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Inessa

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Hi everyone,

I am curious to find out from folks in the current application cycle: what is an approximate timeline from the time one submits primary app, to when schools will start sending secondaries, to "complete" status from each school? I know this varies on factors like how quickly the turnaround for secondaries is, etc... but hypothetically speaking, if submitted primary on June 31st ( right after MCAt results) one returned the 2ndary within a few days of receiving it- is it possible to be "complete" by August 1st, how likely is it?

I know the question is a bit premature, I'm just trying to gauch whether with taking MCAt on May 31st, ( aka getting scores 30 days later) I could still be potentially "complete" at schools very early? Thanks so much for your help!
 

gmsquid

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Hi everyone,

I am curious to find out from folks in the current application cycle: what is an approximate timeline from the time one submits primary app, to when schools will start sending secondaries, to "complete" status from each school? I know this varies on factors like how quickly the turnaround for secondaries is, etc... but hypothetically speaking, if submitted primary on June 31st ( right after MCAt results) one returned the 2ndary within a few days of receiving it- is it possible to be "complete" by August 1st, how likely is it?

I know the question is a bit premature, I'm just trying to gauch whether with taking MCAt on May 31st, ( aka getting scores 30 days later) I could still be potentially "complete" at schools very early? Thanks so much for your help!

Well, its more than just the secondary. You need LORs, and it depends on when schools offer secondaries. It could be possible, but schools like Duke took forever on secondaries this year. It depends where you apply, but it may be feasible of completing by August 1st. Often schools have secondaries online, so look into that.
 

Inessa

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Gmsquid (or anyone on sdn), you mentioned LOR's- pardon my ignorance on this, but what makes them a 'rate limiting step'? Do you think its a good idea to start gathering those NOW( or is it too early?) (I'm applying for next cycle obviously, sorry if these questions are silly- just trying to organize things..) How to approach people-- should I have my PS already written to give them? or would resume and transcipt suffice, or anything else to bring with you? How many LORs to get? As many as possible- a good or bad idea? Does it make a difference from whom they come from-chair of department in some hospital who might not know me as well, but a big person- well known for his work, etc.. has many connections, or the doc who is not as well known, but as a "direct supervisor"?

ahh... so many questions, someone please help. THANKS!!!:)



Thanks!

Well, its more than just the secondary. You need LORs, and it depends on when schools offer secondaries. It could be possible, but schools like Duke took forever on secondaries this year. It depends where you apply, but it may be feasible of completing by August 1st. Often schools have secondaries online, so look into that.
 
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Droopy Snoopy

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Gmsquid (or anyone on sdn), you mentioned LOR's- pardon my ignorance on this, but what makes them a 'rate limiting step'? Do you think its a good idea to start gathering those NOW( or is it too early?) (I'm applying for next cycle obviously, sorry if these questions are silly- just trying to organize things..) How to approach people-- should I have my PS already written to give them? or would resume and transcipt suffice, or anything else to bring with you? How many LORs to get? As many as possible- a good or bad idea? Does it make a difference from whom they come from-chair of department in some hospital who might not know me as well, but a big person- well known for his work, etc.. has many connections, or the doc who is not as well known, but as a "direct supervisor"?

ahh... so many questions, someone please help. THANKS!!!:)

The numbers and type of letter is variable by school, but a good rule of thumb (if you don't have a committee letter): 2 from science professors, like your Physics prof; 1 from a non-science prof, like English; 1-2 from someone affiliated with an EC, a doc you shadowed, etc. Don't go off sending schools 8 or 12 letters it's ******ed. You want letters to come from people who know you. A big name professor who knows you only by your name and class grade is likely to write a very dull and thoroughly non-helpful LOR. I would go with professors, though, not TAs or anything like that. I actually picked up LORs as I went along in undergrad, but some people waited until summer of junior year before going around and asking people. Better to ask as early as possible though, since the prof may forget or be slow about it, thus delaying your application.
 

Xotica

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Personally I think now is the best time to ask for LORs. If you wait till later profs may say that they are already done writing or you will have to deal with them in the summer (which is not good). I told my profs about this time last year and gave them ~1 month advance notice.
 

Inessa

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Thanks, Tic- very helpful info. Anything else, aside from gathering LORs, and starting to think of PS, that I could plan for now? For example, there was a thread with secondary essays for each school-- do those change much from year to year? For EC's- how much detail do we need to give to explain them on AMCAS? Just a paragraph or so, or bullet format of responsibilities... or what learned from experience? What are some things that you, guys, learned as you went through the cycle, that wish knew ahead of time??

MANY THANKs!!!




The numbers and type of letter is variable by school, but a good rule of thumb (if you don't have a committee letter): 2 from science professors, like your Physics prof; 1 from a non-science prof, like English; 1-2 from someone affiliated with an EC, a doc you shadowed, etc. Don't go off sending schools 8 or 12 letters it's ******ed. You want letters to come from people who know you. A big name professor who knows you only by your name and class grade is likely to write a very dull and thoroughly non-helpful LOR. I would go with professors, though, not TAs or anything like that. I actually picked up LORs as I went along in undergrad, but some people waited until summer of junior year before going around and asking people. Better to ask as early as possible though, since the prof may forget or be slow about it, thus delaying your application.
 

Inessa

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Thanks, Tic- very helpful info. Anything else, aside from gathering LORs, and starting to think of PS, that I could plan for now? For example, there was a thread with secondary essays for each school-- do those change much from year to year? For EC's- how much detail do we need to give to explain them on AMCAS? Just a paragraph or so, or bullet format of responsibilities... or what learned from experience? What are some things that you, guys, learned as you went through the cycle, that wish knew ahead of time??

MANY THANKs!!!




The numbers and type of letter is variable by school, but a good rule of thumb (if you don't have a committee letter): 2 from science professors, like your Physics prof; 1 from a non-science prof, like English; 1-2 from someone affiliated with an EC, a doc you shadowed, etc. Don't go off sending schools 8 or 12 letters it's ******ed. You want letters to come from people who know you. A big name professor who knows you only by your name and class grade is likely to write a very dull and thoroughly non-helpful LOR. I would go with professors, though, not TAs or anything like that. I actually picked up LORs as I went along in undergrad, but some people waited until summer of junior year before going around and asking people. Better to ask as early as possible though, since the prof may forget or be slow about it, thus delaying your application.
 

JohnMadden

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Thanks, Tic- very helpful info. Anything else, aside from gathering LORs, and starting to think of PS, that I could plan for now? For example, there was a thread with secondary essays for each school-- do those change much from year to year? For EC's- how much detail do we need to give to explain them on AMCAS? Just a paragraph or so, or bullet format of responsibilities... or what learned from experience? What are some things that you, guys, learned as you went through the cycle, that wish knew ahead of time??

MANY THANKs!!!

If you really want to see what you're going to need to do:

Create a username and password for the 2007 AMCAS application. Go into the application system and see what you will need... It won't have any impact on your 2008 application because they delete the application. You'll be able to see the character limits and functionality.

I strongly suggest working on the EC descriptions now. It's not as critical as a personal statement, but they are important. Get them done now so you can focus on personal statement later.
 
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