When does it make sense to stop sending secondaries?

  • Early Sept

    Votes: 6 24.0%
  • Late Sept

    Votes: 9 36.0%
  • Early Oct

    Votes: 6 24.0%
  • Late Oct

    Votes: 2 8.0%
  • Later

    Votes: 2 8.0%

  • Total voters
    25
May 25, 2015
147
109
Status
Pre-Medical
Trying to decide how long to keep going with secondaries. Been steadily working at them, but it's rather hard to find time with job+commute, unfortunately.

I've got 13/25 in as of now, for a range of schools, stats wise. 2 Interviews so far (Legacy schools, Father's Med School and Residency, respectively. One upper tier, one middle tier).

I'm fairly compeditive, I think. MCAT heavy 77 LizzyM (Couple of C+'s in there), top 20 UG (public), lots of independent research (with highly cited 1st author pubs, invited reviewer as well), some unique EC's, and interesting gap years.

How long should I keep going? I'm hoping to finish up a couple more this week/weekend. The app fees aren't a big deal (yay Fulltime position in a low cost city), so I'll keep going as long as there's a real chance.
 

steelersfan1243

5+ Year Member
May 9, 2013
435
561
Status
Pre-Medical
Trying to decide how long to keep going with secondaries. Been steadily working at them, but it's rather hard to find time with job+commute, unfortunately.

I've got 13/25 in as of now, for a range of schools, stats wise. 2 Interviews so far (Legacy schools, Father's Med School and Residency, respectively. One upper tier, one middle tier).

I'm fairly compeditive, I think. MCAT heavy 77 LizzyM (Couple of C+'s in there), top 20 UG (public), lots of independent research (with highly cited 1st author pubs, invited reviewer as well), some unique EC's, and interesting gap years.

How long should I keep going? I'm hoping to finish up a couple more this week/weekend. The app fees aren't a big deal (yay Fulltime position in a low cost city), so I'll keep going as long as there's a real chance.
You're going to need to send in all 25
 
OP
M
May 25, 2015
147
109
Status
Pre-Medical
You're going to need to send in all 25
Yeah, the C+'s are a real bummer, unfortunately. Not hard to get either, my UG is big on grade deflation. C+ = Median. I re-took one and did well, and did very well in subsequent classes. The other one I couldn't retake, but did very well then on.
 
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LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
10+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
23,144
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Academic Administration
This is the argument I make for choosing 15 well targeted school. Enthusiasm for secondaries tends to decline after the first 15. With a LizzyM score of 77 you should be golden at any school you choose.
 
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OP
M
May 25, 2015
147
109
Status
Pre-Medical
This is the argument I make for choosing 15 well targeted school. Enthusiasm for secondaries tends to decline after the first 15. With a LizzyM score of 77 you should be golden at any school you choose.
That's good to hear. And I totally agree (as I assume, do the adcom's who would rather read fewer, more well targeted apps), and I have basically been doing that as an after the fact paring down of secondaries.

Though the secondaries definitely get easier as you go too. I now have a 128, 700, 800, 1000, and 1500 character and 200 and 250 word response for all of the main questions.
 

Rainbow Zebra

Long, hard journey
2+ Year Member
Jan 27, 2015
1,245
1,154
GO BLUE!
Status
Medical Student (Accepted)
Trying to decide how long to keep going with secondaries. Been steadily working at them, but it's rather hard to find time with job+commute, unfortunately.

I've got 13/25 in as of now, for a range of schools, stats wise. 2 Interviews so far (Legacy schools, Father's Med School and Residency, respectively. One upper tier, one middle tier).

I'm fairly compeditive, I think. MCAT heavy 77 LizzyM (Couple of C+'s in there), top 20 UG (public), lots of independent research (with highly cited 1st author pubs, invited reviewer as well), some unique EC's, and interesting gap years.

How long should I keep going? I'm hoping to finish up a couple more this week/weekend. The app fees aren't a big deal (yay Fulltime position in a low cost city), so I'll keep going as long as there's a real chance.
I applied to 25 schools, and after the first 15 or so, you get to start recycling essays (same questions seem to reappear at different schools). It does get easier as you go along, but it is a slog. Good Luck to you.
 

gonnif

Only 389 Days Until Next Presidential Election
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Jul 26, 2009
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If the question is asking simply about when is it "too late" to send in secondaries because it it past the window to gain acceptance, then the answer in this poll is definately "later." Adcoms had thousands of applications to compile, review, and evaluate. There certainly are many still being reviewed for the first time in Oct, Nov, & Dec. So the belief that being "late" will kill any chance an applicant that is pervasive across the SDN-verse does not reflect reality on the ground in med school adcoms.
 

LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
10+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
23,144
32,678
Status
Academic Administration
If the question is asking simply about when is it "too late" to send in secondaries because it it past the window to gain acceptance, then the answer in this poll is definately "later." Adcoms had thousands of applications to compile, review, and evaluate. There certainly are many still being reviewed for the first time in Oct, Nov, & Dec. So the belief that being "late" will kill any chance an applicant that is pervasive across the SDN-verse does not reflect reality on the ground in med school adcoms.
true that we are still reviewing applicants in the last quarter of the calendar year BUT as we get down to having just a handful of interview invites and hundreds of applicants left to review, we are much less generous. We are also jaded by that point and it takes far more to impress us than it took in August.
 

gonnif

Only 389 Days Until Next Presidential Election
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true that we are still reviewing applicants in the last quarter of the calendar year BUT as we get down to having just a handful of interview invites and hundreds of applicants left to review, we are much less generous. We are also jaded by that point and it takes far more to impress us than it took in August.
I posted prior to adding to your comment about having to prioritize choices of where to focus on. Will later secondaries be as effective as earlier ones? Simply by finite number of interview slots and rolling admissions, the numbers do work against you. However, giving up on a secondary solely on the submission should not be your only factor in doing so.

I will also add for future generations of applicants who may read this that many students do not understand the amount of work nor the time commitment to fill out and submit applications, and thus, do not schedule this into their summer plans. For many applicants this should be seen as the workload like a shortened and intensive summer course. If you want to become a doctor, then the summer you apply is by no means vacation time. I can not emphasis enough how many student think they can just add this huge task to their normal summer job, activities, or vacation travels. They are in for a rude awakening
 
OP
M
May 25, 2015
147
109
Status
Pre-Medical
I will also add for future generations of applicants who may read this that many students do not understand the amount of work nor the time commitment to fill out and submit applications, and thus, do not schedule this into their summer plans. For many applicants this should be seen as the workload like a shortened and intensive summer course. If you want to become a doctor, then the summer you apply is by no means vacation time. I can not emphasis enough how many student think they can just add this huge task to their normal summer job, activities, or vacation travels. They are in for a rude awakening
Amen. It takes a lot of work, especially on top of other work. Getting home at 7:30 has not been helping.
 

nwts

2+ Year Member
Jun 9, 2015
1,093
668
Status
Pre-Medical
I posted prior to adding to your comment about having to prioritize choices of where to focus on. Will later secondaries be as effective as earlier ones? Simply by finite number of interview slots and rolling admissions, the numbers do work against you. However, giving up on a secondary solely on the submission should not be your only factor in doing so.

I will also add for future generations of applicants who may read this that many students do not understand the amount of work nor the time commitment to fill out and submit applications, and thus, do not schedule this into their summer plans. For many applicants this should be seen as the workload like a shortened and intensive summer course. If you want to become a doctor, then the summer you apply is by no means vacation time. I can not emphasis enough how many student think they can just add this huge task to their normal summer job, activities, or vacation travels. They are in for a rude awakening
It's crazy how many people asked about what I did this summer and then said: "Wait, that's all you did?!" after hearing that my summer was spent volunteering, working a part-time job, and applying to medical school. It's really difficult to convince people that this was actually a full summer because of the time required to complete a quality medical school application.
 

steelersfan1243

5+ Year Member
May 9, 2013
435
561
Status
Pre-Medical
It's crazy how many people asked about what I did this summer and then said: "Wait, that's all you did?!" after hearing that my summer was spent volunteering, working a part-time job, and applying to medical school. It's really difficult to convince people that this was actually a full summer because of the time required to complete a quality medical school application.
Wait, that's all you did?!
 
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