Pre-med questions? Ask here.

<p>I will be a junior this fall, and I've been pre-med since I was 6 (haven't given up yet!). Feel free to ask anything about being a pre-med student at Stanford, such as difficulty of classes, requirements, research, or being a non-science major pre-med.</p>

<p>Alright, I guess I'll be the first to ask. As you said in another post, there is weeding in these courses. But could students easily get to know the professors, or is the class simply too large?</p>

<p>Definitely a good question. It is difficult to get to know a professor just by sitting in a class, even if you sit towards the front. It helps if you participate every now and then. But since there are a lot of large lectures, there is often little chance to participate. What really helps is going to the professor's office hours, whether you have a homework question or you wanted to share your enthusiasm about a topic.</p>

<p>do you find the path challenging? How many hours do you have to spend on hw? and how much free time do you get? </p>


<p>Hmm, those are tough to answer because it varies a lot from person to person. I found class content pretty hard, but doable. Tests were difficult for me because the way questions were worded was not "plug and chug" or simple definitions; professors expect you to synthesize complex methods from basic principles they have taught. I found that pretty different from high school. Curves in pre-med type classes (such as o-chem or bio core) tend to be relatively high because those who stay on the pre-med track tend to be driven and extremely intelligent.</p>

<p>I don't exactly count how many hours I spend doing what. Homework is something that's not due every day, like in high school. There might be weekly problem sets, or no homework at all. I just had a class with a midterm and a final, and that was it for the entire class. A problem set might take 3-5 hours, but again, problem sets are weekly at most. I think physics or computer science assignments take longer. Staying on top of reading can add a couple hours every 2 nights or so, per subject.</p>

<p>Free time does exist. I would guess that I do nothing educational for a good 4 hours a day, maybe more. That consists of eating meals, surfing the net, visiting some friends... scattered here and there.</p>

<p>Sorry your questions were hard for me to quantify... there are no real answers. But pre-med life isn't awful, and it's definitely doable - only if you're determined.</p>

<p>celestial605: I want to major in pre-med in college. I have also heard about the combined BA/MD programs. What is the difference between doing the program and going to college (e.i. Stanfod) and then test for medical school? Do you know? Is the BA/MD program a easier route or not necessarily?

<p>First, pre-med is not a major at Stanford. Instead, there is a pre-med track to follow; there are advisors to help you pick the classes that full medical school admissions requirements (such as biology or chemistry or a year of english, whatever). While completing the courses that are required for med school, students major in something of their choice. Many students find it logical to major in Biological Sciences, because many of those classes overlap with premed requirements. However, I have a friend who is a pre-med but an Art History major. She takes lots of art history classes, and she also takes the chem labs and physics necessary to enter medical school. Stanford is awesomely flexible that way. They want you to study something you enjoy.</p>

<p>You probably know that Stanford does not have a combined BA/MD program. Unfortunately, I do not know much about that because I did not choose to apply to any. Even though I joked that I've been pre-med since age 6, I didn't want to apply for a BA/MD program in the case that something else appealed to me more than medicine. Hopefully another person can answer your question here, or you can start another thread for that. Good luck!</p>

<p>I also have been planning to be a doctor since I was a wee lad and so I am going to try and pursue a bio degree from Stanford (hopefully I get in) and I was wondering if you have much free time to spend at social functions or with friends. Is it hard to make/keep friends who are in a different major because they don't know exactly what you are going through or you just find you can't spend much time with them? Is there spare time to go to social events like football games and soroity/frat parties, and is there time to be in a relationship? The major sounds so demanding and my parents and I want me to be able to have fun and do things outside the classroom. Just wondering. I have read through some of the things you have posted, by the way, very helpful, thank you.</p>

<p>There's definitely time!!!! One of my good friends is a classics major. Another is in English. A lot are from bio, physics, CS, and EE. Maybe my personality just clicks better with people who are on the techie side, but I don't think at all that premeds are friends with only premeds. In fact, most of my friends are not.</p>

<p>Two of my friends were dorm co-presidents, and they were always doing something - organizing dorm dinners, going bowling, going to events from synchronized swimming to basketball... And I know a lot of premeds who enjoy frat parties and go to them often.</p>

<p>I have been in a relationship for 2 years. Actually, it's a long-term relationship. I have enough free time to talk to my boyfriend on the phone a lot, and visit him at least once a month. Two of my best friends have been dating for over a year at Stanford, and they show no sign of letting dowwn. Sooooooo I think you should not worry about lacking time for a social life =]</p>

<p>Does Stanford allow you to have your visitors stay the night? It sounds like you are in a long-distance relationship and if I go to Stanford, assuming I am still with my girlfriend, it would be a long-distance relationship and I would like her to visit me.</p>

<p>On another note, I have quite a few AP credits and I was wondering if they will transfer and if that would put me in a position to graduate in 3 years instead of 4 or take a lighter load?</p>

<p>I know many people who had long-distance relationships or just friends who came to visit. I think there's actually a housing policy saying someone can only stay 3 days during a quarter without being charged, but I have never heard of an RA "tattling". So, as long as your roommate doesn't mind, it's totally okay for a friend/girl/boyfriend to stay in your room.</p>

<p>Some of your AP credits will transfer over <a href=""&gt;;/a> look there for specifics. However, in my case, I had 35 units transfer over but it didn't matter much. I still had to take many classes over again due to major or pre-med requirements. For example, I took AP Statistics in high school and got a 5, but I still have to take basic stats (Stats 60) at Stanford because of the bio major and psych minor. In that case, the extra units can be applied towards your graduation... but I'm going to have enough units to graduate anyways. So, I suppose it depends on what APs you took and what major you will have. I am actually able to graduate in 3 years and 1 quarter, but instead of doing that, I will space out my classes and take fewer classes per quarter, leaving more time for research and extracurriculars. That might be something to consider.</p>

<p>Wow, you totally reminded me of some other things I wanted to ask. Do most people dorm for all four years or do they move to appartments? Also, have you or do you know people, who really don't get a long with your/their roommate? Are there ways to get a new roommate or are you stuck with them for a quater or year, or is Stanford pretty talented at getting people matched up with roommates they can at least tolerate?</p>

<p>While typing this I came up with another question... I know it is really expensive to go to Stanford, is there a plethora of financial aid or scholarships that I can try and get or is taking a loan the most probable way of paying for tuition, books and all the other things that is required for college?</p>

<p>Thank you for answering all my questions, I feel that I am using you as my personal information lady. I hope I am asking questions that will help others out too.</p>

<p>Everyone I know lived in the dorms all 4 years. Stanford encourages community by having guaranteed 4-year housing =] I actually did not get along with my freshman year roommate, and there are several other instances of that. My roommate and I were friendly towards each other, but we just turned out to be different... One guy I know is very sweet, but his roommate was a partier who lit his hand on fire with vodka (seriously) and set off the fire alarms... anyways, that guy got kicked out of the dorm. So if something really stupid happens, a new roommate could come in =p Other than that, I don't think Stanford will give you a new roommate if you just "don't like" yours; the reason has to be pretty serious. But the bright side is that many people end up being best friends with their roommate, or at least will continue to hang out.</p>

<p>I'm actually not a good person to ask about financial aid... I don't know if Stanford has anything you can apply for, but I know there's a ton of scholarships available online... just search... but those can be difficult to get because they're on the national level. I lucked out and got a big district scholarship, so I don't know a lot about Stanford's fin aid.</p>

<p>No worries about all the questions, keep them coming =]</p>

<p>Are there "fun" classes that I can take so that I am not just in all academic classes every quarter? What are some that you have taken and/or what are some of the popluar classes people take, assuming there are "fun" classes. Also, is it necessary to take summer school or will i be able to handle all the classes and extracurriculars during the fall, winter and spring? Do you, or have you, work(ed) during the school year? Are there jobs available, especially for pre-med, that can be done with a full class schedule? If so, what kind of jobs and do they pay decent?</p>

<p>I am all over the place in this post. It is early, or late depending on how you look at it, so I neglected to organize my questions. I hope this isn't gibberish.</p>

<p>LoL no problem. Actually, if you look in the Stanford 2010 forum, I posted all the classes I've taken in a premed thread. I have taken absolutely no fun classes =p However, I will do my best to remember the ones my friends have taken and list a few for you: pilates (very popular), photography, intramural ultimate frisbee, hiking, wine tasting, swimming... When you get the paper version of the Time Schedule at Stanford, definitely browse through it to look at all of the classes offered. There are plenty of "fun" classes to take, and many people say it keeps them sane.</p>

<p>I don't think it's necessary to take summer school. I'm taking the MCAT in April, which means I need to study during the year; for this reason, I'm taking a very light courseload during fall and winter of this year. It helps that I'm taking all 5 physics classes this summer, but I think I could have managed if I took them during the regular school year.</p>

<p>I do not work during the school year; maybe someone else can pitch in on this. I have a friend who worked in a library for a few hours every now and then; his schedule was extremely flexible. I don't know about the pay.</p>

<p>I know I seemed to exhausted all my question but one just came to me the other day. I have a laptop and I am a fairly proficient typer and I was wondering if professors mind if you bring a laptop to class to take notes. When i picture a college lecture, I picture the professor up there talking and the students frantically writing. Well when i write fast my writing goes down the tube so i was wondering if bring the laptop and typing the notes was allowed. Also, is the typing noise that occurs when you start typing on a laptop bother people (assuming laptops are allowed)?</p>

<p>On the laptop note, if you do bring your laptop to class, does the school's wireless allow you to connect to the interenet while in the classrooms?</p>

<p>Actually, there are often a handful of students who bring laptops. Typing is especially useful in humanities-type courses in which you need to get the info down quickly. In classes such as chemistry, you can imagine that it is easier to hand write so that you can make tables and diagrams. The typing noise is usually not a problem. I have not yet encountered a professor who requested that students not bring laptops.</p>

<p>Oh, many classrooms have wireless internet... but try not to give into the temptation to websurf =p</p>

<p>lol... i would never use the web to distract me from lecture, well maybe if i have to take an english class. No you are right, the web would distract me, it probably happens frequently. Do you know if the wireless connection is fast enought to support videogame play (i am not talking for inclass playing)? I am an avid gamer (who isnt at my age) and I would like to know if my skills are going to get rusty.</p>

<p>i know a few guys that would play in the dorm lounge where there was wireless. not sure what games, but i know it was all intense and whatever. haha. never tried it myself.</p>

<p>have you ever doubted your decision of, "oh, i want to be a doctor"? </p>

<p>Is it true that the teachers are very good and the classes interesting? what are the requirements to pass (or to qualify as a Stanford premed student)?</p>