Is my school rigorous enough?

jd989898

Full Member
7+ Year Member
Oct 21, 2012
643
495
  1. Medical Student
    I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

    Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?
     

    TheFamilyDoc

    Senior Member
    7+ Year Member
    Jan 18, 2010
    199
    6
    Down South
    1. Pre-Medical
      I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

      Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?

      Congratulations, you're smart.
       
      About the Ads

      Bangersandmash

      Full Member
      Jul 28, 2012
      693
      6
      1. Pre-Medical
        Actually, SDN can answer this for you.

        College classes were a similar experience for me OP. I did extremely well in high school with minimal effort. I have a photographic memory and can put in half the time studying that others do and still get better grades. Everyone kept telling me college would challenge me and I shouldn't expect an easy ride.

        Well, college came around and it's more of the same. It's about the same amount of time involved as high school, just more test studying and less busy work. Some upper level classes might be a little harder, but a lot of classes in college aren't that tough if you focus and manage your time.

        I still manage to have fun and relax too before anyone calls me a nerd.
         
        Jul 28, 2012
        1,214
        12
        Illinois
        1. Pre-Medical
          Actually, SDN can answer this for you.

          College classes were a similar experience for me OP. I did extremely well in high school with minimal effort. I have a photographic memory and can put in half the time studying that others do and still get better grades. Everyone kept telling me college would challenge me and I shouldn't expect an easy ride.

          Well, college came around and it's more of the same. It's about the same amount of time involved as high school, just more test studying and less busy work. Some upper level classes might be a little harder, but a lot of classes in college aren't that tough if you focus and manage your time.

          I still manage to have fun and relax too before anyone calls me a nerd.

          Dare I ask what major you are?
           

          DrHa

          Full Member
          Nov 18, 2012
          37
          1
          Dallas, Tx
          1. Pre-Medical
            I think you're kind of jumping to conclusions. Personally, I see those classes as transition classes meant to ease freshmen into college since they're level 1/2 courses. Much of the material could of and should of been review from high school. Once you go toward higher level courses, 3/4, you probably see a difference.
             

            Plue00

            Full Member
            10+ Year Member
            Nov 10, 2007
            494
            34
            Somewhere
            1. Pre-Medical
              I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

              Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?

              I'm probably going to get a lot of crap for this but...

              It probably is that your school is just easy. If you don't go to a top school or one of those really hard liberal arts schools, then it's probably really easy to get an A.

              Think about who you're competing with, a lot of average ~3.3GPA/1750SAT students. You're probably very smart for pulling off such good grades, but I doubt the same results would be achieved if you went to a top/top-LA school.

              Some of my friends go to a much higher ranked school compared to mine and they tell me that usually their premed classes are restricted to giving 10-15% As. Now you might say that your school does the same, but you're competing against a much smarter population.
               

              KnuxNole

              Sweets Addict
              15+ Year Member
              May 3, 2006
              4,692
              1,654
              1. Attending Physician
                Also, it's not always about a "smart" population, but people who care to do well above the absolute minimum. A LOT of college kids are ecstatic about a C. Getting a B is analogous to a pre-med getting a 35 on the MCAT in their eyes. Remember, to the average college kid, C's gets degrees ;)
                 
                About the Ads

                ShenanigansMD

                Gryffindor
                Jul 10, 2012
                1,525
                12
                Horcrux Hunting
                1. Pre-Medical
                  I can honestly say that I don't know a single person who took the engineering route that didn't think it was difficult... Pride doesn't even come into play, everyone will admit that it's difficult and you need to study

                  But OP is a freshman. Everything hits the fan if not by sophomore year then by junior year, at least for pre-medgineers.
                   

                  jd989898

                  Full Member
                  7+ Year Member
                  Oct 21, 2012
                  643
                  495
                  1. Medical Student
                    Thanks for the help guys. Your responses inspired me. In fact, I've decided that tomorrow right before I walk into my bio final I'm going to inhale a bunch of car exhaust to really test my knowledge of the material under non-traditional conditions.


                    But in all seriousness.. Are the prereq classes at a decent state school such as mine going to generally cover all the info I would see for the PS and BS sections?
                     

                    mcloaf

                    Full Member
                    7+ Year Member
                    Jan 21, 2012
                    5,174
                    4,756
                    1. Resident [Any Field]
                      But in all seriousness.. Are the prereq classes at a decent state school such as mine going to generally cover all the info I would see for the PS and BS sections?

                      You'll probably tag all the same bases you would if you went to any other accredited undergrad and took those courses. The depth and rigor of your courses will be different than it could be at another school. Either way, you'll still need to study for the MCAT, so I'm not sure that it matters too much.
                       

                      lobo.solo

                      Full Member
                      10+ Year Member
                      May 4, 2011
                      1,950
                      126
                      1. Medical Student
                        Also, it's not always about a "smart" population, but people who care to do well above the absolute minimum. A LOT of college kids are ecstatic about a C. Getting a B is analogous to a pre-med getting a 35 on the MCAT in their eyes. Remember, to the average college kid, C's gets degrees ;)

                        Good comparison, I would be super excited about a 35. It's weird to imagine another student getting excited like that for a B.
                         

                        mcloaf

                        Full Member
                        7+ Year Member
                        Jan 21, 2012
                        5,174
                        4,756
                        1. Resident [Any Field]
                          Good comparison, I would be super excited about a 35. It's weird to imagine another student getting excited like that for a B.

                          It is interesting how being pre-med totally warps one's perception of a "good" GPA. I had plenty of non-premed friends who were quite intelligent and thoughtful but weren't heading into areas where their UG GPAs were going to matter much; most of them felt pretty baller to break 3.5. Then again, they tended to have much more, uh, active social lives.
                           

                          lobo.solo

                          Full Member
                          10+ Year Member
                          May 4, 2011
                          1,950
                          126
                          1. Medical Student
                            It is interesting how being pre-med totally warps one's perception of a "good" GPA. I had plenty of non-premed friends who were quite intelligent and thoughtful but weren't heading into areas where their UG GPAs were going to matter much; most of them felt pretty baller to break 3.5. Then again, they tended to have much more, uh, active social lives.

                            I know man, this process changes you so much, it's scary!!
                             
                            About the Ads

                            DrBarbie08

                            Full Member
                            Aug 20, 2012
                            185
                            10
                            1. Medical Student
                              Thanks for the help guys. Your responses inspired me. In fact, I've decided that tomorrow right before I walk into my bio final I'm going to inhale a bunch of car exhaust to really test my knowledge of the material under non-traditional conditions.


                              But in all seriousness.. Are the prereq classes at a decent state school such as mine going to generally cover all the info I would see for the PS and BS sections?

                              Oklahoma Sooner here, you'll be fine. I had a 4.0 as a freshman engineering student too. It gets much harder, I promise. Of course A&M will cover the necessary material for the MCAT, that's not the hard part of the test. Best of luck to you! And we'll see you in the cotton bowl...
                               

                              DrHa

                              Full Member
                              Nov 18, 2012
                              37
                              1
                              Dallas, Tx
                              1. Pre-Medical
                                Thanks for the help guys. Your responses inspired me. In fact, I've decided that tomorrow right before I walk into my bio final I'm going to inhale a bunch of car exhaust to really test my knowledge of the material under non-traditional conditions.


                                But in all seriousness.. Are the prereq classes at a decent state school such as mine going to generally cover all the info I would see for the PS and BS sections?

                                Your prereq courses should cover the majority of the material on the mcat, just don't forget it by the time you're going to take it. It's all basic material, but once you've gone through a bunch of higher level courses sometimes you need a refresher just because you probably haven't seen some of it in ages :laugh:
                                 

                                lovemango

                                Full Member
                                7+ Year Member
                                Jan 4, 2012
                                333
                                68
                                Boston
                                1. Resident [Any Field]
                                  I feel like this is a silly question. Thousands of students from state schools all over the nation are accepted to medical schools every year. It's not about the rigor of the classes at your school, it's more about what you put into it. Congrats on the good grades but you're only a freshman (and it's only your first semester, at that). Most people need to prep for MCAT regardless of how rigorous their prereqs were, it just makes it easier if you already have a good foundation (which again I believe is dependent on the individual, not necessarily the class). I have a friend from Brown University who made sub-30s on her MCAT while another friend from Texas Tech rocked it and got a 42.
                                   

                                  Bangersandmash

                                  Full Member
                                  Jul 28, 2012
                                  693
                                  6
                                  1. Pre-Medical
                                    Dare I ask what major you are?

                                    I'm curious too. I took the scenic route and ended up with my behind handed to me on a platter.

                                    I am biomedical sciences / classics dual major. I've had a strong mix of 10 page paper classes and rote scientific memorization classes.

                                    You could say my university is easy because its a large public university that isn't highly ranked, but I'll tell you that I will excel at any university. I had the opportunity to go to top ranked universities but it was cost prohibitive for me. I've talked to other pre-med friends at higher ranked universities in my state and I knew just about the same stuff as them for our pre-reqs. Like everyone said, it's about what you put into it.
                                     

                                    Drogo

                                    hakuna matata
                                    Jul 13, 2011
                                    243
                                    14
                                    Michigan
                                    1. Pre-Medical
                                      I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

                                      Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?

                                      intro chemistry was probably high school level. Intro Bio is baby stuff. Calc is not anything super difficult.
                                       

                                      Plue00

                                      Full Member
                                      10+ Year Member
                                      Nov 10, 2007
                                      494
                                      34
                                      Somewhere
                                      1. Pre-Medical
                                        I am biomedical sciences / classics dual major. I've had a strong mix of 10 page paper classes and rote scientific memorization classes.

                                        You could say my university is easy because its a large public university that isn't highly ranked, but I'll tell you that I will excel at any university. I had the opportunity to go to top ranked universities but it was cost prohibitive for me. I've talked to other pre-med friends at higher ranked universities in my state and I knew just about the same stuff as them for our pre-reqs. Like everyone said, it's about what you put into it.

                                        You're a big fish in a little pond. Try being a little fish in a big pond and you'll quickly see how hard a school can get.
                                         
                                        About the Ads

                                        tn4596

                                        Full Member
                                        7+ Year Member
                                        Jul 23, 2011
                                        848
                                        11
                                        1. Medical Student
                                          I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

                                          Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?

                                          Fellow aggie here, my gpa and mcat match up pretty well especially in the sciences side. I had a 3.9(Biol) and both my science scores are around 12. Biol 111 is extremely easy for some, although it weeds out some people. Biol 112 is the premed weed out course (srsly the hardest and most annoying class you will take). orgo is the weed out on the chem side. You are taking only 15 hrs of stuff you probably already learned in Hs which is why things are easy right now. Just a head up, biol 112 supposed to covered all the organ systems for the mcat, but somehow my(our?) class never went through them and instead focus on the animal phylum BS... So I had to learn everything about all the systems prior to the mcat :(. Other than that, premeds at a&m actually do very well. Everywhere I went for interview there are tons of aggies.
                                           
                                          Last edited:

                                          sliceofbread136

                                          Full Member
                                          10+ Year Member
                                          Nov 5, 2011
                                          4,972
                                          2,951
                                            I am biomedical sciences / classics dual major. I've had a strong mix of 10 page paper classes and rote scientific memorization classes.

                                            You could say my university is easy because its a large public university that isn't highly ranked, but I'll tell you that I will excel at any university. I had the opportunity to go to top ranked universities but it was cost prohibitive for me. I've talked to other pre-med friends at higher ranked universities in my state and I knew just about the same stuff as them for our pre-reqs. Like everyone said, it's about what you put into it.

                                            :rolleyes:
                                             

                                            gettheleadout

                                            MD
                                            Moderator Emeritus
                                            10+ Year Member
                                            Verified Expert
                                            Jun 23, 2010
                                            11,808
                                            2,801
                                            1. Resident [Any Field]
                                              Actually, SDN can answer this for you.

                                              College classes were a similar experience for me OP. I did extremely well in high school with minimal effort. I have a photographic memory and can put in half the time studying that others do and still get better grades. Everyone kept telling me college would challenge me and I shouldn't expect an easy ride.

                                              Well, college came around and it's more of the same. It's about the same amount of time involved as high school, just more test studying and less busy work. Some upper level classes might be a little harder, but a lot of classes in college aren't that tough if you focus and manage your time.

                                              I still manage to have fun and relax too before anyone calls me a nerd.

                                              lol no you don't
                                               
                                              D

                                              deleted393595

                                                lol no you don't

                                                photographic%20memory.jpg
                                                 

                                                EarthtoneJon

                                                Full Member
                                                7+ Year Member
                                                Aug 14, 2011
                                                282
                                                166
                                                1. Medical Student
                                                  OP,

                                                  It is possible that you are already good at playing the college grading system game. Congratulations. Let me guess: you get the impression that each lecture covers a very small amount of material, but the professor expounds for an hour and five minutes on a concept you understood the first time. You feel that exams only test a few key concepts, but tests them in creative ways to give the impression of higher volume. Your classmates say things like "we did ABC in lecture, but got tested on XYZ" and you say "yeah" indignantly to make friends, but secretly do not agree. You practice solving problems from the textbook, and soon find that they follow a template, and instantly recognize a particular problem's "trick" when you see it on a test. You find yourself anticipating the next thing the professor will cover.

                                                  If you can identify with any of the above statements, it will get tougher, but not much. Enjoy the ride.
                                                   

                                                  cuculici1

                                                  Full Member
                                                  10+ Year Member
                                                  Jul 11, 2010
                                                  326
                                                  2
                                                  Los Angeles, CA
                                                  1. Pre-Medical
                                                    You could always transfer to a more competitive school if you want the challenge. There were plenty of transfers at Columbia who had a high GPA at other institutions, but usually the reason they transferred was because they didn't like their former school. If you're happy where you're at and getting good grades, there's no reason to complain.
                                                     

                                                    911 Turbo

                                                    middle schooler aspiring doctor
                                                    Removed
                                                    7+ Year Member
                                                    Jul 24, 2010
                                                    2,624
                                                    736
                                                    mars
                                                    1. Medical Student
                                                      I go to a state school in Texas (A&M in particular). I'm a first semester freshman and took 15 hours this semester including intro biology, intro chemistry, and engineering calculus. Everyone told me that college classes would be much harder than high school and that I would have to work extremely hard for As. I'm finishing up my first semester and I don't feel challenged whatsoever, I have above a 100% in every course I took. I feel as though college is at least 2x as easy as high school somehow...

                                                      Is this a sign that I'm not learning enough science in my pre reqs to have a good base for when I start studying for the MCAT sciences?

                                                      Lol. If you took 151 then you should know that it gets much much much harder. 151 is a joke of a class and even if you make a high A, then you are probably doomed for a B/C in 152 and 251. Good luck during finals next year when you are lying on the floor crying because your physics 208, which had an average failure rate of 50%, and your ochem and 251 final are back to back. Oh and it only gets harder junior year. Granted, if you are a smart cookie, you should be able to make it out with a 3.7+ but its not easy by any stretch of the imagination.

                                                      Freshman year at a&m is a joke because there are so many *****s to help your grade. You are in a world of pain if you think that sophomore year is going to be as easy.



                                                      Oh and please dont join AMSA or any other premed societies...

                                                      Also wtf? I've never heard of any 151 teachers giving extra credit...

                                                      What's ur major OP?
                                                       
                                                      Last edited:

                                                      jd989898

                                                      Full Member
                                                      7+ Year Member
                                                      Oct 21, 2012
                                                      643
                                                      495
                                                      1. Medical Student
                                                        Lol. If you took 151 then you should know that it gets much much much harder. 151 is a joke of a class and even if you make a high A, then you are probably doomed for a B/C in 152 and 251. Good luck during finals next year when you are lying on the floor crying because your physics 208, which had an average failure rate of 50%, and your ochem and 251 final are back to back. Oh and it only gets harder junior year. Granted, if you are a smart cookie, you should be able to make it out with a 3.7+ but its not easy by any stretch of the imagination.

                                                        Freshman year at a&m is a joke because there are so many *****s to help your grade. You are in a world of pain if you think that sophomore year is going to be as easy.



                                                        Oh and please dont join AMSA or any other premed societies...

                                                        Also wtf? I've never heard of any 151 teachers giving extra credit...

                                                        What's ur major OP?

                                                        Hey, cool to see someone else from A&M. Trust me, I don't think it's going to STAY quite this easy.. Obviously orgo, calc2, and biochemistry will be a step up from intro classes. It's just that everyone told me that college classes would be an incredible amount of work to get all As in even freshman year, but this seems easier than high school so I'm questioning if I'm learning enough to be prepared for what's to come. Math 151 exams that I took were out of 105 points, so I was able to get above a 100. Also, I'm not an engineering major. I'm a biology major. I just figured I would take engineering calculus because I thought I would learn more than in "calculus for biological sciences". Not to be defensive, but it's kind of ridiculous to say that I will "probably" get a B/C in 152. I received one of the highest grades in 151 and from myedu it's easy to see that most 152 teachers will have about 20% As. Why would I suddenly drop from the top of the class to the top 30-50%? And yeah I went to one AMSA meeting at the beginning of this year and could easily tell it was very cookie cutter. The only society I'm considering joining is Alpha Epsilon Delta once I have 30 hours.
                                                         
                                                        About the Ads
                                                        This thread is more than 8 years old.

                                                        Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

                                                        1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
                                                        2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                        3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                        4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
                                                        5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
                                                        6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
                                                        7. This thread is locked.