Beware of colleges that boast of
extremely high medical school acceptance rates from
their premed programs. These
schools often achieve those high numbers by weeding out
their premed students aggressively, so that only the
best premed students are even allowed to complete the
program. You can calculate
a school's "true"
acceptance rate by dividing the number of premed
graduates it has accepted into medical school by the number of
current freshmen premed majors. A 90% med
school acceptance rate probably means that the school rejected students
who would have been borderline medical college admits before
they finished their premed programs!
If you believe you would be near the median of such
a premed program, you will probably not want to attend
that particular university. You would run the risk of
being pushed out of the program if your performance
Not all premed advisors are created
equal. If you are not happy with your advisor, see if
you can discretely
(and tactfully) switch. Many advisors' only training consists of reading
a pamphlet describing the required courses. A good
advisor will go beyond that to advise you on which order to take the
courses in, and many on additional items.
Our consultants will be glad to act as competent premed
advisors and conduct pre admission consultations
with you. We generally spend 1 to 2 hours per year with
each of our pre admissions clients, during which we cover positioning issues such as
course selection, extracurricular activities, and work
Hard work, motivation, and dedication
are what really matter. Most medical school graduates
will tell you that their
class work was not really that cerebral. It was just extremely voluminous. (The
average SAT score of a medical school student is not
much higher than the average SAT score of a college
Never CLEP out of an introductory science course.
If you take a more
advanced course, you will only wind up competing
against sophomores and juniors with superior studying
skills. Worse, you may find out that your high school AP class didn't cover the
introductory class material as well as your high school
teachers said it did.
If possible, audit a demanding science
course such as organic chemistry over the summer at a
nearby university. Take science classes
beyond what is required of you (usually inorganic and organic chemistry, biology, and physics)
only if you believe it will
raise your sophomore and junior year science GPA.
Wait until your
senior year to take the most difficult classes required
for graduation as well as any optional science classes that will help prepare
you for medical school. That way, those grades will not affect the GPA
medical school admissions committees
You may be tempted to volunteer in a hospital one night a week during
your freshman year. However, it is
wiser to stay focused on your course work. After
completing your freshman year, though, you
part-time employment that shows you can manage your time and get along
well with others. A job in a hospital or doctor's office is ideal.
only can such experience boost a borderline application, but it can also
provide a letter of recommendation. Most importantly, the job can allow
you an opportunity to reexamine your desire to attend
Extracurricular activities can
persuade medical schools that you are genuinely
concerned about others and that you have good
interpersonal skills – critical
qualities for any aspiring doctor. Pursue extracurricular activities that you genuinely enjoy.
This genuine enjoyment will
come through in your applications. The only stipulation is to avoid
activities that require too much of your time.
Toastmasters, debate teams, premed and science clubs,
and intramural sports are all very helpful
in managing your
work/life balance and increasing your medical school admissions chances.