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Average GPA of all applicants for Canada?


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Hi Guys,

So I've seen all the general terrifying statistics about getting into Canadian Med, such as the fact that the odds of getting in generally are around 20%, and at each school is around 5% or so. However, I'm just wondering if any people have stats about the average GPA of all applicants. I'm just curious because I feel as if, say 5000 people apply but the average GPA of all applicants is pretty normal for a university, that's really different to competing with 5000 4.0s. Maybe I shouldn't really be worrying about the statistics but idk, I guess knowing the numbers helps me with the motivation to apply, in spite the daunting stats.

 

Thanks for any ideas of info.

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It's probably a little more nuanced than that, just because of the different GPA weighting systems each school uses (best 2, last 2, worst year dropped etc.) so cGPA wouldn't really give the whole picture imo. Some schools do publish this information though, so maybe see if the schools you are applying for do? 

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25 minutes ago, KeyzerSoze said:

There's so much variability between schools at the undergrad level (and even between programs in the same school, and hell, even between courses in the same program) that I can't imagine a nationwide average GPA being significant in the least. Personally I think that instead of an absolute, fixed GPA system, grades should be determined by something like an average of the differences between your grade and the class average in all the classes you took. But that's just me.

So kind of like the MCAT which is marked in percentiles and is standardized for everyone. Medical application system isn’t perfect, but it’s what we have. I don’t think GPA will ever go away, so if it’s not your strongest part, hopefully you do much better than average on the MCAT. That would definitely help at schools like western and Mac that are more MCAT heavy (although Mac only looks at CARS but is a major portion of the app). Also the different weighting formulas do help people substantially, heck it definitely helped me lol.

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1 hour ago, KeyzerSoze said:

Thanks for the advice but I don’t think my gpa will be holding be back. With a 3.96cgpa I think I’ll be fine in that compartment ;). That being said I still think a system where your grades are compared to your peers is more fair so that bird programs don’t have that extra advantage, like Mac health Sciences 

I think you misunderstood, I wasn’t giving advice, but saying we already have a standardized metric utilizing percentiles. Your suggestion is unfortunately impractical and hence the use of various formulas for various schools. But good job with your gpa, hopefully you do well on the MCAT as well.

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On 7/26/2018 at 3:22 PM, danielolivetree said:

Hi Guys,

So I've seen all the general terrifying statistics about getting into Canadian Med, such as the fact that the odds of getting in generally are around 20%, and at each school is around 5% or so. However, I'm just wondering if any people have stats about the average GPA of all applicants. I'm just curious because I feel as if, say 5000 people apply but the average GPA of all applicants is pretty normal for a university, that's really different to competing with 5000 4.0s. Maybe I shouldn't really be worrying about the statistics but idk, I guess knowing the numbers helps me with the motivation to apply, in spite the daunting stats.

 

Thanks for any ideas of info.

I haven't heard any stats on this but it would be interesting to know as well. There definitely are some people who apply who don't do their research beforehand. Know someone who got a 500 on the MCAT and thought it was going to get them accepted because it is a "pass." :(

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23 hours ago, KeyzerSoze said:

There's so much variability between schools at the undergrad level (and even between programs in the same school, and hell, even between courses in the same program) that I can't imagine a nationwide average GPA being significant in the least. Personally I think that instead of an absolute, fixed GPA system, grades should be determined by something like an average of the differences between your grade and the class average in all the classes you took. But that's just me.

It's not a bad idea, and it's actually what's used in Quebec- a standard deviation from the class average is calculated for every class & student (both at CEGEP and university - CEGEP is where most admittances into medicine occur and is between high school and university).  There are issues that crop up, though: 

  •  students aren't distributed identically - in theory, in an academically 'strong' class, being avg might mean more than being above avg with a 'less' academically focused group.  So an adjustment factor/calibration has to be added, which is pretty empirical and ad-hoc:
  • at the CEGEP level high school grades are partly used (I believe), which means grade inflation there could influence the process.  Also,  there's a question of equity - it ends up that high SES status CEGEPs effectively get way more students into professional programs vs wrong part of town...
  • at the university level, the entrance grades into the program are used .. which means it's almost impossible to get into medicine from university without going into usually professional program - i.e. physiotherapy, pharmacy, law,  ..  but there's also an assumption that people are going to be as academically strong once they are admitted to a given program as before - which may not be true (they may simply be looking to complete their training rather than excel to be admitted into a different program).
  • it creates odd incentives - basically the opposite of class solidarity.. intense class competition instead (vs say a standardized test).  
  • finally, standard deviations only really makes sense if the grades of the class are normal, which isn't usually the case. Without normality there's not usually an easy correspondence between deviation and percentiles.

In terms of results of results, I'd say there's more regional admittance since CEGEPS aren't only in large urban environments like most unis and probably greater SES since trying for medicine is easier from CEGEP (less money & time investment) vs uni.

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Just a huge guess here, but I’ve always assumed the average student has a GPA of ~3.8 and an Mcat of ~510

These numbers come from the uBC’s “average rejected scores” from their published statistics. I expect Ontario’s scores to be a bit higher due to the increased competition. 

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19 hours ago, helicase said:

It's probably a little more nuanced than that, just because of the different GPA weighting systems each school uses (best 2, last 2, worst year dropped etc.) so cGPA wouldn't really give the whole picture imo. Some schools do publish this information though, so maybe see if the schools you are applying for do? 

Exactly (also are summer courses counted or not?).  Not only this, but there are different GPA scales - e.g. OMSAS vs Alberta, not to mention UBC on a % grade scale.  So there's no simple way to compare pan-Canadian cGPAs without looking at all the scales/adjustment that goes on.

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1 hour ago, Potentiate said:

Just a huge guess here, but I’ve always assumed the average student has a GPA of ~3.8 and an Mcat of ~510

These numbers come from the uBC’s “average rejected scores” from their published statistics. I expect Ontario’s scores to be a bit higher due to the increased competition. 

 UBC % grades don't convert at all easily to the 4.0 scale.. - an 85% avg could mean 3.9 or 3.5.. it's just a different way of looking at things.

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On 7/27/2018 at 11:10 AM, Potentiate said:

Just a huge guess here, but I’ve always assumed the average student has a GPA of ~3.8 and an Mcat of ~510

These numbers come from the uBC’s “average rejected scores” from their published statistics. I expect Ontario’s scores to be a bit higher due to the increased competition. 

Could you link me to those UBC stats by any chance?

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