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MastersMeUp

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Hi friends, I am going to be graduating this May with a BSc from a Canadian University (UBC).

cGPA = 3.6, sGPA = 3.8 <-- values from September 2010 to December 2013
MCAT = 29 [11,8,10]

I believe my cGPA/sGPA for my complete bachelors will be 3.7/3.8 (I only have 6 of 38 courses which are non-science... which is my sGPA isn't really changing). My Non-Academic is lots and lots of volunteering, I'm pretty happy with my extra-curricular.

I was thinking of going into a Masters Program - MSc:Experimental Medicine (Thesis) in the same Canadian University. Last Friday I had an interview with a potential supervisor. Today I found out he is willing to take me in as a student. Completion of this masters, if I work hard enough on it, can be completed within a year. I will be taking up his offer for sure, the project I've been accepted to do is something I've always wanted to do.

I am not very knowledgebale on how much of an edge Graduate students have with US Med applications.

Could someone shed some light in this area for me? For sure, I am going to have to redo my MCAT to even pass cut offs. Please do not consider this as a "should I do a masters or not", I have already replied to him indicating that I will accept his offer!

Thank you for your time and best of luck to the current/future applicants.
 

armybound

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I don't think it has a huge advantage compared to having a higher MCAT. My degree was completely irrelevant in my medical education, so I don't see why it would have been too relevant for admissions.
 
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I am not very knowledgebale on how much of an edge Graduate students have with US Med applications.

Could someone shed some light in this area for me?
I'm assuming you plan to apply summer 2014: Being a grad student will give you no edge at all. Listing a just-started research project on your application won't do much for you either (though updates to schools might be useful later in the cycle) . Having a masters degree and a completed research project with resulting a poster/presentation or publication is more likely to give you an edge when applying for residency positions.
 

DrRedBug

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I was thinking of going into a Masters Program - MSc:Experimental Medicine (Thesis) in the same Canadian University. Last Friday I had an interview with a potential supervisor. Today I found out he is willing to take me in as a student. Completion of this masters, if I work hard enough on it, can be completed within a year. I will be taking up his offer for sure, the project I've been accepted to do is something I've always wanted to do.

I'm in a similar boat right now, and considering doing an MSc prior to med school. As it's been a year since you posted this, I'm curious, how is your Experimental Medicine program going? Can you see it being completed within a year?

Aside from that, my personal opinion is that an MSc/PhD can give you an upper edge, provided that you performed excellently in its coursework and were productive with your research (i.e. significant publications and conferences attended). If you combine this with a solid MCAT score, I think it can only do you good. There's certainly nothing to lose, except for a bit more time. And that's just a drop in the bucket compared to decades working as an MD :)
 

thedarkcanuck

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From my experience last cycle, I don't think an MSc. gives you that big of an edge (although I didn't end up producing any first author pubs). US MD schools are really hesitant to even interview Canadians. You have to have a solid track record throughout undergrad and need to stand out with your ECs.

Honestly, that 29 might be hard to overcome. I had a 38 and only received one interview. Good luck.
 

ZedsDed

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Too late now. Presumably OP already finished the degree.
 

lmn

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I'm in a similar boat right now, and considering doing an MSc prior to med school. As it's been a year since you posted this, I'm curious, how is your Experimental Medicine program going? Can you see it being completed within a year?

Aside from that, my personal opinion is that an MSc/PhD can give you an upper edge, provided that you performed excellently in its coursework and were productive with your research (i.e. significant publications and conferences attended). If you combine this with a solid MCAT score, I think it can only do you good. There's certainly nothing to lose, except for a bit more time. And that's just a drop in the bucket compared to decades working as an MD :)
A master's degree is a waste of time and money unless it provides a backup career or is something you will utilize once you're a physician. Nobody cares about the grades or thinks you're a stronger student for completing a master's, not to mention you could do great research as a full-time job and get paid instead.
 
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