Can we talk about the best resources for info about post-baccs or SMPs?

What are the best resources for info about SMPs and post-baccs for students.

These would be for folks who either decided late to go to med school or they were premed but had a rough start in college (GPA issues), changed majors, graduated a few years ago, but realize that they really want to go to med school.

I guess I’m mostly asking for the second scenario…the former premed who got into GPA trouble, graduated, but now wants to do either a post-bacc or SMP to get back on track for med school.

What is the best path for this? SMP? Post-bacc? And if so, which programs are recommended? Is it better to go to a program that has a linkage to a MD or DO school for assured interview ?

Do they first redo the low grades at a local CC? And then apply to a SMP or special masters?

Postbaccalaureate Premedical Programs

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@WayOutWestMom can you please explain the difference between a special masters program and and a post Bacc…and also the risks associated with them.

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A post bacc is a formal or informal post-baccalaureate program intended to either:

  1. improve a student’s sGPA (gpa-enhancing post-bacc) prior to applying to med school
  2. give a student with a non-science degree the necessary science & math pre-req coursework so they can apply to medical school (career-changer post bacc)

Formal (structured) post-baccs are often expensive and can vary widely in quality. Formal post baccs may offer built-in volunteering & research opportunities, and MCAT prep, as well as specialized advising.

GPA repair can be done independently without a formal program by taking upper level biology coursework that demonstrates a student’s ability to perform well in challenging science coursework.

Post baccs are not eligible for federal student loans unless they are part of degree or certificate granting program.

A SMP (Special Master’s Program) is special type of post bacc. A SMP attempts to simulate the rigor and content of the first year classes of medical school.

At universities that host a medical school, SMP student often take all or many of the same classes as MS1s and are graded on the same scale.

The very best SMPs guarantee students who hit certain academic and EC benchmarks a interview or an acceptance at the associated med school. (Known as linked programs or programs with linkages.)

SMPs are high risk - high reward. Do well in the SMP and a student will have a good chance for med school admission; finished outside the top 25% or with a GPA below 3.75–and any chance for a med school admission is permanently gone.

SMPs work best for students who have minor academic deficits.

AAMC maintains a searchable database of post baccs and SMPs (link in post #2), but the post bacc forum on Student Doctor dot Net has a very comprehensive list of GPA-enhancing post baccs and SMPs, together with reviews and comments from students who have been through the programs.

Also on SDN, in the pre-med forum, https://. forums. studentdoctor. net/. threads/goros-advice-for-pre-meds-who-need-reinvention.1291333/

Goro is an med school adcomm and offers terrific advice for low GPA “reinventors”

NOTE: remove extra spaces from link to get it to work

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Thank you for this link.
Is there a list like this for those who’d be doing a postbacc to get into DO schools?

WOWMom, thank you for this explanation!


The same programs work for both MD and DO hopefuls. Most grade-enhancing post bacc students are encouraged to apply to both types of programs.

If a re-inventor absolutely, positively has to have a MD, then they will likely need to attend a MD-sponsored SMP.

NOTE: recently there has been a proliferation of lower quality and non-linkage SMPs as universities have realized these programs can be serious money-makers. Caveat emptor!

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Yes, I noticed that!!! Ty