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The medical education system

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Doc Martins, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. Doc Martins

    Doc Martins Senior Member
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    As many already know, the United States is different from many other countries regarding medical education in that it requires students to attend an undergraduate institution before going to medical school (this is excluding any sort of special programs).

    I'm wondering if anyone would prefer if we could apply to medical school directly out of high school, or if our current method is better. I see advantages to both sides, but am not sure which one I would prefer.
     
  2. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    I don't know which I'd prefer either, though having gone through the US procedure, I would have liked to try the foreign one :)

    Seriously though, I would have liked to cut out with all the music/art/literature class crap. I got myself into that, though, so I probably can't complain.

    As for going straight through from HS, I knew I was ready to do medicine back then, and so I would have liked this approach. I would have added 4 productive years to my life too (productive for ME = having a job, raising a family, earning money towards my future, etc...) I wasn't able to accomplish those things in college, nor did I try.
     
  3. Gleevec

    Gleevec Peter, those are Cheerios
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    I enjoyed college a lot and liked learning about a lot of different things.

    But on the other hand, if I had only 3 years of undergrad and started med school a year early that would be cool too.
     
  4. midlifecrisis

    midlifecrisis Member
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    The straight outta high school systems seem to wipe out non-traditional students. Being one, I think thats a big advantage to the US system, plus it gives young-uns time to experience more ideas and people than they would if it was a straight out of high school system. As a patient I usually have better visits with docs who have experience outside medicine. They communicate better.

    I can see being frustrated by our system if you've known since age 1 this is what you want to do. But I'm not convinced that leads to better health care.
     
  5. leavesam

    leavesam Member
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    College isn't just about preparing yourself for med/grad school. It is a worthwhile endeavor by itself. Looking back at my college experience, I would never want to trade that for the opportunity to go straight to med school from high school.
     
  6. lazgirl24

    lazgirl24 Senior Member
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    i don't think ppl would be ready for med school right out of hs, are you sure you want to be a doctor at that age?
     
  7. GregsAnatomy

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    The United States doesn't require you get an undergraduate education, the medical schools do. In the early days of medical education, anyone and I mean ANYONE could attend medical school. Medical students were known for their rather unacceptable behavior and never going to class. Fortunately, those brilliant folks over at John Hopkins changed the face of medical education by requiring applicants to have a baccalaureate degree with one year of study in biology, physics, chemistry, organic chemistry, and German! The other medical schools followed in pursuit to upgrade the profession, and the reforms that John Hopkins made in the late 19th century have stuck through today. (cf. any history of medicine textbook) It is the AAMC--the overseeing body of US medical schools--that requires just about everyone to get an undergraduate education.
     
  8. mosoriire

    mosoriire Senior Member
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    I think going out of high school would have been sweet. You have to remember that in a lot of the countries where you go straight from high school, there are systems put in place to ensure that you dont go into a field that might not be right for you....A lot of personality tests, cognitive tests, etc. And non-trads can also go into medicine, but they ususally wont be as many.

    I think the US has the most non-trads interested in med school...
     
  9. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    There are many, many people all over the world who go into medicine at 18, in lieu of college. Are you saying that they're not ready?
     
  10. MoCookiess

    MoCookiess Hater of Biochemistry
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    There's a ton of growing up to do during the college years! I can't imagine putting kids barely out of high school into a medical school environment. Much of undergrad is learning how to learn. I know high school barely prepared me for college. Most of the smart kids in high school rarely have to really study, but struggled with when they hit college and actually realized they had no clue how to study. That's my $0.02.
     
  11. avicoo

    avicoo SDN Donor
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    I think that different people mature at different rates, and that additionally some people regardless of maturity level may take longer determining what path they want to follow in life. I don't think I would want to eliminate the prereq for some undergraduate college experience, but it might be beneficial if there were alternate pathways to medicine - maybe just two years. Especially considering the length of medical education and training I don't think this is unreasonable. I myself am not a traditional student, and that path would not have worked for me but I still think it would for some people.

    Also I don't think it would cut out nontraditional students. We already have a variety of medical students . . . some with a bachelors, some with a masters, and even some PhDs and JDs. I do agree that outside experiences and college courses outside of the science/medicine realm are beneficial which is why I think we should require at least some undergraduate experience.
     
  12. Doc Martins

    Doc Martins Senior Member
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    At first I was in favor of beginning medical school straight out of high school, but now I am thinking about how much I have learned (in school and out) throughout college, and I know if I went straight out of high school, I would have had a whole different mentality. I like the fact that doctors are usually well-rounded people. College allows us to explore fields of knowledge outside of science, and I think that can only be beneficial to us in the end if we take advantage of it.
     

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