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Hi everyone! Sorry for the long post, but just looking for some quick advice on grad school/applying! I'm currently finishing my first year of grad school in a 2 year thesis-based MSc in epidemiology. After a lot of discussion and contemplation, I've decided that I really want to apply to med school once I'm finished. However in a recent conversation with my supervisor, he suggested that my project was coming along really well and that if I transferred to the PhD stream this summer I could probably finish it in an extra year and a half (so 3.5 total, as opposed to 2 years for the Masters). I am enjoying the project, however given the timing of admissions (I'd probably finish in Dec 2017), I'm a bit torn on whether to delay applying for another 2 years to transfer. I am interested in pursuing research as a clinician, so that's why I'm drawn to getting the PhD as opposed to simply sticking with the MSc. However, I'm a bit unclear as to whether there would be a significant benefit to having a PhD vs MSc, especially since this will be before I start medical school and decide what to specialize in (for instance, my project is examining lung cancer outcomes, however I don't know at this point if oncology is what I'll end up in). I know I could apply for MD/PhD programs, however that would be an extra 3-4 years (vs 1.5) at this point, and since you typically start your research only a year into medical school, I think I might have the same problem about the focus of my research. Alternatively, I know if I apply now and decide later that I really do want to pursue the PhD, I could do so after medical school part-time or through one of the clinician-scientist training programs, so I'm not sure if that's a better option, especially considering the difference in funding/salary at that point. I think another issue that's drawing me to the PhD is that this would be my first time applying (if I applied this Oct, assuming I stick with the MSc), so I don't have the best idea what my chances of getting in this year are. My undergrad GPA is decent (3.88/4), and I do have a number of ECs and a couple of publications (not first author), but unfortunately most of my research activities (conferences, first-author publications) will be done this year after the October application deadline. I'll be writing my MCAT in late August, so I'd have to decide before I get those results. Thanks for any and all advice! TL;DR Applying to med school and want to do clinical research. Trying to decide whether it is worth it to delay applying for 2 years to transfer from MSc to PhD