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confuse-pre-med

Personal statement?

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Does Canadian Medical schools ask for personal statements when a student apply or does it depend on which school you are applying to?

Can we or Should we submit a personal statement to a school even if a school may not require it for the sole purpose of trying to explain some obstacles that was faced during undergrad? 

I keep hearing that personal statements are very important in the US when considering the applicant, but I'm not sure if that also applies to Canada. Likewise, I've read online that the US References are very very important too and I'm wondering if its also true for Canadian medical schools or are references only there to serve as "red flag" alert? :confused:

TIA!

 

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28 minutes ago, confuse-pre-med said:

Does Canadian Medical schools ask for personal statements when a student apply or does it depend on which school you are applying to?

Can we or Should we submit a personal statement to a school even if a school may not require it for the sole purpose of trying to explain some obstacles that was faced during undergrad? 

I keep hearing that personal statements are very important in the US when considering the applicant, but I'm not sure if that also applies to Canada. Likewise, I've read online that the US References are very very important too and I'm wondering if its also true for Canadian medical schools or are references only there to serve as "red flag" alert? :confused:

TIA!

 

I can't answer for all the Canadian med schools, but in terms of the Ontario med schools, you do not need a personal statement submitted to the school. For Ontario schools, all the required forms are processed through the application centre (OMSAS). If I recall, UofT is the only Ontario med school that allows you to write an academic explanation essay to explain any extenuating circumstances that may have impact your academics. The other Ontario's schools won't accept any personal statements submitted directly from the applicant to the university, in fact, I don't think the other ones accept any additional documentations expect the ones that they require - simply if you send it to them as a part of your application (and its not required), I doubt they'll read it unfortunately.  

References are important to any medical school you apply to, it gives admissions an idea of who you are through another person's perspective - some school grade your reference letters on a pass/fail basis, and others will grade your reference letters as part of your pre-interview score. If your references are not credible (family member, close friend, etc) that would be one  good reason for a red flag. Another would probably if one of your referees wrote an extremely negative reference letter that would probably also be a red flag as well. When choosing references, choose the individual that knows you best and ensures that they can write a strong and positive reference letter. 

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I don't think any school is going to accept a personal statement they didn't ask for... All the applications are completed online anyways so you won't be able to add an extra letter in.  I believe some schools like UBC have a small area in your application to explain extenuating circumstances.

I don't think anyone knows how important references are - some say it's just to catch red flags, some say it's a pretty key differentiator between applications, we'll never know.  Does knowing the answer change how you approach it though? Just try to get the best possible references that you can, regardless of how adcom uses it.

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Yeh very different from US where you have the primary documents (standard PS and your AMCAS entries) before the schools give you their school specific admission essay questions. Here in Canada your primary application is basically the equivalent of both your primaries and secondaries in the US. 

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