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sportsMD23

Taking pre-requisite courses after graduating?

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Hi all,

I am planning to apply to medical schools this upcoming Fall and I have pre-requisite courses for all schools in Canada except McGill (missing physics labs and Orgo II). I am also planning to graduate next Winter. If the upcoming application cycle isn't successful, I am considering to return to school to take both physics labs, Orgo II (+lab), and a stats course. I am a bit hesitant to take these pre-requisite courses in my last year of undergrad since these courses are known as being GPA killers at my school and I really would like to protect my undergrad GPA.

I am planning to apply to US schools as well if my chances for Canadian schools are looking slim. I believe US schools(most of them calculate cGPA and sGPA) will include these part-time study courses into GPA calculations (NOT in the year of application, but the year after), but how about Canadian schools? I will be taking 1.5 courses in the fall and 2 courses in the winter term. (Physics I lab and stats in the fall term and Orgo II, Orgo II lab and Physics II lab in the winter term- labs count as a half course). 

Would these courses not be included at all for GPA in Canada because it's part-time studies? (I am guessing schools like Mac and Memorial will include them since they calculate cumulative GPA?)

Thanks!

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On 5/6/2019 at 4:59 PM, sportsMD23 said:

Would these courses not be included at all for GPA in Canada because it's part-time studies? (I am guessing schools like Mac and Memorial will include them since they calculate cumulative GPA?)

I hate to sound  like I'm giving you a cop-out answer, but it's hard to say because a lot of schools calculate things their own way. There isn't a single standard that applies to all schools in Canada, or even all schools in province. Some schools offer a weighted formula based on course load, others look at all undergrad course work regardless of status, others still only take specific years. To give you some examples: 

U of T: only looks at course work done during an undergrad degree. If every semester of every year was completed with a minimum of 5 courses, however, you're eligible for their weighted GPA, where they drop your lowest marks from each year. They specifically say on their website "Part-time and summer courses are counted towards meeting the prerequisite and degree requirements but they will not be included in the GPA calculation." (https://md.utoronto.ca/gpa-and-gpa-weighting). So U of T wouldn't count them. 

University of Western Ontario: Looks at your two best years where you were taking at least 5 courses each semester. They would also not count your part time prerequisite courses: "Part-time years cannot be considered for GPA, regardless of the requirements of degree programs."  (https://www.schulich.uwo.ca/med_dent_admissions/medicine/admission_requirements.html#grade_point_average)

Northern Ontario School of Medicine: "The GPA is calculated on all converted undergraduate course grades completed at a recognized institution as of the application deadline." (https://www.nosm.ca/education/md-program/admissions/admission-requirements/). NOSM would count your part-time prereqs. 

University of British Columbia: "based on all university-transferable courses attempted (including summer courses taken prior to the year of application and graduate courses with grades, if applicable)."  (https://mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/evaluation-criteria/). But they also have their own weighted GPA formula for if you've completed 90 credits by the time you're applying. I think UBC would also count your part time courses. 

I could go on, but I think you get the idea. You need to look at any/all of the schools you want to apply to, and see for yourself if they'd count your part-time science pre-reqs as part of your GPA or not. Some will, some won't. 

I think a better (or at least simpler) way to look at it would be "Do I want to apply to US schools or not?". If you do, you need those prereqs regardless of what the process is at some Canadian schools, and you need damn good marks in them. Don't worry about whether or not they'll drag your GPA down; you don't have the option of letting that happen. To be competitive in the US, you need to ace these courses, and you need to ace your MCAT. It's not about protecting your undergrad GPA, it's about succeeding in courses you have to succeed in. 

If you aren't going to apply to US schools, you have to decide for yourself if it's worth the time/money needed to take those courses. Many schools in Canada don't require all the prerequisites US schools do, so if you don't need them to get into your chosen schools, and they're not going to be part of your GPA, is it worth it, or would it be better to simply prepare for the MCAT and focus everything you have on acing that instead? 

 

Finally, if you do take all the prerequisite courses, they'll be accepted by Canadian schools that require prereqs, even if they aren't calculated as part of your GPA, so you're good there. 

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3 hours ago, firsttimeposter said:

adding on to this, if I take a few prerequisite courses not on a full time basis next year, will I be eligible for grade weightage at UofT. I graduated this year btw and the prereqs would be to satisfy uOttawa's requirements

As I understand it, the grade weighting at U of T is based on the course load for the years you were doing your degree. If every semester of every year of your degree was done with a full course load (they define this as 5 courses per semester), then you should be eligible for the weighted GPA. If the prereqs weren't taken on a full-time basis, they're not going to be counted in your GPA by U of T. 

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On 5/9/2019 at 4:31 PM, Curveball said:

I hate to sound  like I'm giving you a cop-out answer, but it's hard to say because a lot of schools calculate things their own way. There isn't a single standard that applies to all schools in Canada, or even all schools in province. Some schools offer a weighted formula based on course load, others look at all undergrad course work regardless of status, others still only take specific years. To give you some examples: 

U of T: only looks at course work done during an undergrad degree. If every semester of every year was completed with a minimum of 5 courses, however, you're eligible for their weighted GPA, where they drop your lowest marks from each year. They specifically say on their website "Part-time and summer courses are counted towards meeting the prerequisite and degree requirements but they will not be included in the GPA calculation." (https://md.utoronto.ca/gpa-and-gpa-weighting). So U of T wouldn't count them. 

University of Western Ontario: Looks at your two best years where you were taking at least 5 courses each semester. They would also not count your part time prerequisite courses: "Part-time years cannot be considered for GPA, regardless of the requirements of degree programs."  (https://www.schulich.uwo.ca/med_dent_admissions/medicine/admission_requirements.html#grade_point_average)

Northern Ontario School of Medicine: "The GPA is calculated on all converted undergraduate course grades completed at a recognized institution as of the application deadline." (https://www.nosm.ca/education/md-program/admissions/admission-requirements/). NOSM would count your part-time prereqs. 

University of British Columbia: "based on all university-transferable courses attempted (including summer courses taken prior to the year of application and graduate courses with grades, if applicable)."  (https://mdprogram.med.ubc.ca/admissions/evaluation-criteria/). But they also have their own weighted GPA formula for if you've completed 90 credits by the time you're applying. I think UBC would also count your part time courses. 

I could go on, but I think you get the idea. You need to look at any/all of the schools you want to apply to, and see for yourself if they'd count your part-time science pre-reqs as part of your GPA or not. Some will, some won't. 

I think a better (or at least simpler) way to look at it would be "Do I want to apply to US schools or not?". If you do, you need those prereqs regardless of what the process is at some Canadian schools, and you need damn good marks in them. Don't worry about whether or not they'll drag your GPA down; you don't have the option of letting that happen. To be competitive in the US, you need to ace these courses, and you need to ace your MCAT. It's not about protecting your undergrad GPA, it's about succeeding in courses you have to succeed in. 

If you aren't going to apply to US schools, you have to decide for yourself if it's worth the time/money needed to take those courses. Many schools in Canada don't require all the prerequisites US schools do, so if you don't need them to get into your chosen schools, and they're not going to be part of your GPA, is it worth it, or would it be better to simply prepare for the MCAT and focus everything you have on acing that instead? 

 

Finally, if you do take all the prerequisite courses, they'll be accepted by Canadian schools that require prereqs, even if they aren't calculated as part of your GPA, so you're good there. 

Thank you, really appreciate the response!

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