February 9, 2015

5 Tips for Your Medical School Personal Statement

 

Through Kaplan’s exclusive, national partnership with the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), we will be providing a series of personal stories from AMSA leaders about their premedical experience and journey to medical school.

Stefanie Smith: University of Missouri

 

The Medical School Application

The hours spent volunteering in hospitals and communities, the studying we do at all hours of the night, the long list of extracurricular activities, and of course, the MCAT all lead up to one thing: our medical school application, the packet that sums up the very person we are to medical school admission committees.…

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January 22, 2015

Map Your Medical School Application Process

Regardless of where you are in your pre-med education—just starting out as a freshman or sophomore, completing prerequisites as a junior or senior, or studying for the MCAT—it’s never too early to start mapping about the medical school application process.

Don’t be fooled: the med school application process doesn’t begin when you start actually applying. It begins as soon as you decide to become a physician. One of the biggest mistakes pre-meds make is waiting too long to start thinking about their applications and how they are going to present themselves. So, no matter where you are in …

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December 22, 2014

How to Plan Your Medical School Application Timeline

You might think that applying to medical school is pretty much the same as applying to college. Sure, the basic idea is the same, but the process can actually be much more complicated. That’s why it’s a good idea to start by setting up a medical school application timeline so you hit all the right points at just the right time.

While there is no wrong time in your life to go to med school, that doesn’t mean there’s not a best time of the year to apply.

When is it too late to take the MCAT?

Ideally, you should …

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January 17, 2013

Application Essentials I: The Holistic Review Process

Earlier this month, I had the great fortune of attending the 2012 AAMC Annual Conference in San Francisco, CA.  This meeting represents one of the largest gatherings of medical educators, premedical advisors, admissions officers, practicing physicians and students in the country, all with one common goal:  your education.  This is the group that writes the MCAT, runs the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) and creates informative resources like Careers in Medicine to help you plan your future medical career.

One of the “hot topics” in medical admissions these days is holistic review.  While a full detailing of this …

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Applying to Med School
October 24, 2014

The Med School Personal Statement: Where To Start

There’s a great line in the 2000 British stop-motion animation film Chicken Run. After surviving a brush with death, Babs, the sweet, daft chicken deadpans, “All me whole life flashed before me eyes . . . It was really borin’.”

Some of you may be feeling a little bit like poor ol’ Babs as you stare at an empty Word document – or blank sheet of paper for you old-fashioned types – wondering how you’ll ever manage to craft a personal statement for your medical school primary application that is interesting, meaningful, and no longer than 5300-characters-including-spaces. You might be …

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Applying to Med School
November 29, 2011

The Personal Statement – Part 2

By Carleen Eaton, M.D.

In January, I wrote about taking the first step towards crafting an outstanding personal statement. That initial phase involved generating ideas, anecdotes and examples to use when you sit down to write. Now that it is April, it is time to take those ideas and turn them into a cohesive document that will convince the admissions committee that you are a strong applicant, worthy of an offer to interview at their school.

With a 5300 word limit, the personal statement for the primary application doesn’t give you a lot of space in which to tell …

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Applying to Med School
January 20, 2015

Reapplying To Medical School

By Carleen Eaton, M.D.

If you are reapplying to medical school this cycle for the second (or third) time, then you need to take a different approach than a first time applicant. Your goal is to differentiate your current application from the last one as much as possible, and to convince the committee that you are now deserving of a spot in the class. This means scrutinizing each section of the application and determining what is new or improved and making sure that those features stand out.

In terms of timing, applying for back-to-back cycles may not be the best …

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Applying to Med School
November 29, 2011

MD-PhD Programs

By Carleen Eaton, M.D.

For applicants who are considering a career combining both medicine and research (a “physician scientist”), completing an MD-PhD program may be a good option.  Besides graduating with both an MD and a PhD, and thus receiving excellent preparation for a career in academic medicine, in most programs, you will attend med school tuition free and even receive a stipend for living expenses. However, these advantages need to be balanced against the drawback of spending an extra 3 to 4 years in school on top of the 4 years needed to obtain the MD, and …

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Applying to Med School
November 23, 2011

Medical School: The Personal Statement – Getting Started

By Carleen Eaton, M.D.

To a writer, there is nothing more intimidating than being faced with a blank screen. That sight induces the average person to check their e-mail, browse the web, grab a snack and do just about anything to avoid having to type a single character. While this technique will keep you in touch with your friends and ensure that you are up to date on breaking news, it won’t get your personal statement written – or at least not very quickly.

At this point, you may not be ready to sit down and write your entire personal

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