February 2013: Picking A Medical School (MSMP Pulse)
Happy February! It’s time for the theme of the month. This month’s theme will be: Picking a Medical School. As always we encourage you to ask questions regarding this topic to your mentor. Even if you are a freshman, please keep in mind the planning that should go into picking your medical school (including taking the right classes for the right school).
Some things to consider (by no means a full list, ask your mentor what they thought about and how they made their decision):
- Cost of the medical school
- Average GPA and MCAT score of the medical school (numbers aren’t everything but they can give you an idea of your general chances)
- If the curriculum will fit your needs and learning style (ex: PBL based vs. lecture based; A-F scale or pass or fail system)
- Prerequisites: probably one of the most important since it requires you planning out your class schedule appropriately
- Location: Do you mind moving to Texas or Canada or the Caribbean? Would you be willing to join a military school?
- Admissions process: some schools have rolling applications or Early Decision Programs (JABSOM has an EDP). Be sure to consider those things when planning to apply
- Extent of research at the medical school
- Type of program: Just MD? MD/PhD program? MD/MPH? There may be different requirements for each.
- You may also consider pursuing a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree (DO). They do not go through AMCAS but rather through AACOM. Never heard of this? Here’s a little history:www.aacom.org/about/osteomed/Pages/default.aspx
While we will list some possible sites to visit, please keep in mind that there are a number of resources regarding medschool information out there. Pick one that fits your needs. You can either buy books, or go to the UHM PAC office which often holds a variety of books you can look through. Once you find a few schools, visit their website. It may even help to email or call someone in admissions to show you are interested in the program.
1. List of AMCAS participating medical schools and their websites (you should really look on the website of schools you are interested in):www.aamc.org/students/applying/amcas/participating_schools/hawaii/
2. A Decent FREE source (but note not all info may be current or accurate):medicalschools.collegenews.com/
3. MSAR (this is a PAID service): www.aamc.org/students/applying/requirements/msar/
4. Osteopathic Schools (AACOM): www.aacom.org/about/colleges/Pages/default.aspx
5. Ross University Caribbean Medical School: www.rossu.edu/medical-school/
More resources will hopefully be made available as the month goes on. Hope to see you all at the PBL Demo!