Undergrad graduating in 3rd year, which starts this fall. Is it too late to sign up for MCAT?

I originally planned on taking a gap year in my “4th” year, but I’m just wondering if it’s too late to instead go straight to med school in my 4th year? I honestly have no idea how my timeline should look like; I haven’t signed up for the MCAT yet nor have I done anything on the paperwork side of preparing for med-school, like interviews and such.

Is it too late to start med school in my 4th year? Should I just take my 4th year as a gap year? Also, what should I start doing now or, in other words, what should my timeline look like? I originally wanted to do hospital volunteering this summer but COVID just screwed that over. I’m also wondering if taking a gap year looks bad to med schools. I’m trying to secure some research for the 4th year as well as some clinical work and shadowing.

@WayOutWestMom knows the exact age…but the average starting age for medical school students is something like 25. Many many students don’t start right out of undergrad.

I’m also not sure it’s to your advantage to apply to start after three years of college.

If you have not taken MCAT and not done clinical and non-clinical volunteering you should avoid this cycle. You should be ready with strong application by May 1st of any app cycle, until that time post pone. Take 1 or 2 years and plan what you want to do for for the 2 years, masters, research or teach america or peace corps or whatever you like.

Agree with @thumper1 and @GoldenRock

Gap year is not considered a bad thing. A large percentage of applicants do go beyond undergrad and come back to the application due to low GPA, not having enough science credits or not doing all the activities that show an interest in medicine. You can use the extra year to do a masters/more classes/research or anything else that fills in gaps in your app. If you are just now thinking of MCAT, then applying in this cycle is probably not in your best interest unless you have been prepping, taking practice tests and doing well.

Please get the AAMC official material for MCAT and take the practice tests (1,2,3,4). These are close to predicting the actual MCAT test score. Until you reach your target MCAT score in practice tests, there should be no hurry to take real MCAT test.

Agree with everyone above, if you don’t have MCAT test date, don’t have clinical and non-clinical volunteering and physician shadowing, applying this year is just a waste of time and money.

AMCAS has opened applications already. MCAT test dates are more or less fully booked through October. It’s too late now to try to get everything you need to have done completed in the next few weeks.

Taking one or more gaps years before med school is the new norm. Over 65% of successful applicants do so. Please take the time to prepare a strong application–one that has all the needed parts ready to go.

3 posts were split to a new thread: Undergrad in 3 years plus Masters