I was wondering if taking some time off (a semester or so) appears poorly in the eyes of potential medical schools (and/or graduate schools). I have also considered doing part-time, and I know that doesn't appear too good. But I would much rather just leave and come back, but if that's going to cause major problems I want to know before doing anything. In terms of reason: I never took the so-called gap-year, and after having done somewhat poorly for a few semesters, although improving [compounded with medical problems (not minor but not major either, more chronic) which I wouldn't really want to bring up because it might take away from my strengths as a candidate]. I feel like I really need to take some time off to make sure I know what I am doing and feel/perform better. In this time I'd be earning some money for school and continuing to volunteer and expanding on some of my hobbies. I plan to take full loads when I come back. Hopefully that'll be okay. In short: is anyone going to ask me why the hell did it take you 4.5-5.0 years to graduate? and will they be satisfied with I took some time off, or am I going to have to go into detailed explanations and provide papers and so on and so forth? And also will it put me at a disadvantage? Peace out.