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Med School

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From what I know, med schools accept students from all educational background: science, engineering, commerce, arts...etc.

However, is there a program that would give you a better chance of getting in?

Between commerce and science undergrad programs, which one is harder to obtain good marks?
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No program gives you a better chance, although a program that you are thoroughly interested in will yield a higher GPA which would help you gain admission to a medical school.
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Choose the program you like and you'll get good marks in it.
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Thanks for the replies.

At some schools, isn't it more difficult to obtain high marks? I heard med schools don't take that into account, and that they only look at your GPA? In that case, isn't it more beneficial (in terms of getting into med school) if you attend a lower end university rather than somewhere like Toronto or McGill?

Also, what is the difference between health/life/biomedical sciences?

Lastly, wouldn't it be easier to get into med school if you take a non-science undergrad program, since there's so many people in science that wants to go into med, and med schools want people from all educational background? (this is just my own theory)
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Yes, at some schools it is more difficult to obtain good marks but you don't want to go to a university that won't allow you to get the opportunity, resources, and advising that you need to get into med school. (ie. choose a decent-above average university)

You need to research each individual program and read the program descriptions. In first year, all those majors generally have the same courses so you don't need to decide right away.

And you need to choose the program that YOU like the best because that is what you will perform the best in. Med schools don't care what your major is. They just want to see that GPA. So do whatever you're most interested in.
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A photo of pattycakes pattycakes
Well a science undergrad would better prepare you for your MCATS than let's say, business or engineering. But if you are extremely above the average intelligence, you would be able to pull of a competitive MCAT score with a background in any program.
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@pattycakes wrote
Well a science undergrad would better prepare you for your MCATS than let's say, business or engineering. But if you are extremely above the average intelligence, you would be able to pull of a competitive MCAT score with a background in any program.



This is not entirely true. While a science background may help for the MCAT, one must realize that the science content tested on the MCAT is VERY minimal. It is a logic and reasoning test, skills you hone in university. So, a student majoring in any subject has the ability to do well on the MCAT. It's just easier to get med school prereqs done in a 'sciency' major.
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@xXxUfacStorAxXx wrote
Yes, at some schools it is more difficult to obtain good marks but you don't want to go to a university that won't allow you to get the opportunity, resources, and advising that you need to get into med school. (ie. choose a decent-above average university)

You need to research each individual program and read the program descriptions. In first year, all those majors generally have the same courses so you don't need to decide right away.

And you need to choose the program that YOU like the best because that is what you will perform the best in. Med schools don't care what your major is. They just want to see that GPA. So do whatever you're most interested in.



So then it is indeed more beneficial to attend a less prestigious university where you can get a better GPA than attend a top tier university like McGill or Toronto. Isn't this system somewhat flawed then? And what about the program? Because I'm sure there are some programs where it's easier to obtain a higher GPA than others.
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A photo of kyczevag kyczevag
So, on a related note, if I decided to do an undergrad in Psychology instead of say, Health Sci, what would be the pros and cons ?

What would I need to do to prepare, to apply for med school afterwards ?
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@kyczevag wrote
So, on a related note, if I decided to do an undergrad in Psychology instead of say, Health Sci, what would be the pros and cons ?

What would I need to do to prepare, to apply for med school afterwards ?



Health Sci, depending on where you are and what you're studying, may lower your GPA. Some students are very good with handling all the physics, chem, bio, calc and so on. Others preferred to study something they enjoy and take science courses on the side to prepare for MCAT's because they may really want to be a doctor, but also love the Arts as well! You can study to become a nurse first, write your MCAT's and apply to medical school. As long as you enjoy it and can manage, you can do it.

Pros: You could take something you're interested in while studying science and preparing for MCAT's on the side, you could get a degree in something you enjoy instead of being thrown in the fire of science if you really find you don't like it, no education is ever a waste.

Cons: No real cons as long as you PLAN AHEAD, take into account ALL the med schools you would like to attend and pay attention to the prerequisites, both academic and not.

You need to volunteer with research, at hospitals, or any type of health related endeavours while preparing for medical school. If you didn't take a high school physics course, consider taking a first year intro to one or learn it with a private tutor (or smart friend!) during your off time. A lot of MCAT writers have trouble with the physical science aspect the most I find (chem and physics). Study hard and stay organized! You can do it.

Here's a useful website put together by a poster on the old SA:
http://www.medhopeful.com/
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A photo of Realist Realist

@brian524 wrote
From what I know, med schools accept students from all educational background: science, engineering, commerce, arts...etc.

However, is there a program that would give you a better chance of getting in?

Between commerce and science undergrad programs, which one is harder to obtain good marks?


If you think about these trivial matters, clearly you don't have what it takes to be a doctor. I see a future for you in burger-flipping, though. You might want to consider a job in that.
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Getting into med school is not supposed to be easy. You can go ahead and chose an easier university but I would make sure that this university has the facilities and opportunities that will allow you to build the resume to get you into medical school.

You need the research, clinical experience, advising, clubs, extracurric.s to get you into medical school, the whole package.

As long as you can get all of this and you find a school that's a good fit, then go for it.
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@brian524 wrote
From what I know, med schools accept students from all educational background: science, engineering, commerce, arts...etc.

However, is there a program that would give you a better chance of getting in?

Between commerce and science undergrad programs, which one is harder to obtain good marks?



You're not the only one who wants to get into med school! I'm in first-year science at UBC, and it seems like nearly everyone has the same goal.

It's true that med schools accept students from all educational backgrounds. You could take a degree in music if you really wanted, though you would probably be wise to also take the science courses that teach MCAT material (for example, first-year physics is tested on the MCAT).

Be aware that GPA is growing less and less important in the med school evaluation system. They are really emphasizing well-roundedness, so try to be involved in a lot of things. Interview scores are also given a lot of weight.

That said, of course GPA is still important. The courses you will do well in depend on what you like and what you're good at. In my experience, arts courses are easy to pass and hard to do exceptionally well in. Science courses are harder to pass but easier to excel in. I didn't have a hard time pulling off 92, 96, and 98 in my three UBC science courses this term (bio, chem, physics). And although I'm a reasonably good writer and I loved the material in my arts courses, it took more hard work to get 87s in English and philosophy. (No one looks at an essay and thinks, "That's a 97 for sure!") But of course it depends on you.
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go for your passion and the marks will follow.
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A photo of sroberts sroberts
I think there are obviously certain streams of study that will definitely work to your advantage when applying to med school (science/biology based would be the best route), but it's also important to choose something you are interested in and can develop a passion for. They look for that --what your interests are, and how you can apply yourself to your interests. And there isn't really any point in studying something you don't really care that much for just to get into medical school, because then you are pursuing your education for the wrong reasons. Just follow your interests, and that will lead you wherever you want!!
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@brian524 wrote

@xXxUfacStorAxXx wrote
Yes, at some schools it is more difficult to obtain good marks but you don't want to go to a university that won't allow you to get the opportunity, resources, and advising that you need to get into med school. (ie. choose a decent-above average university)

You need to research each individual program and read the program descriptions. In first year, all those majors generally have the same courses so you don't need to decide right away.

And you need to choose the program that YOU like the best because that is what you will perform the best in. Med schools don't care what your major is. They just want to see that GPA. So do whatever you're most interested in.



So then it is indeed more beneficial to attend a less prestigious university where you can get a better GPA than attend a top tier university like McGill or Toronto. Isn't this system somewhat flawed then? And what about the program? Because I'm sure there are some programs where it's easier to obtain a higher GPA than others.



This again depends. Some people do better when they are surrounded by 'intellectual peers' and it brings out the best in them. You may be more motivated to work hard as a more prestigious university (and remember, prestige is not equal to quality) and become lazier at a lesser name university.

Really, when we're talking about 'premed' schools, we are talking about U of T, McMaster, Western, York, Guelph, and that's about it (in Ontario). Of those schools, the only two that might be easier are Guelph and York. I doubt going to McMaster or Western over U of T would result in a GPA difference of >0.1. At that point it becomes trivial (as long as you are at the 3.8+ range) because your MCAT, ECs, LORs, research, etc. come into play. There is so much more to it than GPA (although, I don't really know the 'breakdown' of GPA v. MCAT in Canada. I know in the US the MCAT can mean more than a GPA because of the wide range in quality of schools).

My suggestion is go with fit and a place where you think you will find the peers, resources (including research, advising, etc.), and more to do well. Around 14% of those who APPLY to medical school get in and it is safe to assume that 50% or more 'premeds' out of high school don't even end up applying. So, we're looking at a <7% admit rate to medical schools. This is not to say that you won't go to med school at all. This is to say that it will be hard no matter where you/we go, so chose somewhere that will allow you to succeed and be the best. That school is not necessarily the 'easiest' school, but where you have the best 'fit'.
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@Realist wrote

@brian524 wrote
From what I know, med schools accept students from all educational background: science, engineering, commerce, arts...etc.

However, is there a program that would give you a better chance of getting in?

Between commerce and science undergrad programs, which one is harder to obtain good marks?


If you think about these trivial matters, clearly you don't have what it takes to be a doctor. I see a future for you in burger-flipping, though. You might want to consider a job in that.



I liked your previous 'realist' comments, but that is just rude.
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