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Some questions for the BCPM

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by christian15213, Jul 30, 2006.

  1. christian15213

    christian15213 Membership Revoked
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    Hello, this is my first official post so BE EASY... LOL, with that said I have looked and searched around the board and have found some great information about the BCPM and what it is and what falls under the BCPM... In fact, lol I didn't even know what it stood for at first, that is really funny for a Pre-Med major.

    But here is my situation and concerns regarding the BCPM... First, can someone please explain the workings and idea with what is included and what might be excluded... For example, I recieved an A in college algebra, a B+ in Pre-Calc and a C in Calc... Do all three of these grades get tallied into my BCPM?

    Why this is important to me is because of this reason. I am a second half student. Meaning, my first attempt at college was not to become a doctor, it was virtually a way to keep up with some people who were going and to party at various fraternity's if you know what I mean... LOL, needless to say my grades were not failing but they weren't medical school quality in the least. One thing lead to another I stopped school for a while, became a Financial Advisor and low and behold I said after 5 years this sucks and I will never want to do this type of work again... and a little other thoughts came into play and WALAAAA,,, hey I want to become a doctor. Ok, so the second half begins and it has been A's galore from here on out. Where do I stand currently? I really am not too sure. I can imagine that my current BCPM is better than my overall GPA because my overall has so many screw grades in it...

    Currently, my GPA is 3.482 and I am finishing this semester for the summer of Organic II, Org II lab and Physics II lab, and a couple other courses that should finally break my 3.5 GPA cherry... Sorry guys but with over 130 credit hours, due mostly to the major switch, I can really only hope to approach that threshold. But, like I am saying I think my BCPM is higher than Overall GPA... my math grades and how they are included is really the only question to me, so any help on this would be greatly appreciated.

    Oh and another thing, here is my plan... I cannot and will not finish my degree in Biology, my GPA is dear to me and the last BCPM class I must take is Physics II, which I will do this fall. I will take at least BIOCHEM as well because now a lot of Med schools are requiring it to even apply to thier school, like UF... However, that was really the end of the road for me as I planned it. The reason is simple, why should I take difficult BIO courses that might hurt my GPA, basically they will unless I get A's or at very least A-'s and dimminish my plans of getting into medical school just to get a BIO degree that I technically don't even need. Instead I will be finishing with a Sociology degree/business degree and my core BCPM requirements. After this fall semester I planned on graduating from Sociollogy and using the Spring semster to relax take only Bio chem and perhaps statistics and basically study all day every day to prepare for the MCAT which I will be taking in April or May of 2007...

    But alas, should I or would you suggest this route? would it be better for me to actually take more classes that I know I could at least get an A or B (hopefully B+) in such as Genetics, MicroBiology, Ecology and Molec Cell for the spring semester instead of just taking it easy... My reasoning behind this possibility is simply that I would be Raising my BCPM to an excellent level, probably around 3.8 or more while my regular GPA would still be at the 3.5-3.6 level. However, the obvious drawback to this would be Zero time for preperation of the MCAT... and Lastly,

    What if I took those classes this next upcomming Summer? I.e. like the Statistics Genetics and Ecology... Would these classed be added to my AMCAS? and be able to raise my BCPM or won't they even matter at this particular point...

    For anyone who understands what I am trying to say... your help and opinion would be greatly appreciated... I know this is a lot but I hope whoever is in my kind of boat will appreciate the responses by all of you...

    Thanks
     
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  3. C.P. Jones

    C.P. Jones Catface Majigger
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    first, truthfully, i only read the first half of your post before i got tired.....sorry, i always skip long posts

    but those math classes are BCPM

    in your situation, you do show that you started out w/ bad grades, but then completely turned it around in the "second half". you can split off where you started doing really well, and calculate that gpa if you want.

    anyway, this marked improvement will be very clear to the schools, and i don't think will hurt you if you explain to them what happened, that you decided to buckle down and actually work hard, etc. Did you do this in your Personal Statement? If not, you should definitely do it somewhere....like in all of your secondaries, if possible.

    If you already submitted your AMCAS, classes you take in the fall will not go onto that, but you can send the transcripts in as updates
     
  4. Dr Durden

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    Well for starters, any grade you have received on the college level will be used to calculate your GPA on the centralized AMCAS application. Even if you retake a class, both grades show up and are in effect "averaged." There's no hiding from math grades in BCMP as was discussed in another thread earlier this week.

    Take whatever courses you can reasonably handle in order to boost your GPA, both BCMP and All Other. Success in a few upperlevel courses will erase most doubts about your academic prowess. That being said, know that a 3.5 isn't the end of the world and upward trends are smiled upon by admission committees.

    Yes, summer courses can be added to AMCAS. But if it's the summer before your application year, you'll have to wait until the classes are over before you submit if you want them included. You can't submit AMCAS in June then "update" it later. This would mean submission in late August most likely followed by about 4-5 weeks for verification after you get your transcript in. Being verified late in September or early October is a disadvantage, especially for candidates who consider themselves borderline. SDN is pretty obsessed with getting in early and with good reason. You'd like to be complete before the wave of August MCAT scores come in, but the new revised testing schedule is going to change the admissions game next year.

    If you have any more questions or want more clarification from others on here, might I suggest making it more succinct next time or in replies on this thread. You'll likely get more responses that way.

    Good luck though and welcome to SDN. :thumbup:
     
  5. DoctaJay

    DoctaJay bone breaker
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    Hey man. It took some concentration, but I did get through your post. It is not bad at all to graduate with your sociology degree and your med school required classes. What I'm am worried about is how prepared you will be for medical school with just biology, OChem, GChem, and Physics. Now I am a little biased because I'm a Biology major and I have to take all the science classes, but I feel that it at least helps to have seen the information before. Ecology you could basically stay away from, and I would take a lower version of Genetics if it is possible, but basically what you learn in college science is reviewed in about the first 2 weeks of medical school anyway; then they start new crap. So its at least nice to recognize that first 2 weeks of material. The learning curve in med school is already hard, so I would advise easing the transition a little.

    If you blow the MCAT out of the water (and for me, that means anything over a 30), then a 3.4 GPA is really quite workable, especially since you have nice ECs being a non-trad applicant and everything. But on the other hand, if you are sure you can ace the other science courses and bring up your BCPM, then go for it. A 3.8 is definetly better than a 3.4. I think though in the end it will boil more down to what you have done outside of school rather than how high your GPA is.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  6. christian15213

    christian15213 Membership Revoked
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    Thanks, for the quick replies. I wanted to clear up the first person first so they understand what I am talking about. LOL, I won't make this too long. I am in summer classes currently and have the fall and spring to "really do anything" that will thus go on my amcas. From what you guys are saying, what I do in the first summer session won't be on my amcas application once submitted in June. Therefore, the importance to me is what I will be taking this upcomming spring semester. <<<<Am I thinking of this the right way<<<

    So, because of this I was thinking to take Statistics, genetics and Microbiology ooooohhhh and this one will be a bit more difficult, BIOCHEM in the spring. Thus, it should round out my amcas BCPM nicely if I get all A's in those courses.

    One last thing, as I previously mentioned I have to take the MCATS as well and with a course load as such I might not be able to realistically take those classes and properlly prepare for the MCAT's in April or May. hmmmmm, what would you guys suggest and do. Once suggestion to myself is this... Biochem is required by Matriculation... I can perhaps do it over the summer after the MCATS to "have it" on my recordes by the chance I would get accepted at UF or something. And thus, not put too much pressure on me for the Spring semester. The other three classes shouldn't really be too bad. Perhaps I could even look at taking just too... what work load with MCAT preperation would you all suggest?

    Again, thanks for the really great responses...
     
  7. christian15213

    christian15213 Membership Revoked
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    I'm sorry did that make sense? I just really needed the help before I plan out my upcomming semester.
     
  8. Dr Durden

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    If biochem is required before matriculation at your med school of interest but it strikes fear in your heart, you can put it on AMCAS as "Current/Future Course" to let schools know you intend to take it prior to graduation but just haven't gotten around to it yet.

    Definitely boost your GPA and knowledge base with "easier" courses in the mean time though, and take a lighter semester this coming spring if you feel you need it. There has been plenty of debate on SDN about how closely ad coms look at your course loads, but I'd at least do the minimum required to be a full-time student (usually 12 semester credit hours). The MCAT is likely the most important exam you'll have taken in your life up to that point, so by all means devote plenty of time towards preparation.

    And yes, your current summer courses will show up on AMCAS but if I were you, I'd submit AMCAS before waiting around on NEXT summer's course grades unless you feel they will offer a SUBSTANTIAL boost to your GPA.

    Hope that helps.
     
  9. christian15213

    christian15213 Membership Revoked
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    Maybe I am confused. But I think I know what you're saying. I plan as of now to do everything by the first possible second I can do it... The classes I am taking this summer and the upcomming fall and spring are for the 2007 AMCAS... I am not applying now but next time... I just want to prepare for next time. As well, I think you're telling me don't wait for next summers classes just to submit a "in everyone's view" late amcas application. :) Is that what you're saying... I just want to make sure...

    Lastly, I really appreciate the advice about the upcomming classes option on the AMCAS... this will allow me to hold off on the BIOCHEM until I feel like taking it... which will prefrentially be during my "off" year waiting to go to school... Plus, hahahaha if I am not accepted to a school that requires it then I won't have to take it at all.

    oh lol, and one more thing... It isn't that I am afraid of it per se, it is I much rather take the easy genetics course and ecology and focus on my MCATS rather than spending all day and night busting my arse for an A in BIOCHEM... Like Organic I and II... believe it or not the lab for ORG II was the worst of them ALL...
     
  10. Dr Durden

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    Yes, every course grade between now and next June will count on AMCAS. If at all possible, you want to submit your primary application and transcripts next June or July. Procrastination with the personal statement and extracuricular descriptions is what traps people, myself included I'll confess.

    And trust me, I in no way meant to slight you or your intelligence by implying you were scared of biochem. The dumb ones in my opinion are those who walk into that ultimate pre-med weed out course with absolutely no trepidation or at the very least respect. True it's not the horror story it is often made out to be, but it has its reputation for a reason. Substituting simpler courses and delaying it until your "off" year is a good idea provided that your schools of interest just want it before enrolling. Don't do this with too many pre-requisites though or you'll raise a few eyebrows.
     
  11. christian15213

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    Ok Doc you said a mouthfull of good information so I want to get this straight coinsiding w/ my scenario. Summer A is only six weeks and technically I could fit in an Ecology and Statistics course in there for the summer A session. If the classes end by the end of June would that be enough time to include them on my AMCAS for next year 2007... LOL, sorry if I sound ******ed about this but the reason why it is so important to me is because if I don't have to load up on them in the spring I would rather not. Just kinda wondered if anyone has tried this tactic before?

    But as far as prerequisites I only have to take Physics II and that is going to be this fall and I am done... again, albeit some schools want the BioChem... are there many more schools that want other things as a must as well... oooooo, ohhhhh I did notice through this site though that UM and UF want to see a lot of research which is a little wierd because their own site doesn't really portray that message, not UM's in any event...
     
  12. defrunner

    defrunner I'm Greased Up
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    The weird thing is that I just recently found out that BCPM means Basic Courses for Pre-Medical studies or something like that, when all this time I thought it was really just shorthand for Biology-Chemistry-Physics-Math courses.

    My shorthand notation made too much sense so I never questioned it further.
     
  13. Dr Durden

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    Submitting in July would certainly be fine. Just have the registrar at your summer school send your transcript in directly after you get those A's in that first summer session.
     
  14. GoldenBlind221

    GoldenBlind221 Completely Clueless

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    Huh. I thought the same thing up until this post. Guess you learn something new every day.
     
  15. Dr.TobiasFünke

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    For serious?? But the BCPM includes all science and math beyond or before the "Basic Courses for Premedical Studies".
     
  16. Dr.TobiasFünke

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    Also, OP, what's with the LOLs. There wasn’t anything really funny enough to laugh out loud about unless you are one of those people who awkwardly laugh at everything, subsequently limiting my ability to engage in any meaningful conversation with you. Seriously, I stopped reading after the second LOL.
     
  17. DaffyDoc

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    Your post made me LOL :)
     
  18. Dr Durden

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    I have to question that acronym as well. Seriously, molecular evolution, advanced thermodynamics, quantum physics, and differential equations all count as courses in BCPM GPA but are hardly what I'd consider "Basic Courses for Premedical Studies."
     
  19. defrunner

    defrunner I'm Greased Up
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    Hey, I was just repeating what I read recently and remember, I had thought otherwise myself. This may not be right either, but here's the source: http://umsis.miami.edu/~raycock/medshort/medshort.pdf (go to page 67). Overall, this was a decent introduction for those just starting out and is a handy reference, but experienced users on SDN would already know most/all of this.
     
  20. hopefulM.D.

    hopefulM.D. Senior Member
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    according to aamc, BCPM stands for Biology Chemistry Physics Math.
     
  21. Dr Durden

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    That guide is definitely a good one for getting started defrunner. I used it myself a few months ago when I decided to take the plunge and commit to being a pre-med myself. :thumbup:

    PS Didn't mean for that earlier post to come off as harsh as it seems.
     
  22. TSK

    TSK Senior Member
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    Ummm, actually it doesn't. As described on the help section for AMCAS courswork, "The BCPM GPA is comprised of courses, which are considered to be Biology, Chemistry, Physics, and Mathematics courses."


     
  23. defrunner

    defrunner I'm Greased Up
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    Oh my goodness; that's the last time I repeat anything anyone says online as some kind of modicum of truth.

    Ok, ok, it's Biology-Chemistry-Physics-Math!

    The guy that wrote the book merely seemed like he knew what he was talking about and while I did know that from AAMC, I didn't remember it being capitalized so I mistakenly thought it wasn't the technical name for BCPM (instead, I thought BCPM was "composed" of biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics courses; big difference there, my droogs).

    But now that I've been put in my place, I'm done with this silly and petty little argument. You all win, but again, I was merely quoting this guy. Blame me if you must, but I didn't publish this.

    Thanks, Tyler; I know you weren't intending to come off harsh. All good!
     
  24. Dr.TobiasFünke

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    I'm still waiting for an apology after what you put us through with your lies and wickedness.
     
  25. defrunner

    defrunner I'm Greased Up
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    Keep waiting!

    :D
     

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