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Is a pre-matriculation program worth it? ( Generally/specifically at U of maryland)

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical Allopathic [ MD ]' started by snowys435, 05.12.14.

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  1. snowys435

    snowys435 2+ Year Member

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    Hi!

    I'll be attending UMD this fall and I was wondering if doing their 6 week pre matriculation program will be worth it? They call it a "preview" of med school and will be starting anatomy, Biochem, histology etc. Supposedly it will help with the adjustment to medical school. Anyone actually done one / or know someone who has done one and has any thoughts?

    Thanks!
     
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  3. CyberMaxx

    CyberMaxx Doing math in pen 7+ Year Member

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    I've never heard of anything like that but it sounds like school sanctioned pre-studying to me. I wouldn't waste your time unless you are worried about making new friends and you want to start meeting your classmates (or something like that).
     
  4. mdambitions

    mdambitions 2+ Year Member

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    I'm starting a pre-matriculation program in 3-ish weeks. I'm pretty excited about it; but I'm looking forward to a few extra weeks to transition into medical school. They award us a stipend, which is enough to pay for daycare during the summer, and in order to earn the whole stipend, you have to pass everything. The grades do not carry over to your actual transcript.

    In my case, since I'm nontraditional, its an opportunity for my family to adjust to the med school intensity, without fear of the initial adjustment affecting my grades. Also, anything that subsidizes daycare is a win in my book.
     
  5. snowys435

    snowys435 2+ Year Member

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    thanks for your input! I guess for me it's more that I just graduated undergrad and I'm wondering if I should do something else with my summer or if this is really worth it! I have an internship lined up that will pay 3000 for the summer or I could go visit relatives in a foreign country. Just having a very hard time deciding what to do.
     
  6. Catalystik

    Catalystik Providing herd protection SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

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    If one has already taken many of those classes, is entering med school soon after college, and is confident they won't struggle with the full curriculum, they'd likely be fine without it.

    If one is of nontraditional age, had a non-science major in college, or had a lower BCPM GPA relative to the school's average for matriculants, the program would help such a person hit the ground running when the regular school year begins.
     
    ReadyToRumble and mdambitions like this.
  7. hmockingbird

    hmockingbird 5+ Year Member

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    I did a pre-matriculation program. I thought it was a good way to get to know people before med school and one of the people in the program is now one of my best friends (we didn't hang out much outside the program haha - but we did know each other). Also, I was a non-science major, and it was a good way to get used to the intensity like someone else said, without all of the pressure. It helped with trying to figure out my study strategy too. What happened with ours was they basically taught us the first block of anatomy and gave us the first anatomy test and practical (obviously different questions than the real thing) at the end. I think my score did go up by about 10% the second go-round/when I actually did it for class. I'm not sure I'd necessarily recommend it for everyone though. It was a good experience, but if you have something else you want to do, you will probably be fine without it. I would consider it more if you fit into one of Catalystik's groups.
     
  8. Frazier

    Frazier turtle in a rabbit race Lifetime Donor 7+ Year Member

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    I did one offered by my med school.

    It paid me $1000 + free rohens + free netters + free catered lunches + meeting some classmates early + getting exposure to the "pace" of med school curriculum.

    As a result, I certainly felt less stressed during the first couple weeks of school compared to majority of my peers.

    Largely low stress since you just show up everyday and that's it -- no real hw other than couple PBL-esque presentations. And studying for an example anatomy exam. Exam didn't count or anything beyond exposure though -- so study as little or much as you want.

    ...And all that $$$ and free stuff was cool too.

    Wasn't a bad way to spend several weeks.

    If I had the chance to go back in time, I would still do it again.
     
    chenzt likes this.
  9. Espadaleader

    Espadaleader 5+ Year Member

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    Yeah ppl don't get that these programs pay you + you learn.
     
  10. snowys435

    snowys435 2+ Year Member

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    The low stress is why I'm considering doing it. But I also have an internship lined at NIH for the summer which would pay more like 3000 or I was considering ditching work all together and visiting relatives in India. I'm trying to figure out if the lower stress during the first couple weeks is really worth passing up either of those. Would you have done something else over it if you had an alternative or it really did lower stress that much?
     
  11. tmn

    tmn Dr. Blake Downs

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    I wish my school's program was available to everyone. I would consider doing it. It is only available to certain groups of people who qualify e.g. disadvantaged background.
     
  12. Frazier

    Frazier turtle in a rabbit race Lifetime Donor 7+ Year Member

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    I guess it depends.

    For example, the beginning half of the program was all anatomy...the actual anatomy professor showed up every day, gave us lectures, gave us each a syllabus, and took us to lab where we did a dissection.

    I did bad on the sample anatomy exam.

    Apparently my study method sucked.

    Adapted.

    By the time the regular school year came around, I knew the anatomy professor's style, I already knew a bit of the material, already knew how to do proper thorax dissection, and had a new study method.

    So the first couple weeks of anatomy (up to the first exam) was pretty cake. It was like review for me and the rest of my pre-mat program peers.

    I went from almost "failing" that sample exam in the summer, to end up having scores in the top 10% consistently in regular anatomy...and it's been all downhill from there ;)

    I would not likely do the program just for that though. You might have different curriculum, you might have different perks, you might have different opportunities to spend your time outside the program.

    Despite my little story above, I would not do it if my only goal was to get a "head start" on my other classmates, rather it was the total package that drew me in.
     

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