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zxcccxz

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  1. No matter your MCAT score, your GPA will preclude you from applying/being competitive at any med school in Canada. If you are set on going to med, you would have to do a second undergrad and score at least 3.8+ (on the OMSAS scale) while taking a full course load. This could make you competitive for Western and Queens. For most other med schools, your GPA from your first undergrad is lethal, unfortunately.
  2. They probably want to keep doing better is my guess. Calgary is starting fully online (no surprise here since classes start on July 6th) but initially we were informed that we would transition to in-person classes by September. After getting our final schedule tho it looks like they just meant that the first big exam (which will be sept 14th) will be on site and at least for now, the whole rest of the fall semester seems to be planned as online.
  3. Well that's not true. UofC will count the GPA from your masters as the equivalent of a single undergraduate year in calculations. UofA says "All coursework completed as part of a thesis-based graduate program to which a grade and course weighting was assigned will be included in the calculation of cGPA." But I agree. If GPA is the weakest part of an application (which is the case for you), it's a lot better to do an extra year of undergrad than spend 2-3 years on a masters. One advantage though, if you would be open to considering doing your masters at UofC, is the leaders in medicine program. I'll let you look into it yourself, but the jist of it is that you can keep applying every year to the MD program while you're in the masters and if you get into MD partway through the masters they let you defer by whatever period of time you will need to complete your masters before matriculating into the MD program. This maximizes your chances of getting in because you potentially get multiple applications cycles as compared to if you did your masters at a different university you would only be eligible to apply in the cycle by the end of which you would have your masters degree conferred to you. The biggest barrier for you currently is getting your wGPA up. Your ECs are decent, but perhaps not good enough to overcome your GPA (unless there are some elements I'm missing or you're a phenomenal writer who can really sell themselves in the Top 10). The 130 CARS will help you, but that's only 10% of the file review (and 5% of the overall admissions score) for UofC. If you can get a 4.0 in your final year, I encourage you to apply, but a 3.5 wGPA is still on the low end. If you don't get in that cycle, I would suggest a follow-up 5th year. Another 4.0 then should make you more competitive (3.65wGPA; which is still not great tbh but certainly a lot better than a 3.5).
  4. I definitely agree that there is too much focus on grades at Canadian medical schools. For all the fuss they make about being "holistic", the fact that many students are ineligible to apply simply because they do not meet an arbitrarily high cutoff (I'm looking at you UOttawa) is such a waste, when these students could very easily be excelling in other parts that are important such as the MCAT, ECs, CASPer etc. just because their GPA was 0.01 too low. Heck, Queen's doesn't even release any information like admissions averages or cutoffs, and end up pocketing application fees from hundreds or thousands of applicants every year who will basically pay $100s to get their application thrown out without even been looked at. Ultimately though, the problem is that there are just too many qualified applicants. There are just too many people who have amazing ECs, research, volunteering, MCAT and CASPer in addition to a strong GPA, for applicants with all of those things but a poor GPA to have a realistic chance of gaining admission. There's a cutoff and there's a competitive average. At most schools, anyone who barely passes the cutoff won't get an interview. Are there some gems that get looked over every year because of these cutoffs? Probably. But shifting through a thousand below-cutoff applications for a few applicants who will be able to overcome a very poor GPA with stellar ECs is probably not within the resources of ADCOMS. Otherwise, we will need to accept paying much higher application fees so that they can double or triple their admissions team size to grant every applicant a full file review (which will pose problems of it's own, like discouraging low SES applicants).
  5. How would you classify the different IM subspecialties in terms of broad vs. narrow? Would you say that something like med onc is broad because there is so much cancer in Canada, and it doesn't require lots of equipment like rad onc or an ICU/OR (most of the time). Or by broad do you just mean something like GIM which can kind of treat most of anything unless its a particular uncommon or tough case that might need a specialist?
  6. GPA isn’t everything but it’s still very important. You need to calculate your OMSAS GPA and then your weighted GPA for each school. Without posting those, we can’t give you a proper idea of your chances. To be competitive, you need a minimum 3.7 OMSAS weighted GPA (but realistically more like 3.9 for schools like UofT and Ottawa). If you’re not close to there, and you are still very committed to going into med, your only option would be a second undergrad to increase your GPA (unless the 5th year your planning on doing is sufficient to make your GPA competitive). Two solid years would give you a shot at queens, western and maybe Ottawa (depending on how your 4th year goes).
  7. I'm pretty sure Mac Health Sci is harder to get into out of high school than Western MedSci or really any BioMed program? Also, the website says a minimum of 90% avg is required for consideration (and I believe the competitive avg is much higher). If you're getting high 80s and some 90s, you should check if you qualify to apply.
  8. This is a great point. I personally get very annoyed when people continually post on this forum or ask me IRL what the "easiest" program is to give them the golden ticket to med school--it's really such a counterproductive mindset to have, and makes me question whether I would like to have them as a colleague in the future. I have nothing against anyone who chooses a satellite campus because they want to be closer to home, or to go to a less prestigious university because they like a program there or feel the community is a better fit for them. But many people think "Courses are easier at the Missisauga campus of UofT compared to the main campus and I will be able to stand out more in my class", and make it their main reason for avoiding a challenge--it's really tantamount to saying, "I think I'm incapable of succeeding except in an environment where I will never be challenged and where I feel everyone is comfortably dumber than me". I don't know if it's actually true that going to an "easier" university makes it easier to get into medical school. I barely know anyone who go into med school from places like Trent or Brock, while there are loads of people coming out of big unis like UofT, UBC, and UofC, but of course the student body at these unis is so much larger and attracts much smarter students... so it's really hard to say.
  9. I think some of you are missing the point that OP is making. Obviously noone forced them to attend UofT, but this evades the problem of fairness which was the purpose of the post. If we get credit for taking a heavier/full course load in the form of wGPAs, if schools like to see that we can handle doing extracurriculars/volunteering on top of being in school rather than only doing them in the summer, and if they want your to maintain your ECs during the summer you write your MCAT or give you credit for having a part-time job during the school year--why not also give credit for having a tougher program? To address the question directly, the problem is that academics is not all that makes a doctor. Yes, UofT Life Science is a very tough program. But grades only really matter up to a certain point because really you just need enough intelligence and work ethic to pass your courses in med school. Beyond that, there are many other clinical and soft skills that make a much bigger difference towards the ultimate goal of making you a good physician (this is one of the reasons so many schools empahasize CARS). If schools start giving significant credit for completing tougher programs, they would be overemphasizing the importance of attending an unnecessarily difficult program that doesn't necessarily prepare you to be a doctor any better than someone who attended a less rigorous program (ex: if the goal of a course is to teach you algebra, should we give someone extra credit for knowing how to do multi-variable calculus?; not really, we should just give credit for mastering algebra really well). Even if schools were to give some small credit for tougher programs (and to be fair, UofC does do this as part of this "global assessment of academic merit"), it would only be marginal, and lets be honest, the difference between a 3.93 and 3.95 GPA often comes down to luck more so than any replicable difference in the academic abilities of two individuals. My view is that, the intense rigour of UofT Life Science is unnecessarily difficult. Perhaps it is useful for grad school, which is really what the UofT Life Sci program is designed to prepare you for (I personally know at least a dozen people from UofT Life Sci who got into prestigious instutions like LSE, Harvard, MIT, Oxford, Cambridge, UPenn, and JHU for grad school). But if it's any comfort, I have many friends in med school now who graduated from UofT Life Science, and they all find med to be a breeze. Most say it's a 1/3 to 1/2 easier than undergrad for them, and anecdotally, I've heard that students from grade-inflated programs like Mac Health Sci do struggle to adapt to medical school. So perhaps if you do get into med school, you'll be in a great position to succeed.
  10. I wouldn’t say it’s rare. The average person who gets into med school has applied 2-3 times. Aside from that, I will echo JohnGrisham’s point. Statistics don’t matter to the individual. The avg applicant has (by definition) average stats and scores. If you too have average stats and scores you’re about as likely to get in as the avg applicant. Comparing your own stats to the avg applicant isn’t very useful because the avg applicant doesn’t get into med school. If you’re looking to get an idea of your own chances, I would say that it’ll be far more useful to compare your stats to the mean/median stats of matriculated applicants at different schools than to look at how many tries it takes people to get in on avg (because again, it is very statistically unlikely that you’re perfectly avg). If you have a 4.0GPA and 528 MCAT with great ECs/CASPer, you’ll prob get in on your first try. Alternately, if you rank poorly in all of the categories med schools look at, it may take you many more than 2-3 tries to get in (if you do at all).
  11. Do you think this is because UofC starts clerkship off with electives and students haven't had a chance to do any of their core rotations yet? I am a little concerned (incoming student at UofC) because I have heard this from more than one person before, and am unsure if I should be trying extra-hard to make up for this when I start clerkship. Interestingly, the national residency directors survery shows that ~95% UofC grads are equal or better than the avg resident, and over half are stronger than the avg, so perhaps this is an issue in early clerkship that gets resolved by the time students enter residency?
  12. Not sure if there is a centralized document for all schools together in once place (feel free to correct me if I am wrong!), but I know there is data for individual schools here and there. For example, UofC posts their data on their website: https://cumming.ucalgary.ca/mdprogram/about/governance/national-ranking-outcome-measures. I think the latest data is for 2019, and they (understandably) haven't gotten to updating the most recent match. Looking at CaRMS can also be useful, because they have match data that shows the number of students that ranked FM as their first choice speciality from each med school. This doesn't tell you where they matched I guess, but it can give you an idea of the relative interest at each school in FM vs. other specialities (and I'm guessing most people that rank FM first will match too).
  13. Please give me your source, thanks. Many BSc. students don't want to go to med/dent. Your second point about business doesn't make sense, because BComm students have the highest GPAs of any undergrad degree type (if you took the time to check out the link I posted, you would know this). So if your logic from your first point holds, BComm students must grind the most. And in fact, many BA students are gunning for law school. A significant number of BA students from my college went to Oxford or an Ivy league in the states for their grad degrees, not something that's achieveable without significant extracurricualar involvement and academic excellence. I really wish that people would stop making such blanket statements.
  14. As a current med student, and a graduate of the so-called "infamous" UofT Life Science program, I want to address several points that you've made. Firstly, it is frankly ABSURD (to use a word that you've used) to say that Arts degrees are easier. It is so much more difficult to score in the A range on essays compared to multiple choice tests. Since all applicants, whether BAs, BSc.'s or otherwise, are held to the same competitive standard to gain admission, I would argue that people who get into med school after completing a BA were actually at a higher percetile rank within their cohort compared to many BSc. matriculants. Don't believe me? Check out this data from the recent class of 2020 at UofT on R3DD1T, which shows that Arts graduates as a whole have considerably lower GPAs than BSc. or BComm students: https://www.**DELETED**.com/r/UofT/comments/gyl2od/academic_achievement_of_uoft_graduates_june_2020/ Secondly, difficulty is subjective. I excelled in my life science courses, but if you put me in an English Literature or Drama course, I have no doubt that I would get my a** handed to me. Your single n=1 experience of finding an arts degree easier than your science degree does not provide evidence of anything. I will acknowledge that the practice of taking online courses at "easier" universities is concerning and needs to be discouraged by putting some measures in to the admissions process (I know UofC at least does do this by evaluating the difficulty of your courses as part of their "global assessment of academic merit"). Perhaps more med schools need to look into this. Now of course, that does bring up the point that, people only take these courses online at different univerisities because they can score better in them, so perhaps some universities do have an easier curriculum than others. But if you're really a medical student, why does that concern you? If anything, you should be happy because you made it in despite having some a more rigorous curriculum and now are better equipped to succeed due to your work ethic and background (I have heard from many upper years in UofT med that students from Mac healthsci struggle more than students who came out of UofT Life Science). The only reason why I could see it annoying you is if you somehow feel that these students who "cheated" their way into med school took a spot that you deserved more. It seems as though your real problem is with some of your classmates and not with any "unfairness" within the admissions process. Perhaps you feel that they haven't paid their dues, or you feel some sense of superiority because you got into med school "the hard way". You should do away with such notions. If some individuals behaviours are truly as bad as you say, they will either have to striaghten themselves out or face problems with professionalism in the future. By the way, there was definitely a more refined method of making the points that you made in your original post, and I would certainly hope that you will not be translating any pent up anger for your colleagues into the workplace, as that's going to land you into some professionalism problems yourself.
  15. So the way UBCs calculation works is, they only use their own percentage scale (A = 87, A+ = 95) IF you went to a school that ONLY reports letter grades without a percentage. For schools that report a percentage of any kind (whether with or without a corresponding GPA value/letter grade), they will use the percentage that is on your transcript. So for me, an A+/90% would be calculated as a 90%, not 95%. Obviously, a good workaround would be to convert everyone's letter grades to percentages using the UBC scale, regardless of whether there is an actual % on their transcript. Unfortunately, UBC doesn't do that for some reason (maybe because it would disadvantage UBC's own students, since only % grades are reported on transcripts, I believe). But I agree, if we were able to standardize percentages across schools, I think % scales would be a better metric. Of course, that doesn't solve the problem of grade inflation that exists in some programs (I'm looking at you Mac healthsci), but I suppose that is already an issue with the GPA system. UofT does report course-averages beside grades on transcripts which could be somewhat useful for this (and I know UofC's med admissions have said they look at these averages for students when scoring the "global assessment of academic merit").
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