Take a class to get a better LOR or take Cell Bio for MCAT?

Doctor_Strange

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Hi,

At the moment, I have two biology professors that I have taken 2 classes with each with an A- between them all except for one B+ and I plan on getting a LOR from both. I also have a professor who I earned a A in Histo, and I am debating whether or not to take his anatomy class and then ask him for a LOR. Alternatively, I already have 2 science LORs in the bag I think with the current bio professors, so I don't know if I should stop pursuing a third science LOR and go for a random professor who teaches Cell Bio/Genetics in order to prepare for the MCAT which I am taking in the spring. I am a senior so I don't have that many options.

TLDR: Take a class mainly to get a better LOR, or take Cell Bio/Genetics to better prepare for the MCAT? I have two professors that I have taken 2 classes with, so I don't know if going for a third science LOR is worth it...

Any thoughts?
 

Doctor_Strange

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@Tr1LL I know Cell Bio is recommended for medical schools, and I do intend to take it, but do you know how valuable it is for the MCAT? Same for genetics. I am expecting that Bio 1 and Bio 2 will be/should be sufficient.
 
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0dee

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@Tr1LL I know Cell Bio is recommended for medical schools, and I do intend to take it, but do you know how valuable it is for the MCAT? Same for genetics. I am expecting that Bio 1 and Bio 2 will be/should be sufficient.
I haven't taken the new MCAT yet, so my opinion would not be helpful. However, I am taking both genetics and biochem to prepare for it.
Also, I know some people who don't benefit from classes in the undergrad, my friend chose to self study instead of taking an upper division bio course, and he did extremely well. So it all depends on your style of learning.
 
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samac

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I wish I could give more solid advice, but I took the old mcat so take what I say with a grain of sault.
Cell bio didn't help a ridiculous amount for my MCAT. Anything really helpful was stuff that I had spelled out for me in other classes too, and I didn't need the detail I learned in cell bio for the MCAT. I think my time studying for cell bio could have been spent just as well working through Examkrackers when it comes to MCAT prep.
But I 10000% recommend taking cell bio before med school. If I didn't have that class my first semester here I'm ed school would be 10x harder, and it's already hard enough.
 

jwilliams1993

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You should definitely take cell bio before you graduate or enter med school. Looking back though, I can't say there was much I learned from cell bio that was on the MCAT (I took it last August and this August). The info you need from cell will be in Kaplan/ Examkracker books. If you've already got two science LORs though, the third isn't incredibly necessary. (Make sure you get a non-science professor LOR if you'll be applying to MD schools, quite a few of them require one.) Anyways, I think cell would be more beneficial than a new LOR. If anything, it'll boost your cumulative and science GPAs.
 

Doctor_Strange

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Thanks! @jwilliams1993

Yeah, i am at the point now of deciding between genetics or cell bio? the search threads have shown that genetics is perhaps more relevant.
 

Doctor_Strange

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Bump! I am no longer concerned about the LOR, but about the pros/cons of taking either cell bio (relatively easy prof), genetics (lab heavy), or anatomy (very easy) and their relation to the MCAT. Past forums have said genetics is a big one, but my real question: i can do fine on the mcat without taking genetics...?
 
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Bump! I am no longer concerned about the LOR, but about the pros/cons of taking either cell bio (relatively easy prof), genetics (lab heavy), or anatomy (very easy) and their relation to the MCAT. Past forums have said genetics is a big one, but my real question: i can do fine on the mcat without taking genetics...?
Took the old MCAT, but I didn't take any genetics classes or cell bio and I felt fine. It just takes a little bit more time to learn the concepts if you're seeing them for the first time.
 

Doctor_Strange

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Thanks for the replies! I think I will place faith that the Kaplan prep course will guide me sufficiently!
 

Cardboard101

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Might just be me or the test I took, but I didn't really need any upper division other than biochem and organic. The stuff covered is really just a years worth of intro biology and maybe a semester worth of physiology. Managed a 130 somehow :eek:
 
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