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Hi! Could someone offer me guidance on the pros and cons of doing an SMP or a post-bac to enhance my undergraduate GPA? I’ve been doing a bunch of research between the differences, and I have a 3.1 overall Ugpa. I currently have offers from UC Davis for their post bacc program, and the Wake Forest SMP but Im not sure which would be better for my application.
 

PigsHaveWings

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The lines are blurry between the two.

In general post bac used to be for career changers who need to do a lot of science pre reqs to qualify for medical school admission requirements/MCAT preparation. Some of them have glide linkages to allow transition to medical school.

SMP programs were considered GPA boosters and also to allow students with low GPA to demonstrate they can handle rigorous medical school level courses, so in general, sometimes tend to have first year medical school level classes. Some of them offer guaranteed interviews and rarely guaranteed acceptances to graduates based on their performance.

Recently the two are starting to look similar.
 
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Screamapillar

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Hi! Could someone offer me guidance on the pros and cons of doing an SMP or a post-bac to enhance my undergraduate GPA? I’ve been doing a bunch of research between the differences, and I have a 3.1 overall Ugpa. I currently have offers from UC Davis for their post bacc program, and the Wake Forest SMP but Im not sure which would be better for my application.
SMP's are pretty much always better for an application. I chose to do a DIY post-bacc to increase my GPA so I could keep my job (gotta make that $$), live with my fiance, and not drop a ton of money. However, a non-SMP post-bacc doesn't give you the chance to compete against medical students and demonstrate that you have what it takes to do well. SMP's are expensive and intrusive to your life, but they can be worth a lot more to your application IFFF you do well.

Does Wake have any linkages? Do you have to move yourself to get to either program?
 
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jhmmd

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DaBrownBoss said:
Hi! Could someone offer me guidance on the pros and cons of doing an SMP or a post-bac to enhance my undergraduate GPA? I’ve been doing a bunch of research between the differences, and I have a 3.1 overall Ugpa. I currently have offers from UC Davis for their post bacc program, and the Wake Forest SMP but Im not sure which would be better for my application.
In general, a post-bacc (as opposed to a SMP) tends to be the option that's more likely to result in success. As has been said before, in a SMP you are usually competing on the curve with med students--and like they say, what do they call the person w/the lowest grades in med school? A DOCTOR. So you will be competing against some very smart people.

SMPs are a high-risk, last resort option if you have a s***** ugrad GPA and want to prove yourself. A bad or mediocre performance in a SMP WILL tank your application--mark my words. Otherwise, I'd aim for a post-bacc.
Good luck :)
 
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SMP's are pretty much always better for an application. I chose to do a DIY post-bacc to increase my GPA so I could keep my job (gotta make that $$), live with my fiance, and not drop a ton of money. However, a non-SMP post-bacc doesn't give you the chance to compete against medical students and demonstrate that you have what it takes to do well. SMP's are expensive and intrusive to your life, but they can be worth a lot more to your application IFFF you do well.

Does Wake have any linkages? Do you have to move yourself to get to either program?

I vehemently disagree. SMPs are great IF YOU can ace the classes. If you screw up, it's over. Period. Also SMP can show you can handle medical school, it will not push you above the cut-off for schools that have an auto GPA screen.
 
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Is UC Davis an easy school? As a UC school, I'm betting not. My advice would try to get your GPA up in a post bacc at a school without harsh grading so you can get your GPA up to 3.3-3.4 and apply to lower tier MD schools and DO schools. Rock the MCAT.
 

Screamapillar

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I vehemently disagree. SMPs are great IF YOU can ace the classes. If you screw up, it's over. Period. Also SMP can show you can handle medical school, it will not push you above the cut-off for schools that have an auto GPA screen.
Note that’s why I said “IFFF you do well.” Good SMP grades > good post-bacc grades for reinvention. SMPs are high risk high reward, but I am of the opinion that if you can’t do well in an SMP when your back is against the wall then you would have struggled in medical school anyways.

That’s probably true about screens as SMP is usually masters, but you just have to make sure your list doesn’t include schools that screen out your GPA. IMO there are really good reasons not to do an SMP, hence why I’m not doing it, but it is the most efficient option.
 
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Note that’s why I said “IFFF you do well.” Good SMP grades > good post-bacc grades for reinvention. SMPs are high risk high reward, but I am of the opinion that if you can’t do well in an SMP when your back is against the wall then you would have struggled in medical school anyways.

That’s probably true about screens as SMP is usually masters, but you just have to make sure your list doesn’t include schools that screen out your GPA. IMO there are really good reasons not to do an SMP, hence why I’m not doing it, but it is the most efficient option.

I understand what you're saying but everyone with less than a 3.5 uGPA thinks they are going to rock the SMP with a 4.0 although few come anywhere close.
 
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Screamapillar

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I understand what you're saying but everyone with less than a 3.5 uGPA thinks they are going to rock the SMP with a 4.0 although few come anywhere close.
For sure. I just don’t think the prospect of competing against M1s should frighten people away from an SMP. If you think you deserve to be in medical school you should relish the opportunity to prove it. They certainly won’t all succeed, but second chances aren’t supposed to be easy!
 
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Angus Avagadro

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Look for a post bac or SMP with linkage to the school. If you maintain a certain GPA, it varies from school to school, you get accepted or guaranteed interview. This varies from about 3.3 to 3.5 gpa. Our PhDs love our SMP grads. Now, since you want to run with the big dogs, you have to walk the walk. A student I recently endorsed had a 3.7 gpa as a chem major at a local pre.med mill, but sub 500 MCAT. They were also a 4 yr varsity letterman. They could not make the gpa requirement in our SMP
So get any learning issues dealt with and any outside distractions eliminated for this high risk/high yield endeavor. Its only a year. Good luck and best wishes!
 

jhmmd

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Angus Avagardo said:
Look for a post bac or SMP with linkage to the school. If you maintain a certain GPA, it varies from school to school, you get accepted or guaranteed interview. This varies from about 3.3 to 3.5 gpa. Our PhDs love our SMP grads. Now, since you want to run with the big dogs, you have to walk the walk. A student I recently endorsed had a 3.7 gpa as a chem major at a local pre.med mill, but sub 500 MCAT. They were also a 4 yr varsity letterman. They could not make the gpa requirement in our SMP
So get any learning issues dealt with and any outside distractions eliminated for this high risk/high yield endeavor. Its only a year. Good luck and best wishes!
Something that I did: Make a spreadsheet with info about each SMP (nationwide) that you're interested in. You can include data like length of program, average GPA and MCAT, linkage, and contact person. Reach out to these schools to gather more info and take notes so that you're prepared when you apply. Good luck.
 
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Hi! Could someone offer me guidance on the pros and cons of doing an SMP or a post-bac to enhance my undergraduate GPA? I’ve been doing a bunch of research between the differences, and I have a 3.1 overall Ugpa. I currently have offers from UC Davis for their post bacc program, and the Wake Forest SMP but Im not sure which would be better for my application.
SMP is higher risk but higher reward, as it's a back door into the host medical school, if given at a med school and has good linkage.

DIY postbac is cheaper and can be done on your schedule, but doesn't come with MCAT prep or advising.

Post-bac programs are more for career switchers who lack the pre-reqs.
 
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Angus Avagadro

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DIY post bac. You have made some poor decisions, working full time while.studying for mcat , and applying with low stats. I dont think with your stats you will be successful, i.e., meet the requirements for admission. DIY is a safer route, able to drop courses, etc. Good luck and best wishes!
 
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