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How Do I Improve My Pre-Interview Score?


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I applied to UofC this year and was rejected pre-interview. 

After taking a look at the score breakdown, I was baffled by one of my non-academic merits with a whopping 1% (bottom 1% that is)...

I am especially surprised because UBC scored my NAQ 37/50  (to those of you who are not familiar with the score, it is above average for accepted applicants). I just don't know how to improve my application when they tell me that I am literally at the bottom of the applicant pool in this criteria, when I don't understand how that could be possible. 

 

I thought I was fairly well-rounded (8 year managerial employment, 2 research positions/one where I lead the project, 2 3+year presidential role in student associations, 10+ year in sports/instructor experience, 2 3+ year volunteering position with marginalized populations, TA at university)

 

 

Almost every single one of my non-academic merits were below average except for one where it was just barley above. This is just a huge discrepancy from UBC's NAQ scoring... 

 

Any input will be appreciated!

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From talking with a friend who experienced similar news, his thoughts were that it could have been wording differences- something about canmed competencies and all that jazz.  Rumour has it that UofC was especially competitive this year (A few friends who say their scores significantly drop in percentiles).

I wouldn't take it personally though - your 37 NAQ for UBC obviously means you have  very strong ECs. It is just that for UofC in particular their scheme is different and you just have to figure out through trial and error I suppose what works for them. 

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I can understand the more competitive pool and me scoring below average non-academic scores. But a 1% in an academic merit literally means I was the worst in that category out of all the applicants. I just don't understand how that is possible when looking at my app. I know it is not the best but certainly not the worst... 

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Med application systems make so little sense. I received 29/50 at UBC last year for NAQ and I received an interview this year at Calgary. 

Did you receive 1% in academic merit? What school were you at for undergrad, and what degree?

I went to UBC Science. I had above average GPA/academic assessment/MCAT verbal.  The 37 NAQ i got was from last year's cycle as well. So I don't know where this discrepancy is coming from... I got 1% in communications... 

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i think the score for communication also stems from how well you actually write your V7. Did you have anyone check over your application, is english a second language, etc etc. I spent a long time writing my applications, making sure that I used proper, concise wording (right-click, synonym, for the win). If your curious, I scored in 94th percentile last year in communication and 93rd this year.

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Med application systems make so little sense. I received 29/50 at UBC last year for NAQ and I received an interview this year at Calgary. 

Did you receive 1% in academic merit? What school were you at for undergrad, and what degree?

Is that 1% in academic merit related to your GPA? 

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Sorry I misread the question. I scored above average in the academic merit. I received above average for R1-R3. 

 

Meaning only my non-academic merits were below average with the communication part being in the 1%...

 

This particular category relies on your references also. Is there a chance that your "

 

Interpersonal Behaviours and Collaboration "

reference ended up saying extremely negative things?

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It is a little bit baffling. My application included over a decade practicing law in two languages, 5 scholarly publications, numerous speaking engagements and fluency or proficiency in 5 languages. All this got me a "communications" score in the 14th percentile.

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It is a little bit baffling. My application included over a decade practicing law in two languages, 5 scholarly publications, numerous speaking engagements and fluency or proficiency in 5 languages. All this got me a "communications" score in the 14th percentile.

 

I have mentioned this in previous posts, but I ran into a similar situation last year with lower scores than I anticipated. I don't know how much my scores improved this year, but there would have had to have been a moderate change for me to not get rejected pre-MMI.

 

My advice would be to review the canmeds roles and also the specific R1-R7 attributes Calgary evaluates. Being fluent in multiple languages is amazing and a skill I wish i also had, but I know people that can speak multiple languages that are horrible at communicating ideas. Similarly, I know others that can communicate ideas well, but in a way that isn't approachable or that doesn't demonstrates understanding of what the person they're speaking with may be experiencing. You have to demonstrate how you use the languages you speak to communicate. I tried to make the relevance of my skills very obvious this year and I think it paid off. Does that make sense?

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I suspect what messed up my scores were the letters of recommendation - not so much what was written, but who wrote them. I'm an older applicant and I've been out of school for so long that I cannot get any professors to write letters. Moreover, at this stage of my career I only have peers and colleagues, no supervisors.

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I suspect what messed up my scores were the letters of recommendation - not so much what was written, but who wrote them. I'm an older applicant and I've been out of school for so long that I cannot get any professors to write letters. Moreover, at this stage of my career I only have peers and colleagues, no supervisors.

 

I'm in the same situation--it's difficult. Thankfully, Calgary doesn't require letters from profs. I did find that I had to really make sure that my referees were clear about what the letter meant and the time it took to write something meaningful and thorough. Most people I approached assumed it was the standard "this person is suitable" letter I'm sure there are areas of your application that could be improved. If you'd like feedback on your top 10, etc., I'm open to taking a look as well. It's nice to have the score feedback so early this year.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I laughed when I saw my pre-MMI score (I got rejected), as they attributed quantitative scores to qualitative scores. Seeing something like "60.3" next to something like "Communication Skills" made me scratch my head, then laugh.  :lol:

 

How would you prefer that they select for qualitative attributes? Mark on a scale of "Satisfactory - Good - Very Good - Excellent" etc.?

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