Feb 22, 2010
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I have a question about "official transcript". I have heard of people who submit their application early, before their final grades are out and so on their app they can only say something like currently taking. I heard that you have to "update" your application if you do this. If you choose to update, then does that mean that med schools don't look at your app until it is updated? Or will it look at your app, make a decision on secondary, THEN wait for your update?

Likewise, I hear of people choosing to wait until their official transcript is done so that they can just submit without choosing to update, albeit at a later time.

Can someone explain this submit, verify, update process to me?

Thank you!
 
Sep 4, 2006
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You may submit before your final grades are available for the current term, in which case the transcript you send at that time will be used to generate the official application transcript that AMCAS sends to schools. You cannot update the grades through AMCAS later, but you may send transcripts directly to schools you've applied to. It is, however, likely that any decision about whether to look at the rest of your Primary will be based on what is on the official transcript. If you have a borderline GPA, it would be best to apply a bit later to include grades that will put your application in a better position.

You can also use this timing strategically if you know your grades for the current term will be poor and make your application weaker. Updates to schools are not generally expected or obligatory. It is a rare situation that a school would ask you for a more recent transcript before they make a decision.
 

mvenus929

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Jul 6, 2006
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If you send in your transcripts before your Spring grades are out, then that's what the med schools will see. They'll likely make a decision on you before you send any update--very few schools will request an update before making a decision. If your grades are going to get better, I suggest you wait to send your transcript.
 
Feb 22, 2010
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Thank you for the answers so far!

Does this also mean that once your application reaches the secondary position, then they no longer consider your primary but just your secondaries?
 
Sep 4, 2006
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The information on your primary remains under consideration throughout the application process. It helps them decide if they will add the information on the Secondary to their decision-making process, or not (if you don't make their cutoffs for various parameters). Many schools send out Secondaries to everyone without screening the Primary first (great way to bring in funds, you know).
 

mvenus929

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Thank you for the answers so far!

Does this also mean that once your application reaches the secondary position, then they no longer consider your primary but just your secondaries?
They consider all of it, but specifically your personal statement and activities once you pass their screen (whatever it is). But, you can't update your AMCAS application at all once you submit it, so sending in your transcript before spring grades and submitting your application then means that's all schools will see on your application. You could try to send each of them updates, but who knows if you'll make it before they put your application aside (should it go that route).