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MSTP research essay

Discussion in 'Physician Scientists' started by Kraazy, May 3, 2007.

  1. Kraazy

    7+ Year Member

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    Do any of you past MSTP applicants have any advice regarding the format and tone of the research essay? My first (very preliminary) attempt at a draft came out very narrative, with a lot of "this is how I got into research, and this is why I was interested in this topic" kinda stuff in between the descriptions of the actual work I did. Is that too fluffy?

    I guess part of my concern is explaining the evolution of my research interests since I started out in bench research and am now going for a phd in epi. Or should that go into the "Why MD/PhD" essay?
     
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  3. j-weezy

    j-weezy MS1
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    Although you'll find very different opinions on here, I asked one of my professors and she basically said to write it as an extended abstract. Hope that helps!
     
  4. PBandJ

    PBandJ hot dog back in action!
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    hmm, that is a good question. Describing how your research interests evolved might make more sense for your "Why MD/PhD" essay in your case (since it sounds like that's how you decided to do an MD/PhD program). Keep in mind, though, that you have a lot more freedom with the research essay (10K characters for research vs. 2K or something like that for the MD/PhD essay). The research essay can just serve to describe the major projects in which you were involved (basically abstract-like), but be sure to include your specific role in those projects.

    If you need any other tips, feel free to PM me. :luck:
     
  5. Dr.Watson

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  6. Kraazy

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    Thanks!

    Do you guys have any advice re: the personal statement? I am applying mostly MSTP but also straight MD to some research-focused schools. My PS makes it clear that I want to go into research, but no clear reference to MSTP. Also, how much should my PS focus on clinical exposure rather than research?
     
  7. SuperMatt

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    My thoughts are your PS should place a lot of emphasis on clinical exposure. Unless research is what led you into medicine then you may want to stick to the clinic side of the story for your PS. You have two other essays to show your love for research and prior experience. Remember that for some MSTPs you have to be accepted by the med and grad schools, so make sure that there is some clinical relevance for the med committee.
     
  8. Ziggy08

    Ziggy08 Junior Member
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    I guess this question applies not only to the personal statement but to MD/PhD interviews as well... How specific are you expected to outline your research interests? I have some idea of what field I want to pursue (biophysics, mathematical biology) based on prior research experience but I'm also really interested in developmental biology (other prior research experience). I have no idea what subject I'll be studying in 10 years--or even whether it would be in physiology or developmental bio. Should I focus on 1 research interest in my MD/PhD essay?
     

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