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Which field is most common for research?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by easilydoctor, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. easilydoctor

    easilydoctor doctoreasily 10+ Year Member

    Mar 5, 2007
    New York City
    Is it me or are there more opportunities in chem than bio? Some biochem?
    From your experience, which field holds more opportunities for research than others? (for premed)
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  3. SugarNaCl

    SugarNaCl Dental Student Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    Akron, OH
    I have just been accepted to dental school, but have been involved in research for about 5 years now. First 2 years (MS program - VCU) in immunology, the past 3 years in prostate cancer research at a local hospital. I have been told that being a chemistry major increases your chances of getting into med or dental school if you do well (because bio majors are a dime a dozen...and yes, I'm a bio major), but as far as getting a research position it depends on what interests you. Are people going to turn to a chemist to conduct immunology research? Probably not as likely as they would be to turn to a biologist or a biochemist. Personally, I think biochem is a perfect combination that would fit right in the research groove...and look good on an application.

    My source for the whole chem looks better than bio thing isn't a personal feeling... it came from my MD and my pre-health advisor. Same thing for dentistry... as you know, standards are rising across the board of healthcare. I was told to be competitive as a dental applicant, I should have a 3.6 GPA.
  4. ADeadLois

    ADeadLois Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Dec 18, 2005
    There is no consensus that any particular major increases your chances of getting into medical school.

    The research opportunities for pre-meds would depend on the breadth of individual departments at individual schools. It's hard to say whether one department inherently has more opportunities or is easier to get a position. A notable exception would be any organic lab. Most typically won't take on an undergrad unless they have taken some sort of advanced Organic synthesis lab and is familiar with the techniques.
  5. CTtarheel

    CTtarheel Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Feb 23, 2006
    At many schools Bio is a VERY popular major so you're competing with hundreds of other bio majors to get research opportunities. Thus, it can be more difficult to find them than in smaller departments.

    I think that being a chem major did help me because the major makes you take classes that are generally considered very difficult (p-chem, extra organic chem, etc.). This gives your gpa some kind of backing that bio majors don't get. Engineering/physics majors also get this advantage.

    Either way do what you think you will enjoy the most and do the best in. What made me choose chem was that bio involved so much straight memorization and very little actual thinking (though this seems to be what the first 2 years of med school are about anyway), while chem was all about thinking through problems. Also, chem gives basic explanations for stuff, while bio sometimes gives results with little explanation.
  6. SugarNaCl

    SugarNaCl Dental Student Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    Apr 28, 2006
    Akron, OH
    :thumbup: That's what I'm saying... if you won't take it from a lowly DDS student, take it from one of your own. :p
  7. CCLCMer

    CCLCMer CCLCM Alum c/o 2011 7+ Year Member

    Jul 10, 2006
    Cleveland expatriate
    Do research in whatever interests you. My program requires research as a pre-req, so we've all done some. In my class, a lot of people had molecular bio or biochem kind of backgrounds. But we have a bunch of engineers too, and also some clinical science and even non-science people. A few people did social science research. Maybe look into that if you want to do research but don't want to do regular lab stuff.

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