LV16

High School
Dec 2, 2012
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Hey, I've been lurking on the forums for a while. SDN's a great place, very informative. Anyway I'm currently in high school (in Canada), grade 10, and am very interested in the medical field. I'm gonna do my best to get into medical school (MD most likely) and have been researching on how it all works. My mind is still open to what I'll be doing in the future, but medicine would be my first preference as of right now (I also have a strong interest in business, finance, law, government, etc.). I'm slowly trying to step it up so I can see these goals to be true. Also I have some questions below. I hope to be able to post here in some years following up on how all this going! :)

1. During my undergraduate university years, I would be working on my ECs for medical school. What types of things do you do when you "research"? What counts as "research"? Does "research" during medical school help you at times like matching or do people just do it for general knowledge?

2. Just need some clarification, the MCAT is scored out of 45 right? What about the USMLE Step 1?

3. Some people have listed that they've published things on their ECs, what type of things do they "publish", articles, books or what? Are these "publications" usually medicine/health-related? What counts as "published"?

4. For ECs, some good things that should be on there are volunteering in a clinic-like setting (like a hospital), job shadowing with a physician, research, any clubs and sports, anything else that could be of help?

5. Are LORs typically submitted with initial applications or when the school requests secondaries? Who submits to the LORs to the schools you apply for, you, the people that wrote the LORs, or the company that manages your applications (like AMCAS)?

6. What is included with these secondaries?

7. What does "II" mean when talking about interviews for medical school? :p

Not all of this is relevant to me right now, but I just like to know things in general... Also helps me know what people are talking about here haha, thanks for any help!
 
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I'm No Superman

Crushin' scones
5+ Year Member
May 7, 2011
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383
Ann Arbor
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Medical Student (Accepted)
Hey, I've been lurking on the forums for a while. SDN's a great place, very informative. Anyway I'm currently in high school (in Canada), grade 10, and am very interested in the medical field. I'm gonna do my best to get into medical school (MD most likely) and have been researching on how it all works. My mind is still open to what I'll be doing in the future, but medicine would be my first preference as of right now (I also have a strong interest in business, finance, law, government, etc.). I'm slowly trying to step it up so I can see these goals to be true. Also I have some questions below. I hope to be able to post here in some years following up on how all this going! :)

1. During my undergraduate university years, I would be working on my ECs for medical school. What types of things do you do when you "research"? What counts as "research"? Does "research" help you at times like matching or do people just do it for general knowledge?

2. Just need some clarification, the MCAT is scored out of 45 right? What about the USMLE Step 1?

3. Some people have listed that they've published things on their ECs, what type of things do they "publish", articles, books or what? Are these "publications" usually medicine/health-related? What counts as "published"?

4. For ECs, some good things that should be on there are volunteering in a clinic-like setting (like a hospital), job shadowing with a physician, research, any clubs and sports, anything else that could be of help?

5. Are LORs typically submitted with initial applications or when the school requests secondaries? Who submits to the LORs to the schools you apply for, you, the people that wrote the LORs, or the company that manages your applications (like AMCAS)?

6. What is included with these secondaries?

7. What does "II" mean when talking about interviews for medical school? :p

Not all of this is relevant to me right now, but I just like to know things in general... Also helps me know what people are talking about here haha, thanks for any help!
1. Depends on the research. People usually do it because they like it, or they know it looks good on a med school app.

2. It is out of 45 at the moment, I don't know what the new MCAT score range is. 300 I believe.

3. Published is usually referring to research.

4. You should do EC's that you enjoy.

5. Dunno.

6. Also dunno.

7. Dunno.
 

LV16

High School
Dec 2, 2012
41
0
Earth
Status
1. Depends on the research. People usually do it because they like it, or they know it looks good on a med school app.

2. It is out of 45 at the moment, I don't know what the new MCAT score range is. 300 I believe.

3. Published is usually referring to research.

4. You should do EC's that you enjoy.

5. Dunno.

6. Also dunno.

7. Dunno.
Ah thanks. :)
 
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Eon

Shine Bright
5+ Year Member
Dec 4, 2012
148
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Pre-Medical
Oh lol...
I love how everyone associates Guy Fawkes with 4chan even though, Guy Fawkes is used by the extreme and ruthless Anonymous group.

And so that this thread doesn't go off-topic like most of the threads on hSDN, I'll answer your questions to the best of my abilities.

1. During my undergraduate university years, I would be working on my ECs for medical school. What types of things do you do when you "research"? What counts as "research"? Does "research" help you at times like matching or do people just do it for general knowledge?
Research as an undergrad is basically just following your lab PI and following his orders. Even though you're researching, you're not actually researching. Rather, you're his lab rat, for lack of a better term. Think of it like volunteering at the hospital, same concept. In that similarity, being an outstanding volunteer and being evidently helpful can allow you to gain more knowledge from the nurses, doctors, etc. Same idea for researching. The more evident your helpfulness, the more likely the lab PI will allow you to do more work. It doesn't help with matching because that's after medical school, but it will help you to get into medical school. In the end, do it because you want to research something, not because it's a "check-box" item. Medical schools will likely disapprove the "check-box" item type researching. General knowledge comes with researching, granted you're working on a lab that's not just basic knowledge.

2. Just need some clarification, the MCAT is scored out of 45 right? What about the USMLE Step 1?
As of the current MCAT, 2014 and before, the scoring is out of 45. USMLE Step 1 is out of 300. However, by the time you're taking your MCATs, thing might be completely different. The MCAT's going to change in 2015, so definitely look into preparing early for it because of the rush of new material to learn. Likewise, the USMLE Step 1 might change completely for us.

3. Some people have listed that they've published things on their ECs, what type of things do they "publish", articles, books or what? Are these "publications" usually medicine/health-related? What counts as "published"?
Publishing on these forms usually means that you send in some sort of research or the like to a science journal, etc. These are then polished further and further until they're "perfect." After that, the journal publishes the study/article/etc. and your name is the latter end of the author's list, 4th author, 5th author, etc.

4. For ECs, some good things that should be on there are volunteering in a clinic-like setting (like a hospital), job shadowing with a physician, research, any clubs and sports, anything else that could be of help?
The biggest is shadowing by far. After everything I've heard, shadowing is the best thing you can do. It shows that you've "stepped into" a physician's shoes and experienced life for them. Of course it also shows your interest in medicine, but that's a side dish compared to the main course. After that, research shows that you're also interested in the other aspects of science, not just medicine. Volunteering is another big plus as well as getting a job in a clinical setting, physician's office, clinic, etc. Clubs/sports and things of that nature are extracurricular activities that show that you're a "well-rounded" person, whatever way that can be construed as.

5. Are LORs typically submitted with initial applications or when the school requests secondaries? Who submits to the LORs to the schools you apply for, you, the people that wrote the LORs, or the company that manages your applications (like AMCAS)?
That is something that you should probably wait to talk about with your undergraduate pre-med advisers. They'll have the most information about this kind of stuff. But, as far as LoRs go, I believe they go with your initial applications. Back in high school, I sent my LoRs with the initial applications, they had an option for picking the letters I want to send. I believe it's the same format for AMCAS. Some committees mail them in, others send them with your transcripts and things like that. Definitely check with your pre-med adviser(s), they'll have the most up-to-date information on how to approach this.

6. What is included with these secondaries?
Secondaries for AMCAS is like secondaries for the CommonApp. You answer their open-response/short-answer/personal statement/etc. on why this school, why medicine, what qualifications you had that explain why medicine. Things of that sort.

7. What does "II" mean when talking about interviews for medical school?
II, I believe meant invited for interview. Double check that with someone else though.
 

LV16

High School
Dec 2, 2012
41
0
Earth
Status
I love how everyone associates Guy Fawkes with 4chan even though, Guy Fawkes is used by the extreme and ruthless Anonymous group.

And so that this thread doesn't go off-topic like most of the threads on hSDN, I'll answer your questions to the best of my abilities.



Research as an undergrad is basically just following your lab PI and following his orders. Even though you're researching, you're not actually researching. Rather, you're his lab rat, for lack of a better term. Think of it like volunteering at the hospital, same concept. In that similarity, being an outstanding volunteer and being evidently helpful can allow you to gain more knowledge from the nurses, doctors, etc. Same idea for researching. The more evident your helpfulness, the more likely the lab PI will allow you to do more work. It doesn't help with matching because that's after medical school, but it will help you to get into medical school. In the end, do it because you want to research something, not because it's a "check-box" item. Medical schools will likely disapprove the "check-box" item type researching. General knowledge comes with researching, granted you're working on a lab that's not just basic knowledge.



As of the current MCAT, 2014 and before, the scoring is out of 45. USMLE Step 1 is out of 300. However, by the time you're taking your MCATs, thing might be completely different. The MCAT's going to change in 2015, so definitely look into preparing early for it because of the rush of new material to learn. Likewise, the USMLE Step 1 might change completely for us.



Publishing on these forms usually means that you send in some sort of research or the like to a science journal, etc. These are then polished further and further until they're "perfect." After that, the journal publishes the study/article/etc. and your name is the latter end of the author's list, 4th author, 5th author, etc.



The biggest is shadowing by far. After everything I've heard, shadowing is the best thing you can do. It shows that you've "stepped into" a physician's shoes and experienced life for them. Of course it also shows your interest in medicine, but that's a side dish compared to the main course. After that, research shows that you're also interested in the other aspects of science, not just medicine. Volunteering is another big plus as well as getting a job in a clinical setting, physician's office, clinic, etc. Clubs/sports and things of that nature are extracurricular activities that show that you're a "well-rounded" person, whatever way that can be construed as.



That is something that you should probably wait to talk about with your undergraduate pre-med advisers. They'll have the most information about this kind of stuff. But, as far as LoRs go, I believe they go with your initial applications. Back in high school, I sent my LoRs with the initial applications, they had an option for picking the letters I want to send. I believe it's the same format for AMCAS. Some committees mail them in, others send them with your transcripts and things like that. Definitely check with your pre-med adviser(s), they'll have the most up-to-date information on how to approach this.



Secondaries for AMCAS is like secondaries for the CommonApp. You answer their open-response/short-answer/personal statement/etc. on why this school, why medicine, what qualifications you had that explain why medicine. Things of that sort.



II, I believe meant invited for interview. Double check that with someone else though.
Awesome, thanks for all that information! Will be checking with the advisors when I can. And yeah I was guessing a bit (or a lot) would change with the testing by the time I have to go through it all. I'm a long way from medical school right now, but where I'm going for my undergraduate studies will be decided in less than two years... Closer than I think, I think. Lol anyway thanks!
 

Eon

Shine Bright
5+ Year Member
Dec 4, 2012
148
0
Status
Pre-Medical
Awesome, thanks for all that information! Will be checking with the advisors when I can. And yeah I was guessing a bit (or a lot) would change with the testing by the time I have to go through it all. I'm a long way from medical school right now, but where I'm going for my undergraduate studies will be decided in less than two years... Closer than I think, I think. Lol anyway thanks!
Come to think of it, sophomore to senior year basically flew by for me. Between volunteering/SATs/parties/AP coursework in senior year, I didn't even realize what the hell was going on. Definitely keep yourself busy, have fun, look towards your goals, work hard. All the cliches are true. It does work itself out in the end, you just gotta stick to your plan.
 

I'm No Superman

Crushin' scones
5+ Year Member
May 7, 2011
1,947
383
Ann Arbor
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
Deleted system32

Doesn't know any of the rules

Plebeian...

Wow
Has been a member for 1 day.

Responds to obvious trolling

lol.

In case you haven't realized yet, I've been messing with ya the whole time. Welcome to the forum bud!
 
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LV16

High School
Dec 2, 2012
41
0
Earth
Status
Come to think of it, sophomore to senior year basically flew by for me. Between volunteering/SATs/parties/AP coursework in senior year, I didn't even realize what the hell was going on. Definitely keep yourself busy, have fun, look towards your goals, work hard. All the cliches are true. It does work itself out in the end, you just gotta stick to your plan.
No SATs for me (in Canada), plan to do my undergrad. studies here. Although I hope to attend medical school in the US. But I know what you mean. Again, thanks for the advice and motivation. :D
 
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