Advice from a Medical Student  [ENDORSED]

Any general non-science questions (software questions/problems, etc.,) and class announcements.

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RichBollini3C
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby RichBollini3C » Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:44 pm

Thank you so much for your advice! This is going to help me a lot this year!

Chem_Mod
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Thu Oct 03, 2019 3:08 pm

Yiyang Jen Wang 4I wrote:Thank you so much for sharing these. I am a 2nd year right now and was so stressed about being a premed student. I felt like I have so much to do, to get prepared but don’t even know how to start. Your advices are so helpful! I should really make a plan for myself.


Don't stress! You have so much time before you need to even think about applying. Just focus on your courses now and doing well in them. The rest will all fall into place when the time comes. You'll be fine. You got this! Good luck!

Leslie Magana 4C
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Leslie Magana 4C » Thu Oct 03, 2019 8:24 pm

Thanks for the advice!

Jingyao Chen 4H
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Jingyao Chen 4H » Thu Oct 03, 2019 8:57 pm

Thank you so much for sharing this! I have just began this course, and I will make sure to follow your advice. Thank you!

Anvi Brahmbhatt 4A
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Anvi Brahmbhatt 4A » Fri Oct 04, 2019 10:27 pm

Thank you so much for sharing your advice on how to excel in this class! I will definitely keep your tips in mind as I navigate through this course!

GEOVANNAO_3F
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby GEOVANNAO_3F » Sat Oct 05, 2019 11:07 pm

Can’t wait to learn, Ive never had a professor so dedicated in providing their students with so many resources in order to ensure their success. Office hours are a new thing to me but I can’t wait to take advantage of it

Lauren Tindall
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Lauren Tindall » Sun Oct 06, 2019 3:33 pm

Wow! Thank you so much for your insight. As a currently overwhelmed STEM student, this is very helpful.

AnayaArnold_3L
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby AnayaArnold_3L » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:06 pm

Chem_Mod wrote:Hey Chem 14A and 14B Students!

I'm Ashley and I am a UCLA graduate and current NY medical student. Before medical school, I was Dr. Lavelle's UA for 10 quarters, which means I know how to do well and effectively study for this class. I wanted to give you some advice and things I wish I knew when I was in your shoes. If there is only one thing that you should keep from UCLA, save your notes from this course. As many of you premeds already know, the MCAT has a chemistry section. To study for that portion of the MCAT, I read over all of Dr. Lavelle's notes from Chem 14A and Chem 14B. I was not a chemistry major, but I scored in the top 5% for that section just by reviewing his notes. What Dr. Lavelle teaches you in this class will prepare you not only for the MCAT but also for medical school. Many of the topics taught in these next two quarters will reappear again and again, and having heard it all before from Dr. Lavelle makes learning it again that much easier. I cannot stress enough how important it is to study those notes and save them after the course is over. I go to school across the country, but I made sure to take his notes with me to med school. His lectures are so well prepared and cut through all the distracting detail to help everyone focus on clear concepts that assist so much with problem solving.

While this course may seem a little overwhelming at times as this is one of your first university courses, just know that Dr. Lavelle provides you with so many resources. He has Chemistry Community which is 24/7 virtual office hours! Plus, he organizes a huge number of weekly Office Hours and Peer Learning Sessions, in addition to even more Review Sessions before exams. He wants to help you succeed so if you get stuck on a concept or a homework problem, go to one of these sessions and talk to Dr. Lavelle, the TAs, and UAs about it. There are so many opportunities for success. Use them. Ask questions on Chemistry Community 24/7, and in discussion sections, office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions. Be proactive. These study skills will help you not just in this class but in the rest of your schooling.

To do well in this class, attend all your lectures and discussion sections and go to as many office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions as you can. Even if you don't think you have questions, learn from other students. They might have a question you never thought of. Especially on Chemistry Community. Dr. Lavelle's Chem 14A and 14B are going to be two of the most rewarding classes you will take at UCLA. It might seem tough at times, but by the end of the quarter you will have learned so much and have set a solid foundation for your future courses. You will not have another class whose core topics repeat over and over again. Take advantage of all the resources Dr. Lavelle has put a huge effort into developing for you, including the online Focus Topics which are really helpful. He wants you to do well. No other professor creates, maintains, and provides as many additional resources as he does.

Good luck this quarter! If you guys have any questions, feel free to email me at smileysarquiz@ucla.edu. I was Dr. Lavelle's student in 2012 and his UA from 2013 (when Dr. Lavelle created the UA program for lecture courses at UCLA) to 2017. I know how to help you do well. Even though I'm not a UA anymore, I'm happy to guide you guys.

Ashley Sarquiz
UCLA Class of 2015


Thank you so much!!1

Alexis 3F
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Alexis 3F » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:55 pm

Thank you so much for this; as a student interested in pre-health, I found this advice very helpful!

Alexis 3F
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Alexis 3F » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:55 pm

Thank you so much for this; as a student interested in pre-health, I found this advice very helpful!

Alexis F 3L
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Alexis F 3L » Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:31 pm

Thank you for sharing your advice! I'm also interested in going to medical school in NY and I have been feeling very overwhelmed, so I really appreciate these tips!

Kaylee Sepulveda 3C
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Kaylee Sepulveda 3C » Sun Oct 06, 2019 9:03 pm

Do you have any advice for professors who are not as accommodating as Lavelle? Did you ever struggle in a specific class because of a lack of resources/support?

Ayush Ray 1I
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Ayush Ray 1I » Sun Oct 06, 2019 9:33 pm

Thank You so much for posting this. I've been stressing a lot recently, and this really cleared things up for me.

Jaklin Astvatsatryan
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Jaklin Astvatsatryan » Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:24 pm

Thank you for the advice!! Update us on how Med school is going.

brennayoung
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby brennayoung » Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:40 pm

This was very interesting, thank you for sharing!

Adelpha Chan 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Adelpha Chan 1B » Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:53 am

thank you for your advice, encouragement, and tips on how to succeed in this class!

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:19 pm

Kaylee Sepulveda 3C wrote:Do you have any advice for professors who are not as accommodating as Lavelle? Did you ever struggle in a specific class because of a lack of resources/support?


With other courses, you need to find a way to get your questions answered. It's harder because there isn't a 24/7 forum like Chemistry Community where you can ask questions at any time of day. But if you reach out to the TAs or the professor, I'd say that most of the time they are receptive to meeting if their office hours are conflicting with your class schedule.

Chem_Mod
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:20 pm

Jaklin Astvatsatryan 3G wrote:Thank you for the advice!! Update us on how Med school is going.


Check out my other post "Advice from a Medical Student - Part II". I just posted it and it is a two year update regarding clinical rotations and how it's different than lectures the first two years of medical school.

505106414
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby 505106414 » Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:44 pm

Do you recommend taking chem 17 before chem 14a?

Areli C 3L
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Areli C 3L » Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:19 am

Wow, this is very helpful. Thank you :)

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:48 am

505106414 wrote:Do you recommend taking chem 17 before chem 14a?


It honestly depends on how strong your background of high school chemistry is. While Dr. Lavelle teaches the basics and then progressively works his way up to more complex concepts, if you are really struggling or you feel like the class is going at too fast a pace for you, then it might be worth taking chem 17 first. It is a good course to use as a refresher before chem 14a but it's up to you and how comfortable you feel with the class right now. Hope this help! Good luck this quarter!

BSolano_3A
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby BSolano_3A » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:03 pm

Thank you, for the super helpful and informative information. I appreciate it.

BSolano_3A
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby BSolano_3A » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:03 pm

Thank you, for the super helpful and informative information. I appreciate it.

erica thompson 4I
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby erica thompson 4I » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:42 pm

Thank you for the advice Ashley! How much do you think you specifically reference this information from this class in your work today, and as a medical student?

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Fri Oct 11, 2019 6:56 pm

erica thompson 4I wrote:Thank you for the advice Ashley! How much do you think you specifically reference this information from this class in your work today, and as a medical student?


I actually used the majority of what Dr. Lavelle taught in the first year of medical school. I do reference his material from time to time, but during the first year there was a ton of overlap. Particularly now in that I'm doing rotations in the hospital, there is a huge focus on the acid-base section and buffers. Every time someone gets their daily labs drawn, you need to understand that bicarbonate buffer of hemoglobin to determine if there needs to be any changes in their medications. When he starts teaching that section, pay close attention. Dr. Lavelle does a great job incorporating the cell biology portion into that lecture. Just this morning I was asked why there was sodium bicarbonate added into the patients IV fluids, and it was because we needed to alkalize the urine to improve excretion of one of the medications to prevent its harmful side effects. So while there is a lot of overlap between the chem classes and the lecture material the first year, acids and bases, specifically, I use every day.

ngarcia
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby ngarcia » Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:43 pm

Thank you so much for sharing your bits of wisdom with us! I will definitely reach out to you if I come across obstacles this quarter and the next.
While you were at UCLA, did you overlap biology and chemistry? If so, what was that like? Any advice for balancing and keeping up with both?

Chem_Mod
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:06 pm

ngarcia wrote:Thank you so much for sharing your bits of wisdom with us! I will definitely reach out to you if I come across obstacles this quarter and the next.
While you were at UCLA, did you overlap biology and chemistry? If so, what was that like? Any advice for balancing and keeping up with both?


I don't think I took an LS class along with a chem class until spring quarter of my first year. I wanted to give myself some time to get adjusted to the fast paced quarter system before I jumped into taking two very tough core science classes. It's going to be difficult, which is why you shouldn't rush into it. I would start out by taking chemistry, a GE class, and maybe an English class or something that is writing-based. When you take a writing course, it is nice because your final is a written paper and not a 3 hour final exam that you need to study for. So by spreading out the courses, your finals week isn't as stressful. You will eventually get to a point where you will be taking two science courses at the same time, but that's when you're in your second year and you've gotten used to the pacing and have found a study technique that works for you. But while you are still adjusting, I'd say take it slow and gradually incorporate a tougher class schedule.

405398682
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby 405398682 » Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:09 pm

Thank you very much! I really got a better idea of how to be a pre-med student!

madeleine_dis1E
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby madeleine_dis1E » Sun Oct 13, 2019 8:12 pm

Thankyou so much i really needed this advice it really helped.

Nick Lewis 3D
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Nick Lewis 3D » Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:35 pm

Thank you for the insightful message! As a first year student, I don't really know what I want to do yet. I am a pre-biz Econ major, but I am kind of torn between an Econ route and a pre-med/pre-dent route. I am really enjoying this class so far because chemistry has always interested me. I am definitely going to attend more office hours and peer learning sessions. It is amazing to see how much of an impact he has had on your development!

Kendra Barreras 3E
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Kendra Barreras 3E » Sun Oct 13, 2019 10:36 pm

Thank you so much for the advice!

LeAirraBullingor3k
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby LeAirraBullingor3k » Thu Oct 17, 2019 11:02 am

Thank you so much for your advice! Would you recommend taking 14B and 14BL at the same time? or should I save my labs for the summer?

Yailin Romo 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Yailin Romo 1B » Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:45 pm

Thank you so much for this, I am currently a second year pre med student and am stressed OUT about doing well in classes, becoming involved to get into a good medical school.

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:06 pm

LeAirraBullingor3k wrote:Thank you so much for your advice! Would you recommend taking 14B and 14BL at the same time? or should I save my labs for the summer?


The chem lab courses are very time consuming. The lab periods itself are long, and then writing pages of handwritten labs take a really long time. It's possible to take it at the same time, just understand that even though it is fewer units than the lecture course, the time commitment is the same if not more. Just be sure to keep that in mind when registering for classes. Also, keep in mind, there's a lot more students going into Chem 14B than there are spaces in 14BL so there's a really good chance it'll fill up before you even get the chance to enroll. So if you can't get it winter quarter, just remember you can always take it in the spring (even if you are taking Chem 14C during that time). When you choose to take the lab courses don't really matter. If you take it in the summer, you won't be dealing with other courses; however, you'll be doing double the amount of labs per week and therefore you don't have as much time to work on each lab report because you have to turn it in before starting your next lab. There's pluses and minuses so just weigh it out and see what you think fits best in your schedule.

ShreyaKannan1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby ShreyaKannan1B » Sun Oct 20, 2019 3:09 pm

Thanks for the advice, because I'm not sure about the pre-med track so it's nice to hear from someone who has been through it.

Joanne Kang 3I
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Joanne Kang 3I » Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:49 pm

Thank you so much for the advice!

ShreyaKannan1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby ShreyaKannan1B » Sun Oct 27, 2019 4:42 pm

Thanks for the advice! Any tips for the midterm?

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Sun Oct 27, 2019 7:45 pm

ShreyaKannan1B wrote:Thanks for the advice! Any tips for the midterm?


Make sure you understand the concepts behind each calculation problem. You want to be sure that you are understanding why you do each step so when you see a fresh new question on the midterm or final, even though the wording is new, you've seen a similar question on that same topic and can figure out how to answer it. If you get stuck, think about the units of the values given and the units for your final answer. Even if you aren't quite sure which formula to use, you may be able to use this information to determine which numbers need to be multiplied or divided in order to start being able to cancel out the units. And lastly, if you missed any questions on the test given during your discussion section, make sure you go over it so you have a good grasp before walking into the midterm. Hope this helps. Good luck! You got this!

Areli C 3L
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Areli C 3L » Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:22 pm

Thank you so much! This was quite insightful

AnayaArnold_3L
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby AnayaArnold_3L » Sun Oct 27, 2019 10:04 pm

Thank you so much!!!!
Chem_Mod wrote:Hey Chem 14A and 14B Students!

I'm Ashley and I am a UCLA graduate and current NY medical student. Before medical school, I was Dr. Lavelle's UA for 10 quarters, which means I know how to do well and effectively study for this class. I wanted to give you some advice and things I wish I knew when I was in your shoes. If there is only one thing that you should keep from UCLA, save your notes from this course. As many of you premeds already know, the MCAT has a chemistry section. To study for that portion of the MCAT, I read over all of Dr. Lavelle's notes from Chem 14A and Chem 14B. I was not a chemistry major, but I scored in the top 5% for that section just by reviewing his notes. What Dr. Lavelle teaches you in this class will prepare you not only for the MCAT but also for medical school. Many of the topics taught in these next two quarters will reappear again and again, and having heard it all before from Dr. Lavelle makes learning it again that much easier. I cannot stress enough how important it is to study those notes and save them after the course is over. I go to school across the country, but I made sure to take his notes with me to med school. His lectures are so well prepared and cut through all the distracting detail to help everyone focus on clear concepts that assist so much with problem solving.

While this course may seem a little overwhelming at times as this is one of your first university courses, just know that Dr. Lavelle provides you with so many resources. He has Chemistry Community which is 24/7 virtual office hours! Plus, he organizes a huge number of weekly Office Hours and Peer Learning Sessions, in addition to even more Review Sessions before exams. He wants to help you succeed so if you get stuck on a concept or a homework problem, go to one of these sessions and talk to Dr. Lavelle, the TAs, and UAs about it. There are so many opportunities for success. Use them. Ask questions on Chemistry Community 24/7, and in discussion sections, office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions. Be proactive. These study skills will help you not just in this class but in the rest of your schooling.

To do well in this class, attend all your lectures and discussion sections and go to as many office hours, peer learning sessions, and review sessions as you can. Even if you don't think you have questions, learn from other students. They might have a question you never thought of. Especially on Chemistry Community. Dr. Lavelle's Chem 14A and 14B are going to be two of the most rewarding classes you will take at UCLA. It might seem tough at times, but by the end of the quarter you will have learned so much and have set a solid foundation for your future courses. You will not have another class whose core topics repeat over and over again. Take advantage of all the resources Dr. Lavelle has put a huge effort into developing for you, including the online Focus Topics which are really helpful. He wants you to do well. No other professor creates, maintains, and provides as many additional resources as he does.

Good luck this quarter! If you guys have any questions, feel free to email me at smileysarquiz@ucla.edu. I was Dr. Lavelle's student in 2012 and his UA from 2013 (when Dr. Lavelle created the UA program for lecture courses at UCLA) to 2017. I know how to help you do well. Even though I'm not a UA anymore, I'm happy to guide you guys.

Ashley Sarquiz
UCLA Class of 2015

Ben 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Ben 1B » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:14 pm

If you are not enjoying this class or subject but still have dreams of becoming a doctor, what do you do? Do you just go through it and hope it gets better?

Ben 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Ben 1B » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:15 pm

Is there any way to complete medical school pre-requisites while majoring in business economics? Is this a smart move? What do you recommend for an indecisive individual?

Ben 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Ben 1B » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:16 pm

Is there a way to go to medical school without the pre-requisites such as chemistry classes and physics classes?

Ben 1B
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Ben 1B » Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:18 pm

Can you take all your medical school pre-requisites online or at a community college? If so, is it any less competitive?

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:08 am

Ben 1B wrote:If you are not enjoying this class or subject but still have dreams of becoming a doctor, what do you do? Do you just go through it and hope it gets better?


If it's a course that is a medical pre-requisite then you need to determine if being a doctor is still what you want to be. Medical school with residency is a minimum of 7 years (4 years medical school + 3+ years of residency depending on the program). Medical school is a lot different than what I thought it was going to be. I really loved my undergraduate courses and I still struggled with some topics. They're difficult and some are hard to teach, which makes learning the material difficult. If you aren't enjoying one course for one quarter, take another similar class and see if it is the topic that isn't interesting to you or if it was the method in which it was thought. If you really want to be a doctor, you can make it happen. But it will be a long road if you're forcing yourself into a career you aren't 100% invested in.

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:10 am

Ben 1B wrote:Is there any way to complete medical school pre-requisites while majoring in business economics? Is this a smart move? What do you recommend for an indecisive individual?


If you aren't a pre-med, I find that super cool! You end up becoming such a well-rounded applicant and I know from experience that admission committees do like that. It is definitely something that will not hurt you. You just need to make sure that you finish all the pre-requisites before applying, which may consist of doing a post-Bach where you take additional pre-med requirements. Many many students, including myself, take gap years so you can use that time to finish taking the necessary required classes.

Chem_Mod
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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:11 am

Ben 1B wrote:Is there a way to go to medical school without the pre-requisites such as chemistry classes and physics classes?


Unfortunately, you cannot. You need to take these courses because medical school will only build on this material. They don't teach the foundations; they just assume you know it from the courses you took in your undergraduate courses.

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Re: Advice from a Medical Student

Postby Chem_Mod » Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:16 am

Ben 1B wrote:Can you take all your medical school pre-requisites online or at a community college? If so, is it any less competitive?


You can take them wherever you would like. I'm not sure if they accept online courses (that you would need to check with specific schools), but they should accept courses taken at a community college. I can't comment on competitiveness because each school looks at it differently. However, we have accepted students who did their pre-requisites at a community college. Everyone has their own unique backstory and it's more than just grades and GPA that go into considering admission for a student to medical school. Good luck to you!


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