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What are my chances of getting into a medical school in U.S. or outside U.S.

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by BernzFerguson, May 17, 2007.

  1. BernzFerguson

    BernzFerguson Go Lakers!
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    Hi, if anybody could please help me and give me their opinion on my chances of making into medical school for this Fall 2008 class, here is my info:
    GPA: 3.4
    MCAT: 21Q
    Extracurricular: Volunteered at hospital for about a year and a half, also research in Neuropsychological studies
    Letters of Rec: probably standard quality
    Are there any schools out there from anybody's recollection that would give me a shot?
    Should I even bother applying? Or should I retake the MCAT (I'm not sure of how much better I can do on the test)?
    Please HELP
     
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  3. DocBR

    DocBR MS-3
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    Maybe a Caribbean school.

    My advice; retake the MCAT.
     
  4. Dr.Inviz

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    A newbie cross post.
     
  5. GuzzyRon

    GuzzyRon Son of the Son of Man
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    Don't worry about applying for now...retake the MCAT.
     
  6. uhohspaghettio

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    Retake for 28+. if you can get 28-30, you should be good for DO; if not, go to St. George
     
  7. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    No, people with a 21 generally do not get into US allo med schools. It would be a big waste of money and put you in the disadvantageous position of being a reapplicant. To give yourself a shot you want at least above a balanced 27. Average for matriculants is a 30 and it is a very tight grouping, so you are not going to make it past many admission screens. Study for the MCAT and until you are getting closer to your target on multiple full length exams do not take it.
     
  8. nekrogg

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    28-30 he should have a shot at allopathic? i thought DO was for people around the 20s.
     
  9. Law2Doc

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    The average for US matriculants in allo schools is a 30. Means about half of admittees will be coming up just shy of 30. I think you want above a balanced 27 to have any odds at all, and each point above that makes admission significantly more likely.
     
  10. nekrogg

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    so to answer the op's original question in most strict sense, does he have a shot as if he goes the the DO route?
     
  11. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    I would suggest he pose that specific question on the pre-osteo board. My understanding was that a 21 is still probably a bit low for those.
     
  12. Depakote

    Depakote Pediatric Anesthesiologist
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    That score is low even for the most forgiving DO schools.
     
  13. Divine Furor

    Divine Furor Academician
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    The OP asked if schools would "give him/her a shot?" for fall 2008. Here's the deal: probably not. There are a few new DO schools that *might* consider you, but your best course of action would be signing up for the January classes in either Kaplan/Princeton Review, busting your tail to up your MCAT by at least seven points, and then you can consider applying for fall 2009. I know, personally, that it can be brutal to wait to apply...but better to wait and apply when you really have the guns.
     
  14. dbhvt

    dbhvt Senior Member
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    What did you do to prepare for the MCAT?
     
  15. BernzFerguson

    BernzFerguson Go Lakers!
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    to prepare the first time in august i took princeton review, the second time i studied on my own. so i tried both types of preparation styles, so now i'm lost as how to prepare. the test is just so hard for me, i really don't know how to prepare for it. Is it true that if you take the MCAT more than three times the admissions committee will start averaging your scores? And is the Ross Medical school in the Carribean any good?
     
  16. Noeljan

    Noeljan Senior Member
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    You should not apply until you redo the MCAT. good luck.
     
  17. premeddick

    premeddick Junior Member
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    Is 21 your best combined score? What was your first test breakdown? second?
     
  18. EMDream

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    if you've taken it twice already and really tried i dont know. i think maybe you should just apply carribean and a few of the lowest score accepting DO's although unlikely.
     
  19. Law2Doc

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    Bear in mind that the MCAT is but one of many multiple choice/standardized tests you need to get through in your path to becoming a physician. And it isn't even the hardest one (Step 1 covers a lot more info). So I personally think you want to find a way to conquer it, because if you bypass it and go caribbean, you may perhaps be postponing your test issues until later, after spending a lot of time and money.
     
  20. AnesthesiaMD

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    did you prepare for the test? I would suggest not retaking until after an extensive (2 months) review of the material and just getting more comfortable with the types of questions that they ask.

    edit: sorry, I didn't see the rest of your posts in the thread. I would just keep trying. When you think you've prepared enough, study some more...
     
  21. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    Your GPA is a fine but your MCAT is a little low for SGU (the best Caribbean school). Their average is a 26.

    http://www.sgu.edu/website/sguwebsite.nsf/som/student-statistics-docofmedicine.html

    SGU Averages

    MCAT
    Verbal = 8
    Phys. Sci. = 9
    Bio. Sci. = 9

    GPA
    Undergraduate = 3.4
    Undergrad. Sci. = 3.3
    Graduate = 3.4

    USMLE Pass Rate (1998-2005)
    SGU = 90%
    US = 92%

    Top 5 Residencies:
    Internal Medicine
    Surgery
    Pediatrics
    Emergency Medicine
    Family Practice
     
  22. dbhvt

    dbhvt Senior Member
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    If there was something lacking in your preparation, I would say fix it, and then retake the MCAT. As it is, I think you need to reconsider your career options. And I'd echo the advice of Law2Doc. The MCAT isn't the only standardized test hurdle you'll need to deal with.
     
  23. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    Well, depending on the skewness of the distribution, you might need to look at the median :D
     
  24. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Agree. Which is why I said "about half" rather than just half.
     
  25. uhohspaghettio

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    hmmm didn't know that St. George has better stats than some Midwest state schools and top DO Schools such as Westerm and Touro
     
  26. uhohspaghettio

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    He doesn't have a good enough GPA though. If his GPA were 3.8 or 3.9 then, with 28 he could get some interviews at low-tier schools such as RFU, Drexel, NYMC, St Louis, Creighton etc but not with his 3.4 GPA.
     
  27. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    SGU is a very good school if you don't mind being an IMG. It's a great alternative for people who can't get into US med schools and who don't want to give up on being a MD.
     
  28. uhohspaghettio

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    Do you go there or something ? :smuggrin:
     
  29. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    No, I just like for people to have all the information so that they can make the best decision for themselves.

    If you get into medical school, I'm sure your future patients will also appreciate this approach.
     
  30. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Then you need to factor in attrition rate (as well as decellerations), which is the dirty little secret of most caribbean schools. What percentage of people who start actually sit for Step 1 in two years and graduate in 4? Safe bet it's way below the typical US school.
     
  31. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    All of this information should be easily available through connected links off the URL I listed. There's also Google.

    Also, what you're not factoring in is that if the person is motivated and really willing to work for their MD, then attrition and decellerations will be a non-issue.
     
  32. MedStudentWanna

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    Don't make a blanket statement like that. You're wrong. There are people who get in to an allo school with a 3.4 and a 28 or 29 MCAT. Many of them post on this site.
     
  33. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    I'm not sure I can decipher it from that info. It seems they have 300+ matriculants and graduates each year, but a total student body of 2500. Does that mean a large percentage who get in stay bottlnecked for more than 4 years before graduating (i.e. lots of deceleration and repeating of years)?
     
  34. Law2Doc

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    That's true, but when you list things like a 90% board pass rate, it's only going to be a useful comparison if that's not 90% of the top third of the class who ends up left, or doesn't keep getting held back. I agree, some people go through caribbean and do fine. Just that your stats may not be presenting an accurate picture the way you were comparing them head to head with US allo. The people who fall out of the picture need to be accounted for.
     
  35. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    Like any statistic, it depends on how you define the sample. If you read the caption on their website, it refers to "First Time Test Takers". This mean that among first time test takers, the average pass rate is 90%. This says nothing about those that decel at US schools or at SGU nor does it claim to. Check out PDQ (Pretty Darned Quick) Statistics by Norman and Streiner if you want a great primer on statistics. While the authors don't claim it, I think it's really geared toward clinicians. I can't tell you how many times I've worked with docs who couldn't tell the difference between a Chi Square and a Kolmogorov-Smirnov to save their life and still wondered why they couldn't just throw a linear regression on any data set that came their way.

    Anyways, the way I see it, US schools accept fewer students are thus are more selective with their admissions. SGU accepts approximately 1 out of 7 applicants and, due to the applicant pool, ends up with lower MCAT and GPA averages. They admit more students than a US school does but, once admitted, it is up to the student to study, do the work, and pass the USMLE. It gives more people a chance to have a life in medicine and, if the person can't cut it, they get held back or dismissed from the program. That way, the lower performing students weed themselves out of medicine and leave the better performing students to go on, graduate, and practice.
     
  36. uhohspaghettio

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    could u please list some examples? oh, and dont list disadvantaged minorities or URMs or whatevere
     
  37. MedStudentWanna

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    A quick search on MDApps gave me 131 profiles (er, um, "examples"). A few notable ones:

    3.14 and 28 MCAT got into Wayne State

    3.30 and 28 MCAT got into the University of Cincinnati

    3.19 and 29 MCAT got into St. Louis University

    3.29 and 29 MCAT got into the University of Maryland

    3.20 and 28 MCAT got into Jefferson

    3.30 and 28 MCAT got into University of Utah

    For more:
    http://www.mdapplicants.com/searchresults.php

    Don't dash hopes and act like you know what you're talking about when you don't.
     
  38. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    Absolutely. It's a good second chance school. I was just objecting to your head to head board pass percentage because you seem to be suggesting that everyone in that school does just as well as stateside; in fact your numbers are basically a comparison of almost all of the US allo med students who matriculated vs the relatively smaller percentage of that caribbean school's grads who made it to the step 1 stage. So the 92 vs 90 is misleading. i.e. The odds of someone startng med school today, taking the boards in two years, and passing simply aren't as good. You are omitting all of the people who drop out or are decelerate between day one and the boards, which is a very small number in the US and not such a small number in the caribbean. You have to get to that stage to get to be one of the 90% and as best I can tell from your link fewer are getting to that stage outside of the states. The way it is presented is simply intentionally misleading.

    If you get into a US med school you for the most part will become a physician. Not so elsewhere. But if it's your only shot, yes you can absolutely work hard and make it happen there. For those it works for, kudos.
     
  39. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    The goal isn't to define the sample to be simply statistically accurate. Accurate but intentionally misleading is what is troubling here.
     
  40. fever106

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    Here here! Where does that jerk get off bashing schools like creighton, drexel, and nymc? Does he have any idea how many people on this site would kill to get into any us allo school? As far as I am concerned, there is no such thing as a "low tier" med school. The competition is fierce, and anybody who turns their snoot up at a school just because some bs rating scale didn't put it in their top 50 needs to grow up. Ratings are bogus. US news bases its ratings only on research funding or primary care. If you look at the primary care category, US news ranked an Osteopathic school #2! And as for research, what if you don't want to do research? Rankings are completely arbitrary, all med schools only take the cream of the crop.
     
  41. QuakerPreMed

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    I'm pretty sure "cream of the crop" depends on how you measure it. There are totally insane people here, incapable of social interaction, accepted to tier-1 schools. I wouldn't put them in my top ten favorite people list. They may be the same people who take issue with your above statement, claiming that their 43 MCAT and 3.99 GPA makes them superior to lesser beings who get into NYMC with a 29 and 3.4. Rightly, the 29/3.4 applicant is a bit defensive. I land somewhere between these two groups of people, and I still am conflicted by your generalization.

    Are all US allo matriculants fairly bright people? Yes. At least, I hope so. Are they all the same? No. Perhaps we're all cream of the crop compared to college graduates as a whole (pre-vet and pre-dental might be offended by that statement, hey, you guys are smart too, i mean those busines majors), but there is a definite stratification even among us 'good' applicants. This may lie more in test-taking ability than in intelligence, but to claim we're all the same is silly.
     
  42. fever106

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  43. uhohspaghettio

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    hmmm.I guess some people here - non URMs- have 28 and 3.4, and they hope that it would be good enough to get them in. Lets see what happens in this cycle.
     
  44. MedStudentWanna

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    You're pretty smug. That's cool. Just remember that karma's a boomerang.
     
  45. bwells46

    bwells46 MD, MPH, MSM
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    You mean the business majors that will be setting our fee schedules for reimbursement? Or the ones running multi-billion dollar corporations?

    Physicians, business majors, etc. are like all groups of people - there's a bell curve. A few real standouts, a large portion of those that are adequate, and a few whose involvement in the field is a non sequitur.

    Either way, I wouldn't get on their bad side. Chances are, some MHA is going to be the one deciding how much to reimburse you per procedure or visit.
     
  46. uhohspaghettio

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    I am not expecting karma to nail or elevate me. I am just trying to give him an honest assessment.
    Anyways, I think it would be wrong for me to give him a false hope and say that his chance of getting into an MD school with 28 MCAT and 3.4 GPA is pretty high- because it is not. What if he applies this year with the high expectation of getting accepted, only to get very disappointed later on? Or he might get accepted make me look moted... Either way, with 3.4 and 28,he shouldn't expect much success. But hey, this is all crap shoot so...
     
  47. uhohspaghettio

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    Actually, NYMC average is a bit higher than that now. It is around 3.6 and 31... btw, I know many people from my school with 3.5 and 30 that did not even get interviews from there, RFU, or Drexel so...
     
  48. kdburton

    kdburton Ulnar Deviant
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    thats why you gotta get that MD/MBA, sucka!
     
  49. powerful_squib

    powerful_squib Snoop dogg resident
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    To the OP.

    I feel as though you have the drive and dedication to become a great MD. You can't ignore the statistics, but if you have this strong passion for medicine I do not see why you can't make it. Everyone is not a born test taker. I know that and everyone of SDN should know that. Your GPA is pretty ok but you definently have to bring up that MCAT score. If you do go DO u need to bring up ur score up at least 4-5 points. I don't see why you can't get in. If you want to go allo you need to bring ur score up to about 28.

    If you have the determination I would really go back and think about the strategies you used for preparing for the MCAT. Then I would compare that to how you prepare for your classes and try to find a study strategy that is best for you. I am not saying that studying for the MCAT is like studying for a course, but it might help.

    Just try to bring up that MCAT score, and you should be fine.
     
  50. 45408

    45408 aw buddy
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    :rolleyes: A 3.8/28 is good enough for a LOT of schools, provided the applicant has other good qualities. Remember that a 3.7/30 is the national average! (no, I'm not just trying to make myself feel better - I'm an M1 who applied with good numbers.) However, a 21 is a long ways from a 27.

    For the OP, at all costs, you need a better score on the MCAT. It should honestly be an indicator to you whether or not you're capable of handling medical school. If you can't get a balanced 27, then I honestly doubt your abilities in medical school. Yes, there are exceptions, and no, I don't need to read about them. Medical schools wouldn't use the MCAT if it weren't a useful indicator of medical school success.
     
  51. Funky

    Funky This space is for sale
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    I had a 28/3.5 and had 3 interviews in '06. So a 3.8/28 would take you a long way.
     

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