)? Thank you.

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You will be writing your secondaries and submitting them in that window. Depends on the course, a hard science or very writing intensive class is probably not going to work out. I was taking two 1 credit classes while working full time and balancing secondaries, it was pretty intense and there was very little free time. I really hit close to the two-week turn around guideline for some schools. That said I have gotten interviews from schools I submitted the same day and schools I submitted on day 13, so clearly as long as you have a good enough turn around you should be fine.
The two courses I was taking were really easy astro and earth classes that had a weekly commitment of maybe 2-3 hours max. Work was the real drain on time. If you choose to add the courses, make sure you can budget your time well and pre-write the "main" secondaries (the most common prompts).
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Thank you- I will probably hold off on the class as I have plenty of room in my schedule to graduate on time without it.
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Pre-write your secondaries. Start looking at this year's prompts and begin the writing process. But as noted, you can be surprised. As long as you can turn around your secondaries efficiently especially in July, you should be fine.

If the course is not a prerequisite, you can take the summer course if you can balance your time. For example, I wouldn't recommend you take organic chem in the summer while trying to apply for medical school, but that's a different conversation. But if it sounds like you don't need it for your degree, you don't have to take the class. Give yourself a few easy classes in your final year.
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