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Reporting an acknowledgement on the app

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by pazan, Apr 13, 2007.

  1. pazan

    pazan 5+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2007
    I have an acknowledgement for a non-scientific research publication. It's for a book on research ethics (my boss is the Associate Dean of Ethics at the med school) that's going to be used to guide research ethics courses at other universities. The book is online and was commissioned by the Office of Research Integrity... I definitely helped my boss write it and could talk about it in an interview, but I'm not sure how to report this on the AMCAS application. Is there a separate space for acknowledgements? Is this even worth reporting? Thanks.

    And, if it matters, I was the only acknowledgement and he was the only author.
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  3. CTtarheel

    CTtarheel Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Feb 23, 2006
    I think that a better way to get this information out would be to get a LOR from your boss.

    An acknowledgment is hard to interpret because it can mean something (for profs who are stingy in giving out authorship to undergrads (especially to pre-meds)) or it can mean absolutely nothing (i.e. that you helped do menial tasks). Authorship on the other hand definitely indicates a substantial role in the research.

    So . . . a letter from the prof. would be a much better way to mention it (i'm sure he'd mention your role in the letter), and would probably be a good letter to have anyway as he probably got to know you fairly well from all the time you spent together.
  4. ltrain

    ltrain Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 9, 2004
    I'd report the research as an activity on AMCAS, and you can mention the acknowledgment in the description (but the description should be much more indepth than just noting the acknowledgment).

    Then, definitely have your boss write your LOR and he'll certainly be able to communicate the amount of effort you put into the project.
  5. roverdoggy

    roverdoggy 2+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2007
    I reported an acknowledgement in NEJM on my AMCAS and it led to some pretty fun conversations during interviews. Just be prepared to answer questions/defend your research.

    Oddly enough, the school where I got the comment "I'm disappointed that NEJM accepted this article" was the one place I got accepted to.
  6. pazan

    pazan 5+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2007
    I pretty sure he'll report it in the LOR, but I'm worried that if its only reported there it'll get lost among everything else in the application. Especially since they ask ethics questions in interviews anyways, I would want them to know that I have more experience than the average undergrad in dealing with clinical research/care ethics.

    But yeah, acknowledgements are more trite than authorship credits, so I wasn't sure if I should even list them under the publication section. And the book wasn't research, it was sort of a review that synthesized all of the ethics research papers... I searched for and collected the papers (hundreds of them), grouped them by topic, and wrote summaries for some of them. I didn't deserve anything more than an acknowledgement, but I did a good amount of work and I want that to be reflected in the app.
  7. AnEyeLikeMars

    AnEyeLikeMars Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    Carrboro, NC
    I would just let him put it in the LOR. Listing as a publication may lead to questioning in which they'll find out that you did mostly legwork (I'm not denigrating this, it's a lot of work and I'm sure you learned a lot but it's different than contributing to the scholarly analysis. I just think that the first thing they'll see is "Publication," then they might be disappointed to see it's only an acknowledgement). You might be better off leaving it in the LOR and maybe bringing it up if you get ethics questions or if you're asked about research.

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