Premed Timeline 2018-2019

Premed Timeline and Pre Med Requirements and Best Pre Med Courses to Take and Pre Med 5 Year Plan and Pre Med Acceptance Timeline,

Creating a premed timeline

Yes, we know thinking about applying to medical school can give even the best student a headache. 

There is so much to do, so many courses to take, and many logistical aspects of the process to consider. 

Are you on the pre med track?

Where do you even start?

Remember there are people that have helped pre-med students for many years.  

These people became doctors.

Then they became medical school administrators. 

Then they became pre-med and medical student mentors. 

Then, 

They worked in academic medicine.

And that’s not all.

Yes, they even spend most of their time reading the latest academic literature and attend important pre med meetings.

They can help you.

Who are they? MedEdits Medical Admissions.

By knowing what is ahead of you, we can decrease your stress.

We can position you for success.

It’s true.  Medical school admissions is super competitive.

If you’re a pre med parent or pre med student, read on to begin your plan.

I know what you’re thinking: 

Where do I start?

Let’s start with very basic first steps.

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Best Pre Med Schools

MedEdits Pre Med Advising 2018-2019

Pre Med Requirements

First, you must understand what is required of you to:

  1. Prepare for the MCAT
  2. Apply to medical school

So, what are the medical school prerequisites? 

Sounds pretty straight forward right?  

Well think again.

Would you believe that some medical schools no longer require absolute prerequisite courses?

It’s true:

Instead, they require students to be “competent” in certain academic disciplines:

Here’s a list of the best pre med courses to take:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Physics
  • Mathematics
  • Humanities
  • Social sciences 
  • Behavioral sciences

But, you should also keep in mind that traditional prerequisites are still important. 

Again, most medical schools in the United States still require absolute prerequisites.

That’s why we advise the following: 

Students should take “traditional” premedical prerequisites. 

Why you ask?

This strategy will satisfy both types of medical schools:

  • Those that have “competency-based” admissions criteria
  • Those that have required prerequisite courses

Best Pre Med Courses to Take. 

Trust MedEdits’ experience with these premed recommendations.

Look: 

You should follow the required prerequisite courses for most medical schools in the United States.

In fact, we also recommend taking these courses before taking the MCAT:

  1. General Chemistry 1 (with lab)
  2. General Chemistry 2 (with lab)
  3. Organic Chemistry 1 (with lab)
  4. Organic Chemistry 2 (with lab)
  5. Biology 1 (with lab)
  6. Biology 2 (with lab)
  7. Physics 1 (with lab)
  8. Physics 2 (with lab)

The following courses are required prerequisites by some medical schools:

  1. Math (2 semesters)
  2. English (2 semesters)
  3. *Psychology 
  4. *Sociology
  5. *Biochemistry

You’re probably wondering:

 Why did we * the last three?

*Psychology, sociology and biochemistry are all covered on the MCAT.

 Most people that score well on the MCAT know this. 

So, we recommend taking these courses before taking the MCAT.

But that’s not all.

It gets better.  

We have lots of other tips and recommendations.

Some are additional classes you can take

and 

Some are non-academic activities.  

Building Your Pre Med Profile

That’s right, we can build your profile in many ways

It’s important to understand what else will prepare you for the medical school admissions process.

We want to position you to be the strongest applicant possible.

Here are some important examples: 

  1. Upper level science classes

First:

Medical schools love students that are strong in the sciences and earn great grades.

So, here’s a chance to prove this.

You can show an admissions committee that you’re one of these students.

Take upper level science classes.

What does this show?

This proves that you would be a good fit for a scientifically-based curriculum.

2) Research

Next: 

Even though research is not a defined prerequisite for medical school, think again.  

MedEdits considers it one. 

Why?

As a physician you will always be doing the following: 

  • Asking questions
  • Analyzing data
  • Practicing evidenced-based medicine
  • And, reading journals

Therefore, let’s be clear: 

Research in ANY discipline is something we feel you must have on your application.

3) Clinical Exposure

Next: 

Students that get into medical school been exposed to medicine.

Having exposure to clinical medicine is a must for premedical students.

What does this mean?

What is the best clinical experience for pre med?

Here are some good examples of pre med clinical experience:

  • Shadowing physicians
  • Volunteering in a clinic
  • Working on medical missions abroad
  • Scribing
  • EMT work

Why are these experiences important?

You must understand what it means to practice medicine.

But that’s not all:

You must also be able to explain, for a patient, what it’s like to live with illness.

And/or

a disability.

Again, this is SO important.  

The bottom line: 

Clinical exposure is considered another prerequisite for MedEdits students.

Premed Timeline and Pre Med Requirements and Best Pre Med Courses to Take and Pre Med 4 Year Plan and Pre Med 5 Year Plan and Pre Med Acceptance Timeline.

4) Community Service/Volunteering

You may be wondering why this is so important?

As physicians, you will be caring for diverse groups of people.

And that’s not all.

You will be part of a service industry. 

So, 

Showing your commitment to the well being of others through service work of any type is valuable. 

Medical school admissions committees want to see this.

This is why MedEdits considers community service to be the third non-academic prerequisite for our students.

5) Teaching

As a doctor, you will always be teaching.

You may be wondering, 

“Who will I be teaching?”

  • Your patients
  • Staff
  • Medical students
  • Residents
  • Colleagues

While not considered a prerequisite for our students, it’s great to have some teaching or tutoring experience.

Want to know the best part?

Medical school admissions committees will love this in your background.

Premed Timeline and Pre Med Requirements and Best Pre Med Courses to Take and Pre Med 4 Year Plan and Pre Med Acceptance Timeline,

6) Leadership

Not all leadership positions are created equally.

What does this mean?

Rather than seek out experiences that satisfy the “leadership” category

We, and admissions committees, know when an experience is meaningful to you.

Students should take on leadership opportunities within meaningful experiences. 

It is best when leadership experiences evolve organically as a natural progression from your true interests.  

Let me explain. 

  • Choose a specific existing interest.
  • It should be an experience where you can prove deep involvement.

And finally, 

  • You demonstrate even more commitment to this existing experience. 

Here’s an example: 

Maybe you become a supervising teacher’s assistant in your senior year.

Or, 

Maybe you take on more responsibility at the lab in which you work. 

Here’s the deal: 

Don’t take on leadership roles simply for the purposes of doing so.

7) Other distinguishing interests

Explore your other interests and do something that you enjoy. These outside interests don’t have to be related to medicine, either! Do you have a particular interest in dance, sports, cooking, public health, art history, or global health? Medical schools love to have diverse classes full of interesting people. 

So you may now be thinking:

This is crazy:

You ask, “How in the world will I fit all of these activities in and do well in my courses?” 

With planning, consideration, and flexibility, you can, and will, accomplish all of this.

Everything that is necessary to get in to medical school can be done. 

So I present to you two possible timelines to help you stay organized and, of course, help you to realize that you can do this. 

Premed Timeline(s): The 4 and 5 Year Plans

Below are two basic timelines to follow that will help you. Please modify these timelines depending on your personal commitments and school/major requirements and schedules.

PREMEDICAL TIME LINE:

Many applicants are taking five years.

Yes, it’s true:

Rather than the “traditional” four year path to prepare for medical school admission, for some, a more realistic goal may be five years.

Let me explain: 

What this means is that many students find it more realistic to apply to medical school at the end of the senior year of college rather than the end of junior year of college. 

Is this a good strategy?

It is.

This enables students to have more time to study for the MCAT.

And that’s not all.

This extra time will help you to prepare your medial school application.

Taking a full “gap year” to explore medically related interests will result in:

Greater maturity

Professional development

Focus

And, “talking points” for medical school interviews 

You might be wondering, do these timelines apply to all pre med students?

They do NOT.

Keep in mind these are general time lines. 

Depending on your own academic, extracurricular, scholarly background, major, and college/university you might decide to dedicate even more time for your premedical studies. 

So let’s get started: 

MedEdits Pre Med 4 Year Plan: 

Year 1:

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus

Fall: Chemistry 1, Biology 1, Meet with premed advisor

Spring: Chemistry 2, Biology 2

Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service

Year 2: 

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus.

Fall: Organic Chemistry 1, Psychology, Meet with premed advisor

Spring: Organic Chemistry 2, Sociology

Summer: Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service, consider starting MCAT prep

Year 3: 

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus. Meet with premed advisor.

Fall: Physics 1, Biochemistry, Start MCAT Prep. Learn about the different application systems – AMCAS, AACOMAS, TMDSAS

Winter: Start working on personal statement, application entry write ups

Spring: Physics 2, MCAT Prep, Request letters of reference

Pre Med 4 Year Plan Acceptance Timeline

Now, it’s time to put all of your hard work and focus into action.

By May/June: Take MCAT

So you ask: When should i apply to medical school?

June: Submit medical school applications.

Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service

Year 4:

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus. Meet with premed advisor

Fall: Upper level science courses, medical school interviews

Spring: Upper level science courses, decide where to go to medical school

Summer: Have FUN!!!!

START MEDICAL SCHOOL!  Think “White Coat Ceremony.” 

Premed Timeline and Pre Med Requirements and Best Pre Med Courses to Take and Pre Med 5 Year Plan and Pre Med Acceptance Timeline,

MedEdits Pre Med 5 Year Plan:

Year 1:

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus

Fall: Chemistry 1, Biology 1, Meet with premed advisor

Spring: Chemistry 2, Biology 2

Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service

Year 2: 

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus

Fall: Organic Chemistry 1, Psychology, Meet with premed advisor.

Spring: Organic Chemistry 2, Sociology

Summer: Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service, consider starting MCAT prep

Year 3: 

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus

Fall: Physics 1, Biochemistry, Start MCAT Prep, Meet with premed advisor

Spring: Physics 2, MCAT Prep

Summer: Research, Clinical Exposure, Community Service

Year 4:

Fall/Spring: Pursue medically related meaningful activities that won’t distract from academic focus. Meet with premed advisor

Fall: Upper level science courses, MCAT prep, start exploring gap year options. Learn about the different application systems – AMCAS, AACOMAS, TMDSAS

Winter/Spring: Request letters of reference

Pre Med 5 Year Plan Acceptance Timeline

Now, it’s time to put all of your hard work and focus into action.

By May/June: Take MCAT

Winter: Start working on personal statement, application entry write ups

Spring: Upper level science courses, decide on gap year experience, complete medical school applications

Applying to med school senior year

June: Apply to medical school

Year 5:

Gap year medically related experience

Interview for medical school

Start medical school!

Pre Med Check List

Finally, let’s make a pre med list.

Things to accomplish throughout your premedical years:

  1. Meet with your premed advisor regularly. Find out the specific recommended premed courses and medically related opportunities at your school and the surrounding community. You want him or her to be your advocate, to know who you are, and to advise you. 
  1. Keep in mind academic success is your TOP priority above everything else. No one will even read about what you have done if your “metrics” (GPA and MCAT) don’t meet thresholds.
  1. Keep a journal. Write down interesting observations, insights, and stories about your experiences. This will all be very useful when it is time to write your medical school personal statement, application, and secondary essays.

4. Nurture relationships with professors, principal investigators, and leaders at your   college/university. You will need these people as letter writers and advocates.

  1. Explore research, medically-related, community service/volunteer, teaching, and leadership opportunities. Try to stay away from ‘filler’ activities through which you won’t learn much. 
  1. Don’t be discouraged by a poor grade, one less than stellar MCAT score or other disappointment. Instead, figure out what you need to do to improve your candidacy and recover.
  1. Explore other interests unrelated to medicine.
  1. Stay positive! Like a career in medicine, applying to medical school requires a “marathon” mentality. It’s not a sprint.

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