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The Low Gpa--What Do I Do Thread

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BPlaysItCool

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Nontrad version.

This seems to come up. All the time. And for the first time, pokin your head in here, with lot's of anxiety about your decision, with lot's fast moving assertions, it can be confusing.

So what do you do?

You read. Not like a twittering tween, intimidated by your own audacity. But like a grown person. With discernment. With suspicion that everyone, including myself, just might be a 7th grader.

You know you. That's one of your greatest assets. So don't listen to any joker standing on the corner talking ****. When you don't do it elsewhere.

Use the search function. Use the post bacc forum. Block off two days and read a wide swathe of internet conversations. Pay particular attention to anyone scuccesful who seems like you. If you have three kids don't listen to the bachelor finance guy with a sports car telling you where to place your bets.

Here's your basic tools:

1. MSAR book. Google it. Buy it. Read it. That's your probability calculator. Not the random opinion of someone you do ro don't solicit.

2. Make calculative scenarios of what your gpa will be if you do A, B, or C. If you can't do that math. You're in trouble.

3. Talk to the people who run any program your interested in. They know your specifics and the track record of any of their graduates/particpants. Not us. Take it up a notch. Talk to people wh have done the program. Remember: Everyone, including your mother, might be jivin you.

4. Lastly. Your own guts. Your own gumption. Trust them. It will be always just you and that. Against the world. If I had listened to too many people. I wouldn't be in med school.

Now. You don't need a tour guide. Get your head clear. Make your own moves. You have no reason to not be bold.
 
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0919mmk

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B you're a crazy dude. I like you, you give good advice without the typical SDN bitterness, but you're a crazy dude, no doubt. How does the low gpa part of the thread title apply to your post at all? lol :)

Very motivational though. In any case, I have a 3.1 GPA, and I got in to a US MD school 2 cycles ago, and I'm reapplying this cycle. Go figure. Crazy world. Almost as crazy as Bcool :D jk, but I really do wish I was living in the same dimension as you.
 
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DrMidlife

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What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.
 
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EdLongshanks

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What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.

From now on when we get our 3-posts-per-week asking the same question, we ought to reply with a link to this thread. It's useless to put it as a sticky, since those posters never read the stickies (which is one of the reasons that I get testy with them.)
 

BPlaysItCool

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What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.

Absolutely masterful breakdown. The shepherd has spoken lambs.
 
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QofQuimica

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From now on when we get our 3-posts-per-week asking the same question, we ought to reply with a link to this thread. It's useless to put it as a sticky, since those posters never read the stickies (which is one of the reasons that I get testy with them.)
I'll add a link to the sticky. Hope springs eternal with me, after all. ;)

If someone would like to explain the AACOMAS grade replacement policy, that would be very helpful as well. I'll do it if no one else wants to, but it would be better if someone who has gone through the entire grade replacement process, applied through AACOMAS, and gotten into osteo school would do it.
 

DrMidlife

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I'll add a link to the sticky. Hope springs eternal with me, after all. ;)

If someone would like to explain the AACOMAS grade replacement policy, that would be very helpful as well. I'll do it if no one else wants to, but it would be better if someone who has gone through the entire grade replacement process, applied through AACOMAS, and gotten into osteo school would do it.
I did this once with pictures of what the app looks like. I'll dig it up.
 

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how come TX only has the grade forgiveness after 10 years?
 

BPlaysItCool

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how come TX only has the grade forgiveness after 10 years?

Seriuosly. Q, how do you do it?

Bop gun right up side your rump:

[YOUTUBE]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TuG9YSyRhU[/YOUTUBE]

There. Now this thread is serious internet biz. No more pointless questions. Do any of us seem likely to be Texas legislastors from whenever that poilicy was designed? What are the chances of that?

You no why?!!!!!

You say How? or nothing.
 

DrMidlife

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How to make it easier to get into med/vet/dental school with a low GPA:

1. Get into med/vet/dental school (note: requires good GPA)
2. Get through med/vet/dental school & residency
3. Get into med ed academia (note: may require Ed.D degree as well)
4. Try to change the policy

Good luck!
 
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DrMidlife

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That would be perfect. Thank you.
I did AMCAS, AACOMAS & TMDSAS in '07 with I think 6 different classes of repeats. Give me a couple days & I'll try to update it to match current rules.

A teaser:
AMCAS: computer science isn't math
TMDSAS: computer science is math
AACOMAS: computer science is math...but math isn't science!
 
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n3xa

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*golfclap*

*right click, save as*
 
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jsp132

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Seriuosly. Q, how do you do it?

Bop gun right up side your rump:

[YOUTUBE]_TuG9YSyRhU[/YOUTUBE]

There. Now this thread is serious internet biz. No more pointless questions. Do any of us seem likely to be Texas legislastors from whenever that poilicy was designed? What are the chances of that?

You no why?!!!!!

You say How? or nothing.

:laugh: stupid question im sorry
 

DrMidlife

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As promised and delayed, here's a draft of a GPA Cookbook. I'll leave it to Q to decide whether things should get reorganized or stickied. Also, Q, if you want to do any editing, have at it. Note: I could use some updated pictures if newer folks have submitted apps that they can screenshot & whitewash.

MD/DO/TX GPA cookbook

1. There are three parties who get to vote on how your GPA is calculated (but only 2 votes count)

a. your college(s)

  • a college transcript's GPA calculation is completely ignored in med school admissions
  • a college's forgiveness/retake policy is usually ignored in med school admissions
  • college A's appraisal of college B's coursework, such as for transfer credit, is ignored
    • possible exception: foreign coursework appraisal for transfer credit
b. your application service(s) such as AMCAS, AACOMAS, TMDSAS

  • every app service makes you type in your coursework, line by line, and it's up to you to correctly categorize it
  • med school app services then go line by line through your entered coursework, comparing it to your direct-from-college transcript(s)
    • app services have access to college-specific info
  • med school app service GPA calcs are given to med schools, along with the summary breakdowns and a verified list of coursework
  • GPA calc systems used by app services usually have instructions and are predictable
c. your med schools

  • med schools can do whatever they want with the data they get from the application service.
  • med schools can impose a hard cutoff at 3.0, or a weighting that favors early vs. later coursework, or something mysterious and creepy
2. What matters on your college transcript

  • course number, title, description, grade, hours
    • note that credits/units/hours are not standard between schools
  • degree granted (or not)
  • maybe transfer evaluation of foreign coursework
3. There are different application systems with different rules

3. Repeated coursework vs. AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS

  • AACOMAS forgives old grades when you retake the class, in doing GPA calcs. AMCAS and TMDSAS include everything in GPA calcs.
  • say you take the following:
2001: School A, Gen Chem 1A, 4 hours, B
2002: School A, Gen Chem 1B, 4 hours, C
2004: School B, Gen Chem 141 (1st semester), 3 hours, W (withdrew)
2011: School C, Gen Chem 101, 5 hours, A
2012: School C, Gen Chem 102, 5 hours, A
AMCAS and TMDSAS count everything in the GPA calc, and you get a 3.33 for the above. You are expected to mark "repeat" for a repeated course, but this does not affect GPA calcs.
AACOMAS counts only the most recent grade in the GPA calc, and you get a 4.0 for the above.

  • Marking repeats for AACOMAS uses buckets. For the above example, you would use the provided bucket called "Repeat 01" and put Gen Chem 1A, Gen Chem 141, and Gen Chem 101 in it. You use the provided bucket called "Repeat 02" and put Gen Chem 1B and Gen Chem 102 in it. As of 2011, you get 7 buckets.
4. Coursework classification vs. AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS

  • the definition of your science GPA varies by app service
    • AMCAS and TMDSAS use BCPM as science (bio, chem, physics, math).
    • AACOMAS uses BCP as science (bio, chem, physics).
  • examples:
    • Engineering or computer science
      • AMCAS says these are non-science. Not BCPM. So all that stats and dynamics coursework is just, you know, liberal arts or something.
      • TMDSAS says these are science or math. BCPM.
      • AACOMAS says engineering isn't science. But computer science is math. But math doesn't count as science.
    • also note that health classes don't count as science
      • clinical or health courses, such as phlebotomy or nutrition, don't count in your science GPA.
5. GPA breakdowns vs. AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS

  • examples from the '07-'08 app year below
  • again, med schools get all the data and can do anything they want with it. Med schools don't have to use the app service summaries.
This is AMCAS, from 2007, but it was the same in 2010:
gpam.jpg


This is TMDSAS
, from 2007 (an update would be welcome here):
tmdsas07.jpg


I don't have AACOMAS, unfortunately.

Again, any suggestions for edits or improvements would be welcome.
 
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n3xa

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I can screen shot my AACOMAS this week.
 

QofQuimica

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As promised and delayed, here's a draft of a GPA Cookbook. I'll leave it to Q to decide whether things should get reorganized or stickied. Also, Q, if you want to do any editing, have at it. Note: I could use some updated pictures if newer folks have submitted apps that they can screenshot & whitewash.
This is great, DrMidlife. Thanks so much for putting it together. :thumbup:

As promised, I have linked this thread to the FAQs sticky. If you want to find it, go to the second post (Info on How to Apply to Professional School), third section (Academic Requirements for Medical School), and it's the first link listed there. Feel free to provide links to this thread early and often for our noobs who will find this info useful.

To be fair to the noobs, I won't deny that my sticky links have sticky links in some cases....we may be reaching the point where I need to reorganize and divide up the FAQ posts again to make them a bit less unwieldy. :hungover:

I can screen shot my AACOMAS this week.
That would be great if you would. Thanks in advance.
 

phltz

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4. Coursework classification vs. AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS

  • the definition of your science GPA varies by app service
    • AMCAS and TMDSAS use BCPM as science (bio, chem, physics, math).
    • AACOMAS uses BCP as science (bio, chem, physics).
  • examples:
    • Engineering or computer science
      • AMCAS says these are non-science. Not BCPM. So all that stats and dynamics coursework is just, you know, liberal arts or something.
      • TMDSAS says these are science or math. BCPM.
      • AACOMAS says engineering isn't science. But computer science is math. But math doesn't count as science.
    • also note that health classes don't count as science
      • clinical or health courses, such as phlebotomy or nutrition, don't count in your science GPA.

I took a lot of computer science classes at my main undergrad school, many of which were cross-listed with the mathematics department. Off the top of my head, algorithms, theory of computation, math for computer science, and two cryptography classes were all cross-listed when I took them. Despite being cross-listed in both departments, they were reported on my transcript as being part of the computer science department. However, to someone not familiar with the school, it's actually pretty hard to tell department a class is in.

There is some ambiguity here, and for each of these classes there's a good argument to be made for it being CS, and a good argument for it being math. I categorized the classes I got As in as math, and the others as CS. AMCAS didn't change a thing.

If you took a class with a lot of math that has "Statistics" in the name, and you feel like it'd be better for it to count as BCPM, I think it's worth categorizing it as a math class. They might change it to computer science, or engineering, or whatever, which is fine. As long as there is a genuine argument to be made for it being a mathematics class, you aren't going to get into any trouble.
 

n3xa

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Ok, my AACOMAS was just verified this morning. I'm searching both the saved .pdf and html version of my application and AACOMAS's application just has a listing of all the courses I've ever taken. It looks just like the Course Work section of AMCAS.

Prior to verification, the Colleges and Coursework section had a breakdown of my GPA. :confused: :shrug: Unless my tired old eyes are missing something, I don't see my AACOMAS gpa at all.
 

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Ok, my AACOMAS was just verified this morning. I'm searching both the saved .pdf and html version of my application and AACOMAS's application just has a listing of all the courses I've ever taken. It looks just like the Course Work section of AMCAS.

Prior to verification, the Colleges and Coursework section had a breakdown of my GPA. :confused: :shrug: Unless my tired old eyes are missing something, I don't see my AACOMAS gpa at all.
Thanks for trying. This explains why I don't have the breakdown either - I saved my AACOMAS app every way I could back in '07 and never saw what AMCAS & TMDSAS give.
 

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Looking at the breakdown of "Freshman, Sophmore, etc" when putting in grades. How do they determine the class year?

I took classes 25 years ago, then about 20 years ago, then finally about 15 years ago ----- all for undergrad.

How about that - a ten year undergrad :laugh:

Anyway.... how do they figure the class designation when you are putting the grade in?
 

DrMidlife

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Looking at the breakdown of "Freshman, Sophmore, etc" when putting in grades. How do they determine the class year?

I took classes 25 years ago, then about 20 years ago, then finally about 15 years ago ----- all for undergrad.

How about that - a ten year undergrad :laugh:

Anyway.... how do they figure the class designation when you are putting the grade in?
You can find details on this in the app instructions, usually.

Generally you're expected to divide at 30 semester hours or 45 quarter hours per academic year, when there's no obvious dividing line due to part time or whatnot.

Mine was messy, in that I did a freshman year, then a semester at a CC, then a bunch of years on the quarter system. No idea how to define the end of my sophomore year. But AMCAS added the CC semester to my freshman year, which adds up to 39 semester hours running from 1984 to 1987.

Unless there's a specific reason you need coursework to fall in a particular bucket, just call it like you see it and the app service will correct it as they see fit, apparently.

Best of luck to you.
 

QofQuimica

Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting....
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I suggest following whatever your transcript says, since that's what AMCAS does. If your transcript doesn't give a year of attendance status, then like DrMidlife said, you assign them by credit hour. If you don't have any year statuses *or* credit hours, and your classes aren't even listed in the order you actually took them in (that was me!), then you arbitrarily divide them into four approximately equal years. This is exactly what I did, following the order the classes were listed in on my transcript, not the order I actually took them in. AMCAS didn't touch that one with a ten foot pole. :p
 
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md2b111

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Thanks A lot!!!!!!!!!!

What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.
 

AnotherGasMan

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7. Spend three years improving your GPA and apply to Australia. Most Australian schools only consider your GPA from the last three years of your undergraduate study.
 

cantthink

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4. Coursework classification vs. AMCAS/AACOMAS/TMDSAS

  • the definition of your science GPA varies by app service
    • AMCAS and TMDSAS use BCPM as science (bio, chem, physics, math).
    • AACOMAS uses BCP as science (bio, chem, physics).
  • examples:
    • Engineering or computer science
      • AMCAS says these are non-science. Not BCPM. So all that stats and dynamics coursework is just, you know, liberal arts or something.
      • TMDSAS says these are science or math. BCPM.
      • AACOMAS says engineering isn't science. But computer science is math. But math doesn't count as science.
    • also note that health classes don't count as science
      • clinical or health courses, such as phlebotomy or nutrition, don't count in your science GPA.


I saw you mentioned Engineering is not counted in the Science GPA....

I was looking at the AACOM page, and they have some engineering subjects listed under their "physics" section in the list of science classes..... my example is Heat Transfer and Thermo-Dynamics that were taken as MEE classes not PHY classes..... I did awesome in them so it'd be good to have them counted. I don't care so much about the statics and dynamics cuz i only did so-so in them

If anyone know that would be awesome. Just trying to plan ahead and keeping tabs on my GPA for both DO and MD applications....
 

excitedtoapply

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I calculated my cGPA and sGPA by hand because I didn't know about the AMCA calculator and was not really happy but not surprised at my 3.06 sGPA and 3.44 cGPA. You can imagine how I cringed inside when I put it into the AMCA calculator and found myself sitting at a 3.00 sGPA and 3.36 cGPA. I guess I will have to see if I can sneak any of those good engineering class grades in there for the science, huh?
 

OBK

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I calculated my cGPA and sGPA by hand because I didn't know about the AMCA calculator and was not really happy but not surprised at my 3.06 sGPA and 3.44 cGPA. You can imagine how I cringed inside when I put it into the AMCA calculator and found myself sitting at a 3.00 sGPA and 3.36 cGPA. I guess I will have to see if I can sneak any of those good engineering class grades in there for the science, huh?

i only caution you because the application that the school sees shows whether they corrected your misclassifications. i had a few fairly innocuous ones (such as miscellaneous vs. political science) but i contemplated trying to sneak some environmental classes in as 'ecology' under biology...glad i didnt since it shows
 

excitedtoapply

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i only caution you because the application that the school sees shows whether they corrected your misclassifications. i had a few fairly innocuous ones (such as miscellaneous vs. political science) but i contemplated trying to sneak some environmental classes in as 'ecology' under biology...glad i didnt since it shows

I was thinking things like my statistics for engineers is probably actually math and as mentioned above, I may be able to consider my thermodynamics as science. I am way too high-strung:eek: to try and classify something differently than I actually believe it to be :)
 

spen64

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If you do not mind how did you score on the mcat? Which school?

thanks

spen64
 

lunalight

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If you do not mind how did you score on the mcat? Which school?

thanks

spen64

Hiya, I doubt you're gonna hear back from that person because that post was from over a year ago. :) I believe the term is "necrobump."

On a side note for anyone else going through this thread: I followed DrMidlife's directions on "What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is WAY below 3.0" almost to the letter and was accepted, so.....it works!
 
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TeddyBoomBoom

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While this is an old thread, it got bumped anyway, so I'll respond.

I have *27* (yes 27) F's and W's on my college transcripts, and am currently accepted at 3 DO schools, and waitlisted at my state MD school.

I grew older and grew up, and went back to school and finished my BS with great grades. I completed a traditional MS program with great grades, and subsequently was hired as adjunct faculty at the same university. I worked as a scribe in a local hospital for a year or two and received fantastic letters. I studied haaaaaaaard for the MCAT (4-5 hrs over 3-4 months using SN2D's plan) and earned a 33.

I have *no* qualms about entering med school at 36, but it was a long journey.

I'm just saying that it is very difficult, but doable.

~TeddyBoomBoom
 
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whatwhy

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Thanks for the bump. I have a 2.9 and a 27 on my MCAT and I literally can't find anywhere to accept me. Maybe there's hope for me yet.
 

ImmunoLove

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What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.

So, this is old, but I just have to say it: I love this. I love you. I've busted my fanny for years. Did everything on your list. I needed a slap in the face (too much time on SDN turns one into a neurotic fool), and this was it. Hell, I'm going to save this post.
 
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The_Sunny_Doc

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What you should do if you want to go to med school but your GPA is way below 3.0:

1. Best option, not kidding: find another career. Without a doubt, another career is a much, much better idea than pursuing medicine. You can't imagine how much work you have to do to get through med school at this point, and no, it's probably not worth it.

2. Assuming you're going to ignore #1: hold onto your fanny, this is going to get ragged.

3. Honest question: seriously, what, exactly, has you thinking you will survive med school, and that it will not suck for you? If watching House is your motivation, don't get anywhere near me because I will slap you: you have a basic fact vs. fiction problem and you are wasting everybody's time. If, however, your interest in being a doctor is based on some knowledge of what doctors have to be responsible for, and some knowledge of what it takes to make it through med school and residency, then read on. What have you done to change your study habits? Your work ethic? Your ability to tolerate profound levels of bullsh*t that are between you and a goal? Your ability to withstand debilitating life events without getting debilitated at your job which is school? Your use of mind altering substances? Whatever prevented you from getting good grades in college simply must be addressed. This is not optional. Figure it out. Don't find a med school that will let you in: you will fail and have a few hundred thousand dollars of federal debt that is not discharged in a bankruptcy. Getting a residency is never going to be your biggest problem.

4. You must get an A, in one class, math or science, at a community college or wherever you can take a class, before you do anything remotely like a postbac. If you get one A in one class, now get two A's taking two classes at a time. Now three. What's that? You are worried about some detail here? Shut up. Do it. What's that? You did it and you got all A's? Great! Proceed.

5. Your cumulative GPA is never, ever getting fixed. (Unless you invest about a decade, and move to Texas, see 5a). You will never be a competitive applicant for medical school compared to 90% of medical school applicants. If you get into medical school, it will be because you have an incredibly compelling story that makes adcoms want to take a risk with you. You have to make your cumulative GPA a small detail. If you get into medical school, it will be because you did multiple consecutive fresh very full time years of hard science at some university that let you in, and you got a killer 3.7+ in those years, and you got an above average MCAT (28+ for DO, 32+ for MD). You also did every last thing you possibly could to demonstrate that you're in this for the duration: you volunteered, you were a leader, you are employable, you earned the approval of faculty and bosses, possibly you published.

5a. Texas has an academic fresh start, where for established TX residents, you can have a college record that is 10 years old wiped out so you can start over. Valid only in Texas: you have to stay there for med school.

6. Make no mistakes in the above. No withdrawals, no C's, no incompletes, no incidents.

Still reading? If you get the above right, then you've invested at least 3 years, you're broke, you can't borrow any more federal money for undergrad, your significant other is long gone, your parents are trying to get you to stop, and you can't remember why you wanted to do this. And you still have no guarantee of getting into med school.

If this all sounds like what you want to do, more power to you.

Best of luck to you.

Echoing what the poster above me said - you're the best, @DrMidlife . I followed your instructions starting in 2011, and have my acceptances in hand. Thanks for your immense contribution to SDN in the form of your clear and concise, fluff-free guidelines for pre-meds.
 
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