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Would medical schools consider my research too controversial?

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inabox

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I am currently in the process of conducting an independent ethnographic research project for my anthropology senior thesis that I am very passionate about. I plan on including it in my application for research experience along with my regular lab work.

Without getting into too much detail, my research project will look at the intersection of religion, feminism, gender identity, American identity (esp after the 2016 election), hyper-masculinity, Islamophobia, etc. So basically, all hot topic issues that can possibly be seen as controversial. I don’t plan on writing my specific opinion on any of these issues but rather looking at the real life experiences of people these issues are important to.

Some people have mentioned to me concern that this would make me stand out in a bad way to medical schools, marking my application and person as too controversial or something. What do you guys think?
 

inabox

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Well, you should probably hope that the person reading your app isn’t on the right
thank you for responding! do you think that’s a big worry for adcoms making split second decisions off my research? like are there really that many “right wing” admissions officers that would dismiss me right off the bat that I wouldn’t get in anywhere?
 
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readmypostsMD

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thank you for responding! do you think that’s a big worry for adcoms making split second decisions off my research? like are there really that many “right wing” admissions officers that would dismiss me right off the bat that I wouldn’t get in anywhere?

haha I presume most academics are liberals, so practically speaking you probably don’t have much to worry about

And yeah, I’m sure right wingers wouldn’t dismiss your research even if they understandably think intersectionality is Marxist rhetoric/propaganda
 
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gonnif

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haha I presume most academics are liberals, so practically speaking you probably don’t have much to worry about

And yeah, I’m sure right wingers wouldn’t dismiss your research even if they understandably think intersectionality is Marxist rhetoric/propaganda

That would be a presumption without support, especially for academic medicine. A large study a few years ago found 49% of physicians are registered republicans which would suggest they lean conservatively. In Southern states you also find many democrats lean conservative on some social and religious issues

Article https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/113/42/11811.full.pdf
Supporting Methodology
https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/suppl/2016/09/29/1606609113.DCSupplemental/pnas.201606609SI.pdf?targetid=nameddest=STXT
 
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inabox

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Most people in admissions are smart enough to see an anthropology senior thesis for what it is: an anthropology senior thesis.
haha thank you! i assume you mean that they won’t take it to mean anything more than something i worked on. follow up question: if i try to get it published in a journal later, will that be an issue?
 

inabox

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That would be a presumption without support, especially for academic medicine. A large study a few years ago found 49% of physicians are registered republicans which would suggest they lean conservatively. In Southern states you also find many democrats lean conservative on some social and religious issues

Article https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/113/42/11811.full.pdf
Supporting Methodology
https://www.pnas.org/content/pnas/suppl/2016/09/29/1606609113.DCSupplemental/pnas.201606609SI.pdf?targetid=nameddest=STXT
do you think that will affect my chances?
 
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deleted947265

I think there are adcoms that will view that thing as controversial. I'm not naive enough to think all adcom members are cool like Goro or LizzyM. I don't know if it will effect your chances, it could at some schools. I will say that if you're doing independent research about something you're passionate about, getting stuff done, and putting yourself out there I think people are going to notice. That will work for you too.
 
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inabox

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Well, I doubt any of them will ask to read your thesis. They might ask about it during an interview, in which you keep it as diplomatic/neutral as possible.
my hope is to get it published in a journal. also, my anthropology major has been important in my premed experience so considering this thesis is a culmination of my anthropology background it might come up in an essay?
 
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inabox

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I think there are adcoms that will view that thing as controversial. I'm not naive enough to think all adcom members are cool like Goro or LizzyM. I don't know if it will effect your chances, it could at some schools. I will say that if you're doing independent research about something you're passionate about, getting stuff done, and putting yourself out there I think people are going to notice. That will work for you too.
yeah i guess my concern is if they too see it as controversial, are they going to dismiss my entire application? i am definitely leaning on the second part of your reply lol i hope it works in my favor
 

Nugester

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my hope is to get it published in a journal. also, my anthropology major has been important in my premed experience so considering this thesis is a culmination of my anthropology background it might come up in an essay?
Right, I have a couple papers published and no one asked about or read them (to my knowledge). I even brought copies to each interview. If you can write it well, don't be afraid to write about it if it is important to your PS ("why medicine") or applicable secondary prompts. Most schools have a push for diversity and it looks like you can bring a different perspective.
 
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Angus Avagadro

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What if you turned your thesis around and the research was about America First, rugged individualism, strict I immigration, etc., . You get what I mean. How would you feel about putting that into your app? I personally believe you will be fine with putting your thesis into your app. I'm pretty sure most Adcoms are professionals and can set aside personal politics or religious views when selecting applicants. Some schools with strict religious rules, like Liberty University, might have an issue, but there are only a couple I think. You're fine to use your research, imo. Good luck and best wishes!
 
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deleted480308

Frankly I rolled my eyes at the intersectionality stuff but as long as I thought you could be a normal enough human to get along with people who disagreed with you I wouldn’t count it against you
 
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inabox

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What if you turned your thesis around and the research was about America First, rugged individualism, strict I immigration, etc., . You get what I mean. How would you feel about putting that into your app? I personally believe you will be fine with putting your thesis into your app. I'm pretty sure most Adcoms are professionals and can set aside personal politics or religious views when selecting applicants. Some schools with strict religious rules, like Liberty University, might have an issue, but there are only a couple I think. You're fine to use your research, imo. Good luck and best wishes!
awesome! thank you so much, i do plan on including these topics too actually. not evaluating the validity of any myself but examining how it impacts a specific community. good to know most schools wouldn’t be offended, thanks!
 
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inabox

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Frankly I rolled my eyes at the intersectionality stuff but as long as I thought you could be a normal enough human to get along with people who disagreed with you I wouldn’t count it against you
not sure what you mean by that, can you clarify? and yes strictly speaking i don’t automatically agree with the community i want to base my research on and my interest in the research was borne out of how different cultural influences resulted in these disagreements and different perspectives on life
 
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deleted480308

not sure what you mean by that, can you clarify? and yes strictly speaking i don’t automatically agree with the community i want to base my research on and my interest in the research was borne out of how different cultural influences resulted in these disagreements and different perspectives on life
I mean that usually when someone starts dropping “intersectionality” they follow it with something I disagree with and/or find illogical. But I like lots of people I disagree with. My only question in reviewing a candidate is “will you be a problem with the team”. You can have some dumb political ideas and get along during a shift. If you are so busy campaigning for your pet ideology that you can’t work with others I don’t want you around.
 
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inabox

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I mean that usually when someone starts dropping “intersectionality” they follow it with something I disagree with and/or find illogical. But I like lots of people I disagree with. My only question in reviewing a candidate is “will you be a problem with the team”. You can have some dumb political ideas and get along during a shift. If you are so busy campaigning for your pet ideology that you can’t work with others I don’t want you around.
i definitely agree with your sentiment, it’s important in any field especially medicine to be able to cooperate with people who disagree with your ideology.

i do wanna note i never said intersectionality, i said intersection as in the point where two or more things cross. you seem like someone i would have no problem working with, as i do pride myself on being able to put aside political differences. however, your attitude towards my question immediately categorizing my views and work as a “pet ideology” and implying i may have “dumb political ideas” because you “don’t agree with/find illogical” the idea of intersectionality tells me maybe you don’t work well with others because of your inclination to simplify my views, my research, my person. the reason i posed my question is because i’m concerned about people like you on an admissions committee dismissing me right away because of exactly how you come off.

thank you for your feedback.

ps this is unrelated to my question but since you brought it up, your automatic dismissal of intersectionality and finding it “illogical” (?) is concerning considering you are (presumably) in the field of medicine
 
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deleted480308

i definitely agree with your sentiment, it’s important in any field especially medicine to be able to cooperate with people who disagree with your ideology.

i do wanna note i never said intersectionality, i said intersection as in the point where two or more things cross. you seem like someone i would have no problem working with, as i do pride myself on being able to put aside political differences. however, your attitude towards my question immediately categorizing my views and work as a “pet ideology” and implying i may have “dumb political ideas” because you “don’t agree with/find illogical” the idea of intersectionality tells me maybe you don’t work well with others because of your inclination to simplify my views, my research, my person. the reason i posed my question is because i’m concerned about people like you on an admissions committee dismissing me right away because of exactly how you come off.

thank you for your feedback.

ps this is unrelated to my question but since you brought it up, your automatic dismissal of intersectionality and finding it “illogical” (?) is concerning considering you are (presumably) in the field of medicine
You are getting pretty worked up over that comment if you are already nervous about me being a doctor.
@Goro , what’s the law around here where it only takes x # of posts before someone says someone else isn’t morally fit to be a doctor?
 
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gyngyn

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i definitely agree with your sentiment, it’s important in any field especially medicine to be able to cooperate with people who disagree with your ideology.

i do wanna note i never said intersectionality, i said intersection as in the point where two or more things cross. you seem like someone i would have no problem working with, as i do pride myself on being able to put aside political differences. however, your attitude towards my question immediately categorizing my views and work as a “pet ideology” and implying i may have “dumb political ideas” because you “don’t agree with/find illogical” the idea of intersectionality tells me maybe you don’t work well with others because of your inclination to simplify my views, my research, my person. the reason i posed my question is because i’m concerned about people like you on an admissions committee dismissing me right away because of exactly how you come off.

thank you for your feedback.

ps this is unrelated to my question but since you brought it up, your automatic dismissal of intersectionality and finding it “illogical” (?) is concerning considering you are (presumably) in the field of medicine
I believe he is referring to terms of art that become hackneyed (or cringey) over time, not dissing your thesis.
 

inabox

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I believe he is referring to terms of art that become hackneyed (or cringey) over time, not dissing your thesis.
not sure what terms of art he meant, if you mean intersectionality i never said that and he brought it up not me. i don’t feel as he dissed my thesis, i’m put off by the attitude and the simplification of my thesis. thank you for your input btw!
 
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You are getting pretty worked up over that comment if you are already nervous about me being a doctor.
@Goro , what’s the law around here where it only takes x # of posts before someone says someone else isn’t morally fit to be a doctor?
Burnett 's Law in action!
 
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let me know where i said something wrong or why you put a rolling eyes reaction on my long comment response to sb247. i have no intentions to argue, just want to learn where adcoms are coming from
You really, really need to let this go.
 
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