If you’re keen to be a medical student but have a low GPA, fret not! Here are some tips on how to get on track to enter medical school.
It’s still early in your academic career after the first year, so you’ll be fine if you make the correct improvements. If you finished the first year with a 3.5 or lower, you need to really settle in and change your priorities.
However, if you are still in the 3.5 to 3.6 range after the second year, there is even greater pressure on you to perform well on the MCAT. So there you have it, our first piece of advice. And I’d want to emphasize the significance of the time journal, the tutor, and enhancing your efficiency. At this point, changing majors is less enticing. Examine our medical school GPA requirements blog to learn more about what you should be striving for.
At this stage, you should begin to take a close look at how you’re spending your time. You can’t cut back on your extracurricular activities too much because they’re crucial, and schools want to see that you can handle a diverse set of activities.
However, you must trim the fat and ensure that every hour you spend has a purpose. Make sure, now more than ever, that you are setting and adhering to an efficient timetable for completing all of your chores per week.
Another thing you could do is start researching whether schools are a good fit for your GPA. Learn how to utilize MSAR to identify the perfect school for you if you are applying to the United States. Schools with lower GPA requirements should be your first priority. Determine which ones work best for you.
In Canada, your choices will become increasingly confined to schools with extremely low GPA requirements, such as McMaster Medical School and the Cumming School of Medicine. However, in practice, those schools accept relatively few students with GPAs below 3.7, but you will not be immediately removed from the pool.
Canadian students with lower GPAs should start thinking about medical school in the United States or elsewhere. This has its own set of obstacles, but if you’re dedicated and determined, you can return to Canada and practice medicine. It is, however, becoming increasingly difficult to do so.
After your third year, you plan to apply to medical school this summer/fall, depending on whether you live in the United States or Canada, with a GPA of 3.5. You must prepare yourself to apply to a large number of colleges.
Also, make sure your applications are stellar so that you don’t give the merciless admissions committees any more reasons to reject you. To discover out how we can help you make your application stand out, click here to schedule your free initial session now.
Consider your backup plans, which could include post-baccalaureate programs, unique master’s programs, graduate degrees, a second undergraduate degree, and additional courses. The option of taking additional courses should be examined explicitly at this point because the extra courses will not be reflected in your GPA calculation until you have completed your undergraduate degree.
If you decide to take more courses, consider turning this into a Minor concentration or, better yet, a second Major. You must receive all As. Otherwise, it’s not worth it. Ensure the school is aware of your intention to postpone graduation until the following year, and talk with an academic counselor about your possibilities. You don’t make any costly mistakes with your course selection.
After completing an undergraduate degree
These contingency measures do not detract from the fact that you must also excel in your final year. If you have a 3.6 GPA in your first three years and an outstanding fourth year, you have a far better chance of obtaining an offer after your fourth year than if you keep humming along and getting the same grades as before.
Many medical schools look for growth and GPA increases over time, so make sure to include these in your transcript. Take our study tips from above. Once again, you must ensure that your application is remarkable. Consider meeting with an academic advisor or a medical school advisor to ensure that your application is as great as it can be.
While a low GPA is never desirable, it can be mitigated if you know how to communicate about it in a way that helps you. Transform your early academic failure into a story about progress and resilience. If you followed the remedial measures mentioned above and improved your grades as a result, you have shown your ability to deal with challenges in a mature and responsible manner.
What you should emphasize is what you have learnt as a result of these challenges: discuss how enhancing your academic achievement has taught you about self-improvement, better time management, effective study habits, and so on.
Demonstrating to the admissions committee or interviewer that you are capable of both self-reflection and corrective action demonstrates your drive to achieve. When addressing a poor GPA, make sure to emphasize these characteristics.