Dr Yiot

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Oct 29, 2009
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IMO i think you need to do more research. in a masters in biomedical science degree (from what I understand) your not as intergrated with the med school in that all of your classes are med school courses but you do have 1 or 2 courses that you can (and probably will) take with the med students. so I wouldn't think its a walk in the park and if you do bad I would think (imo) it would be bad. whether you do either one I would destroy it, but honestly I would not retake your mcat score. even if my gpa was a 2.0.
 

jslo85

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This is purely my opinion so take it as a disclaimer if you will.

Masters of Biomedical Science is a very broad based general term that needs to be looked at from the basis of the institution that is offering it. Generally these apply mostly to osteopathic graduate programs offered by the medical school and taught/run by the medical school faculty with/without an agreement with the school (admissions). They run from a curriculum almost purely analogous to the MS-1s to only a couple medical school classes and a splattering of research/biomedical science oriented classes. Most will require a thesis of some sort and a certain # of hours of bench research conducted under a faculty member who will serve as your mentor/advisor throughout the entire time you spend in the program. For example KCOM and Nova MBS will offer medical school "electives" that you can take with the medical students in conjunction with your set graduate courses and allow you to transfer credit upon your matriculation into the medical school. Or you can take LECOM which takes the first year of the 2 year Masters to teach 12 medical school courses (abridged and non-abridged) and requiring the second year to be dedicated towards your thesis/research.

Of course this term "MBS" does not apply purely to osteopathic programs but are also to allopathic programs like UMDNJ Newark or RWJ but the concept of it all is relatively the same to me. I categorize these programs as SMPs even though they do not follow the strict definition as Midlife likes to define it due to the fact that you are taught by the medical school faculty, same exams, same material, at the medical school. The only deviation would be whether your program requires you to take them with the medical students and whether your curriculum is purely medical school classes or intermixed with graduate ones.
 

DrMidlife

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I have a 3.4gpa and a 3.25sgpa, a 30MCAT and I may retake and hope for a 33? (I think i can do better). I applied to schools but I feel like this cycle isnt going well and I will probably not be enrolled in med school next year. I have decided that an SMP is too high risk. Is a masters in biomedical sciences (for example UMDNJ) pretty much the same thing as an SMP? Is it easier to do well? Im not looking for an easy way out, and I think that I can succeed in medical school, but I dont want the pressure of having to take medical school classes for a year and feel like my only chance of getting into medical school is to perform in the top 10% of medical students affiliated with that SMP. From my understanding, those are the requirements to be successful in an SMP.
I don't think there are any SMPs that restrict med school admission to the top 10% of their SMP students. Like you, people wouldn't want to take a risk like that. Generally, SMPs are 2/3 of the first year of med school, with expectations that you'll do better than the med school average.

If you look at programs like EVMS, Cincinnati, Tulane ACP and Temple, you'll see a small class of SMP students (15-30) with 80% or more getting accepted at the host med school, or another med school, with no gap year. These programs are med school on the five year plan.

If you look at reputable larger programs like Gtown and Loyola, maybe Tufts, maybe Boston, these SMPs also have 80% or better success rates, mostly to other med schools than the host school. In these programs, maybe 50% get into med school without a gap year; the rest have to complete the SMP before applying to med school.

That said, your numbers are only very slightly below competitive, and as others have said, the cost and effort of an SMP may be overkill for you. Is another year of undergrad a possibility for you (such as Harvard or Berkeley extension, UT Dallas)? A year of straight A's in hard science classes would be a great addition to your app.

It's possible that you don't come across as a mature and compelling candidate (which would mean you're a normal 21-24 year old), in which case you could do something like the Peace Corps or Teach for America or City Year - and I'd say you could do these instead of more schoolwork. Just a thought.

To summarize: your understanding of SMP risk isn't correct, but an SMP is probably more than you need, and I'd encourage you to be creative in how you improve your app.

Best of luck to you.