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Should I apply for early acceptance?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by sirmalcs, Mar 4, 2007.

  1. sirmalcs

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    I will be applying starting this summer and would like to know if most people try to get an early acceptance or not. I was thinking about applying to MUSC for early acceptance and I am a SC resident. What should be the factors that weigh my decision whether or not to do it or to just apply with everyone else on the regular date??

    Thanks!
     
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  3. Robizzle

    Robizzle 1K Member

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    Your Stats

    and ofcourse whether you want to go somewhere else.
     
  4. sirmalcs

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    I think that this school would be my first choice in that I do like it and I have a good chance of getting in.

    As for my stats they are right around the average for their acceptance, plus the advisor already told me I could surely get an interview...
     
  5. Robizzle

    Robizzle 1K Member

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    Here's a couple reasons both for and against:

    Pros:
    1) You apply early, get your decision early, and if you're in, you're in way before others!
    2) You save a ton of cash by not adding as many schools on AMCAS and not sending in as many secondaries and not going on as many interviews.
    3) You save tons of time by not doing as many secondaries and not going on as many interviews
    4) You will be reviewed before the adcom members start getting grouchy from looking at so many applications
    5) They will know you're serious about the school (duh!) since you're applying to just them

    Cons:
    Just 1:

    1) If you get rejected, you're already in like October. At this time, you gotta scramble to add more schools to AMCAS, and get secondaries out ASAP. People on SDN will tell you repeatedly that being early HELPS both with your application competitiveness as well as your SANITY. So applying to so many schools in October is like shooting yourself in the foot before a race.


    If they really are your top choice, and if your stats are competitive, go for it!
     
  6. Wanna_B_Scutty

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    Schools know that early admission puts you at a disadvantage if you have to reapply later on in the season for regular admission. As a result, many of them are pretty generous with their "pre-application" counseling. That is, you call them up and say, "Hi, I'm interested in applying early. Here is my GPA, my MCAT, and a list of extra-currics. What do you think?" Many will actually help you out in a way that they don't do for normal admissions by saying either, "Sure, we think you have an excellent chance for early admission" or "Hmm, perhaps you might be better served by applying in the regular pool."

    So in terms of what factors weigh into your decision, I would get on the horm with admissions and let the vibe that they give you be your guide. Good luck! :luck:
     
  7. HumbleMD

    HumbleMD hmmmm...

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    Are you sure that it's your top choice? Many times, you'll hear folks say that they didn't know what the heck they wanted in a school until the interview at a few (I concur). If it truly is, and you have a real reason to stay in that area (family, girlfriend/wife), then go for it.
     
  8. HamburgerHelper

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    I remember my premedical advisor telling me if you are to apply to a school for early admission, it is best to actually approach the institution and get an indication from the school that you have a very high chance of being accepted via that route. In fact, she told me that it is usually conveyed in writing. Of course, I do not know this from personal experience as I did not apply via the early method.
     
  9. MattD

    MattD Curmudgeon

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    Definately get pre-application counseling from the school. Stats 'right around the average' for accepted applicants is not typically what I think of when I think EDP. The successful EDP applicant typically has stats significantly higher than the school average, with decent amounts of ECs thrown in there. The school probably has minimum cut offs for EDP, but meeting them doesn't really mean it's a good idea either. EXCEEDING them is the idea. At any rate, the school should be happy to review your stats and chat with you about your chances of success in EDP. They do appreciate the enthusiasm for and committment to their school, so they aren't going to screw you over for fun or anything, they'll shoot straight with you. If they're less than encouraging, I'd apply regular admissions with a good range of other schools, but try to get the app in before the EDP deadline anyway, so you can get the earliest interview possible.
     
  10. sirmalcs

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    Yeah I was thinking the same thing. I was shocked when the advisor told me that I should apply for EDP since my stats are at the average for acceptance. I will go back and talk to her about my odds of getting in that way for sure. But one thing, if this is my first choice do you think it could neccesarily hurt me by trying the EDP process..?

    Thanks
     
  11. OncoCaP

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    I assume you are speaking about early decision where you choose one school, and they give you a thumbs up or down a month or two before their other applicants. If not, ignore my post.

    I wouldn't do it under any circumstances. If you get your app in early and your stats are good enough, you may get accepted pretty early anyway. What does early acceptance really buy you? A month or two of earlier notification on an acceptance you would have gotten anyway? If you don't get accepted by your first choice you'll be glad that you didn't go early acceptance because you didn't mess up your chances with other schools by sending you scurrying in October or whenever, well behind many of your peers. If your early acceptance goes awry, I would be worried that you'll also have a fun time explaining why another school is your second choice, but you really want to go there and hope you get accepted. My HPO advisor and I agreed that there were little or no meaningful advantages and huge potential disadvantages. She has probably worked with thousands of students and never has seen it do anything helpful.
     
  12. MattD

    MattD Curmudgeon

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    Eh, the thing is, if you're thrown into the regular applicant pool, depending on the school, you could interview at any time, and wind up not getting word of the acceptance until Feb-March of matriculation year. With early decision, you know by october. That can be a huge difference in managing relocation, finding work for a spouse, not having to miss a ton of class going to numerous interviews, etc. Also, some schools give preference to the EDP applicants, as a way of reciprocating your enthusiasm for their school. Obviously you still have to have the stats, but it's an edge, for what it's worth. The disadvantage of being incomplete at all the other schools until october if you do get rejected is huge, but that's why getting pre-admissions advice is so important. For certain people, there are big advantages to EDP, but it certainly isn't worth it for everyone.

    Sirmalcs, when you mention talking to your advisor... I don't know where you go to school or anything, but there is definately a range in the quality of pre-med advisors. The advice I'm recommending for you comes from the med school, not your ugrad advisor. No matter how smart or knowledgeable your pre-med advisor is, his word means absolutely nothing when it comes down to it. He's not on that adcom. Talk to someone who is.
     
  13. OncoCaP

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    Few people go this route. It's not the normal path and probably for good reason. The downside of not having other schools see your application until October seems significant for me, and, more importantly, my highly seasoned HPO advisor who places many students at top schools around the country every year flat out told me it was a bad idea that she has never seen work to anyone's advantage in her many years. On the other hand, she has seen this go wrong for applicants who chose to ignore her advice or never spoke with her about it.

    I interviewed at my top (in-state) choice Sept 8th and was accepted October 18th (with regular admission). I withdrew from my other choices, but received another acceptance in November anyway. Even if I didn't get my first choice, I had other choices by November with plenty of time for moving, etc. There was no one on SDN accepted to my school before me in the 2006-7 cycle (early decision or otherwise). Thus, it can work out very nicely with regular admission as well.

    I spoke to one other person who was doing early decision at my top choice, and he had better stats than I did. I'm not sure if he is an SDNer and if he got in (quite possibly he is not; if he was on SDN, I would have expected him to get in earlier and perhaps let others know). My point is that it is possible to get in early under regular admission as well.

    I would check into the particular school in question as to when the first regular acceptances vs early decisions go out.

    I think what really left an impression on me is the war stories (not early decision, granted) of people with 38 MCATs and 4.0 GPAs who applied to 3 schools and did not get in anywhere (and had to wait another year). This just isn't a process I would take risks on if I could avoid it. I would go through a lot of last-minute scrambling rather than risk waiting another year or finding out even later than everyone else (because my app was considered later by another school).

    Here is the typical advice I see (note -- this is not my UG school):
    http://studentservices.tufts.edu/hpa/apphandbook/sectionII.htm
    Early Decision
    " A very small number of medical school applicants may consider the early decision option that many medical schools offer. This option allows a student to apply early decision to one (and only one) medical school no later than August 1, 2006 and have an answer by October 1, 2006. Students may not apply to any other medical school until October 1. This option makes sense for those students who have a clear first choice of a medical school AND are strong candidates for that school. You should consult with Carol if you are seriously contemplating an early decision applicatio, to discuss the risks involved.
     
  14. Critical Mass

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    Average is usually not good enough to get in as an EDP applicant. I'd work on your MCAT, apply early, and apply broadly. There are 2 med schools in SC, no? I'd keep my options open.
     
  15. HumbleMD

    HumbleMD hmmmm...

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    Echoing what's already been said. EDP is tempting when you're first applying, but there are plenty of downsides and risks. Sirmalcs, what are the reasons that make MUSC your top choice? Do you have extenuating circumstances that require you stay in your area? Is it your dream school and you've never wished of going anywhere else? You'll want to answer these questions before you even consider EDP. Then, it's time to talk numbers (especially with their advisor, moreso than here).
     
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  17. DoctaJay

    DoctaJay bone breaker
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    Its smarter to apply early, than to apply early decision. If you apply early, you can have your first acceptance as early as October 15, and it gives you more options.
     
  18. sirmalcs

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    Well to break it all down the school's average acceptance is 29-30 and around a 3.6. My stats are a 29 O and 3.45 undergrad plus grad degree. They normally accept 140 students a year and do accept 30 EDPs a year. The advisor just told me they usually receive about 50-60 EDP's and accept about 30 and that I should consider doing that myself. I had a good feeling when leaving the office but that is now replaced with some thought of insecurity about the whole process. I will indeed go back and talk to her again about my odds. It is hard figuring all this out now since I do not have a pre-med advisor that's why I appreciate all your advice!
     
  19. Robizzle

    Robizzle 1K Member

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    Ask your advisor to hook you up with the e-mail/phone# of the dean of admissions or another head adcom member at MUSC. That's who you gotta talk to.
     
  20. sirmalcs

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    Yeah I don't have one, anyways, I did that and they are still saying to go ahead with it. So I guess I will if I decide that's where I want to go.
     
  21. wake5233

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    Hey sirmalcs, I am in the same situation as you it sounds like. I am a grad student in SC applying this summer and want to stay in-state. I have talked with MUSC and they told me the same thing... that they encourage me to do EDP. The advisor said its always in your best interest to do so, even though my grades are average. I did not quite understand that reasoning. I also talked to USC about it and they "strongly encouraged" me to do EDP there, which is where I would rather go. I was just trying to get a feel for both schools. My MCAT is a 30, about average for both with a low undergrad gpa 3.21, a grad gpa of 3.93, and a lot of clinical experience. Let me know what you are thinking.
     
  22. modernistic

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    Does anybody know when the interviews for early acceptances take place? Let's say if you send your application in by June. I'm not sure what the timeline is like, because it's really, really fast that you find out by October.
     
  23. in.a.nutshell

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    To add to that, is the first day to submit June 1st like the regular cycle?
     
  24. TheRealMD

    TheRealMD "The Mac Guy"

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    Interviews are from August to mid-September.
     
  25. CTtarheel

    CTtarheel Senior Member

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    ED just really does not pay for med school the way it does for undergrad. The ONLY advantage is finding out early AND, it may only be a few weeks earlier.

    Schools repeatedly say they only accept the ED candidates that they would be certain to accept ANY year and defer the vast majority of them to regular admission. SO . . .

    if you apply ED to MUSC, all of your other applications are held until possibly Oct. 1, and you are very late in the application process and will be right up against the deadlines at many schools

    if you don't apply ED and just get your application in as early as possible, you could know as soon as Oct 15th, and you will be getting early interviews (sept-oct) everywhere you apply (not just MUSC).

    So, it just really doesn't make sense unless you are die hard for MUSC (which it doesn't sound like you are) and almost certain to get accepted (not just to get an interview).
     

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