PMY 177 : When to Take the MCAT and More Premed Q&A

Session 177

In today's episode, Ryan takes some questions posted on Google Voice caller line and Facebook Hangout and shed light on some topics where you may also be experiencing the same and can learn from.

Q: From Ashley: An active duty midwife for the US Air Force and 1 year out from applying to USUHS (military medical school); with clinical experience, graduate GPA of 3.6, undergrad GPA 3.2, Science GPA of 2.9; no time to take additional coursework – would this be detrimental in her application to medical school? Would an exceptional MCAT score make up for poor undergraduate GPA?

A: Your undergrad GPA is probably not strong enough for medical school at this point while your graduate GPA might not help a lot because it's not really related to your ultimate goal of becoming a physician. Ryan recommends looking at separating from the Air Force and taking some time off to take the courses that you need.

Q: From Lung: Got accepted to UC Berkeley, UCLA, and UC Riverside. Does your undergraduate school make a difference? Is it worth going to a reputable college and risking getting a good GPA because it's more challenging versus focusing on UC Riverside which is a much less rigorous college although less reputable than UC Berkeley?

A: No. Except if, for example, you graduate from a small Liberal Arts school in the middle of Montana (no offense) which graduates one premed student every couple of years, then that would make a difference. When applying to medical school, the admissions committee is going to look at your GPA as well as your undergraduate institution and balance those out. based on these three schools, go to whichever fits you the best. Be a great student. As Ryan always points it out, don't go to a great school, go to a school that will make you great.

Q: Graduating senior from a small liberal arts school in Orange County and only graduate applying to medical school from the university with no premed advisor. Received secondaries from almost every school applied to but has been receiving rejections before even being interviewed. Why didn't he get an interview?

A: Most schools send a secondary as a big money-making scheme for the schools. Students fill out secondary applications and pay the money. So just because you get secondaries doesn't mean that you have a chance at that school. Ryan recommends asking the schools that didn't give you an interview and ask them for an application review and what it was in your application that they didn't like. Don't reapply immediately. Figure out why you didn't get in this time and take time to fix it for next time.

Q: Signed up for MCAT in June and hasn't started yet (mid April); retaking the test; should the test be pushed to a later date in June or July and apply this cycle or next cycle?

A: If you're retaking the test, you're not going to get it back until the beginning of July which means that the medical schools aren't going to review your application until the beginning of July. That's not bad. Only take the test when you're prepared. Don't push the test back later either. If you need to reschedule the test to a later date, apply the next year.

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Links and Other Resources:

The Premed Years Podcast Session 171: Reapplying to Med School – What You Need to Know to Improve

OldPreMeds podcast Session 12

Any questions? Drop them here www.medicalschoolhq.net/question

If you need any help with the medical school interview, go to medschoolinterviewbook.com. Sign up and you will receive parts of the book so you can help shape the future of the book. This book will include over 500 questions that may be asked during interview day as well as real-life questions, answers, and feedback from all of the mock interviews Ryan has been doing with students.

Are you a nontraditional student? Go check out oldpremeds.org.

For more great content, check out www.mededmedia.com for more of the shows produced by the Medical School Headquarters including the OldPremeds Podcast and watch out for more shows in the future!

Free MCAT Gift: Free 30+ page guide with tips to help you maximize your MCAT score and which includes discount codes for MCAT prep as well.

Hang out with us over at medicalschoolhq.net/group. Click join and we'll add you up to our private Facebook group. Share your successes and miseries with the rest of us.

Check out our partner magazine, www.premedlife.com to learn more about awesome premed information.

Next Step Test Prep: Get one-on-one tutoring for the MCAT and maximize your score. Get $50 off their tutoring program when you mention that you heard about this on the podcast or through the MSHQ website. Check out their 10-full length practice tests that you can take.

Listen to our podcast for free at iTunes: medicalschoolhq.net/itunes and leave us a review there!

Email Ryan at ryan@medicalschoolhq.net or connect with him on Twitter @medicalschoolhq

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