Now that you have determined to become a doctor with aid of our part 1 post, https://hemtecks.wordpress.com/2015/07/24/steps-to-a-successful-medical-school-application-step-1-knowing-if-medical-school-is-really-for-you/ now it is the time for you to plan out your journey. This is especially important, as many things cannot be procrastinated. Thus, the earlier you set your goals, the earlier your acceptance will come in.
In terms of things on the check list, I have categorized them into few sections: academic, research, community services and the mcat. Please do not free pressured if you are lack of one as there are always rooms for improvement. For academics, it is very initutive to receive the highest grade possible as it is one of the two most important piece to your application (the other one is mcat). To get the highest mark strategically, you should balance the difficulties in in each term. If possible, have at least two easy courses per term, especially when you have multiple lab courses. This way, you can focus your time on hard subjects. However, please keep in mind the prerequisites for each target medical school. In general, most require 2 biology, 2 chemistry, 2 physics, and 2 English courses with some math or statistic courses. Most schools also require >75% prerequisites completed at the time of application, delaying them therefore is not an option, which is why early planning is virtue.
Moving onto the MCAT, with the new version of MCAT, it is advised to spend an average of 300 studying hours, according to AAMC. However, this number varies from person to person as it entirely depends on your studying style and how much you have retained from the undergraduate classes. Thus, this shows paying attention in class not only gives you great grades but also saves your time on study for MCAT. I will later write a blog specific designated in describing how to study efficiently for MCAT to get the score you want.
Last but not least, research and community services are also vitally important, especially during the interviews where you need to use your experiences to show your uniqueness and suitability for medicine. Regarding on how to find research experience and club experience, here are the links:
- On getting the club executive experiences:
2. On scientific research: https://hemtecks.wordpress.com/2014/09/13/part-1-you-must-have-lab-experiences-to-succeed-in-life/
All in all, preparing for medical school is surely a tiring process but it is the rewards you will receive that push you through the pain. You also have to remember that it is not always studying and volunteering, you will always find your free time, enjoy your undergraduate years just like many others. In my next blog, I’ll post on how to prepare put together a medical school application.