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Psych Majors

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by flyingillini, Apr 2, 2002.

  1. flyingillini

    flyingillini Self Proclaimed Ninja
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    How is this major for you with the pre-med requirements and MCAT studying. Is it easy? Is it interesting? I have been taking psychology in high school, and I will either major in it or Biology with the the pre-med requirements my freshman year in college. So far it seems pretty interesting. I'd like your opinion, thanks.
     
  2. Trek

    Trek Grand Uranium Member
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    Psych rulz!!!! You can't go wrong- there's so many facets of the field (social, cognitive, abnormal, etc) that there's undoubtably something you'll fall in love with. Are you in High School still (please god, say no!)?? --Trek
     
  3. medical mind

    medical mind Junior Member
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    i was a psych major with a bio minor. i was interested in neuro-psych and cognitive, so i added the bio minor later--- which eventually lead me to medicine. do something you're really interested in, you'll stay focused and enjoy it more-- which will reflect in your grades. keep up with the science and do very well. you can always take additional bio without it being your major. hey-- psych also has the benefit of a humanistic side!
     
  4. flyingillini

    flyingillini Self Proclaimed Ninja
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    Yes I'm still in high school. Im a senior. Thanks for the tips. I think it is very interesting. There are a few concepts I dont agree with, especially more of the Freudian stuff. But that comes down to religion I guess. Some other concepts are fascinating though, like the process of learning.
     
  5. Suz177

    Suz177 Senior Member
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    If I could do undergrad again, I'd definitely trade my chem major for psych. I've loved all the psych class I've taken. Also, at least at my school, the psych department seems to be pretty generous w/grades. Oh, and humanities majors average about 3 pts higher on the MCATs than bio majors.
     
  6. MedPuck

    MedPuck Made
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    I was a psych major simply because I love the curriculum and broad spectrum it covers! I knew I was going to aim for medical school and there would be plenty of science there, so I decided to choose a major that is enjoyable (to me) and helps you understand human behavior and neuroscience all in one. I had no problem with studying for MCATs and taking pre-med science classe. And NO the major, like all others, is not easy. It is manageable if you are geniunely interested in psych, however I know many people who chose majors because they were labeled "easy" and were in for a rude awakening. Enjoy yourself the next four years while you have the chance. I am glad I did!! Best wishes :) :D
     
  7. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
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    Count me among the psych majors as well. The other wise posters have given some great advice - major in what interests you and you will do well (or at least better) than you would otherwise. In addition, psych majors traditionally have good acceptance rates to medical school (assuming that's your destination).

    However, unless your school requires it, don't worry about declaring a major right off the bat - take some time and enjoy your undergraduate years and you will find a major that suits you. It might take a semester or two but that will make no difference in the long run and will more likely make you a happier person and better student (coming from one who went Physical Therapy ---&gt; Social Work ----&gt; Biology ----&gt; Psychology -----&gt; Experimental Psychology/Biology with a minor in Math <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> ).
     
  8. Neuronix

    Neuronix Total nerd
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    I'm a dual Psychology & Biology major and I would say do whatever major you love to do. The fact is that humanities majors (like Psychology, Anthropology, Sociology, etc...) score better on average on the MCAT than Biology majors! This is because all you need for the MCAT is about 7 (If that many?) classes and alot of prep specifically for the MCAT. Also, I would argue that the MCAT is more about reading and interpreting passages, even in the science sections, than it is about knowing facts.

    So, do what you love, and study hard for the MCAT when it arrives. I sometimes wish I had been an Anthropology major because I've loved the Anthropology classes I've taken. I think Anthro has more relevance to learning about people and the ways they behave than Psychology.

    So anyways, Kimberli is absolutely right, if you're not sure which major you want, go undeclared, take pre-med requirements and general classes and decide later. Med schools want diversity anyways! Just be sure that when you get to college you keep those grades UP in EVERY class (As and Bs, need that 3.5+, preferably 3.8+ GPA!)
     
  9. johnM

    johnM Senior Member
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    Definitely just major in something that interests you, the most impotant thing is to have a great GPA. it will be easier in a major that you enjoy, espeically psychology.
     
  10. strokchik

    strokchik Member
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    I was a double major in psych and comm and I believe that I'm the biggest advocate of non-science majors for pre-meds. Think of it this way...You will be eating, drinking, dreaming, and doing science for the rest of your life as a doc. So take college as the opportunity to learn about other things. Expose yourself to the arts, to humanities, to the social sciences. Your med school interviewers will be pleased to see that you have social skills and other interests. I am so happy I was not a bio major. You will learn enough in your pre-med required classes for the MCAT and to give you a base for your basic sciences in med school. It would be really sad if you pigeon-holed yourself into biology and did not make the most of a liberal arts education by being a lab rat for 4 years.

    By the way, I don't mean to offend any science majors out there. Bio people can be very well versed in other areas as well, but I think that if your major requires so much science, it is often difficult to make time for other things.
     
  11. dukeblue01

    dukeblue01 Senior Member
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    I was a double major in chem and psych, and I really enjoyed psych much more, other than Biochem which was great. Do whatever you like, but remember, your science GPA is computed with all BCPM classes, and if your only ones are the premed reqs, then you better ace everyone of them. Being a science major allows you to take more science classes to boost your science GPA in case you flub a premed requirement (Physics II for example). Never take P Chem. It will scar your GPA forever.
     
  12. leorl

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    Both psychology and biology are two of my majors, I would have done integrated studies in neuropsychology if my school offered it. It's fascinating, whether you're interested in the more "sciency" pathways say of...vision and perception, or whether you like its more social applications.

    Heeh you can use psychology to boost your cum GPA too :) .
     
  13. psyc.lover

    psyc.lover Member
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    i started out as a bio major and it was not that bad. the summer after my sophmore year i changed to a psyc-premed major because i was bored and uninterested with plants and animals after two years and wanted to learn about people. biology began to get redundant. i love psychology and its eaiser to do well in something that you like.
    you really wont be sure of that until you have taken a few courses in college.

    good luck :)
     
  14. flyingillini

    flyingillini Self Proclaimed Ninja
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    Thank you, thank you and thank you for the great advice. I'm already beginning to like this place a lot. Btw, what is P Chem?
     
  15. Neuronix

    Neuronix Total nerd
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    P-Chem = Physical Chemistry. Not something pre-meds need to take. From what I understand from those who have taken it and are in med school now they've never run into it.

    It's one of those chemistry classes on like reaction kinetics and other time based processes. Everyone I've ever talked to said it's a real pain in the arse.
     
  16. SurgeonS4

    SurgeonS4 Member
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    i am psych major now in med school . . . its really easy, at least for me, to do psych and then pre-med stuff it wasnt too difficult . . . and it was interesting at times but most of the books i encountered put me to sleep many a times . . . although i didnt realize it in college when i got to medical school . . . i loved chemistry . . . i wish i majored in chem instead . . . oh well . . . im still going to be a doctor which is the end goal anyway
     
  17. Dr. Don

    Dr. Don Senior Member
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    here are my 2 cents:
    I majored in psychobiology so I know a little about the psych major and being pre med. The best piece of advice I can give you is that if you like what psychology stands for (study of human behavior) then definitely major in it! HOWEVER, if you find yourself struggling in the pre med courses like gen bio, chem, o-chem, and your GPA is not competitive, then you might want to double major or pick up a minor like some of the SDNers here did. HERE is the reason why:
    As a psych major, all your upper division courses will be PSYCH classes, and even if the class you took was NEUROPSYCHOLOGY, OR NEUROPHSYIOLOGY, or something very biology-based (neuroscience), AMCAS and some medical schools will not average your psych grades under SCIENCE GPA (which I think weights more heavily than non-science GPA). Trust me this happened to me, and I was totally pissed off because of it! remember the only courses that count as SCIENCE classes (for the purposes of AMCAS SCIENCE GPA) are bio, chem, o-chem, physics, and math. If you take any courses under these departments, then you're cool, if not, then good luck, well take care and let me know if I can be of any assistance,
     
  18. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Enzyme Regulators, Ride!
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    I was surprised like Dr. Don to find out that some of my upper division psych classes were not considered science credits, despite the fact that a couple were my most rigorous courses. A 400 level class, Neural Basis of Behavior comes to mind. It was intensive neuro A & P... the behavior part of the class was more or less clinical manifestations of brain abnormalities, but I was relieved to find out that some of the jointly offered Psych/Zoology courses I took do count as biology credit, but I digress...

    Psych is an awesome major. Perfect blend of human behavior and science... lots of neuro and physiology if you take the right courses. Personally, I have learned so much about behavior, development, and scientific analysis that I can't imagine not having the experience. Certainly aspects of it apply to working with patients... and peers. Much of the coursework talks to your everyday life, at work, at home, etc. I'm surprised they don't make it a requirement in high schools since it is so focused on social interaction and behavioral understanding. If people understood motivation and endless other topics they would gain a different appreciation and level of patience for their fellow humans. Psych is also a good major for fundamentals of the scientific method and an introduction to research. :cool:
     
  19. jmejia1

    jmejia1 Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Dr. Don:
    <strong>here are my 2 cents:

    I majored in psychobiology so I know a little about the psych major and being pre med. The best piece of advice I can give you is that if you like what psychology stands for (study of human behavior) then definitely major in it! HOWEVER, if you find yourself struggling in the pre med courses like gen bio, chem, o-chem, and your GPA is not competitive, then you might want to double major or pick up a minor like some of the SDNers here did. HERE is the reason why:
    As a psych major, all your upper division courses will be PSYCH classes, and even if the class you took was NEUROPSYCHOLOGY, OR NEUROPHSYIOLOGY, or something very biology-based (neuroscience), AMCAS and some medical schools will not average your psych grades under SCIENCE GPA (which I think weights more heavily than non-science GPA). Trust me this happened to me, and I was totally pissed off because of it! remember the only courses that count as SCIENCE classes (for the purposes of AMCAS SCIENCE GPA) are bio, chem, o-chem, physics, and math. If you take any courses under these departments, then you're cool, if not, then good luck, well take care and let me know if I can be of any assistance,</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Who told you guys you can't count bio-based or math based psychology classes as science classes? I posted before on the subject: I included a physio psych class as Biology, and two Psych stat classes as Math. AMCAS did not make any corrections and I've been admitted to two med schools thus far. The instructions on the AMCAS application says that the class does not need to be offered on the specific department (e.g. biology) to classify it as biology. They tell you to use your best judgement.

    The psych classes at my school are easier than any hard science class, so those three classes boasted my GPA a nice bit.
     
  20. megkudos

    megkudos Senior Member
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    Yeah, my bio based psych classes, such as physiological psych, counted toward my BCPM GPA for AMCAS.

    I am a double psych and bio major. Psych is really interesting. Actually I'm interested in more of developmental and social psych not as much neuroscience psych. Which is weird cuz I'm a bio major too. I started off just a bio major and just kept taking psych classes. Since a had a lot of credits and I liked it I figured I'd double major.

    There's a lot of interesting research you can do in psych too if you are interested. For me I'm really not that interested in bio research so I did it in psych and got to work with infants. It was pretty cool. I found that psych was easier to get good grades, I think because it's more intuitive and less memorization than bio. Like the above posters said though, if you struggle in your pre-requirements it's best to take more upper level bio courses and do well in them so the Adcoms know you are capable of doing the science work. I would just start out your freshman year taking General psych and take it from there! Good luck.
     
  21. flyingillini

    flyingillini Self Proclaimed Ninja
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    thanks again for the advice. Basically you guys are saying that if I screw up in the pre-med requirments, its a good idea to take more science classes to make up for it. So what if I do pull of A's in those classes. Is it necessary to still take more science classes, or could I safely lean toward Psych?
     
  22. IlliniEMT1

    IlliniEMT1 Member
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    Yet another Bio/Psych double chiming in- its a great deal, i really like both. At first i was going to take alot of biopsychology courses like neuro to bridge the gap- but then i realized that the community and social psych gave me perspectives that most science majors didnt have. If you like psych- then by all means, lean heavily towards it and do little more than the other science requirements. There were some areas (like math) where I did no more than the core requirements, and I got in-- so I say, If its not required, you dont need it. I chose to lean more towards bio, but i wish I had more in-depth psych work now.
     
  23. Dr. Don

    Dr. Don Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by flyingillini:
    <strong>thanks again for the advice. Basically you guys are saying that if I screw up in the pre-med requirments, its a good idea to take more science classes to make up for it. So what if I do pull of A's in those classes. Is it necessary to still take more science classes, or could I safely lean toward Psych?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">If you kick ass in the core premed courses, then just take your regular psych classes...kick ass in the MCAT and you'll be in great shape when you apply to med school! good luck!

    Joe, I understand about the phsyio psych courses counting as BCPM for AMCAS, but when I called AMCAS to verify this, they straight out told me that I couldn't count those classes because they were under the psych department. But, I have heard from people like yourself that included psych courses as science classes and it was all good, so now I know that if I have to reapply I'm definitely going to count those classes as science and I know that my GPA will definitely go up because of those courses, peace!
     
  24. drusso

    Physician Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    I was psych major in college too. It's a great major for premeds. I was able to count my biological psych classes as science classes. You'll find that having some knowledge of the science of human behavior goes a very long way in medical school---especially in the third and fourth years.
     

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