Pre-International is not popular..why?

Discussion in 'General International Discussion' started by vietcongs, Feb 19, 2001.

  1. vietcongs

    vietcongs Senior Member
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    since i have a ****ty MCAT (20,Q), but everything else is excellent 3.6 gpa,good recs, volunteer, etc, i think i may have to consider going international. is there anyone else who has done this and has been able to practice in the US? that is my main concern. ive heard that it is difficult to practice in some states after graduating from an international med school. i wouldnt mind being stuck on a tropical island in the carribean for med school, but i would hope that my degree could be used to practice in the US> if anyone has done this please let me know what med school you went to and what states you can practice..all input would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Besyonek

    Besyonek Senior Member
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    Please consider the following: If your best effort on the MCAT is a 20Q, how do you think you'll do on the USMLE, or the additional qualifying exams required of FMGs who want to practice in the US?

     
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  3. dwstranger

    dwstranger Senior Member
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    You know, it really bites my butt when people say things like that -- how do you think you'll do on the Boards when you have a bad MCAT...

    I know they say that the MCAT is an indicator of how you'll do on the USMLE, but there are plenty of reasons a person does poorly on the MCAT -- not able to take a review course, lack of sleep, a fluke, etc. Vietcongs doesn't say how many times s/he took the MCAT anyway.

    Being in a USMLE review course (Kaplan) now and doing fine on the diagnostic exams, I think I'll be able to do well on the Boards - not just pass, but do well. All I needed was the CHANCE - I got it by going to a foreign school. I've been able to do well here by not having to work (living off student loans - yikes!). Besides, the fact that the USMLE is more "topic-oriented" makes it easier to prepare for for someone whose interest is medicine (but who didn't do as well on the non-biology sections of the MCAT).

    So what it comes down to, I think, is how driven you are. There are lots of really smart people in my class who ended up here for God knows what reason. But we came here to learn the material, and to pass the Boards. Which we have, and which we will.

    [This message has been edited by dwstranger (edited 02-19-2001).]
     
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  4. Besyonek

    Besyonek Senior Member
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    dwstranger,

    I believe you've misunderstood the point of my comment above. Yes, it would be wonderful if everyone who desires to become a physician would be able to fulfill that desire. Unfortunately, there are little things like the USMLE (and the MCAT) acting as gatekeepers...

    I think it is entirely appropriate to ponder whether or not very poor performance on the MCAT is more likely than not a prelude to future performance on the USMLE. If the original poster simply had a bad day (s/he did not mention any mitigating circumstances), that's one thing. Were that the case, I think they would have noted it and announced intentions of retaking it. Anyone in their right mind would retake it if this score was an anomaly. If, however, this was the best they could do, then I question whether or not the person will be able to make it through med school (anywhere) and then pass all three steps of the USMLE. Furthermore, virtually every exam in the pre-clinical sciences is similar to the MCAT format: multiple choice, very fast-paced, lots of material covered, etc.

    Why do you think there is such a drastic weed-out in the beach schools during the first two years? It's because the schools try to get their Step 1 "pass rates" within shouting range of those attained by US MD/DO med schools. My concern (yes, it is concern) for this poster is that they will simply be a casualty of this attrition process and lose a $***load of money along the way.

    In short, while it may have been easier to simply reply by giving this person a pat on the head and banal words of encouragement, I instead offered a dispassionate view of what may lie ahead for an aspirant who is taking a long-shot route to becoming a physician, and who has an apparently substantial difficulty with the kinds of exams that will ultimately determine whether or not they make it.

     
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  5. Stephen Ewen

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    Though hard to take, what people are saying here is not without some pretty good merit.

    Even so, there are plenty of folks who have literally smoked the USMLEs but sunk the MCAT, as well as their GPA.

    Explanation? Maybe greater maturity happened. Maybe real passion kicked in. Maybe "Do it" learners blossumed when real medicine came into play. Others reasons, and other reasons still.

    This being said, I will reiterate it: what people are saying here is not without some pretty good merit.

    Why pre-international is popular is b/c people usually do not plan going abroad as a first measure.

     
  6. vietcongs

    vietcongs Senior Member
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    Oh my!

    This message board has been blown completely out of proportion. I simply asked about the difficulty of finding work in the US with an international medical degree.

    I know that my MCAT score is not good at all. I only took it once for the first time and that was my score. I studied from a book that I borrowed from a friend, but obviously not enough. I will have to take it again. I do not believe that my MCAT score is an indicator of how good I am, or how well I will perform on boards, or how good of a doctor I will be. I think that some people who replied have eluded to this.

    And not one of you answered my question..how difficult is it to use your international degree in the U.S. and in what states?

    Please answer the question asked without getting distracted with my ****ty MCAT score. Thank you.
     
  7. Stephen Ewen

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    One cannot really answer your question on a cut and dry level.

    For some IMGs it is nearly impossible, for some, they have more offers than they can handle.

    Residency first: It depends upon your USMLEs, sometimes US clinical experience, grades, school attended, precedent of graduates from it if any, clinical evaluations, interviews, personal qualities, bi-lingual/bi-cultural abilities, population of the area of the residency, In short, it depends upon the whole picture; I think everyone so far was trying to take that into account to this point.

    Practice second: sometimes all the above factors, sometimes less, plus where and in what you did your residency and where you want to practice. Some states will not accept grads from certain medical schools for licensure (e.g., Texas). Others take grads only from certain schools (e.g., CA, NM). Alaska is even more strict.

    Bottom line: If one has ECFMG certification, most can find something, some few can find near everything.



    [This message has been edited by Stephen Ewen (edited 02-19-2001).]
     

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