- Apr 5, 2010
- Pharmacy Student
This has proven to be false time and time again. Average board scores at top schools are not much higher, if at all, than other schools, at least if you believe school-reported average scores.I think you answered your own question.
Top school usually have the highest incoming "averages." Meaning that they tend to accept the best test takers. Residency is based on lots of things, but one of the biggest factors in getting into a super-competitive specialty is Step 1.
So, good test takers do well on the MCAT and go to a higher ranked/number-oriented school where they do well on Step 1 and get a more competitive residency spot.
It doesn't matter where you go, because your grades are up to you (at most schools). You just worry about yourself. If you're good enough to rock Step 1 and have a stellar score you will get into residency wherever you want, "high ranked" schools have a skewed population of people who do well on these exams (personally I think EVERYONE I go to school with is very smart - you have to be to get to med school - but the smartest ones don't make the best doctors....they just get the most competitive residencies and end up becoming 9-5 acne healers ).
Also, publications are a big factor in residency applications and top tier schools tend to be more research-oriented. More opportunities/pressure for research = higher percentage of students who are published = more acceptances to competitive residencies. But, there are options to get published at any school if you look for them, so again with it not mattering where you go - if you want to be published you can be, you just have to do it. I go to a school that isn't very well known, but plenty of my classmates have published research from the summer and great grades and will do great on Step and go into a competitive specialty. They don't push us to do research, it's just an option, but at many top tier schools it's required or highly encouraged.
I never said they don't put their student in better positions. My point is that they do in fact match into more competitive specialities and that this could be partially due to a higher percentage of students with research. That is not contradictory to me saying that it doesn't matter what school you go to per se, as long as you open up the same opportunities for yourself. It may be easier to do research at a top tier, but that doesn't mean by going to any other school you screw yourself for competitive specialties. It means that more people do research at top schools. It also doesn't mean that going to a top name school gives you an edge on particular residencies, in fact I think most people would say that it doesn't help you much. A 260 Step score w/multiple publications & honors on rotations from Podunk HSC would still beat out a 225 Step score from Harvard with no pubs and only passes. If they were equal in all accounts who would get in? I think the person with the best interview skills, but I guess I'm biased because I go to Podunk HSC. I'm not arguing this point anyway, this was my opinion and we're all speculating.In terms of research, you just provided an argument about why top schools put their students in a better position for the residency application process. Going to a top school gives you more research opportunities with bigger name people. I don't believe this is a huge factor for your rank (because doing any research in general is important), but it still matters somewhat.
I really don't know any schools that report average scores. Can you link some?This has proven to be false time and time again. Average board scores at top schools are not much higher, if at all, than other schools, at least if you believe school-reported average scores.
I got into the six year pharmacy program out of high school before truly knowing what I wanted to do. Throughout the years I have begun to realize that a pharmacy career will not fully satisfy my desire for the kind of knowledge and clinical experience that med school and a career as a physician could provide. Thus I have decided to apply to med school after pharmacy school. I love the knowledge that I am obtaining in pharmacy school, however, and see it as very beneficial as a potential med student and future doctor. So I do not feel like I have wasted my time whatsoever. I also know a few people who worked as part time pharmacists during med school. So thats also a useful way to use my degree while still satisfying my desire to go to into medicine.Can I ask why you went to pharmacy school in the first place?
I know that a few schools released them in internal presentations and things like that that some of the posters on the forum had attended and compared so you probably won't find it up somewhere static.I really don't know any schools that report average scores. Can you link some?