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  1. Don't try waking up earlier to get more done. Been there, done that, it's a fast track to burnout. Find your optimum sleep schedule and stick to it. Sleep/nutrition>exercise>almost everything else in terms of academic performance. If you'd like to adjust to being a morning person, without cutting sleep, try putting your alarm across the room. It's silly but it works.
  2. There is no "hack" to 95% grades. What makes those grades happen is a combination of: 1. Being details oriented. Losing 1 mark for formatting on every lab? Good luck breaking 95 in some courses. You simply can't afford to make silly mistakes. 2. Generous marking schemes. This is the big one. Getting a 95+ is essentially impossible in some programs at my school, subjective marking on essays will kill excellent mark's. A course with a high participation grade, easy MC tests, and little else has been my sweet spot. 3. A great memory combined with sharp critical thinking. As you may have guessed, a rare quality. If your Prof likes playing "Remember the slides" on tests your memory comes in. If they love application questions, your critical thinking. You can't really hack this, you can simply get more efficient. I listen to my notes while driving. I also will put my tablet on the treadmill stand and flip through slides. These help with the raw memory part, but you'll need to be able to apply this, and not all courses suit these styles of learning. 4. Luck. Plain and simple. But you know what, maybe I want my surgeon to be a lucky person... Beyond that, working hard, but not "no life hard". You hit the law of diminishing returns fast, and a 95 is well along the curve. Really, the key is learning how Profs test. I'm fortunate to be on a small program, and knowing that Profs have favourite test writing strategies has been worth the A/A+ difference a few times. I've done the 5 courses+25 hour work week+10 hours EC grind before (and comutting). Bad idea, the number of times I had to say no to friends because I was working, or volunteering, or simply exhausted was too high. I love the feeling of going to bed having accomplished a lot each day, but it's not worth it if it comes at the expense of only seeing friends during "verifiable" events and once in a blue moon. ECs have diminishing returns as well (work, not really$$$) so be mindful. Don't let yourself get so busy you have no flex if you get sick, even a cold can upset a perfect schedule, or force you to say no to a friend in need. The best time for building people skills is in these slow down moments. Don't let them go by. Also, while I agree with almost everything @Vivieeeeeee said, in my school, it matters. 95+ typically=A+=OMSAS 4.0. 94=A=OMSAS 3.9. A small difference, but it all helps in making up bad years/courses. I definitely think it shouldn't be your aim, just work hard, leave nothing on the table, and see where you end up grade wise. As a final note, recording lectures has always been against university policies, in my experience. Do you really want to run the risk of a potential misconduct/soured potential reference? You tell me. Check your policies and ask yourself how well this reflects a commitment to privacy.
  3. For the schools I'm applying to: UBC: Sept 13th. Everything (except References) UofC: Oct 1st everything UofA: Oct 1st everything (CASPer later, Jan 1st) UofM: Oct 1st. OMSAS: Oct 1st. Everything. Dal: Section 2 is due on Sept 3rd. Their first deadline has passed. Memorial: Sept 11th. Everything. Hopefully that helps!
  4. McMaster and some OOP schools are CARS centric, so that's why the emphasis on CARS. As far as the others, no idea, but you can try seeing what the lowest subsections were in the admitted/interview threads. I doubt they fluctuate more than 1-2 points yearly (big assumption, I know...).
  5. Some activities you stay put, others you are constantly switching roles. If you hold elected positions you could easily change roles every year, hopefully moving up, for instance. If you hold down different summer jobs each summer that's 3. There are also board seats, oneoff events, Etc...
  6. Not in my understanding: "For those students who have completed three or more years of transferable post-secondary coursework, we will exclude the lowest academic year (September through April) from calculation, provided it is not the most recent year, nor the only year in which the student earned 30 ucw." Completed 3=4th year applicant.
  7. Full time? Yes. But I question how much of that information you'll retain. I only studied for a month while going to school working full time and managed to finish most of the Science Uworld questions, and all but one FL, so I think its doable, if somewhat rushed. Now the reason I mentioned retention is I only went up 4 points from my first AAMC diagnostic (I didn't take any 3rd party tests). Looking back, I think this is almost entirely due to test familiarity and honing my AAMC style critical.analysis skills as I stayed at that level for my next.2 FLs, taken a week or two after the diagnostic. I wasn't really retaining info. I'm happy with my score, but I would have started studying earlier if I could go back. If you do go through this route focus on weak spots and CARS, where are you scoring now for reference? If you start with a high CARS score and some rusty Science its doable, vice versa, less so.
  8. They let 4th year applicants drop a year in the past if you met weighting rules. This change will lead to lower average GPAs for a bunch of applicants (myself included, that 0.08 drop stings...), but since it'll affect a lot of people I think the overall competitiveness change will be minimal. Yes, it's annoying for 4th year applicants with good/ok 1st years, and great years after, but unless you had a horrible 1st year and are a 4th year applicant I don't think this is a huge change (speaking only to dropping the year, not the other changes). The only people who really lose out are 4th year applicants with horrible 1st years that now pull them under the cutoff. E.g a sub 2.0 first year GPA and 2 4.0 years (2nd and 3rd) would put you below the cutoff. Substitute those two 4.0 years for 3.x years and the floor for 1st year Mark's increases.
  9. Right from the horse's mouth: https://med.uottawa.ca/undergraduate/admissions/faq
  10. There are plenty of jurisdictions in which you can take online high school classes. I finished High School through online courses (and took them for the majority of High School) and had no difficulty getting into University. An accredited course by your Province's Ed Ministry is an accredited course, first and foremost. Honestly, in your situation, lookup fast ways to get passable marks for University and start working to build experience, a kind of involuntary gap year (this will also let you explain it as such if you every need to do so). You don't need top marks either, your undergrad doesn't matter to med schools, so if you end up going to a local (accredited, above board) University/College that's an option. You don't need to go to a "UofX" to make it into Medicine, even if the vast majority do take that route.
  11. I would start with the FAQs here, but to start, stop reading American stuff. The whole transfer route is very American sounding. Basically you need too: 1. Apply to and gain admission to a 4 year Canadian undergrad program at an accredited University/College. The program doesn't matter, only that it's 4 years and meets the bare minimum number of prereqs left (which are easily satisfied in a year of studying). Do something you like, with good backup plans, because the stats are definitely against you. 2. Work HARD in your undergrad, obtain the highest possible grades, maintaining a course load that lets you apply broadly, while also adding meaningful work and volunteer experiences. 3. Write the MCAT sometime before the beginning of 4th year. You'll likely need to write CASPER or the AAMC's SJT for almost all/all schools by the time you're in your first cycle too. 4. Apply. That's it. There is no standard path to Medicine outside of that above, all you need is grades, an MCAT (not even for some schools, but right it for the others), sometimes CASPER, and some ECs. The challenging aspect is the competition to have the best combination of those previously mentioned requirement. The harder part is you're starting late, and may lack requisite study skills/knowledge from high school to make a good transition to University. Your actual high school marks matter 0% as soon as you have a University/College admission. I'll be honest, the cards are against you. You'll be competing against a crowd of smart people who have wanted a Canadian MD for a long time, and have been working towards it from their teens onward. Passion isn't enough, on it's own, you'll need to decide if it's worth at a minimum 4 years of work (probably closer to 5+) and how you are going to balance life, school, ECs, and your mental health going down a grueling road. Don't let me be the one to discourage you, but it's going to take awhile, you need to ask yourself if that passion will still be there on a cold December night when you've got 2 finals the next day. In any case, READ, READ, READ! There are dozens of useful threads here that will help you see what the path looks like for you.
  12. Hello everyone, Sorry for what may strike older members as a silly question, but as a newbie, I've stumbled across this maxim a couple of times, in different forms, and was wondering where the evidence for it is, or where it originated? I've seen it stated as 3 applications, 3 cycles, etc (big difference there!). Is there a post/document I'm missing somewhere (trust me, I looked), because when I look at schools that publish the age breakdowns I see tons of 21/22/23 yearolds, so unless the handful of 30+ yearold matriculants have applied since 19 to balance out all these 4th Year>Med, 1 Year out>Med matriculants and dragged up the average, I find this hard to believe.
  13. Hello everyone, As the title states, should I be wary about registering in a full credit (Same as a regular course) Independent Study course? It involves writing a thorough literature review, presentations, etc... I used the search function and found some old threads suggesting it's not a bad idea, shows initiative, research skills, and all that, but this is a course I would be registering in for my 4th year because I've almost run out of courses to take in my small university and have scheduling conflicts with any of the courses I can take. It's a 4th year course (400-level) if that matters, I would still meet the 3/5 rule without it counting. Any feedback would be appreciated, this would greatly ease my scheduling crunch.
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