BME vs. bio/chem/etc...

<p>Hi, I am a first year in engineering school trying to go to a medical school</p>

<p>I was originally planning to declare my major as BME this spring.
However I heard that since medical schools prioritize GPA higher than major, majoring in bio, chem, or other major in college of arts and science is better than majoring in BME since BME is so much difficult that students will have lower GPA compared to those in college.</p>

<p>Since my final target is medical school rather than engineering, I am even considering about going out of engineering school to keep up my GPA high enough to get into good medical school.</p>

<p>What should I do...?</p>

<p>Instead of "do what you are most interested in", can I have actually have some answers that tell me what is the best way to a medical school and why?</p>

<p>If you don't have an excellent physics/mathematics background (Olympiad finalist, for example), I would not major in BME unless it is your dream major and you must have it. The fact is that engineering majors DO have a lower GPA than other majors. </p>

<p>You can't avoid this answer, but major in something you enjoy and like. Chances are you will actually SUCCEED in that major and those classes if you love it. If you love BME and are passionate about it, take that major. You will probably do better than others who are taking it just for the major itself.</p>

<p>Of course if you are one of those people who want to pick a major because it looks good, reconsider your choice. Pick something you know you will like because that will be the major you will be best at.</p>

<p>You do NOT have to major in science at all. There have been numerous classics majors who have gotten into top med schools.</p>

<p>No one can tell you what to do with your life. Engineering provides better job prospects generally than a pure bio or chem major or a classics major. But, at the same time, it is more challenging so it may become a self-fulfilling prophecy that you won't make it to med school. There's no right answer to this question (and it's only been asked a million times). You need to decide based on YOUR interests, YOUR aptitude for math and science, and how much of a risk taker YOU are. We don't have that information so we can't answer your question.</p>

<p>Wow i was going to do Biomedical engineering, but I also want to get into Medical School! It sucks that they reward people who take easier classes vs. people who challenge themselves</p>

<p>yodelo--Since your a high school student and newbie, I'm going to assume you're not trying to troll by posting provocative remarks. (This thread isn't the only one where've posted something similar to the above.) I'm going to assume you don't understand how the med school process works.</p>

<p>Med schools do not reward people who "take easy classes". GPA is only one of many factors adcomms look when they are selecting students to interview. Yes, you have to have both a strong GPA AND sGPA (science GPA) and a good MCAT score (30+), but those only get your foot in the door--past the first rounds of cuts. There are multiple rounds of cuts--all based on "fuzzy" factors: how well you present yourself in writing; your LORs (and believe me if you slack your way thru college with only a few challenging classes your LORs are going to reflect that. A mediocre LOR can kill and otherwise decent app.); what kinds of service work you've done and for how long; persistence and dedication to various projects/programs; research; how personable & interesting you are in person etc.</p>

<p>There are lots of way you can shoot yourself in the foot and get your application shuffled to the bottom of the pile or tossed into the reject bin. And you can get rejected not because you have a weak app, but because there are so many apps which are better than yours. </p>

<p>The point is adcomms are not stupid. They know how to read a transcript so if you take the minimum required science coursework and load up on intro level classes or physics for poets type gut classes--they can bounce your app for no better reason than there are stronger, more interesting candidates than you.</p>

<p>Majoring in engineering (or music or English Lit or sociology or religion) are all valid paths to medical school if you can explain WHY it was meaningful to you. (And, for the record, I personally know people with all of those majors who are either doctors or current med students.)</p>

<p>BTW, don't assume that a music or lit or soc major is "easier" than an engineering major---it's a matter of an individual's strengths and weaknesses and interests. Some people would rather churn through a couple dozen problem sets than write an 50 page literary analysis.</p>

<p>omg! I wasn't trying to be a troll at all! It's just that everywhere I go, people are like, </p>

<p>"major in biology to get a high GPA, if you do Engineering, you'll ruin your gpa and won't get into medschool because adcomms don't look at majors, just GPA"</p>

<p>And what are LOR's?</p>

<p>You say taking a lot of intro classes is bad?
Is it bad if I retake Calc I and II even though I got a 5 on the exam? Is that frowned upon</p>

<p>@yodelo
1. LORs are letters of recommendation.</p>

<ol>
<li><p>In regards to AP credit, most medical schools do not accept AP credit to fulfill a prerequisite course for their program.</p></li>
<li><p>The bottom line for majors is that you should major in what you love and in which you can excel (i.e., something that won't be a GPA killer).</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Most medical schools accept AP Calc as long as your UG gives you the credits for a Calculus course. </p>

<p>Don't be obsessed with engineering. If you have the caliber of a pre-med and are good with Math, you should have no problem getting into a master program for engineering in case you change your mind about medicine. You will be way too busy with engineering. It is not necessarily harder. But, you will likely have to take 4 core courses as a sophomore which could screw up your pre-med courses, research, and other EC's.</p>

<p>Yes, AP math credits are more likely to be accepted by medical schools as credit, but one often still needs to fulfill the prerequisites via supplementation. So if one decides to use their credits to get out of Calculus I/II, or Statistics, then they will have to take upper-level math courses in lieu of these. </p>

<p>I would suggest not carrying over your AP Calculus credit and to take Calculus I and II again. You'll learn more than you did in high school and you're going to have a head-start on your classmates that did not take AP Calculus in high school. </p>

<p>By all means, however, if you feel you can handle it, go ahead and take Calculus III and another math course (like another Statistics course or Differential Equations).</p>

<p>@yodelo,

[quote]
You say taking a lot of intro classes is bad?
Is it bad if I retake Calc I and II even though I got a 5 on the exam? Is that frowned upon

[/quote]
</p>

<p>If you are "taking a lot of intro classes" as filler, and it is obvious on your transcript, then yes it could be bad. Taking intro classes as part of a course of study would be expected. </p>

<p>Do NOT retake classes you don't need to retake. Move on and take the next course in the sequence. This is what adcoms want to see. </p>

<p>
[quote]
In regards to AP credit, most medical schools do not accept AP credit to fulfill a prerequisite course for their program.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>False, most DO accept AP credit. Here is a nice table to help you sort out who takes what. </p>

<p><a href="http://students.rice.edu/uploadedFiles/Students/Academic_Advising/AP%20Credit%20-%20Allopathic%20Medicine%20%28Updated%20Summer%202011%29.pdf%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://students.rice.edu/uploadedFiles/Students/Academic_Advising/AP%20Credit%20-%20Allopathic%20Medicine%20%28Updated%20Summer%202011%29.pdf&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Unfortunately that table is only good for Rice. Other schools record AP credits differently and so those med school may not accept AP credits if you attend a different college. Med schools seem most likely to accept AP credit if it is recorded as equivalent to a particular course at your home school. As always, it's best to contact the
Med schools in question and ask.</p>

<p>^ Yes. The first line of the table make this clear. Rice policy is just the generic policy that an AP course must be mapped to a university course and that course must be shown on your transcript as credit. So this table is equally valid at Rice, Maryland or any other school with such a policy. Even if no credit is given for AP courses at an undergrad school, every adcom I've ever talked to has made it clear that they would like you to take the "advanced placement" and move on to a higher course. So in ANY case, retaking courses in which you scored a 5 on the AP exam is not necessary.</p>