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Trying to make sense of this process

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Loki, Oct 11, 2001.

  1. Loki

    Loki Senior Member

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    They say it over and over...Choose wisely when applying to medical school. Choose some reach schools, some backup schools and just a couple that you don't stand a freakin chance at acceptance.

    Ok...I have just finished reading some posts from last year's applicant pool. I must say, there is no logic behind the results. For example, you may see a couple of schools that are pretty close say Pitt and Cornell and and individual who applied to both schools will get an interview at Pitt not Cornell and vise-versa.

    Never...I mean never...did I see an example of someone getting interviews at a large majority of the schools that require similar stats....

    Empirically, my analysis:

    This whole entire app process is a game of chance...So why, therefore, does everyone tell you to have a school choice application strategy? I really do not see the point in developing/following a tactical plan of application.

    Get the GPA...Take the MCAT...Throw your money on the table...Roll those Bones baby! There is no tactic that will allow you to increase your odds. It is a mystery pure and simple.
     
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  3. lilycat

    Moderator Emeritus

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    Actually, there was a pretty large group of applicants from last year that interviewed at lots of the "comparable" schools to which they applied -- ie, lots of people getting invites to Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Duke, etc.

    To an extent, it is hard to find logic behind the process. My personal example -- I was rejected from Dartmouth without an interview, but invited to interview at 2 schools ranked in the top ten -- definitely didn't make sense to me at the time, and to an extent it still doesn't. However, that's exactly why people recommend that you apply to a wide range of schools -- you may get a second look from some "reaches" you never thought you had a chance at, and still get rejected at schools you felt you were almost guaranteed to interview/be accepted at. Your numbers will get you so far -- then the intangibles come into play, such as extracurrics., essay, etc. And of course, you can't forget about class demographics/make-up -- the best analogy I heard for this is that it's sort of like establishing a football team -- you don't want 10 quarterbacks, no matter how talented they all are. Schools don't want a class that's 80% biochem majors from California. You never really know which school might have a niche for you, which is again why it helps to apply to several schools, at varying tiers of "difficulty" to get into.
     
  4. girl

    girl Member

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    I was wondering why you said Cornell and Pitt were close schools? I would totally disagree and say they are completely different schools. Aside from the objective acceptance rates (3.5% vs. 8%), they teach with very different philosophies. Both excellent schools, but similar? Not as far as I can see.
     
  5. Loki

    Loki Senior Member

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    No, you are right...the number of applicants, however, for both schools are pretty close. As far as the acceptance rate goes, the primary reason that cornell's percentage is lower is the total number of applicants vs the slots available (about 44 seats less), so that is kinda splitting hairs. Yes, the education philosophy is different and there are many other differences.

    The point that I was making was not so much a comparison of these two institutions. Remember, it is not like I was comparing say Cornell to my state school (big difference here). I was illustrating that based on numbers and overall rankings, it can be confusing to see why someone can make it at one and not the other.

    This is a good thing, mind you, as I am beginning to believe that it is not about the numbers, schools have certain niches and they are looking for a special students that fit their needs...plain and simple.
     

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