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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Cerberus, Apr 5, 2004.
Who has long secondaries? It may influence where i apply (at heart I am a very lazy individual).
I hear Stanford and Duke have painfully long secondaries.
Avoid Duke, U. Chicago, and Stony Brook
Rush (the worst.....EVER)
Case (you need to write another 1-page essay)
Pitt (another essay one)
I felt like Case and Pitt were par for the course and that their secondaries didn't ask anything more than most. UChicago's was hell, though (I never actually finished it).
Pritzker was the worst. Duke was second. MSSM, Columbia, UVa and Pitt also had unique essays that required thought.
Stanford's secondary was much shorter this year. In the past they had a ten-essay monster secondary which has since slipped into legend.
Duke required lots of little essays this year.
I third the U Chicago sentiment. They have some philosophy about trying to bring you to a better understanding of yourself through their secondary (they actually said this during the interview orientation)... and as a result most of the questions are floofy as heck. Like, "What did you learn during your research experience that would make you recommend it to another person."
I remember UConn's having a bunch of essays, I took one look at the secondary and decided it wasn't worth it.
Chicago's was rough. Vandy's is pretty long, and they want an autobiography which could be tough to do without overlapping too much with your AMCAS PS.
USC and UCLA have a lot of questions, but they aren't that bad.
I didn't apply to UC-Davis, but I've heard that it is a beast....
Hard ones I can think of offhand:
UCSD (autobiography) the PS but not the PS ??
Stanford, UCLA, and USC are EASY trust me. Lots of questions but nothing of difficulty.
Do any of you get your secondaries proof read? Also, how long do you have until they have to be sent back in?
I checked mine myself and sent them back within a week or two.
ucla/drew asks a lot of questions about minorities, community service, and can get kinda hairy
Stony Brook was terrible - 3 specific essays
i remember Loyola's being kind of miserable too. i didn't finish that one due to lack of interest/energy
Just to add to the others... University of Maryland's secondary reallllly sucks.
Yeah, Duke's were mega long.
Hopkins wasn't all that wonderful either.
Pritzker and Duke's were so annoying I never finished them. USC was kind of annoying too, but I finished cuz I'm a cal resident.
UC Davis was annoying. Chicago was annoying - esp considering how quickly they rejected me.
I disagree about case. I enjoyed the case secondary b/c you get to write about anything you want, preferably not medically related. It was a welcome break from the monotony of saying why I want to be a doctor 100 different ways.
Davis... Duke(ugh!)... Hopkins...NU (not difficult, just stupid. Tell us specifically why our programs x,y, and z are the bomb and why you would do great in our x,y, and z programs. ) NYU (cuz you had to repeat everything... non amcas)
But it was fun to see what other people wrote on the Davis app (love those computer glitches)
4. Stony Brook
6. NYU (easy, but long)
7. Northwestern (stupid)
If I get a secondary from anywhere, it would be amazing. However, I'm pretty sure I would be willing to fill out any secondary regardless of how long it is.
As others have said, UChicago's secondary is terrible. I never completed it. Same goes for UC Davis.
Ditto on Northwestern's. It was painfully difficult to make the essays more about ME than THEM.
UCSD's threw me for a loop because my AMCAS personal statement was autobiographical. UCSD wanted a two page autobio that did not repeat anything in the AMCAS statement. Opps.
Stanford's was easy this year.
UCSF says you can include two pages on anything so I actually put A LOT of time into that even though you dont have to send anything else to supplement.
I gave up on Davis and never returned it.
I know this sounds horrible and was probably ******ed of me, but any school that had a long secondary...I didn't complete it...
I have to agree with everyone on the U Chicago, but I think UCONN's was worse - and they technically have a deadline of 30 days after you receive it.
Oddly enough, i put it off and forgot about it until I got an email requesting me to complete it as they were doing regional interviews at my school.
I didn't think USC's were bad - they were just a little tough because of the word limits...
as in, essays must be longer than XXX?
unless i got a diff secondary, Stanford's only had like 2-3 short questions this year.
ucla's and drew/ucla's are kinda long. i guess to some people usc's might be long. ucdavis just SUX! ucsd was like a 2 page autobiography.
i suggest you apply everywhere you want to based on what you think your chances are and not how long their secondaries are. that almost doesnt make sense to me. i know its hard, but just sit down and answer them. itll be worth it down the road when you find that applying to lots of places really makes a big difference. trust me!!
For instance, Harvard just wanted money. No essays.
well it depends...how long is too long?
cause some of the questions still have character limitations which force you to not write as much as you could...
im gonna assume a lot of questions means 5 or more....but that still shouldnt deter you from applying to these places.
u of chicago
its all i can remember for now...
ill check my list of secondary questions and update it later.
have you seen this thread?
rush's sucked bigtime.........like 10 long essays....and the tough ones like "list your strengths/weaknesses
pritzker was bad too
MabdulD, Mr Reddly, agree with the NU secondary. It wasn't terrible, just very limiting in how you could make yourself stand out. I mean, how do you link anything nonacademic and unique to secondary questions purely about a curriculum?
Duke's was 1) electronic, which means inherent glitches galore and also 2) limited. There were tons of questions, but I was actually quite annoyed at the 'character limit' they had in each embedded Word field... Being longwinded compared to most, I kept bumping up against the edge of the limit and swearing. Then the editing began...
The worst was sitting down with each question and thinking out an answer, then finding you couldn't express yourself completely within their limit. Gah!
Most other secondaries were pretty generic fare. I remember WVU including a 'professionalism' essay question along with a list of (selected) professional traits. Then they wanted me to write an essay describing a situation I found my professionalism tested, and how I dealt with it. None of my other schools touched the idea of professionalism with a stick until my interviews. I wonder if other schools have essays on 'professional attributes?'
Oh no, I meant a maximum limit. I just found it difficult to really express what I wanted to in my essays when I was limited to 250 words per prompt.
i can handle max limits
I totally agree with all of the stated secondaries. Just wanted to add Georgetown.
The only thing I can add are the really, really, really easy secondaries...
The ones I've encountered were:
All the Chicago ones were annoying...
1. Rush (without a doubt)
2. U of Chicago
Somewhat less annoying....
5. U of Miami
Applying to a school w/ a minimal secondary would make my week after a certain point.
i agree (from my limited number of crappy secondaries): hopkins and UMD seemed full of essays. hopkins is probably because they just started doing the amcas thing and are most likely using the bulk of their original app as a secondary. Georgetown was annoying if only because it required me to find a typewriter and try to recall how to use all of its silly functions.
easy, but expensive: BU
(hey, at least they are honest, most of these schools just want your money anyway. i think they waited to mail my rejection until after my check cleared, but at least i didn't waste time on ridiculous essays.)
i rather write essays and give myself a chance, rather than pay for a rejection letter they mail right after they cash my check.