Nov 19, 2015
4
1
Status
Psychology Student
I have none of the prereqs done and I am a bit conflicted as to where to start. The challenge and competivity of uni courses would be perfect, but I work a full time day job and none of the universities near me offer night courses. I would prefer to take university level courses, but the cost and flexibility of cc courses seems more likely at this point. With all this in mind, I know how taking CC courses after earning a bachelors degree can look, so I was hoping for some guidance/non trad wisdom:coldfeet: on what I should do...

My stats as of right now:
BS in Psych
3.67 cum
~3.3 sci ( I only have 5 BCPM courses, two are upper division, the other three are math)
Research: 2,000+ hours for a project funded by the National Science Foundation through ASU, 1 poster presentation, 2 published papers, 1 first author, presented at national conference

Volunteer experience: ~60 hours in random community service (food can collecting, school outreach, homeless shelters, etc) 120+ as a case worker intern for refugee survivors of torture, accompanied them to doctors appts and assisted them with healthcare needs, looking to get some shadowing and more clinical experience at a hospital/clinic

Work history: 3yrs receptionist at massage therapy clinic , 2yrs research assisstant, ~6 months education counselor for a university

Extra curr: Social Media Officer for Psi Chi club, Psychology Learning Community member, also illustrated a childrens book for a sociology professor :)

I feel confident in my ability to get As in a majority of the prereqs. I am shooting for West Coast MD and DO programs for the future, with Colorado/Oregon/Utah being my target states as it is likely I will be moving to one of these states in the next few years. Not looking to get into a top 10 school whatsoever, more than happy with shooting for low-mid tier option.

Thank you for any help, apologies for the wall of text :confused::oops:
 

cyang55

2+ Year Member
May 16, 2015
241
178
Status
Medical Student
Each school have their basic pre-reqs that you have to have, but they also will have a few classes that they specifically require. For example, biochem is not a required pre-req for some schools, but it is required in other schools. Same with anatomy, etc etc. I would suggest going to the websites of schools that you want to get into and see what their requirements are. Also, check your cc or uni and see their pre-reqs for certain classes too. I know for my university, they required cell bio and genetics before I can take biochem. You could also check into online courses that universities will offer. It won't show up as online on your transcript and it'll say it's from the university instead of cc.
 
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Apr 9, 2014
782
736
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Medical Student (Accepted)
I have none of the prereqs done and I am a bit conflicted as to where to start. The challenge and competivity of uni courses would be perfect, but I work a full time day job and none of the universities near me offer night courses. I would prefer to take university level courses, but the cost and flexibility of cc courses seems more likely at this point. With all this in mind, I know how taking CC courses after earning a bachelors degree can look, so I was hoping for some guidance/non trad wisdom:coldfeet: on what I should do...

My stats as of right now:
BS in Psych
3.67 cum
~3.3 sci ( I only have 5 BCPM courses, two are upper division, the other three are math)
Research: 2,000+ hours for a project funded by the National Science Foundation through ASU, 1 poster presentation, 2 published papers, 1 first author, presented at national conference

Volunteer experience: ~60 hours in random community service (food can collecting, school outreach, homeless shelters, etc) 120+ as a case worker intern for refugee survivors of torture, accompanied them to doctors appts and assisted them with healthcare needs, looking to get some shadowing and more clinical experience at a hospital/clinic

Work history: 3yrs receptionist at massage therapy clinic , 2yrs research assisstant, ~6 months education counselor for a university

Extra curr: Social Media Officer for Psi Chi club, Psychology Learning Community member, also illustrated a childrens book for a sociology professor :)

I feel confident in my ability to get As in a majority of the prereqs. I am shooting for West Coast MD and DO programs for the future, with Colorado/Oregon/Utah being my target states as it is likely I will be moving to one of these states in the next few years. Not looking to get into a top 10 school whatsoever, more than happy with shooting for low-mid tier option.

Thank you for any help, apologies for the wall of text :confused::oops:
All else equal, it's best to take your prereqs at a four year university. But all else is never equal and it sounds like your schedule doesn't permit that option. So take the path that is available to you and take the courses at the CC at night.

Alternatively, if you are willing to quit your job, then I would look at the top formal post-bacc programs rather than just stringing something together at the local university. You have a respectable cGPA so you have a good shot at getting one of them.
 
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DrMidlife

has an opinion
10+ Year Member
Oct 30, 2006
7,506
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Tough love for you.

From a 3.3 sGPA so far, with a higher non-science GPA, you can make the following predictions:
1. The prereqs will be very difficult for you, regardless of where you take them. Prereqs are where dreams go to die for a whole lot of otherwise successful students.
2. Therefore your odds of getting A's in the prereqs, with enough content mastery to get an above average MCAT, are not good.
3. You will be applying DO only.

If you want to beat those predictions, then don't cut corners. Prioritize your med school preparation more highly. Loosen your grip on where you live and work. There's a ton of info on SDN for how to approach getting prereqs done at a university, such as getting an on-campus job that covers tuition and gives registration priority. The prescription for a premed in your situation is to get A's in university prereqs. The "A's" part is less under your control than the "university" part.

But: those predictions get you somewhere that's completely reasonable. Aiming for DO via community college prereqs is a completely reasonable thing to do. But again, the pain of the prereqs isn't any less at a community college - you're going to have to work harder in those classes than you ever did before. (And then med school is considerably more painful.)

tl;dr: biggest fear is not getting A's. next biggest fear is hurting yourself with community college.

Best of luck to you.
 
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OP
L
Nov 19, 2015
4
1
Status
Psychology Student
Each school have their basic pre-reqs that you have to have, but they also will have a few classes that they specifically require. For example, biochem is not a required pre-req for some schools, but it is required in other schools. Same with anatomy, etc etc. I would suggest going to the websites of schools that you want to get into and see what their requirements are. Also, check your cc or uni and see their pre-reqs for certain classes too. I know for my university, they required cell bio and genetics before I can take biochem. You could also check into online courses that universities will offer. It won't show up as online on your transcript and it'll say it's from the university instead of cc.
Great advice, I will look at the individual schools more closely. How does online work with needing labs? I know my local universities always seem to have tons of night labs available but the lecture is always during the day :confused: I will see if they have an online lecture/ in person lab...

All else equal, it's best to take your prereqs at a four year university. But all else is never equal and it sounds like your schedule doesn't permit that option. So take the path that is available to you and take the courses at the CC at night.

Alternatively, if you are willing to quit your job, then I would look at the top formal post-bacc programs rather than just stringing something together at the local university. You have a respectable cGPA so you have a good shot at getting one of them.
Oh how I would love to quit and chase my med school dreams, but I am unfortunately the primary source of income so that would not fair well:eek: I would love to do a post bacc, I know they have one in Colorado that might work for me. I am just stuck in AZ for the next 2 years or so, no post baccs here :( but med school isnt going anywhere anytime soon so I suppose I have some time.

Tough love for you.

From a 3.3 sGPA so far, with a higher non-science GPA, you can make the following predictions:
1. The prereqs will be very difficult for you, regardless of where you take them. Prereqs are where dreams go to die for a whole lot of otherwise successful students.
2. Therefore your odds of getting A's in the prereqs, with enough content mastery to get an above average MCAT, are not good.
3. You will be applying DO only.

If you want to beat those predictions, then don't cut corners. Prioritize your med school preparation more highly. Loosen your grip on where you live and work. There's a ton of info on SDN for how to approach getting prereqs done at a university, such as getting an on-campus job that covers tuition and gives registration priority. The prescription for a premed in your situation is to get A's in university prereqs. The "A's" part is less under your control than the "university" part.

But: those predictions get you somewhere that's completely reasonable. Aiming for DO via community college prereqs is a completely reasonable thing to do. But again, the pain of the prereqs isn't any less at a community college - you're going to have to work harder in those classes than you ever did before. (And then med school is considerably more painful.)

tl;dr: biggest fear is not getting A's. next biggest fear is hurting yourself with community college.

Best of luck to you.
Thank you DrMidlife, I think you've illustrated really well the dilemma I'm in and what options I realistically have. I absolutely want to work for a Uni that would cover tuition, the whole reason I am working as an education counselor now is so I can get my foot in the door at my State U. Just gotta keep checking the job boards :dead:

As for prereqs, not gonna lie, the idea of not even being able to handle the basics is something that I worry about. But I am not going to let that stop me without giving it an honest shot. My perspective on school has shifted a bunch since I graduated and I am excited at the idea of getting the opportunity to study my a** off. And if I end up in DO, hey that's life, as long as I get to learn medicine and help people :)
 

cyang55

2+ Year Member
May 16, 2015
241
178
Status
Medical Student
Great advice, I will look at the individual schools more closely. How does online work with needing labs? I know my local universities always seem to have tons of night labs available but the lecture is always during the day :confused: I will see if they have an online lecture/ in person lab...

Some classes that have required labs are usually the gen bio and gen chem, and then definitely O-chem, and I think for physics as well (at least at my school). I took online genetics, and online calc-based physics 3 (1 and 2 had required labs, but 3 did not). I'm sure they have more online courses than those two. You can definitely check and see what they have available at your school :). Good luck!
 
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