Jun 9, 2010
10
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I am completing a combination BS/MS in Biology.

Undergrad cGPA: 3.15 w/ 93 credits, 16 in prog.
Undergrad BCPM: 3.29 w/ 69 credits, 13 in prog.
Grad GPA: 4 w/ 3 credits, 3 in prog.

I screwed up one year, picked up D's and C's due to personal reasons.

My ECs include:
Research in Physics, 1 year and on-going, no publications
About 100 hours volunteering in a hospital, not much clinical interaction, making pharmacy runs and paperwork


What should I work on for next AMCAS cycle?

Edit: thanks for the move dude
 
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chrisoc13

Brand New Member
Jun 26, 2010
407
1
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Pre-Medical
I am completing a combination BS/MS in Biology.

Undergrad cGPA: 3.15 w/ 93 credits, 16 in prog.
Undergrad BCPM: 3.29 w/ 69 credits, 13 in prog.
Grad GPA: 4 w/ 3 credits, 3 in prog.

I screwed up one year, picked up D's and C's due to personal reasons.

My ECs include:
Research in Physics, 1 year and on-going, no publications
About 100 hours volunteering in a hospital, not much clinical interaction, making pharmacy runs and paperwork


What should I work on for next AMCAS cycle?
This is going to be moved to "what are my chances" but you need to rock the MCAT. Your low GPA will be hard to overcome for allopathic schools and a strong MCAT could go a long way in improving your chances. Apply early, broadly, and I would certainly apply DO as well. Lots of DO.
 

Catalystik

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With a 30+ MCAT score, you'd have a shot at many SMPs (Special Masters Programs) which, if completed with a 3.5+ GPA, can override a low uGPA and get you into an MD program. A 30+ mcat score and a cGPA of 3.2 might get you into a DO med school without an expensive SMP.
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With a 35+ and a lot of luck, along with a steep recent upward grade trend, you might get into an MD program.

It looks like you need physician shadowing, nonmedical community service, and a better source of clinical experience. Teaching and leadership are helpful too.
 
OP
Mknks
Jun 9, 2010
10
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
With a 30+ MCAT score, you'd have a shot at many SMPs (Special Masters Programs) which, if completed with a 3.5+ GPA, can override a low uGPA and get you into an MD program. A 30+ mcat score and a cGPA of 3.2 might get you into a DO med school without an expensive SMP.
Would the Master's degree not help with the GPA issues?

With a 35+ and a lot of luck, along with a steep recent upward grade trend, you might get into an MD program.
Let's assume that I ruined my upward trend two semesters in a row

It looks like you need physician shadowing, nonmedical community service, and a better source of clinical experience. Teaching and leadership are helpful too.
Working as a tutor would help, yes?
 
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Catalystik

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There are few MD programs that will regard the GPA of a science heavy masters, so as a generalization a masters GPA doesn't bail out a low GPA.

Adcomms like to see the most recent semester's grades going in an upward trend for 1.5-2 semesters.

Tutoring or TA (=teaching) is also a well-regarded EC and further strengthens an application.

Regarding DO schools are referred to above, be aware that they have a grade replacement policy, where only the most recent retake is included in the application GPA. So the fastest GPA repair for some is repeating some classes and raising the GPA that way.
 
Dec 5, 2009
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Status
Medical Student
If you're not set on MD, retake some classes, get a 30+ on your mcat, and apply DO. It will save you alot of money. I'm not sure about the average cost of an SMP, but at my school its 30k. I have no idea what that is after 7 or 8 years of interest, but its not worth it in my opinion. You also might want to consider taking a cna course. They are generally a week or two long and will help you get some Pt care experience. I'm sure it was a big factor in my acceptence.
 
Dec 5, 2009
59
0
Status
Medical Student
I should have read the other posts, I pretty much just repeated what the cat said. Listen to catalystik.
 
OP
Mknks
Jun 9, 2010
10
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
There are few MD programs that will regard the GPA of a science heavy masters, so as a generalization a masters GPA doesn't bail out a low GPA.

Adcomms like to see the most recent semester's grades going in an upward trend for 1.5-2 semesters.

Regarding DO schools are referred to above, be aware that they have a grade replacement policy, where only the most recent retake is included in the application GPA. So the fastest GPA repair for some is repeating some classes and raising the GPA that way.
Most of the classes I did poorly in were unrelated to my major - i.e. Govt. And I can't re-take classes I passed at my college. They would have to be taken at a Community College.

I don't want to do an SMP because, as people have said before, it's somewhat expensive and mostly useless. Would it be wise to get a second Bachelor's in Math at a Community College? I have a few credits already that could be transferred over for the core curriculum and some major requirements (used to be a Math major). It should take two years at most, but might take up to 2.5 years - about the same time as a SMP.

While I finish up my bachelor's, I could find try to find work in a lab or hospital with my Master's degree, squeeze in some clinical experience that way.

I would much rather prefer going MD than DO, but I'll take what I can get.

Edit: A low non-science GPA is not an application killer, is it?
 
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beckhunter116

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Oct 14, 2008
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I don't want to do an SMP because, as people have said before, it's somewhat expensive and mostly useless. Would it be wise to get a second Bachelor's in Math at a Community College? I have a few credits already that could be transferred over for the core curriculum and some major requirements (used to be a Math major). It should take two years at most, but might take up to 2.5 years - about the same time as a SMP.

Edit: A low non-science GPA is not an application killer, is it?[/QUOTE/]

A good number of SMP are 1yr, the ones that include a research component are the ones that are 2 yrs. I don't think they would be considered useless as some of them have some pretty good linkage programs. What would getting a degree in math show adcoms? That you could raise your GPA taking classes that while are considered science, but don't really relate to med school. Not to be mean, but it doesn't make much sense to me. Unless you have a back-up plan that includes using that math degree it seems pointless to me.
 
OP
Mknks
Jun 9, 2010
10
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Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
@ Beck: I don't want to repeat courses that I've already taken for my Master's. BS in Math would be cheaper and besides, I like math.

And please be as mean as necessary; i got thick skin. :D
 

beckhunter116

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Oct 14, 2008
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@ Beck: I don't want to repeat courses that I've already taken for my Master's. BS in Math would be cheaper and besides, I like math.

And please be as mean as necessary; i got thick skin. :D
Classes for an SMP would be in most cases the classes that med students take themselves, some are actually taught together. So how would you be repeating classes? I get that math would be cheaper and easier since you do seem to like it, but how will it help your application? Yes, your gpa would increase, but I don't see that adcom will look at it favorable. Just my opinion.
 

Catalystik

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Classes retaken to invoke the DO grade forgiveness policy need not be taken again at the same school, and need not even have an identical course title so long as the course content is similar per the two course catalogs.
 

Idia

7+ Year Member
May 13, 2009
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Hi Catalystik,

Sorry to hijack another person's thread, but I've been on SDN for about a year now and I've been able to gain the info from your insightful replies.

I have a fairly similar dilemma, low uGPA issues. I am now presently preparing for the MCAT's which I believe I can do fairly well at. In order to further improve my chances I am debating between SMP's, post bacc programs, and a Master's in Public Health.

Should I include my stats and maybe you could give me more info on what routes you will recommend.

I have some community involvement, a good research background some shadowing but no clinical experience.

Thanks
Idia
 

Idia

7+ Year Member
May 13, 2009
20
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Idia, I'd be happy to comment on your situation if you start a new thread and give all your details and questions in your post.
Thank you kindly, I will do shortly, been MIA (moving).