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Introducing a New Expert Content Section: Careers!

Minimum 3 Years Necessary?

pinkearmufspinkearmufs Registered User Posts: 914 Member
edited May 2006 in Pre-Med Topics
A lot of medical schools say that you must have a minimum of 3 years undergraduate education, but what if you're graduating in 2.5 years (financial reasons) and then going elsewhere to do a post-baccalaureate program? Is that still acceptable?
Post edited by pinkearmufs on

Replies to: Minimum 3 Years Necessary?

  • bluedevilmikebluedevilmike Registered User Posts: 11,964 Senior Member
    The heck?? Why are you doing that?
  • bluedevilmikebluedevilmike Registered User Posts: 11,964 Senior Member
    Oh, now I get it. Yeah, given that you definitely have "room in your schedule" - just do the time in college - then just take them at your home institution.

    I mean, it's definitely "acceptable" to do a post-bacc, but what's your purpose??
  • pinkearmufspinkearmufs Registered User Posts: 914 Member
    Well see I'm attending UC Berkeley out of state as an English major, but because of ap credits and a large courseload I am graduating in 2.5 years to save money because I can't afford Cal out of state for 4 years!! The post-bacc is because when I graduate, I will have graduated early yes, but without the necessary pre-med science courses, because graduating this early means I only have room for courses within my major, and not enough room to fulfill pre-med reqs, because that would put me into 3.5-4 years, which I can't afford.
  • pinkearmufspinkearmufs Registered User Posts: 914 Member
    So...will I still be able to apply to med schools if I've only got 2.5 years of an undergraduate college education and not 3 like it says medical schools want? Does the post-bacc education act as another year of education?
  • bluedevilmikebluedevilmike Registered User Posts: 11,964 Senior Member
    My guess is that post-bacc work would count.

    Are you sure it would be cheaper this way?
  • pinkearmufspinkearmufs Registered User Posts: 914 Member
    It would save me >40k.
  • Lo1603Lo1603 Registered User Posts: 180 Junior Member
    im a pre-med at Berkeley and I am warnign you that the pre-med classes are really hard and taking all of those classes in two years would be quite a toll and they don't reccomend taking more than two at a time because of lab work. So I would say your best bet would probably to do a post bacc program.
  • bluedevilmikebluedevilmike Registered User Posts: 11,964 Senior Member
    Lo, PEM is giving two options:

    1.) Stay at Berkeley, graduate in four years, do premed courses there.

    2.) Go to Berkeley, graduate in two and a half years with no premed courses, and do a post-bacc someplace else. The second option has the advantage of saving him $40K.

    I'll say this. I'm reasonably certain that this three-year minimum requirement thing will not pose an automatic "Whoops, he's disqualified" problem. Whether medical schools will look down on it or not, I don't know.

    Now, I am about to say two things which sound contradictory (perhaps because they partly are).

    I must confess that I am inclined to frown upon your option 2, simply because going into college and intentionally planning on a post-bacc seems to undermine the whole point of a post-bacc program, which is for kids who change their career plans. Somehow - and I can't really justify this - it seems to me like a cop-out, a workaround, an exploitation of the system. Notice that it "feels" that way to me - I can't actually justify this opinion. (I've sat here for a few minutes trying to do so.)

    With that said, I would recommend it anyway - because my "feeling" on the situation is just my feelings, and $40K is really $40K. If I had a good reason, or if I'd seen documentation on the matter, I would urge you otherwise.

    Now, do notice this. I did come up with two disadvantages, neither of which is particularly insurmountable.

    1.) People may ask, "Why didn't you just graduate from wherever you did your post-bacc?" I think there's a good answer, which is that Berkeley's English department is very reputable and you wanted the well-rounded liberal arts education they could provide.

    2.) Obviously, if you do your courses at an institution that is easier AND less prestigious than Berkeley - and if you assume equivalent grades - then a kid who went straight through at Berkeley would have an advantage, but this advantage is (frankly) not particularly large. Besides which, it's not safe to assume equivalent grades.
  • pinkearmufspinkearmufs Registered User Posts: 914 Member
    Thanks for your replies. I understand what you're saying. The thing is, I did change my career plans. I wasn't sure I would do medical school, but was absolutely sure I wanted to be an English major, and just recently realized med school is what I want to do after, but I've now completed one year in my total 2.5 year stay at Cal, so going back now would simply not be feasible without completely altering my plans. I know it's not the traditional track, but if people ask, I'll say the truth, that my years at Berkeley were a rare opportunity to study in depth a subject that I have been passionate about for many years, and so it was absolutely worth exploring.

    On a side note, I have also been looking into optometry, which is quite different I understand, but equally fulfilling and perhaps slightly less stringest than medical schools in all aspects? Is this correct?
  • bluedevilmikebluedevilmike Registered User Posts: 11,964 Senior Member
    I'm sure many people find optometry just as fulfilling while being a lot less draining! I know a lot of opto students, and they seem to be really looking forward to it.

    And yeah, the general understanding is that admissions are somewhat easier.
This discussion has been closed.