Cant take Biochem during Senior yr. Should I do a post bacc because I'll be applying when I graduate

I’m a bit late to the pre-med game (I’m a Sophomore). Right now, I am taking Bio I and plan to take Chemistry I in the Spring (it was filled up during this term which I was pissed about.) My school only offers Organic Chemistry I & Biochemistry I during the Fall term.

Sophomore (Spring): Chemistry I
Junior (Fall): Chemistry II
Junior (Spring): ಠ_ಠ
Senior (Fall): ORGO I
Senior (Senior): ORGO II

I don’t mind taking a gap year and I do plan to take the MCAT then apply during June of my senior year.

Would doing a post-bacc be worth it? If not, how else would I be able to finish it during the Fall before “matriculation”. I don’t mind doing some kind of academic program during my gap year (I need stimulation lol).

My CGPA is a 3.44 right now.

It would be extremely foolish to to take the MCAT before you’ve completed biochem. Biochem questions make up at least 40% of the Bio/biochem section questions on the MCAT. Having a weak score in the BBS can make your application a non-starter.

Wait to apply. Finish biochem, then take the MCAT. Don’t apply to medical schools until you have a MCAT score and final sGPA. This means you will likely need to take 2 gap years. ( One post graduation gap year to take biochem & the MCAT and a second for the application process itself. One applies in June/July to begin med school 13-15 months later.)

Do you have a sGPA? (A sGPA includes all bio, chem, physics and math classes you ever taken, including any dual enrollment classes from high school.) What is it?

SInce you will be considered a traditional applicant, a 3.44 GPA is not competitive for MD programs, but is within range for DO programs. But mostly it’s too soon to tell since you have plenty of coursework ahead of you.

RE: post bacc— sGPA is more important than cGPA. Since you appear to have most of your science pre-req classes ahead of you, it’s impossible to say whether you need a post bacc. Even then unless your sGPA is below 3.2, you don’t need a formal post bacc. Typically gap years are more profitably spent spiffing up ECs (like by working a full time clinical job) and taking some UL bio electives as a part-time student to improve your sGPA if needed than enrolling in formal post bacc program.

BTW, Med schools want to see more than just good academics (GPA. MCAT) in applicants.

You need the right ECs as well. At a minimum pre-med ECs need to include: physician shadowing (must include primary care), hands on clinical experience (either paid or volunteer), long term community service with disadvantaged groups, and leadership roles in your activities. Add laboratory or clinical research to that list, if you plan to apply to more competitive medical schools. You need to start your ECs ASAP.

Check the pre-req for taking Orgo I in your school. If only Chem I (and not II) is mandatory, then another option to take only 1 gap year is do, Orgo I along with Chem II in Jr Fall. Do Orgo I & II in Jr and BioChem in Sr Fall.


Based on your previous threads, you need to know 2 things:

  1. med schools will not accept online coursework for most pre-reqs. And adcomms recognize GPA padding when they see it.

  2. formal post bacc programs can be quite expensive. There is little or no institutional FA available. (They are big revenue generators for bio departments at colleges.) Unless the post-bacc is part of degree-granting program, it may not be eligible for the federal student loan program. You may need to pay for any post-bacc out of pocket.

OP- this is what pre-med advisors get paid to do. Answer questions like yours.

Make an appointment (physical or virtual). Review your transcript up until now, review your course plan going forward, get some input and advice. Advisors have a way of getting a space for a student in a sold-out class btw, when you hit an academic roadblock, emailing your own academic advisor or the pre-med advisory team should be your very next step. Figure out the best/cheapest way to proceed. Don’t rely on advice from the internet- you are looking at (potentially) hundreds of thousands of dollars in loans. Get yourself in front of the people at your college who get paid to know the best way to get into medical school and present them with your predicament. He or she probably could have gotten you into the filled up Chem 1 class-- but lesson learned for the future.