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The Answers to Your Stupid Questions Thread

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by rafflecopter, Dec 14, 2010.

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  1. MightyMoose

    MightyMoose 2+ Year Member

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    Jun 8, 2010
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  3. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Only you can answer that question. I recommend picking up a copy of the Medical School Admissions Requirements book (MSAR) available here (scroll down to find the current version).

    Here you can find valuable information regarding your chances with particular MCAT/GPA combos and also see average acceptance data for various schools. This way depending on which schools you would like to attend you can determine the ideal MCAT/GPA you need and decide whether to retake based on that.

    Most people advise against retaking anything higher than a 30, but that really depends on the type of school you would like to attend. If you have dreams of a top 20, a 30 will likely not cut it and you'll need to retake it.

    Other users response to this question:

     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  4. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    There are numerous forums from people in every specialty here on SDN (see the link below). Most of them have FAQ sections that discuss important things like how competitive residencies are, what sort of lifestyle to expect, and what kinds of things to expect on a daily basis in a career of that specialty. These forums are also the place to ask specific questions regarding the specialty.

    If you have many specific questions, you might want to consider shadowing a physician of that specialty.

    Other user responses to this question:

     
  5. Gibs

    Gibs

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    Been gone all day. Dropped in to say:

    Thanks for the advice everyone! :cool:
     
  6. gujuDoc

    gujuDoc 10+ Year Member

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    QUOTE=rafflecopter;10391097]I've seen way too many threads lately asking dumb, easy to answer questions (most of which that have been answered 1000x before), so I thought I'd create a thread where these questions can be asked and answered without judgment. The rules are simple, as long as someone posts the question here we avoid flaming/sarcasm. Think of this like claiming sanctuary in a church, free from criticism that the question you are about to ask is really, really stupid. Post these questions outside of this thread and there's a 100% chance of getting flamed. Here is a list of asked and answered questions here:

    1) Will 1 C/F/bad semester ruin my chances of med school? Answer

    2) What is an acceptable MCAT/GPA for applying to med school?

    3) What is a letter of intent? Do I email it or mail it? Answer

    4) Should I write thank you letters to my interviewers? Answer

    5) Its February and I have no interviews yet... what do I do? Answer

    6) Which specialty will get me laid the most? Answer

    7) Is there time to work out/get drunk/build pirate ships when in med school?

    8) Is taking 28 units of all science classes next semester too much?

    9) What ECs are med schools looking for? Answer

    10) Does the name of your undergrad matter? Answer

    11) Tell me about x and y specialty. Answer

    12) What is the difference between MD/DO? How will this affect my residency options?

    13) I'm still in high school. What can I do to get into Harvard Medical School and be a neurosurgeon?

    14) While in the 6th grade, I was sent to detention... how will this affect my chances? Should I include this on my PS (as an example of hardship to triumph story)? How will I explain this to the interviewers? Answer

    15) How should I study for the MCAT? Answer

    16) Should I retake the MCAT? Answer

    17)Why are there so few fat doctors? Answer

    18) How hard is it to get loans to pay for medical school? Answer

    19) I have dreadlocks and a thug life tattoo on my neck. Will the admissions committee hold it against me? Answer

    20) I am currently doing bad in one of my classes. Should I stick it out or drop and take a W? Answer

    Etc....

    So, fellow SDNers - please help me by refraining from using sarcasm/flaming people who post in this thread since by doing that they are helping clear up the minefield of idiocy that is the pre-allo front page.

    Also, anyone who has answers to these questions please post them and I will include them in the links up above.[/QUOTE]

    21. What field has the hottest doctors for ladies? For men? :smuggrin::smuggrin:

    ;);):cool:
     
  7. Techmed07

    Techmed07 7+ Year Member

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    Last edited: Dec 14, 2010
  8. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    MSAR lists data on accepted applicants. 2008 applicants had a mean score of 33 and 3.8. Note that accepted applicant stats tend to be inflated since usually people with great stats get multiple acceptances.

    The MSAR is a great resource to see your chances with different GPA/MCAT combos. To get near an 80% chance of acceptance you need to have around a 3.6 GPA and a 30-32 MCAT. There are certainly MANY extenuating circumstances that can alter this number, such as the schools to which you apply, your ECs, letters of recommendation, and interviewing skills. So take this with a grain of salt.

    For more personalized ideas of your chances, please check out the What Are My Chances Forum, where you can give detailed info about your application and knowledgeable people can give you an idea of where you should apply/what your strengths/weaknesses are.
     
  9. berriesandcream

    berriesandcream 7+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    I have a legit, i hope no internal judging necessary question:
    What is considered having leadership and how heavily is it weighed? Here's the thing, I'm the president of a club on campus, thinking of resigning because everything else is taking a pitfall. I talked to the advisor and he supports me, we talked about it, and he's still willing to write me an LOR because I do research with him. Do I have to mention that I was president for a bit? Second, besides that, I don't really have leadrship. Personally, I have my own project where I recycle cans/bottles and for every $5 earned, I buy one or two homeless people a meal or go to the store and buy them supplies to live (hygiene, water, snacks, etc). This is to help them, the environment, and help without putting money from my pocket. SO, i lead the activity, get recycleables from people. it's leadership, right? Thanks raf!
     
  10. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Are you asking whether you should tell your LOR writer that you were president of the club or whether to indicate being the president on your AMCAS application? Definitely tell med schools you were president, it shows you took a more active role in the club and is a worthy leadership experience. As far as telling your advisor, only mention it if you think it helps him get a more complete view of you as a student so the LOR can be more personalized.

    Your homeless project is very intriguing and I think admissions committees will find it intriguing as well. However, I think it might be better indicated on your application as volunteering. You can go into detail about how you started the project etc. The reason I wouldn't classify it as leadership is that there are no people working with you (at least it doesn't seem like it). Either list it as I described above, or attempt to get others to assist you with the project and then you can list it as leadership.
     
  11. berriesandcream

    berriesandcream 7+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Ah okay understandable. I guess all the leadership I hold is president for one quarter! And yup, I am the only one working one it. It's my baby. I'm selfish :) haha But thank you! I had fun reading through all the posts!
     
  12. LadiiKay

    LadiiKay 5+ Year Member

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    9a) I work 2 jobs and volunteer off campus a lot because I'm a commuter. I'm part of the pre-health society at my school and help out with campus ministry once in a while. My advisor says my lack of on-campus involvement is a gaping hole on my application. Is she right? Do I really need to be more involved on campus?
     
  13. Ursa

    Ursa woof 5+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    im starting to go nuts over all the threads lately asking "what will my gpa be after this or that?" its ridiculous. come on people, use a gpa calculator if you can't figure it out by hand.

    http://www.back2college.com/gpa.htm
     
  14. MightyMoose

    MightyMoose 2+ Year Member

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  15. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Does anyone have any insight into these questions? I can't elaborate on most of these...
     
  16. juliedi

    juliedi is legit. 5+ Year Member

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    Ok, I'll take a stab at #8.

    Short answer: probably yes.

    The intensity of the specific class will vary from school to school, but many of your science classes will be quite demanding. 28 units of any classes is almost double what a full-time student normally takes, at least at my undergrad. If you are some freak-of-nature-genius-study-powerhouse (and mad props if you are) and you think you really can handle such a demanding courseload, then give it a shot. But I think that for the vast majority of people, 28 units of science classes is just too much. You gotta make room for all those other important parts of life: ecs, friends, time for yourself, sleep, sanity, etc.
     
  17. FlowRate

    FlowRate 7+ Year Member

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    Physician
    7: Yes, but you have to have good time management skills and make time for such things. These may come at the expense of being AOA.

    8: Take as much science as you can handle socially, mentally, physically, etc. Only experience will tell how much you can handle. If you're a freshman, consider titrating your load from 2 science courses up as needed.

    12: There is no practical difference in terms of training. DO's may apply to DO-only residency slots. Some suggest that DO's will have a harder time at gaining MD-residency slots, although plenty do.

    13: Be excellent, interesting, and a little lucky.

    21: Derm for Ladies, Surg for Men.
     
  18. NickNaylor

    NickNaylor Thank You for Smoking Lifetime Donor 7+ Year Member

    This should be added to the list of questions: should I pre-study the summer before matriculating?
     
  19. FlowRate

    FlowRate 7+ Year Member

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    Physician
    Definitely yes if you want to get into a good residency.
    ;);):p
     
  20. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    No. The general consensus from medical students is that any studying before medical school is both completely useless and a total waste of time. Enjoy your summer, travel, go on a medical mission, or take on an interesting research project instead.

    Other user responses to this question:


     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2010
  21. MightyMoose

    MightyMoose 2+ Year Member

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    12) What is the difference between MD/DO? How will this affect my residency options?

    The primary difference between an MD and a DO is that DO's are required to learn Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM). The other very real differences are that DO's tend to place more graduates in Primary Care, and MD's usually attend universities with greater research opportunities. Both are doctors when they graduate. There is no specialty that you can not do with either degree, but the programs you train in can vary. Please see the residency match statistics below.

    Here is a great description of the MD/DO label importance once you finish residency:

    http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=133066


    In terms of residency placement, MD's can do ACGME residencies and DO's can do ACGME residencies or AOA residencies (they also have combined programs, and military options for both). There are a few nuances that distinguish the two residencies, but by in large you will be trained to be a competent doctor in either program.

    If you want stats on both types of programs, you can look here:

    ACGME Match (both MD and DO):

    http://www.nrmp.org/data/index.html

    AOA Match (Just DO [click the years at the bottom of the page]):

    http://www.natmatch.com/aoairp/matres.htm
     
  22. MCAT guy

    MCAT guy ... 2+ Year Member

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    Agreed this is general consensus.

    Some people would agree that you can benefit from some little things, like medical terminology. For those of us that have a full 12 months off before medical school, spending minimal hours learning medical language is beneficial IMO. I'm all for rest, recharge, vacation, party, etc. But I also don't need 12 months to do that.:thumbup:
     
  23. WorldChanger36

    WorldChanger36 7+ Year Member

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    Hub City
    MDApps:
    Here's a question ...
    Having multiple acceptances to different med schools what factors should one weigh? How can a person tell a good school from a not as good school?
     
  24. MCAT guy

    MCAT guy ... 2+ Year Member

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    A good little discussion from a thread about pre-study:

     
  25. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Here are some excellent responses to this question:

     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2011
  26. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Take as many units as you can handle. Remember it wont be worth it to over extend your reach and risk getting bad grades in any of your classes. Its all well and good to speed up the process of undergrad by taking a bunch of units but if it gets you a ton of Bs its certainly not worth it.

    Other user answers to that question:

     
  27. IDreamtIChased

    IDreamtIChased

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    MDApps:
    Thread's losing heat Raf... so here goes:

    Do surgeon couples have a more freaky/intense love life than average couples?
     
  28. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    In general, Caribbean medical schools are less selective than US medical schools and will confer a MD degree that can be used in the US, making it an attractive option for applicants with lower stats. Know that typically these schools fail out a bunch of people and its generally much harder to gain a US residency, making Caribbean medical schools more of a "hail mary" option for most medical school applicants, rather than a first choice.

    If you are considering a medical school in the Caribbean, make sure the school is ACGME accredited so that you can get a legitimate MD degree and stand a chance of obtaining a US residency.

    Other user responses:

     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2010
  29. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    The general consensus is that there is certainly enough time to have some extra activities in your life during medical school and still achieve good grades. Extremely time consuming hobbies, or working more than a few hours a week, seem to not be good ideas, however.

    Third year and fourth year are tougher. You will have less free time and you'll be in control of it less. Certain rotations, like FM or psych, might leave time for extracurriculars but forget about it during surgery and IM.

    Other user responses to this question:

     
  30. dbeast

    dbeast Neurorectal surgeon 7+ Year Member

    Next question:

    Rafflecopter, how did you find a picture of my car for your avatar?
     
  31. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    :laugh:. I actually know nothing about cars so that could be a porsche for all I know.


    For any of the regular SDN'ers... do you know of any more frequent questions that get asked that I can get answered? Or do you have anything to add to the responses I gave to the questions? Differing opinions? Hows the list looking so far?
     
  32. CougarMD

    CougarMD Come up screaming Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

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    ISIS Headquarters, NYC
    28) What should I do during my gap year?


    Can the answer please include the advice that using the words "gap year" make you sound like a total douchecanoe?
     
  33. MeowMeowCAT

    MeowMeowCAT 2+ Year Member

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    This thread needs a sticky.
     
  34. Surgeonvivor

    Surgeonvivor 5+ Year Member

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    I have a question about math pre-reqs for medical school... Is an A in Calculus III enough to suffice? I have AP credit for Calc I, Calc II, and Statistics.
     
  35. juliedi

    juliedi is legit. 5+ Year Member

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    lol douchecanoe. I'm gonna save that one for later use :laugh:

    Anyway here's my answer:

    28) During your year(s) off between undergrad and medical school, do whatever you want. If your application is lacking in some area (i.e. little clinical experience, no research, etc), then it would be a good time to pursue one of those activities. If you feel that there aren't any big holes in your app, then you can work whatever kind of job suits your fancy, medical-related or not; you can divvy up your time between volunteering/shadowing/cooking/jamming on the guitar/writing a novel; you can go to Africa and build houses for orphans.
     
  36. IDreamtIChased

    IDreamtIChased

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    MDApps:
    Some schools don't even need any math, but they "recommend" some calculus and statistics. Some require 3-6 credits of math.

    Plus, each school has their own policy on AP credits, so you have to call and ask them. But what you have done so far should suffice for most schools...
     
  37. 45408

    45408 aw buddy 7+ Year Member

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    Honestly, I always thought it was nice when I got thank you notes. It did NOT ever affect the outcome, because I often didn't check my mailbox until weeks or months after I submitted my interview report (which happened immediately after the interview concluded).

    Yes, but to very widely varying degrees. If your goal is to be the youngest chairman of radiation oncology at a prestigious academic institution, then yes, I would say it does. If you want to do primary care in a community setting, I would say it does not. Just remember that top-ranked RESEARCH institutions are generally looking to make people into top-notch ACADEMIC physicians. There's nothing wrong with this, but if your goal isn't to go into academia, then it's not likely to be in your best interest to spend an extra six figures on tuition.


    Multiple reasons. Obesity rates decrease across the board with increasing levels of education and wealth. Furthermore, you know very well what your weight is doing to your health. And you work a lot.

    Not.

    Yes, as would I. There are a few people who can look clean and professional with dreads, but it's a fine line, especially with a committee that's on the conservative side. I basically see no excuse for any tattoo on your neck, unless you've made a huge change in your life since you got it.

    Absolutely not.
     
  38. Geekchick921

    Geekchick921 Achievement Unlocked: MD Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Information compiled from the 2011-2012 MSAR: http://www.swarthmore.edu/Documents/slife/pre_med/Math_Req_for_Medical_School.pdf
     
  39. etherpentane

    etherpentane 7+ Year Member

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    There's a really good (old) thread out there saying that the pre-clinical year curric is completely unimportant & the "vibe" you get while visiting is unimportant. The key thing is the clinical experience (scut work? etc)...does anyone have a link to this handy?
     
  40. Surgeonvivor

    Surgeonvivor 5+ Year Member

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  41. FIREitUP

    FIREitUP 10+ Year Member

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    TBL
    should i go to the hospital if my foot starts turning blue? i have diabetes btw.
     
  42. cbrons

    cbrons Ratatoskr! *Roar* 10+ Year Member

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    DEFEND MIDDLE LANE!
    Good thread
     
  43. Geekchick921

    Geekchick921 Achievement Unlocked: MD Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Other schools may have just not specified, and it would be wise to further look into the policies on AP credits on the websites for the various schools where you are considering applying.
     
  44. Chops369

    Chops369 7+ Year Member

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    Someone posted this spreadsheet in a different thread, but it's pretty awesome so I feel like sharing.
     

    Attached Files:

  45. wanderer

    wanderer 5+ Year Member

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    Combining the two,
    If you repeat any class you need to average the two grades. So if you get an F (0.0) and replace it with an A (4.0), for GPA purposes it is as if you took the class once and got a C (2.0).




    Many schools prefer that you complete all prerequisites prior to application, not matriculation. However with an overall strong application it is okay to apply without having completed one or two prerequisites. Some schools require all courses completed prior to application and some schools require completion of all courses by December/January of the application year but these make up only the minority of schools.

    It is in every applicant's best interest to take prerequisites prior to applying since an applicant who does not take all the prereqs will be at a disadvantage when he/she takes the MCAT.

    Though you might be at a slight disadvantage, as long as you have corrected your major weaknesses, you won't be at a major disadvantage. Make sure the new app has some new activities, at least one new LOR, and a revised personal statement. Also make sure to rewrite all secondaries. Also, you should apply to more schools this time around.
     
  46. wanderer

    wanderer 5+ Year Member

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    Yes to both. Most practicing physicians do not conduct any research. However if you are lacking in research experience, your remaining activities/interests need to be stronger. This is especially true for top schools, who are more likely to expect strong research experience from their applicants.
     
  47. nburnett3

    nburnett3 7+ Year Member

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    Where are you getting these numbers? I've never seen any statistics that say the average applicant has a 33/3.8. I've always seen averages of 31/3.6. Correct me if I'm wrong, but those numbers just don't seem right.
     
  48. Kevin Baker

    Kevin Baker 7+ Year Member

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    I think those are averages for the average accepted student, which differs from the average matriculant (as higher scoring individuals tend to have more acceptances), which differ from the average applicant.
     
  49. runawayclock

    runawayclock 2+ Year Member

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    can someone dig up the shoe/sock thread? i believe it is pretty pertinent information for MD hopefuls.
     
  50. rafflecopter

    rafflecopter MS-0 2+ Year Member

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    MDApps:
    Yes. The average for accepted applicants was a 33/3.8 in 2008, but the average matriculating student had lower stats. Not a bunch of weight can be put in the average for accepted applicants since a few "top students" get accepted to a ton of schools and skew the numbers upward. If I remember correctly the average score of matriculated students was something like 31 or 32 and 3.6.
     
  51. rhesuspieces

    rhesuspieces 2+ Year Member

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    Cleveland
    MDApps:
    [YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eKFjWR7X5dU[/YOUTUBE]

    Also of relevance: "douchecanoe" is now in my vocabulary and will be used often in the upcoming weeks
     

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