May 29, 2015

The MCAT Prep Balancing Act: Content vs. Strategy

MCAT prep is a vast undertaking. You can expect to spend somewhere in the neighborhood of 300 to 350 total hours studying for this exam. The hard part of studying for the MCAT, however, is not the time dedication—it’s the balancing act of managing both your content knowledge and strategy so that you don’t overdo one at the expense of the other.

The MCAT does not reward you for knowing content. It doesn’t reward you for knowing techniques to reason out answer choices. Only if you can strategically apply that content knowledge to novel situations will you be … more
May 22, 2015

Gaining Research Experience as a Pre-Med

It’s no secret that many pre-med students are interested in gaining research experience. Not only does it look good on a medical school application, but research can also help you stand out from other candidates, especially if you manage to publish.

The question is, how does an enterprising undergraduate pre-med student work for a research lab, and better yet, how can they be successful?


Who to ask about research experience

The availability of research jobs generally depends on the size of your college or university and its overall strengths. As a rule of thumb, larger, more research-focused, academically-oriented … more
May 14, 2015

Explore the Different Types of Pre-Med Research Experience

Hello my investigative readers! One of the biggest activities that you can add to improve your medical school application and increase your chances of medical school acceptance is pre-med research experience. Now, when I say research, most people think bench research, you know, the nitty gritty, lab coats and petri dishes kind of research. If that’s not your jam, there are actually a couple of different kinds of research, which can benefit your medical school application. Today let’s explore the different types of research experience.


Clinical Research

Clinical research is just like it sounds! Normally you’re working on … more
May 13, 2015

How Important is Pre-Med Research Experience?

The reality is that pre-med research isn’t for everyone, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a component of a successful application. Of course, in many cases, bolstering a medical school application with a publication or two can be helpful, but that doesn’t mean you should sign up to do bench research if it’s not something you’re actually interested in.

We’ve covered the topic of gaining research experience numerous times on the MedSchoolPulse Blog, but what if pre-med research just isn’t for you? Read on to find out.


Is clinical research right for you?

Before throwing in the towel, … more
May 7, 2015

Get More from Your Pre-Med Research Experience

Unless you’re one of the lucky few who has managed to find a position in a lab or been accepted to a research internship, chances are your only exposure to lab work has been through your textbook or your pre-med classes.

Read on for advice on how to make the most of your pre-med research experience, survive the rigors of a real-world research setting, and become a scientific superstar.


Do your research

By the time you interview with the principal investigator, you should have an idea of his/her research and overall field of study.

Once you’re accepted … more
May 12, 2015

How Studying for the MCAT Prepares You for Medical School

When studying for the MCAT, there comes a time when you might feel the urge to rage about how unfair the exa, is. Taking the MCAT can’t possibly prepare me to be a better doctor! you might think. Then you take the test and you think, Whew! I’m glad I never have to do that again—especially, perhaps, now that the test has increased by a couple of hours.

Well, there’s good and bad news. The good news is, you’re right: once you’re done with the MCAT, you never have to take it again.

The bad news is that the … more
May 5, 2015

Five Tips for Shadowing a Doctor

One of the best ways to demonstrate your commitment to medicine in a tangible way on your application to medical school is by shadowing a doctor as a part of your clinical experience.

When reviewing your application, the admissions committee will want to see that you’ve done your research and are sure that a career in medicine—which is not for the faint of heart—is really for you. They’ll want to make sure that you know what you’re signing up for and that you’ve logged enough clinical hours to confidently make the decision to become a doctor.


How do you … more
April 29, 2015

Integrated Sciences on the MCAT 2015 Exam: Part 2

As we discussed in Part 1, most pre-med programs treat the sciences as though they were independent disciplines—teaching and testing students without regard for how subjects like chemistry and physics interrelate. On the new MCAT 2015 exam, however, you’ll be faced with integrated sciences.

The last thing anyone wants is a surprise on Test Day. So, it’s important that you start your MCAT practice and preparation for this new approach early.


How will the MCAT 2015 test your pre-med knowledge?

It’s a matter of fact—and almost a rite of passage—that taking chemistry or physics in college means … more

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