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Weight of publications for applying MD-PhD and quality of research..?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Qwerty2013, May 18, 2014.

  1. Qwerty2013

    Qwerty2013 2+ Year Member

    Mar 8, 2013
    I'm planning on applying to an MD-PhD program one day and I am pretty sure of the field I would like to do research in. For the past year I've been at a large lab well-known in its field and will continue to work here until I apply. The thing is that the type of research they do requires a lot of time and often projects take at least 3-4 years to be ready for publication. Being that I am running my own (somewhat small) project, my chances of helping someone else on their project and getting published are low. :/ I know some people who applied for MD-PhD with 2-4 publications and it seems like it was an important factor. Although I'm very happy with what I'm doing, I question if publications really are a big deal when applying for med school.... Any insight would be appreciated!
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  3. Microglia

    Microglia 5+ Year Member

    Jun 26, 2012
    Publications will help boost an application, but aren't required for admission. What really matters is a long term commitment to a research project, and showing that you have a deep understanding of the projects you've been involved with.
    Reckoner, Shazam243 and gyngyn like this.
  4. Underu

    Underu 2+ Year Member

    Oct 22, 2013
    I agree with Microglia, publications are not technically necessary. However since publications are usually associated with large amounts of work in the lab, you will find that most people who have publications will also have an extensive research background. However the converse is not true; having a strong research background does not mean you will generally have publications. This means that if you are not given authorship on any papers, the impetus is on you to prove you know what you are talking about, by discussing your research intelligently in your essays and interviews.

    However, if the opportunity for publications does not come up, you should present your work in other ways. Posters in symposiums/conferences are the best way to go, and I know some undergrads who gave short talks at small conferences. These opportunities (particularly posters) should be more common, and not doing them will make your application pretty suspicious.
    Reckoner and Shazam243 like this.

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