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"strongly" suggested courses

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jumboolia

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Do taking the "strongly" recommended courses such as Genetics, Immunology, Developmental Biology, etc etc on top of meeting the required courses make you look more favorable to ADCOMS? Are they helpful for the MCAT?
 

deuce924

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I am sure they look better for an Adcom since it shows you have a decent background in science. As for the MCAT, I think the extra classes helped especially Genetics, Physiology, and Biochemistry.
 

ADeadLois

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Keep in mind that this is just my opinion, and I know others have a different view of this, but I think that taking these courses is a tremendous waste of time UNLESS:

(1) They're required for your major

(2) You are truly interested in them


Med schools recommend these courses because components of them are covered, to some extent, in med school. However, as most med students would tell you, you do not gain much of an advantage by taking these courses. Much of the material is glossed over during the first few weeks of med school, and is often presented from a much different perspective (a clinical/pathological point of view as opposed to a broad/conceptual view) As far as preparation for the MCAT, yes, these courses help, but keep in mind that they are likely to go way beyond the curriculum of it. To me, you're better off spending your time studying the basic science and doing practice problems, then studying in depth details in these courses.

From an admissions standpoint, success in these classes (much like success in any science class) will help you, but since they are only recommended they won't hold it against you if you don't take them. I think these recommendations are made for your "benefit" (a benefit that I dispute) and are inconsequential from an admissions standpoint.
 

armybound

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I don't know anything about the admissions standpoint, but I can tell you that molecular genetics and immunology were two of my favorite classes. Especially immunology.
 

mvenus929

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I don't know anything about the admissions standpoint, but I can tell you that molecular genetics and immunology were two of my favorite classes. Especially immunology.

I love Immunology right now. Which probably means I'll hate it by the end of the semester.

I loved Physiology too.
 

armybound

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I love Immunology right now. Which probably means I'll hate it by the end of the semester.

I loved Physiology too.
I liked physiology too. Goes to show you that sometimes you know you're going into the right field when you actually enjoy learning difficult material.
 

MossPoh

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Recommendations are always weird. It is kind of a personal decision how you treat them. I treat them as a tie-breaker. If given two candidates with exact same stats, I'd pick the one that went the extra mile and took the "recommended" courses. Whether they do that or not is a different story. That is just how I treat it. Some courses, like biochem, are required for a few schools...so, if you have aspirations of applying to say, FSU, then you have to take that anyway. If you get an A in it then all the better.
 

Depakote

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Do taking the "strongly" recommended courses such as Genetics, Immunology, Developmental Biology, etc etc on top of meeting the required courses make you look more favorable to ADCOMS? Are they helpful for the MCAT?

I have never heard of those classes being "strongly recommended" save for genetics which is only supposed to help on the MCAT.

Whether it would help you get in... I can't really say for sure, but my take has been that if you've completed the pre-reqs required by the school you're on even ground with everybody else. (unless you've tanked a bunch of the material that is going to be covered, that might raise an eyebrow)

Now from a non-admissions standpoint, has seeing the material before been helpful... somewhat. It's been nice in going to the biochem lectures and having a degree of familiarity with what's being covered, but I'm still studying everything b/c as mentioned above, the focus is more clinical.

Overall: I don't think certain classes beyond the pre-reqs are going to make or break an applicant. Your performances in what classes you do take will.
 

xpinchx

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Immunology, physiology, and fundamental genetics are all required for my degree, so at least I don't have to fret over whether or not to take them. :p
 

greg1184

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I don't know anything about the admissions standpoint, but I can tell you that molecular genetics and immunology were two of my favorite classes. Especially immunology.

Yep, especially the latter. Which is why I am glad I did a Microbiology and Immunology major.
 

etf

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Immunology, physiology, and fundamental genetics are all required for my degree, so at least I don't have to fret over whether or not to take them. :p

meanwhile i accidentally took physical chemistry because i thought it was required for my degree. probably the stupidest thing i ever did in my life.
 
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