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So what exactly are "good" stats?

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curiouslygeorge

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I hear people use the terms "decent" or "good" or "really good" or "stellar" in relationship to GPA or MCAT scores. I read it a lot on these boards.

So according to the experts (which is all of you of course :D ) please tell me how you would break down MCAT and GPA into the above categories.
 

curiouslygeorge

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dhoonlee said:
Here is a more useful exercise.

Go to mdapplicants.com and take a look at the stats of accepted students at the medical schools that interest you.

Keep in mind that the students with the best stats and ec's are more likely to share.

Ah, but this was not my question. I just want to know what people on this board deem "good" etc. since you all use the term so often. Also, the fact that people with the better stats are more likely to share at mdapplicants compromises the usefulness of the exercise.
 

UCLAstudent

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The general consensus is that a 3.5 GPA and 30 MCAT are solid stats. However, stats are meaningless without knowing about ECs. I know of someone who had a 4.0 GPA and 36 MCAT with virtually no ECs. He only got two interviews and ended up being accepted at one school (not a highly ranked school, either).
 

liverotcod

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Say we define "good" as meaning one deviation above the matriculated students' average.

I get the following results using the 2003 matriculant GPA and MCAT data from here:
Good GPA: 3.62 + 0.28 = 3.90
Good GPA: 9.5 + 1.7 + 9.9 + 1.9 + 10.2 + 1.6 = 34.8

My statistics are pretty rusty, but in each area, one standard deviation above the matriculant average is better than about 68% of matriculants. Having both numbers in that range would be more rare; let's say 75%.

So, 3.9 GPA and 35 MCAT are "good" numbers under these assumptions.
 

calstudent

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liverotcod said:
Say we define "good" as meaning one deviation above the matriculated students' average.

I get the following results using the 2003 matriculant GPA data from here and infor from the April 2004 MCAT from here :
Good GPA: 3.62 + 0.28 = 3.90
Good GPA: 25.0 + 6.4 = 31.4

My statistics are pretty rusty, but in each area, one standard deviation above the matriculant average is better than about 68% of matriculants. Having both numbers in that range would be more rare; let's say 75%.

So, 3.9 GPA and 32 MCAT are "good" numbers under these assumptions.

doesn't one deviation put you in the top 16%? (because you have to weigh the 32% leftover between the top and bottom)
someone with statistics help us!
 

liverotcod

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calstudent said:
doesn't one deviation put you in the top 16%? (because you have to weigh the 32% leftover between the top and bottom)
someone with statistics help us!
Could be, my analysis is pretty sophomoric. Also, I think there's a problem with taking one deviation from each of the MCAT areas. Whatever. It's a silly question in the first place. It's probably just as valid to say the anything better than the matriculant average is "good."
 

Medikit

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3.5-3.7 is good. 3.75+ is stellar.

30-34 is good. 35+ is stellar.
 

Jack_Adam

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I hardly think one needs a 3.9 to be considered a "good" candidate. Not to mention the fact that what med schools deem "good" in candidates GPA/MCAT-wise differ markedly across the board. Really, you'd have to define categories for each school to obtain a more accurate measure of what is "good," "really good" or "stellar."
 

akpete

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liverotcod said:
Say we define "good" as meaning one deviation above the matriculated students' average.

I get the following results using the 2003 matriculant GPA and MCAT data from here:
Good GPA: 3.62 + 0.28 = 3.90
Good GPA: 9.5 + 1.7 + 9.9 + 1.9 + 10.2 + 1.6 = 34.8

My statistics are pretty rusty, but in each area, one standard deviation above the matriculant average is better than about 68% of matriculants. Having both numbers in that range would be more rare; let's say 75%.

So, 3.9 GPA and 35 MCAT are "good" numbers under these assumptions.

What if you did this for the applicants rather than matriculants? Then you see what is good versus the entire pool. The matriculants would be skewed up from the entire pool of applicants, and therefore the "good" may be seen as much higher.

Or maybe not. I dunno.
 

bigdan

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Hmmm. I'd define "good" as anything that will get you an interview. So I think - situation dependent - that anything above 3.0 and 24 MCAT could be good. Some applicants will have to do much better than that, all things (life experience, ECs, letters, etc.) considered.

Just another angle...

dc
 

Pinkertinkle

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You're not going to get past many screens with scores around 3.0 and a 24. ECs don't come into play much until your academic record can prove you can handle the rigors of medical school.
 

UCLAstudent

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passthesashimi said:
I think it's much more useful to use the words 'competitive' and 'must pray' rather than 'good', 'average', or 'bad.'

Don't forget "snowball's chance in Hell." ;)
 

prettyslick

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Pinkertinkle said:
You're not going to get past many screens with scores around 3.0 and a 24. ECs don't come into play much until your academic record can prove you can handle the rigors of medical school.

just wondering what kind of stats will get you past many screens?
 

Pinkertinkle

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UCLAstudent's numbers of 3.5 and 30 (evenly split) should get you past any screen. I'd imagine 28 and 3.3's can make it past most screens too.
 

bigdan

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I think some schools have "interview triggers" - I know that SUNY Upstate does - where if you have above a certain GPA and MCAT, you get an interview. I don't remember the numbers that I was told for that...maybe 3.8+ and 34+?

A high MCAT will go a long way, even if it's just to pull you in to find out about a GPA/MCAT discrepancy.

I do believe that some schools do take a look at more than just GPA and MCAT when deciding to interview folks...they have to. SUNY Binghamton had folks with MCATs in the teens accepted to allopathic medical school. And an MCAT study buddy of mine has a 3.9/38 and just received his rejection letter from U of Rochester.

But I do agree that it's generally hard to go wrong with applying with a GPA 3.6+ and MCAT 30+.

dc
 

liverotcod

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duck2005 said:
one standard deviation above mean = 84th percentile, assuming a normal distribution
Yes. Thanks for the correction.

For applicants, it works out to 3.84/33.5. Not that I disagree wiyh anyone above; rather, I just find it an interesting exercise to do little analyses like this. Preparation for clinical research?
 

SFAJess

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liverotcod said:
Yes. Thanks for the correction.

For applicants, it works out to 3.84/33.5. Not that I disagree wiyh anyone above; rather, I just find it an interesting exercise to do little analyses like this. Preparation for clinical research?
You are quite the statistician! :thumbup: Weren't you the one figuring out the chances for getting into med school based on how many interviews one has? :)
 

YzIa

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liverotcod said:
Yes. Thanks for the correction.

For applicants, it works out to 3.84/33.5. Not that I disagree wiyh anyone above; rather, I just find it an interesting exercise to do little analyses like this. Preparation for clinical research?

I definitely think that your statistical methods are sound, but your numbers are definitely elite applicants!! Even the second set is damn good. By the way, a belated congrads on your UW interview!
 

Mens Cupida

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calstudent said:
doesn't one deviation put you in the top 16%? (because you have to weigh the 32% leftover between the top and bottom)
someone with statistics help us!

You've got it right. 68% would be within 1 SD of the mean, so the remaining 32% would be split between those above and below.
 

Dr. N

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Here is another related to GPA question: what if one has great GPA - 3.84 BCMP but MCAT is not so great around 26. Do you think that person has a chance? or vise versa: great MCAT but GPA sucks.
 

gobblety_gook

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Dr. N said:
Here is another related to GPA question: what if one has great GPA - 3.84 BCMP but MCAT is not so great around 26. Do you think that person has a chance? or vise versa: great MCAT but GPA sucks.

I think that someone with a great MCAT/mediocore GPA has a much better chance in this game than the converse, especially with respect to schools in the top 20...

That being said, I think both the high GPA/low MCAT and the low GPA/high MCAT definately have a reasonable chance given that they also have good EC's and a good personality for the interview.
 

liverotcod

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YzIa said:
By the way, a belated congrads on your UW interview!
Thanks! I'm absolutely thrilled to have it.
 

superdevil

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gobblety_gook said:
I think that someone with a great MCAT/mediocore GPA has a much better chance in this game than the converse, especially with respect to schools in the top 20...

That being said, I think both the high GPA/low MCAT and the low GPA/high MCAT definately have a reasonable chance given that they also have good EC's and a good personality for the interview.
i agree that the great MCAT/mediocre GPA crowd has the edge. its not that easy to ace the MCAT, but sometimes i think a bottle of hair gel could get a 3.7 as a psych major at my school. ;)
 

Code Brown

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The only nice thing about having a great GPA/mediocre MCAT is that you can take the MCAT again and fix that portion relatively quickly, whereas it's quite hard to fix up a bad GPA in a short timeframe. Not that this has anything to do with the original question.
 

[email protected]

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superdevil said:
i agree that the great MCAT/mediocre GPA crowd has the edge. its not that easy to ace the MCAT, but sometimes i think a bottle of hair gel could get a 3.7 as a psych major at my school. ;)


So if you wear hair gell is that considered cheating?
 

superdevil

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So if you wear hair gell is that considered cheating?
i guess it depends on how smart your hair gel is. :laugh: i've been sportin' gel in my psych class this quarter, which probably explains why i got a 100% on my first exam, come to think of it!
 

phleebie

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dude, youre so gellin
 

ridirkulous

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You probably won't get in anywhere without at least a 3.95 GPA and a 38 MCAT. But, don't forget research. Even with these scores you probably won't even get an interview unless you've authored a paper in Science, Nature or Cell.
 

constructor

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ridirkulous said:
You probably won't get in anywhere without at least a 3.95 GPA and a 38 MCAT. But, don't forget research. Even with these scores you probably won't even get an interview unless you've authored a paper in Science, Nature or Cell.

totally ridirkulous, but the man's right!
 

jlee9531

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good solid stats that you will never have to regret are 3.7 30 (at least 10s across)
 
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