Applying to medical school



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APPLYING TO MEDICAL SCHOOL:

  • A presentation to help VCU students applying to start in fall 2005
  • Seth Leibowitz, Ed.D
  • Coordinator, Pre-Health Sciences Advising

George Was A Talented Little Monkey

Not only was he a good artist and athlete, but he was talented in the sciences as well

He was so smart, that the man with the yellow hat encouraged him to apply to medical school

George was very curious! So he thought about it during a fishing trip

The thought of helping patients was really exciting to him.

So he showed up to the medical school that was near his house and asked if he could have a seat

The Dean of Admissions explained to George that getting a seat in medical school is not that simple.

  • The Dean Gave George contact information of a pre-health advisor for some help

George’s pre-health advisor gave him some great resources and pointed him in the right direction

George got excellent advice and he was happy!

Advice That George Received

  • How to make the decision to apply to medical school
  • Procedures for participating in the pre-med committee
  • Procedures for starting a letter of evaluation file
  • Timeline of the medical school application process and working with AMCAS
  • How to determine which schools to make application to and using the MSAR

How To Asses Whether To Apply For Fall 2005

  • Main Factors That Medical Schools Use When Evaluating Applicants
  • CUM GPA
  • BCPM GPA
  • MCAT Scores

How AMCAS Calculates GPA

  • CLASSF
  • GRADE
  • HOURS
  • QP
  • CHEM 301
  • B
  • 3
  • 9
  • CHEZ 301
  • C
  • 2
  • 4
  • ENGL 200
  • A
  • 3
  • 12
  • PHYS 201
  • B
  • 4
  • 12
  • Step 1: Add Up Quality Points = 37 For CUM / 25 For BCPM
  • Step 2: Add Up Hours = 12 For CUM / 9 For BCPM
  • Step 3: Divide QP / H = 3.08 For CUM / 2.77 BCPM
  • EVERY GRADE COUNTS REGARDLESS OF COURSE REPEATS
  • EVERY COLLEGE LEVEL COURSE COUNTS

NATIONAL CUM GPA AVERAGES

NATIONAL BCPM AVERAGES

  • BCPM GPA FIGURES, MSAR (2003)

NATIONAL MCAT AVERAGES

  • MCAT FIGURES, MSAR (2003)

Another Way To Look At It

  • NAAHP, (1998)

How to make the decision to apply

  • Meet with faculty advisors and make sure graduation by August 1, 2005 is possible.
  • CHEM 302 and PHYS 202 should be complete or nearing completion before taking the April MCAT
  • If CUM and BCPM GPA are >3.0, focus attention in spring 04 on getting grades up, take more course work in summer 04, Fall 04 and Spring 05 and then apply for F06.
  • If CUM and BCPM GPA are between 3.1 and 3.3, take April, MCAT and reevaluate situation before applying in June 04.
  • Consider practical factors such as health care experience, volunteerism, knowledge about medical schools, and pool of letter writers.

Cost of Applying to Medical School

  • Time = MCAT preparation, Filling out the AMCAS application, getting letters, committee preparation, writing personal statements filling out secondary applications, going on interviews.
  • Financial Cost w/o an MCAT Prep
  • Registering for the MCAT
  • $190
  • Filing with AMCAS
  • $160
  • + $30 for each school
  • Secondary Fees
  • $80-$100 per school
  • Travel and Hotel Arrangements for Interviews
  • $100 each interview

Pre-Med Committee

  • FACULTY COMMITTEE THAT INTERVIEWS VCU APPLICANTS
  • (Interviews occur with 2 faculty members science / non science. Interviewer will probably not be an individual evaluator or your advisor)
  • EVALUATION OF STUDENT’S CREDENTIALS FOR MEDICAL SCHOOL
  • MAKE A RECOMMENDATION ON BEHALF OF VCU IN ONE OF 5 CATEGORIES
  • (Categories are from Highly Recommended – Not Recommended)
  • ALL COMMITTEE LETTERS AND RECOMMENDATION DECISIONS
  • ARE CONFIDENTIAL AND ARE NOT SHARED WITH STUDENTS

What the Pre-Med Committee Evaluates

  • CUM GPA / SCIENCE GPA
  • INDIVIDUAL LETTERS OF EVAL
  • EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
  • MOTIVATION TO PURSUE MEDICINE

LETTER OF EVALUATION FILE

  • FREE SERVICE PROVIDED BY THE OFFICE OF PRE-HEALTH SCIENCES ADVISING. SETTING UP A FILE IS MANDATORY IF PARTICIPATING IN THE COMMITTEE
  • READ CLOSELY, THE LIMITATIONS OF THE FILE SERVICE
  • CONFIDENTIAL LETTERS AND EVALUATIONS FROM INDIVIDUALS TO SUPPORT YOUR APPLICATION TO MED SCHOOL AND COMMITTEE EVALUATION
  • 5 MAXIMUM FOR MD PROGRAMS / 6 FOR DO AND MD/PHD PROGRAMS
  • 2 FROM SCIENCE FACULTY, OTHERS CAN BE FROM NON SCIENCE FACULTY, SUPERVISORS, OR HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS FOR WHOM YOU WORKED

This is What a Letter Should Look Like When It is Turned In By You or a Faculty Member

TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS

  • ALL FORMS AND INSTRUCTIONS AVAILABLE ON PRE-HEALTH SCIENCES WEB SITE: http://www.people.vcu.edu/~slleibowitz/premed.htm
  • KEEP TRACK OF FILE STATUS BY LOGGING INTO BLACKBOARD, LOOK FOR A VCU 101 CLASS CALLED “PREMED FILE” AND THEN CHECK THE GRADE BOOK FUNCTION. (Use Arrow Keys to Toggle through fields)
  • ONCE FILE IS COMPLETE, E-MAIL: DR. LEIBOWITZ WITH INSTRUCTIONS TO TRANSMIT FILE ELECTONICALLY TO ALL SCHOOLS WHERE AN APPLICATION WAS MADE.

EVAL / PRE MED FORMS

  • PART A (ACESS WAIVER)
  • PART B (RECOMMENDATION REQUEST FILE FORM / ACESS WAIVER)
  • PART C (TRANSMISSION AUTHORIZATION FORM) – SUBMIT AFTER FILING WITH AMCAS
  • PART D – (PERSONAL INFORMATION). (You can submit this with a resume and MUST include a photo)
  • PART E – (AVAILABILITY FOR INTERVIEWS)
  • CHECK BOX EVALUATION FORM – TO BE DISTRIBUTED TO INVIDIDUAL EVALUATORS WITH RESUME, PERSONAL STATEMENT, AND DETAILED INSTRUCTIONS FOR SUBMISSION

Due Dates / Time Frame For Committee

  • All forms available on PREMED WEB SITE:
  • (http://www.people.vcu.edu/~slleibowitz/premed.htm)
  • With the exception of Part C, all forms are due by 4/1
  • Individual evaluations due by 4/15
  • Committee interviews will be held in 205 Hibbs from 5/3 – 5/14.
  • Notification of your interview date and time will be distributed electronically on the week of 4/18
  • Medical School
  • Primary Application
  • Complete online application
  • Send college transcripts
  • Pay application fee
  • *MCAT scores are automatically included in application (April 2003 and later)
  • AMCAS processes the primary application.
  • Once this processing is complete, AMCAS sends the primary application to the medical schools selected by the applicant.
  • At this point, the medical school takes over the application.
  • Secondary Application
  • Interview
  • Upon invitation from the medical school:
  • Submit letters of recommendation
  • Submit additional writing samples
  • Send updated transcripts if necessary
  • Pay additional application fee if required
  • Understanding the Process

General Time Frame of Application Process

  • Filing with AMCAS: June – July
  • Requests for Secondary Applications: July – January
  • Interviews Scheduled: September – March
  • Decisions Made: October – Early Summer

HOW TO GET READY TO FILE WITH AMCAS

  • General Information/Getting Ready
    • Know the admissions requirements at each school / Research Schools
    • View the “Practice Application” that comes on line in in April
    • Obtain copies of your transcripts
    • Complete the Application Worksheet
    • Make sure you have access to a computer that meets AMCAS system and browser requirements
    • Make payment arrangements

AMCAS Registration

  • AMCAS Registration
  • Use “real” biographical information during registration:

Application Navigation

  • Application Navigation
  • Become familiar with the navigation sections of the application:
  • Application Navigation
  • Become familiar with the application control buttons:

Common Pitfalls

    • General Errors
    • -Missed application deadlines
    • -Typos and other errors in essay, experiences, etc.
    • -Failure to receive and respond to AMCAS notifications
        • Course work errors
          • - Incorrect academic status
          • - Incorrect course classifications
          • - Missing course work
  • Delayed processing/Missed transcript deadlines

Medical School Resources

  • Medical School Resources
    • Medical School Admissions Requirements (MSAR)
    • Minority Student Opportunities
    • Links to participating schools:
    • http://www.aamc.org/students/amcas

USING THE MSAR

Closing Pieces of Advice

  • Think Carefully About How To Best Spend Your Time This Semester
  • Manage and/or check your VCU E-mail Account
  • Participate in Pre-Med Society Events
  • DO NOT APPLY LATE


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