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Guest Alexa

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Hi! I am currently in 3rd year at UofT (just finished 1st semester) and am hoping to get into med school after 4th year. However, my GPA is really low (3.24 in 1st year and 2.93 in 2nd year). I am doing okay so far in 3rd year. I know I can apply to UWO and Queens after 4th year (I did the MCAT and got 10V,8P,10B,Q; I am doing it again this August). Is there anything I can do to increase my chances of applying to the other schools? I love research work but I don't want to wait till I finish graduate school to apply. Any advice would be appreciated.

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Guest Shahenshah

well if you can totally kick ass this year, that will give you a really good shot at UWO when you apply next year..but of course you probably knew that by now..as for the other schools, I believe U of calgary might also pick only 2 yrs..and there might be a few more that others can shed light on..for eg., manitoba will get rid of some of your worst marks and so on..you should probably just browse through the canadian med school requirements just so that you don't miss any..this forum has links to pretty much all schools in canada...another option would be the states (and of course off-shore schools)..if you have no problem with living in the states, you can probably apply to D.O schools as well..A D.O is almost equivalent to an MD program in that you can practice as a physician (as of now I am not aware of any restricitions on D.O)...there is some stigma associated with DOs but I mean really at the end of the day you can treat the patients..the reason I brought up DOs was because they require a lower gpa than med schools..if you want more info on this option, www.studentdoctor.net/ is an excellent resource...just one more important thing here about DOs is that you CANNOT transfer to Canada and practice as a physician (yet)

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Guest doctorfunk

Now is also the best time to start looking for a research position for the summer months. Look into obtaining an NSERC summer studentship or simply approach professors who conduct research that interests you. If all goes well, you'll get to do research (which you like), obtain valuable experience for your applications, and maybe even earn a little money.

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You should have a decent shot at UWO if both your third and fourth years are above the UWO cut-off...(usually 3.55-3.65 although it will fluctuate with the applicant pool). UWO will not look at your first and second years (only your two best years) so they won't hurt you....Make sure that both your third and fourth year qualify as 'full-time years' according to UWO though....or else you will be in trouble....you must have 5.0 full or equivalent courses taken between Sept and April in both of those years....and you cannot be repeating any courses that you have taken before in either of those years....

One other thing to be wary of....make sure that you have 1.0 in legit 'essay courses' as a pre-req....this is new this year....an essay course is any course in which you were required to write at least one full-length term paper complete with references/foot-notes....and essay format exams don't count....you can do these courses as late as the summer before med school (ie after you have a conditional acceptance) if need be....

 

You mentioned that you are going to re-write the MCAT...probably a good idea as your current MCAT scores likely would not pass the UWO cuts....you should aim to have at least a 9 in each category and a P....although 10's and Q are safer.

 

Good luck!

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Hi! Thanks for all your advice. I have all the course requirements for UWO. I guess my real question was: Am I out of luck for the other Ontario universities except Western? There is a low probability of getting in when applying to only one or two schools.

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Guest therealcrackers

I got into UWO after applying to only two schools (and that was the third time I applied!).

 

I was also a TA at U of T for that marrow-chilling BIO 250 course, and I have this to say about the experience of undergrad there----get to know your TAs in most of your courses for any practical pearls they may have for you, as the professors simply have too many students to worry about for the most part. BUT when it comes to getting reference letters, having a prof who actually knows who you are makes a huge difference in the kind of evaluation they can give you--ie a REAL one. If you have research interests (or just want to find out about research in general) that dovetail with someone's area of research, stick your head in the door and say hello.

 

My old graduate department, the Institute of Medical Science, is the repository for most of the docs and profs who do direct medically-related basic research or clinical research. Josie and Hazel in the office are terrific people to talk to, and they have a terrific summer research program (and if I'm leading you down a path you don't want to follow, by all means disregard this post.).

 

Good luck with second term! And if you're taking JLM 349, get the journal article you need for the essay and the exam EARLY. And if the pattern repeats and someone takes it out of Gerstein so no else can get a copy, try the hospital libraries at TGH, Mt. Sinai, Sick Kids, and even PMH.

 

As far as the other schools go, you have the criteria for McMaster in hand, U of T and UWO will need you to get some very good results this year and next, and I can't speak about Queen's, Ottawa, or any of the med schools out of province (someone else with more relevant knowledge from this forum will fill you in).

 

Happy New Year, everyone!

Graham

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Guest UOMeds05

Hey there,

 

Like other schools, the criteria for Ottawa also changes every year... so i can only comment on what I believe to be true.

 

I will assume since you did state otherwise, your permanent residence is also in the Toronto area... if you are not from a designated "underserviced" area, your first two years do not meet the current cut-offs for Ottawa. However, with an outstanding third and fourth year you may be able to change this, since each year is weighted differently... ie: fourth year 4x as much as 1st year... they only look at the overall average and not each year individually. If you really kick butt you still have a chance. the important thing to remember is that aside from marks, Ottawa really puts emphasis on the "well-rounded" student so it is important to keep other involvements up.

 

With all that said, don't knock down only applying to 2 schools... all you need is one interview! And statistically, you are better off having an interview at any of the schools other than Ottawa since proportionately, they interview more students for the number of positions.

 

Best of luck to you... don't forget that grad work is not the end of the world. It puts you in a different category which makes your application that much more competetive (a large portion of my class has a Master's Degree and even a PhD!!). Despite what is thought, med-schools (at least Ottawa) do accept students that have only completed one year of their Master's work.

 

Good luck!

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