What's the deal with the MSPE?

Discussion in 'Internal Medicine and IM Subspecialties' started by hawksfan, Sep 26, 2014.

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  1. hawksfan

    hawksfan 2+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2010
    So, everyone at my program keeps saying "Don't worry, once the Dean's letter comes out, you will start getting plenty of interviews." But...why?

    I went to read my Dean's letter and it was kind of underwhelming. I could barely make it through the pages of nice comments/evaluations about myself, much less expect an Interview Committee to read it for me and every student applying there. I guess I'm just confused about what the Dean's letter has to offer that isn't already submitted? I was under the impression that they had our USMLE scores and school transcripts already. If most schools try as hard as they can not to include negative clinical comments, then how does it benefit those of us who didn't get any negative comments anyways?

    I'm not saying it's not important, but I'm more just worried that this "wait until the Dean's letter comes out" excuse is going to be really disappointing for me. If you guys have any insight into what they're really looking for, I would appreciate it a lot.

    Thanks :)
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  3. gutonc

    gutonc No Meat, No Treat SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

    Code words. Your MSPE is 6 pages of bulls**t and one sentence that will actually determine whether or not you get the interview. If you're not used to these shenanigans by now it's going to be a rough few years for you coming up.
    MeatTornado and DermViser like this.
  4. medstudent7860

    medstudent7860 2+ Year Member

    Aug 22, 2013
    What's the one important sentence?
  5. chargersfan

    chargersfan 2+ Year Member

    Jan 21, 2013
    My guess is the recommendation statement.
    i.e. I give this applicant the highest recommendation vs high recommendation vs just recommendation, etc.
  6. Aequanimitatis

    Aequanimitatis 2+ Year Member

    Sep 13, 2014
    This one sentence though is based on class rank as far as I know...so class rank/quartile +/- AOA are all you need, no? Not sure what purpose this sentence serves.
  7. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! SDN Advisor SDN Moderator 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    That's not completely fair. The MSPE lists all of your grades and usually the grade distribution. Without that, I can't tell if 90% get pass or 90% get Honors. There's also usually some sort of ranking system, placing students into quartiles or some other grouping. SO there is quite a bit of useful information in most MSPE's.
  8. Raryn

    Raryn Infernal Internist / Enigmatic Endocrinologist 7+ Year Member

    Apr 25, 2008
    Varies from school to school. The MSPE comes with a cover letter the schools don't show the students that explicitly states the hierarchy of their language. For example "highly and enthusiastically recommend", "highly recommend", or "recommend.
  9. Kaixuan


    Sep 26, 2014
    What is contained on your med school transcripts? My school only records pass-fail grades, whereas the MSPE has specific honors/high-pass/pass/fail grades. Is that different from most people?
  10. gutonc

    gutonc No Meat, No Treat SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

    Yes. Yours is weird. Your transcript should be just that, a precise transcription of the grade you received in every single course.

    Your school sucks.
    johnamo and ChessMaster3000 like this.
  11. DermViser

    DermViser 5+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    Yes, I know some people who have transcripts like that. Essentially it's bc the university doesn't have other schools that grade H/HP/P/F, and there is no GPA associated with those letters, it's up to the MSPE to show what the grades are while the transcript shows credit/no credit (P/F). Usually it's at universities that have several schools: School of Medicine, School of Dentistry, etc.
  12. Kaixuan


    Sep 26, 2014
    Yeah, it's interesting. I think our transcripts are overly-generalized possibly because, like you said, we have other colleges within our institution. It won't matter once the MSPE is out, but I think in the mean time, residency programs may wonder why they can't see my grades.
  13. DermViser

    DermViser 5+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    I don't know if residencies even look at the trasncript, just the MSPE. They might look at the transcript to see if there were any failures as sometimes the MSPE masks it. Heck many times, they give an interview without even having an MSPE.

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