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OMG! No research experience.

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by steppwolf, Jul 19, 2006.

  1. steppwolf

    steppwolf Junior Member
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    I have decent stats -- MCAT (34/0), GPA (3.7, chem major) -- lots of relevant volunteer hours, clinical work experience, community service, etc. -- but no research. I just didn't have the time or inclination, although I could possibly do some my senior year.

    Is this going to be a big negative in the application process? List includes schools across the spectrum of selectivity. What do I say if asked about lack of research?
     
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  3. Robizzle

    Robizzle 1K Member
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    you'll be A-ok. A lot of schools do like research, but a majority of them don't require it. there's tons of applicants who don't have any research, chill!!
     
  4. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    Research is not required unless you're applying to the top schools, which are more research/academia inclined.
    But it's always good to have some under your belt...
    So if you're applying to the Harvards/Stanfords/Yales/Hopkins/Dukes and many others, having no research xp is most likely a rejection on the way.
     
  5. braluk

    braluk SDN Surgerynator
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    it might be required or heavily preferred if ur goin to apply for md/phd or mtsp programs
     
  6. dr.z

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    You don't need research experience to goto medical school.
     
  7. LizzyM

    LizzyM the evil queen of numbers
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    But your chances won't be great at the top 20 schools that, while not requiring research, seen to prefer applicants with research experience such that almost >90% of the matriculants have had such experience.
     
  8. CTtarheel

    CTtarheel Senior Member
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    The only place it might come up is in the essays, but all the secondary essays that asked about it asked about your research OR teaching experience.
     
  9. Severus

    Severus FTSM!
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    I felt as if not having it kind of hurt me the first time around, fwiw.
     
  10. peezyweezy

    peezyweezy Member
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    The dean of admissions for Hopkins spoke at my school. He said that he personally doesn't give a care about research when he is determining who would make a good doctor and admitting students. I was surprised. You definitely can't say that admissions committees across the board feel the same way, but it just proves that research is not essential. It can help you, but that doesn't mean that not having it necessarily hurts you. Depends on the place.
     
  11. steppwolf

    steppwolf Junior Member
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    Not shooting for the creme de la creme, but I do have Emory, Case, Baylor, Pritzker, and Feinberg in there, followed by several good state schools in the midwest. Am I going to have to defend the lack of research in my secondaries?
     
  12. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    Well if you have excellent other ECs, then you have a good reason as to why you didnt do any research. Not everyone wants to be involved in research and that is perfectly fine for the schools you're applying to. You can talk about how you prefer doing other things more involved with patient care than sit in a lab all day.

    So I think you will definitely be okay.
     
  13. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    correlation does not imply causation

    in my school, i cant think of any premeds that were 32/3.6 or better that didnt do research

    come to think of it, i cant think of any serious science major in ym school that didnt do at least some lab work
     
  14. MJB

    MJB Senior Member
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    I'd research relaxation.
     
  15. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    Most pre-meds with scores in these ranges are most likely to be the "going for all" types, and thus probably trying to get in to everything...
    For scientific majors, lab work is more emphasized and there are more opportunities to be involved in research. It's much easier for them who have a larger access to it than for those who major non-sci.
     
  16. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    but non-science majors can write a thesis

    thats also research
     
  17. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    That's true. But really, subconsciously, what would be better in the eyes of a Harvard adcomm?
    Scientific vs non-scientific research?

    As a science major, research is emphasized. Non-sci, not so much. I think that's what mostly accounts for the discrepancies in research vs no research students when applying... Obviously that's not saying that non-sci majors never do research. But I think they are at a disadvantage in that area.
     
  18. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
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    Yep. Biology majors at my school are required to do independent research to receive their B.S.

    Honors College students have to write a thesis no matter what their major is. So it works out for me.
     
  19. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    what school?
     
  20. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
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    If I told you the name would think it was in California.

    Then if I told you the city you would think it was in New York... ;)
     
  21. MollyMalone

    MollyMalone I'm a Score Quadruplet
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    That hasn't been my experience, but it's an interesting thought. I don't think there's data on it anywhere.

    /English major
    //Two years physiology research
    ///n=1

    :)
     
  22. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    uc riverside?
     
  23. jackieMD2007

    jackieMD2007 ***MVI***
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    Pritzker and Feinberg are both big on research, as far as your IL schools go.
     
  24. BozoSparky

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    they really try for a diverse student body...all shapes & sizes...
     
  25. ADeadLois

    ADeadLois Senior Member
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    Research might be good fodder for interviews, but you should be fine without it.
     
  26. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California
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    Exactly. Look at it this way, liberal arts majors are actually accepted at a higher rate than science majors. Most liberal arts majors have no research experience, many science majors do. It's obviously not too limiting.

    I asked my premed advisor, whose opinion I really respect, if my lack of research was going to keep me out of med school. She said there's a very short list of schools that it may be a killer at. UCSF, Hopkins and other top ones were not on that list. None I was interested were, with the exception of Stanford.
     
  27. MossPoh

    MossPoh Textures intrigue me
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    Reading SDN you get the feeling if you don't have at least 2 years of research and a few articles published you are screwed....but I've talked to a few people that say the research isn't that important in their decision...more that you view yourself as a public servant. (USF was the school that said that) So apply to a few schools that aren't as research oriented and that can help.
     
  28. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    Yeah, I found my thesis/another research opportunity! "The effect of a non-sci major on research opportunities for pre-medical students" :D
     
  29. aumed22

    aumed22 Senior Member
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    I did research my sophomore year of undergrad, but got no publication and I actually left my mentor on sort of a sour note, so I didn't get a rec letter from him. When it came time to apply, I didn't even mention my research on my amcas, I thought if I didn't publish anything, why include it. In the end, I was accepted to more than one med school, so I think you'll be fine
     
  30. MinnyGophers

    MinnyGophers Senior Member
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    true, but subconsciously....

    Research is not required to most schools, besides Stanford and a few others... but it is very well looked upon by most of the top schools.
    No research doesn't mean the end of the world, as long as you have good ECs, you'll be fine. But if you can and enjoy it, then why not? It can only make your application more enticing to schools...
     
  31. Anastasis

    Anastasis caffeinated for safety
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    Seriously?

    Damn it - why didn't anyone tell me this before I submitted AMCAS!?!? :mad:

    In that case I have craploads of research!!!
     
  32. Anastasis

    Anastasis caffeinated for safety
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    I'm applying to Baylor and Emory (and some other ranked schools) with no research (at least none listed on AMCAS :mad: ). Baylor doesn't really have a place to talk about it in your secondary and I haven't gotten Emory's yet. I don't think it will hurt me substantially but I'll be sure to post when I get my first rejection :(
     
  33. steppwolf

    steppwolf Junior Member
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    Thanks for all the replies. I'll take them as a collective yes-no-maybe-sometimes/somewhere-depends-chill-panic answer to my original question. :) Seriously, though, I appreciate the words of support.
     
  34. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
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    No. It's in Michigan.
     
  35. mvenus929

    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    If it makes you feel any better, I'm sorta in the same position as you... Except I haven't taken my MCATs and I've only been in college for a year... I'll try to get a research position this year, but I'm not sure how well that'll work out.
     
  36. steppwolf

    steppwolf Junior Member
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    Oakland?
     
  37. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    Oakland University

    (though uc riverside did also fit the description)

     
  38. khadija

    khadija Member
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    u have no idea how much this thread reassures me. I'm a doublescience major and yet no research. (i mean i started some this summer but i don't know if that counts). At the same time i'm applying to a lot of the top schools. On the other hand my friends (all non premeds) keep telling me that i'll get in cause i have a good gpa and mcat score. yet on a third hand (i know, a third hand???), most ppl i know that r in med school now have done research in undergrad.
     
  39. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
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    Yep. :D
     
  40. I did not really love being in lab all the time. I'ts okay. (I am a bio major!) I have no interest in purusing research, but will do one quarter of required independent science research. I would much rather devote time to volunteering at a clinic.

    One summer-I was accepted into some research program but chose to do a youth symphony concert tour instead.

    I'm not planning to apply to any "top schools" or research oriented ones.
     
  41. Mister Pie

    Mister Pie Senior Member
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    I wonder though if this might be because there might be a correlation between students who do research and who are more motivated/have higher stats in general. I guess what I mean is, maybe if you look at the stuff done by those applicants with research, perhaps their stats and other extracurriculars just simply tend to be better than the rest of the applicant pool and so the fact that 90% of the students at top schools have research experience might be due to the higher average grades and other more involvement in other activites.

    DISCLAIMER: I have no evidence for or against anything I'm saying, it's all pure speculation.
     
  42. Rocket3004

    Rocket3004 Member
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    Medicine is nothing w/o research!

    I think everyone should do some to appreciate what it takes to say: "take 2 and call me in the morning" :laugh:

    but at the same token, lab rat = not fun. :sleep: :scared:
     
  43. ):(

    ):( Senior Member
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    Not having research puts you at a disadvantage... Think about it, when a drug company asks you to use their drugs will you be able to think like a scientist and understand the primary research papers in relation to the drugs? Also, you have heavy competition; many students have published papers and participated in research. No research won't kill you at any school, but it definitely will not be a highlight of your application.
     
  44. R.P. McMurphy

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  45. Anastasis

    Anastasis caffeinated for safety
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    So how does having no organized research experience translate into being scientifically illiterate?
     
  46. CCLCMer

    CCLCMer CCLCM Alum c/o 2011
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    You must have done other things that you really love and are passionate about, right? So talk about those. You don't have to be a lab rat to get into med school, and even programs like mine that are really heavy into research have some students with very little science research background. A bunch of my classmates even got liberal arts degrees. You definitely don't have to be a science person. But, I think it's important to have some kind of record of scholarship in whatever your major is. So if you're a humanities major and you have the option, definitely do write the thesis, or submit an article to a journal in your field, or put on an art show, or whatever the standard is for your field. And don't do lab research just to try to impress adcoms. You won't be impressing anyone if you're bored silly and you aren't motivated to spend the time in the lab.

    -CCLCMer
     
  47. CptCrunch

    CptCrunch Senior Member
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    Holy shnikies.
     
  48. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member
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    profiles like that give the rest of us hope
     
  49. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
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    The biggest thing I've learned from my research is that I am very patient...

    (I was in the lab from 9:30 to 7:30 today and my results didn't come out).
     
  50. R.P. McMurphy

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    I know, reading that profile almost makes me puke :laugh:

    Hmmm do I want to go to Penn or Harvard??
     
  51. Rafa

    Rafa headbutts like zidane
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    Not all of us yearn to be lapdogs of pharmaceuticals.
     

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