Dismiss Notice
Hey Guest! Check out the 3 MCAT Study Plan Options listed in the 'stickies' area at the top of the forums (BoomBoom, SN2ed, and MCATJelly). Let us know which you like best.

Also, we now offer a MCAT Test-Prep Exhibitions Forum where you can ask questions directly from the test-prep services.
Dismiss Notice
SDN members see fewer ads and full resolution images. Join our non-profit community!

Forum Members Official "Should I Retake?" Thread

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by QofQuimica, Jun 14, 2007.

  1. Gopher7

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Wondering how good my chances are as my MCAT is borderline. I am applying broadly to MD and then specifically to DO schools. I have good EC's I think and a decent GPA. I was consistently scoring 510 or above but freaked out a little on the first section which was always my strong point so I am wondering how it hurts me or if my science GPA, science letters, and research help make up for it.
    MCAT : 507 (124/127/128/128)
    GPA : 3.7 cGPA, 3.65 sGPA
    100 volunteer hours, 50 mentoring and tutoring inner-city middle school students and 50 in a hospital
    Limited shadowing including 3 MD specialties and then DO shadowing
    1200 hours doing cardiovascular research in a medical school lab
    400 hours and 1 publication in a 3D printing biomedical engineering lab
    1600 hours as a medical scribe
    Please be honest. I know I am borderline so would like some advice if possible. Right now I am applying this round and am willing to go MD or DO.
     
    #4551 Gopher7, Feb 9, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
  2. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. WIMNFamilyMed

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    538
    Likes Received:
    521
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    I think you should apply both ways, you have a great DO shot and a fine shot at MD, just depends where you apply kind of. If you want MD, it’s worth the application for you I think.
     
    Gopher7 likes this.
  4. Gopher7

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2017
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Thank you for the advice, I am just worried that the 124 will be filtered out by many MD's. Do you know if this is a requirement? (this really worries me)
     
  5. Isoval

    Isoval Good luck, kupo.

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2017
    Messages:
    585
    Likes Received:
    877
    Status:
    Medical Student (Accepted)
    I had a 508 (130 125 129 124) and received three Texas MD interviews out of a possible 7 to which I applied.

    I agree with the above and do not think you need to retake.
     
    Gopher7 likes this.
  6. WIMNFamilyMed

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    538
    Likes Received:
    521
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Yeah I don’t think that’s a thing.. the MCAT is literally just one page of many stories your AMCAS application tells. Plus it adds up to a really good score still so it’s not too pushy. Being at or below the median score isn’t ideal, but it’s just one below and you clearly have strengths in other areas of the test.
     
    Suzukaze likes this.
  7. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    which state are you in? I know in my state your GPA is below boarder line, mcat is also below boarder line , it would have been easier if the 124 in P/S . I would think you have a small chance in MD but your chances are higher in DO. All depends on your state and matriculation numbers of medical schools in your state.
     
    #4556 doctobeapple, Feb 13, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
  8. MaximusQuintus

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2018
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
    MCAT: 507 (127,124,126,130)
    cGPA: 3.7
    sGPA:~3.6
    Major upward trend in GPA after transferring to UCSD
    CA resident, Utah born

    Research: 180 hrs [promised a publication... but it looks like its falling through:(]
    Clinical: 200 hrs
    Shadowing: 100 hrs
    Other community service: ~300 hrs
    I also work for a radiology medical group as well.


    I feel like a pretty mediocre applicant at the moment and am really torn if I should retake the MCAT on April 21st. I just took my first full length without much practice and scored a 500 so I'm at a similar baseline then when I ended. I heard that if I get a similar score the second time around my odds of getting accepted to MD or DO will greatly decrease, is this true?
     
  9. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    You only retake if you feel you going to improve your score by 2-3 points and you studied for the next test. It is not good to score same as before.
     
  10. template11

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2017
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    14
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    505: 129 CARS, 127 Bio, 125 Chem, 124 Psych Soc. I didn't study Psych Soc at all(yes I'm an idiot, I didn't know many terms and I should have studied, I got lulled in because it was the "easy" section and I was dealing with a lot, for some idiotic reason I wouldn't budge on my timeline), and for various reasons didn't study much for the rest. Yes, it was a bad decision. Yes, I know it shows poor decision making. I get it.

    I have a low GPA, around a 3.3. Major upward trend (C- in bio when I was 18, C in a 4 credit math class, 4.0 in all science classes since then except a B in a brutal Biochem class my last semester of undergrad that had a class average of like 40).

    I applied two cycles ago and got one MD interview. I also applied late that cycle, so I could have gotten more. Again, I know, poor decision making, but I was in a weird situation that isn't repeated now.

    I am not URM, not really much in the way of research (one research experience but nothing published except some data on a website).

    I have a very unique story, am older, and have some unique experiences. Veteran. Some other things that I think will make me stick out.

    Sufficient volunteering and shadowing.

    Reasons I think I should retake:
    I actually can study this time, and think pushing Psych/Soc over 125 will help immensely. I think I can also push the C/P section higher as I really didn't study. I can potentially boost the Bio, and CARS will likely remain the same.
    I can take a prep course with Kaplan if you guys think that will help.
    My test is almost two years old.
    Really want surgery and maybe a specialty, so DO is risky. (Shadowed a surgeon for a long time, loved it more than I can describe, and while I know everyone changes their mind, I doubt I will)

    Reasons I shouldn't:
    It has been a long time since I have looked at some of this material
    I got an interview with my old score, and it might not be worth the risk of a same or lower score
    With my GPA, reapplicant status, and past MCAT, I may not be able to get an MD anyway

    If I retook I would spend 1.5 months studying every day, potentially take a course, and I could cancel/no-show/void the test if my last practice test wasn't a big increase. Take in mid May, submit apps late June.
     
  11. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    In the two years gap , have you been doing any thing to improve your application through job, master program, volunteer or clinical work? I would think this is important. What state are you from?
     
  12. template11

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2017
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    14
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Yes, I have a very professional, prestigious job that is high paced. It would be considered public service. This is what kept me from applying sooner and why I wasn't able to study as well last time. I'm in position to study more now.

    I also continued volunteering in a clinical setting.

    I could probably be considered in state in TX and OR. Long story why. Not sure which I think is more advantageous. I'm sure everyone will say TX, but MSAR says OHSU interviews almost everyone from OR.
     
  13. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    If the MD school matriculation MCAT score is close to what you have in your state (505), with exceptional volunteer/work/clinic you might have chance. I have seen applicants with 505 make it to an MD program with excellent other factors in their application.
    But to be on the safe side, I have seen applicants retaking classes or new classes to improve their GPA to 3.7 and retake mcat to be close to 510-512 to have chance at their desired school (MD schools not in top 50 ranking)
     
  14. Suzukaze

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2018
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    7
    Non-Canadian international first-time applicant here.
    First attempt, 508(05/17): 129/125/126/128.
    Second attempt, 513(01/18): 128/128/129/128.
    GPA expected to be ~3.35, sGPA(AMCAS) will be like 3.26 by the end of this semester.
    Graduating senior, with practically no upwards trend (3.7 in freshman year and ~3 in later years). Though we are GPA deflating, I don't really think ADCOM will think much about it.
    Will be attending SMP in fall, and planning on applying to MD and DO schools on this cycle. If rejected then I'll reapply in next May.
    If retaking I'll be taking it (hopefully) this summer, but I am not very sure about it due to the stress of application at that time.

    Pros for retaking:
    I lose one point in my B/C in my second attempt. (But since it's anyway in my confidence band, will it matter that much?)
    Low GPA plus international status - I probably need a higher score to compensate for that.

    Cons for retaking:
    It looks like that I need a 516+ for this retake to be meaningful, but it is risky.
    If my nearest testing center is full I probably need to travel to another state for the exam, which is devastating, in addition to the stress already accumulated by then.
    I also need to prepare my finals, PS and application while preparing for the exam.
    And it will be my third attempt.

    Thanks in advance. Any advice is greatly appreciated.
     
  15. template11

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2017
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    14
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    MCAT is within OHSU and most Texas schools range, but at the lower end for sure. Also, my 124 in Psych/Soc is below the 10th percentile for OHSU and all Texas schools. The 124 is what makes me think retake the most...
     
  16. Thread continues after this sponsor message. SDN Members do not see this ad.

  17. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    My suggestion to try to improve your GPA to 3.6 or above retake few classes , stay extra semester is worth it. But your mcat is fine.
     
  18. doctobeapple

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2016
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    46
    Status:
    Pre-Medical
    Agree retake is the right option to improve your application. Good luck
     
  19. Olon1974

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2018
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Non-Student
    I almost died from anxiety the last time. Your score isn't bad, at all. I would consider applying to less competitive schools, but that's just me.
     

Share This Page