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Seven year medical program?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Skyeman, Sep 6, 2014.

  1. Skyeman

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    Right now I'm on the seven year medical track at my school. At the end of the year I have to decide to stick with it. It's basically a combined BS/MD program. Would this look more competetive for residencies or is it just a way to over work myself and than if I just did general pre-med?
     
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  3. hoihaie

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    stick with it. applying to med school is not fun
     
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  4. Mr.Zero

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    I completely agree with hoihaie. I did a similar program program and comparing to some of my classmates, it saved me tons of stress and time. As far as I know about residencies, which isn't very much as an M1, they really won't care one bit. The important things are step 1 and your medical school years.
     
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  5. Law2Doc

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    It doesn't look more competitive for residencies. None will care. In fact most could care less if you did two years of post bac and essentially did a ten year path.
     
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  6. DermViser

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    Residencies could care less if you took 6, 7, 8 or as Law2Doc said, 10 years to get your MD. You are not a special flower bc you took 7 years. The only thing you're getting with your program is a guarantee to matriculate in their med school (no matter the quality).
     
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  7. Planes2Doc

    Planes2Doc Residency is ruff!
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    The best thing is that you can save yourself a whole lot of stress by not having to jump through all of those fun hoops during college. :)

    [​IMG]

    Plus eventually residencies will mostly care about your Step 1 scores, as everyone else has said already.
     
  8. DermViser

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    They aren't just hoops. They are there for a reason.
     
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  9. Afford

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    Stick with it. Applying to med school is expensive and time consuming.
     
  10. darklabel

    darklabel PGWhy
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    Stick with that program for sure if you know you want to do medicine. It would save you a lot of stress, time and money.

    Only time I don't suggest doing BS/MD programs are ones that demand stats that would make you competitive at a lot of MD schools (like 3.8/30+) since you would be doing yourself a disservice and can get into potentially better schools and more financial aid.
     
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  11. Law2Doc

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    I think a lot of this "stress" is self imposed. Other than the cost, which i can understand wanting to save, college is a period of life a lot of people would have been thrilled if it lasted even longer, not shorter.
     
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  12. Bethany555

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    Four years ago, I turned down HPME because of the cost (no financial aid). Sticker price for northwestern + feinberg would have been ~525,000 + interest over 7 years. However, I would definitely apply and consider your options once you get them. If your state has a program, it may come out even cheaper than the usual undergrad + med school.

    Many of my friends are in BS/MD programs, and you gain a lot of freedom. For most programs, no MCAT, average grades, bare minimum pre-requisites, no volunteering, and no research if you so choose. Three relaxed years are probably better than four stressful years.

    Plus, as a medical student now, few people volunteer and most only do research over the summer. Also, the classes are pass/fail (at some schools). You won't be missing out on anything if you choose to avoid any of that.

    Then again, if you decide to drop medicine, you might be limited by going to a worse school than you could have. Make sure you are pretty committed if you choose this path.
     
  13. knv2u

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    It depends a great deal on where you went to college and how cut throat of an environment it is.
     
  14. MeatTornado

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    Not sure why/how you think BS/MD is more work. If anything it's significantly less and others have pointed out. In fact the biggest problem I see is that those students get complacent. Also make an effort to be well rounded and gain experiences that'll help u mature.
     
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  15. Law2Doc

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    Not really. Show me any college and I'll find you a guy who is having the greatest four years of his life and still does well enough to go to med school. The prereqs are not that numerous and every school has less intense offerings to pack around them. And whether you appreciate it or not you have more free time in college to do non-science and even non scholastic things than you will ever have in your life.

    And as mentioned there is really no penalty from the med school end to not even touch the prereqs during college and just pick them up later as a postbac. So yes, any stress out there is self imposed. You really should be using college to figure out whet you want to do with your life, which is why these accelerated programs are falling out of favor and there are fewer of them now then a decade ago.
     
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  16. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist
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    In my honest opinion, I don't know why schools even implement these programs. There are zero benefits for the med school. If you're in one of these programs, truly take advantage of the opportunity to explore other interests and make yourself a more well rounded person. You will never have an opportunity to take life this easy and still have your guaranteed shot at being a doctor ever again.
     
  17. Law2Doc

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    It's usually a play by the college to entice better caliber students away from more competitive undergrads. But I think it cuts both ways because the guy who is a High school superstar who is confident he will also be a college superstar won't be as concerned with linkage. Anyhow the average age in med school is going up, not down, and these programs are gradually falling out of favor.
     
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  18. RussianFrolic

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    Where are you getting your information that these programs are falling out of favor? A lot of my friends are pursuing them because they do allow you to finish one year early and usually not have to take the MCAT.

    While it may be true that you don't really have to do anything during undergrad if you don't want to, there are amazing people who do these programs or apply sophomore year and get in because of their stats/ECs. I would much rather graduate in 3 years and apply broadly rather than be limited to one school, but OP in your case you should stick to it since this way you are definitely going to med school. If you decide to apply like other graduates, you don't know if you will get in or not.
     
  19. Law2Doc

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    I'm not saying they are falling out of favor with your friends, I'm saying they are falling out of favor as programs. There are fewer now than historically. There will be even fewer a few years from now. Mature well rounded applicants are more prized now than in prior decades. And most schools actually prefer selecting undergrads who have distinguished themselves in college and on the MCAT over top notch high school students who really have very little in terms of accomplishment yet. As the college applicants get more and more impressive with their research and publications and ECs ad top mcat scores, it just gets harder and harder to justify plucking someone out of high school. Otherwise they have to set high hurdles to allow people to continually prove they can stay in the program and it likely creates some of the stress people are describing in this thread. Stress not as shared by the person doing the traditional 8 year path. Even when you factor in the MCAT.

    And fwiw, the MCAT is by far the easiest of the standardized tests you are going to take in this career (and the only one you can retake to improve a Low score). If that's really dissuading your friends, they have some hurt in their future ith the USMLE, specialty boards, etc. Just saying.
     
    #18 Law2Doc, Sep 7, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2014
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  20. lmn

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    I agree, the hurdles for my program for BS/MD track applicants is absurdly low compared to the rest of us traditional applicants. Sure they might have had awesome in high school, but their required gpa's/mcat/EC's are so far below the overall school's average that it does leave some people wondering how qualified/competent their BS/MD classmates really are. This is in no way to say that there aren't some great and very qualified people coming from those programs (heck it could be possible that the majority of them are), but even a few bad apples can skew the perception of the combined program when other people are accustomed to having to do great EC's, strong gpa's, and crushing the MCAT to get that spot.

    I've heard rumors about reviews on performance of BS/MD applicants vs. traditional track applicants and their performances in school/on step1, but I personally have never seen the studies, so I'm not going to speculate on that.

    I haven't gotten to the usmle's, but imo the mcat is nothing compared to even normal classes in med school, the amount of info/ time you have to learn it for the mcat doesn't match up to the pace in med school at all from my experience, but that's completely off topic.
     
  21. Aerus

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    Yup, I can think of benefits for entities OTHER than the med school itself. The undergrad gets higher caliber high school students is one example. One of my professors also mentioned that some of these programs in the past were used to get some faculty members' own kids into med school. I have no proof of that ever being a motive though.
     
  22. DoctorSynthesis

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    I'm in a program that exists to get better students at my undergrad
     
  23. RussianFrolic

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    Okay, but you still didn't give any number or date behind your "fewer now than historically". What does historically even mean?

    Well, sure it's difficult to pick a hs student who haven't accomplished much yet; however, as others have addressed there are benefits to the schools that chose to have these programs. There are also plenty of reasons why student would want to complete these programs, and not just because they are "dissuaded by the MCAT".

    Just to point out, I never said that my friends specifically chose these programs because they were dissuaded by the MCAT (I did say that it's a benefit of these programs), that was you making assumptions. Perhaps you should stick to giving OP advice, rather than "just saying" things to me.
     
  24. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist
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    To the undergrad school it's connected to. What benefits are there to the med school?
     
  25. DermViser

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    Many times the undergrad and medical school are connected. The undergrad and med school are getting a more motivated, higher achieving applicant and able to lock them in early on in the process. A low ranking medical school that isn't able to attract the best applicants (in terms of GPA and MCAT) capitalizes on that.
     
  26. DermViser

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    Do you want @Law2Doc to actually count them up for you? This is easily Googleable. There are many programs that have slowly increased the number of years to the full 8 years or dropped the program altogether. These programs started in the 60-70s when most people weren't interested in going for medicine. That's just not the case now.

    The undergrad and med school locks in a better student than they would normally get in the process. The student gets the perceived benefit of not taking the MCAT and not going thru the normal application process.

    Your comment to Law2Doc was unnecessary and childish.
     
  27. DermViser

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    Except these programs don't necessarily save on cost either.

    So bc applying to med school is "expensive and time consuming", that means one should commit as high schooler to 6 figures of debt to a school/med school that may not be a good fit for them?
     
  28. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist
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    Yes, I do see that. I guess what I am trying to go on here is the risk factor and the benefits for the med school itself. There are many mediocre applicants from the Ivy Leagues et al. who apply to low tier MD schools. I'm assuming they were just as qualified as the BS/MD applicants in terms of high school achievements. But the thing that makes them better than the BS/MD students is that they're much less of a risk to accept.

    A 2300+ SAT and 4.5+ GPA straight out of high school doesn't guarantee that someone would have gotten a satisfactory MCAT score and competitive undergraduate GPA. On the other hand, a 2300+ SAT and 4.5+ GPA who matriculated at an Ivy League but was only able to get a 3.6 GPA and a 30 MCAT most likely CAN handle med school and the USMLE.

    Why should the med school accept these BS/MDs when enough average Ivy League students apply to their school already? Yes, they can help the undergraduate school connected to them a TINY bit, but I doubt the number of BS/MD students is that large to make a difference.
     
  29. DermViser

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    There are only so many Ivy League applicants to go around. The 3.6 GPA/30 MCAT has to be put into context. Were they a sociology major or were they a Cellular and Molecular Biology major or an Engineering Major? Part of medicine is being able to learn how to prepare for standardized tests. If you think the MCAT is difficult, the USMLE will blow you out of the water. If your first practice with a standardized exam is the USMLE, then you're in trouble (and no the ACT/SAT doesn't count).

    Also, many people will slowly see in undergrad that maybe another pathway is better for them. For example, Dentistry, who take the exact same prereqs that premeds do.

    When you are locked into a program, you don't get the option of seeing alternative routes. It's one thing if you willingly choose not to see alternative routes, but in these programs you don't even get the option.
     
  30. Aerus

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    I agree with everything your post said, but I don't see how it's relevant at all to what my posts stated.

    I'm arguing that BS/MD programs are useless to med schools because there is no benefit to the med school itself. Whatever marginal benefits these programs might offer to the medical school, there are plenty of other ways the traditional route can fulfill them and in a better way.

    Do the med schools want applicants who rocked high school? Accept the below average top 20 undergrad applicants who apply to their school. Do they want diversity in experiences? Accept more non-trads. Do they want to diversify their class in terms of age? Accept more traditional applicants.

    I fail to see any reason why these programs should exist that isn't fulfilled by using the traditional route.
     
  31. DermViser

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    There are some low-tier/low-ranking medical schools that absolutely benefit from these programs. They get to lock in high caliber, super high achieving students they normally would not get. It's a DEFINITE win for them.

    A lot of a medical school's admissions criteria are how they want the class to look like. For example, if you go to WashU's med school - most people there are not non-traditional grads. Meanwhile, with UPenn, nearly half of students are NOT traditional premeds.
     
  32. Aerus

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    I'm sure the low tier medical schools still get tons of students who apply to their school who rocked high school but didn't do extremely hot in college and will gladly matriculate at the low tier school. What's the difference?
     
  33. DermViser

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    Did you not see what I posted? They get a much higher achieving, more dedicated student early on. Many of these high schoolers didn't just have great SAT scores and high school GPAs, they also have tons of health care volunteering, extracurriculars, medical research, etc. Essentially they went all out from 9th-12th grade.
    These students don't just stop achieving in high school. They rock undergrad as well.
     
  34. Aerus

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    I go to a school with one of the top BS/MD programs in the country. People who get interviewed normally had hundreds of volunteer hours, competed in national competitions, presented at multiple symposiums, published their research, and were cross-accepted to multiple Ivy Leagues, MIT, Caltech, etc. Sad to say, I can maybe see only a few of them getting accepted to mid tier schools at best with the accomplishments they have so far in undergrad (GPA, EC's). There are a few who wouldn't get accepted anywhere unless they drastically change how they approach undergrad (Minimal EC's, below 3.0 GPA). That's the "risk" I'm talking about that med schools take when accepting students straight out of high school. It's better to play it safe, in my opinion.
     
  35. DermViser

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    California applicants are a whole another issue. Unfortunately for California applicants, many of their state medical schools would rather take students from other states who are high achieving so they not only get out of state tuition but also stellar applicants who want to be there.

    Like I said, the ones that apply to these binding programs have great GPAs, great SAT/ACT scores, and have great CVs, esp. at those that are the "top BS/MD programs in the country".
     
  36. Aerus

    Aerus Elemental Alchemist
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    Actually, everyone I know in the program and was interviewed are in-state. :p

    But yes, there's a distinction between binding and non binding programs. I still stick to my opinion that, no matter how low tier, med schools are in no shortage or stellar applicants and, by extension, stellar matriculants.
     
  37. DermViser

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    Yes, I know everyone applying to that specific California BS/MD is in-state as that's one of the requirements (it's pretty obvious which program this is, by the way). I was talking about the normal application process for California medical schools.

    You are free to stick to your opinion (as a premed). However, based on the number of applications schools receive which you can check the MSAR, there are definitely medical schools that are poorer in overall quality with less opportunities for things like research, etc. to build up one's application. To commit yourself to those schools early on as a super achieving high schooler would be extremely foolish.
     
  38. Aerus

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    Yeah, I'm in agreement here.
     

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