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Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by TigerGuy, Dec 24, 2001.

  1. TigerGuy

    TigerGuy New Member

    Dec 22, 2001
    I posted this originally in the pre-allopathic forum, but perhaps I might get more feedback here...

    I have seen a lot of good feedback about the pros and cons of many top schools, but for some reason, I have not seen much about Yale. I am interested to hear others' opinions about how this school stacks up to other top ten schools, Also what people think about the Yale System? Posts from current YSM student would be particularly helpful. Thanks
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  3. grasshopper

    grasshopper Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2001
    As a completely useless reply, I'm another premed wondering the same thing. I interviewed there adn they really tried to sell me on "the Yale system", but I'm not sure how that plays out in a day-to-day difference from other med schools that are highly PBL and/or pass/fail (is Yale PBL?)
  4. cardigan

    cardigan Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 29, 2001
    East Coast
    Ok, so I'm a MS IV at Yale. I realize every day that I am truly blessed for the opportunities that Yale has given me. I am contantly amazed at the excellent education I have received in a completely humane setting. It may not be the right environment for everyone, but for those who enjoy independence and value life outside of med school, it is a wonderful choice.

    On the Yale System: the gradeless part of the Yale system applies ONLY to the first 2 years. During this time, we were taught all of the traditional pre-clinical courses in a fairly traditional manner, with some PBL. I believe that the curriculum has now changed to a more integrated, problem based type, but you really should talk about this to current first and second year students. (As a 4th year, I'm not convinced that preclinical curriculum should be anyone's deciding factor in a med school-- everyone covers the same material in the end). At the end of each course there is a "qualifying exam", a.k.a. a final exam, which is taken using an anonymous code. The code is broken only if a student fails 3 or more qualifiers. Thus exams are taken as evidence of minimal competence, and learning is essentially directed by the student in combination with the curriculum and teaching of outstanding and dedicated basic science faculty. This engenders a collegial, completely noncompetitive environment. Our exams are scored, so you can use them to pinpoint strengths and weaknesses. However, we are never ranked (this is the essential difference between Yale and other P/F systems). The Yale system allows students to pursue non-med school interests as well.—many of my classmates have accomplished some pretty impressive stuff during medical school. At the end, we all do fine on the boards, if that means anything to you.

    We do get graded in the third and fourth years. It is Honors/ High Pass/ Pass/ Fail. We do not have oral or written exams. We are graded only on our clinical performance. Even though we are graded, in all honestly, the collegiality only increases during the third year. While students remain highly motivated, gunning and competitive behavior is frowned upon. The spirit of self-directed education continues on the wards, as every student I know here feels a deep sense of obligation to learn—for one's patients… not for exams or grades. Generally, getting "scutted out" is exceptionally rare. Students are on the wards to learn (and get their $40,000 worth.)

    A unique feature of Yale is a required MD thesis. The standard for theses is rather flexible in terms of content, time and energy expended, and type of research. On the whole it is seen positively, esp. when applying to residencies, as all Yale students have some research experience.

    The faculty and administration are exceptionally responsive to students' suggestions. We're almost spoiled!

    But it is the students at Yale that end up being the best aspect of the medical school experience. You cannot ask for a nicer, warmer, more caring, more interesting or smarter group of med students. Students who thrive in the Yale System are self-motivated and independent. However, we tend to work really well together as well. I think we also all share the characteristic of not judging ourselves or others based on grades, scores, etc. Personal characteristics, knowledge, and accomplishments are more valid indicator excellence in medicine, and Yale nurtures these. Further, after you get the M.D., continuing medical education is self-directed. I think Yale grads end up ahead of the game in this regard.

    The only downsides I can come up with are, there is no department of family medicine, if this is essential for you. Not every clinical department here is very strong (General Surgery, for example). New Haven is not the most exciting town, BUT it is a bustling college town. There's a lot to do in and around New Haven. When you get bored of New Haven, NYC and Boston are close enough.

    I hope this long note answers at least a few questions. Best of luck to all of you in selecting a medical school, and happy holidays!
  5. chef

    chef Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 5, 2001
    re: New Haven;

    do u feel unsafe to walk around the medical center after sunset? R there security guards walking around 24-7 like what they do at hopkins? is yale campus area worse than hopkins area?
  6. Cerberus

    Cerberus Heroic Necromancer Physician 10+ Year Member

    Dec 13, 2001
    I have been interested in going to Yale for some time now but have been unable to acquire their acceptance stats. Does anyone know what they are or where I can find them?
  7. mpp

    mpp SDN Moderator Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Jan 17, 2001
    Portland, OR
    If you mean how many people are accepted and what their average GPA/MCAT are, check <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>. If you are wondering how many people they have accepted so far this year, it is zero. They don't send out acceptances until the end of March.
  8. cardigan

    cardigan Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 29, 2001
    East Coast
    In response to chef, I actually feel pretty safe in New Haven. There is a 24 hour Yale security presence around campus, and you can always call for an escort or a minibus ride home if you live away from campus. That being said, you do need to use the same degree of common sense you would in New York, Boston, or Baltimore. Within a few days of being in New Haven, you will learn what's safe and what's not.

    I actually just returned from Baltimore (for a residency interview), and I think the area around Yale feels safer. As a smaller town, there is less of a divide between the nicer "downtown" and the "ghetto". But obviously this is completely anecdotal. But take my 2 cents for what they're worth. Judge for yourself when you visit!

    Good luck,
  9. Hopkins2010

    Hopkins2010 Banned Banned

    Nov 5, 1999
    Baltimore, Maryland
    I've interviewed at Yale and Hopkins and Yale's area was far better than Hopkins.

    I'm sure New Haven has its bad spots like every other city, but in the immediate area I didnt notice anything comparable to Baltimore.
  10. brandonite

    brandonite Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Oct 19, 2001
    Manitoba, Canada
    Another useless post, I know, but I just wanted to thank you, Cardigan! I usually only follow the pre-allopathic boards, but we had been wondering over there exactly what the Yale system was! :D Anyway, your replies have been EXTREMELY helpful! Thank you so much!

    Hope to see you next year! :D

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