25 years old, MA in clinical psych but no science classes!!

Hey everyone, so glad to have found this site! I have been reading several posts and it’s so interesting to see everyone’s background, the variety is great! A little about me: I am in my second year of my master’s program in clinical psych (I just started on my thesis:comparing young caregivers in their 20’s to traditional middle-aged caregivers). However, I have always been interested in medicine but never thought it was an attainable goal for me but I would love to try. I majored in psych and minored in sociology (GPA 3.68), but have only had one Gen. Bio, which I made a C in. I have never had a chemistry class, either. Would I be way out of my league when taking the prereqs? My first two years of undergrad (when I had bio) were a little shaky, I began making A’s in my JR. and SR. years and on into grad school.

Basically: UGPA-3.68


BIO 101- C!!!


Practical experience so far: providing care for a severely disable parent (vent 24/7, level IV pressure sores, I do pretty much anything the nurses do)

Do I have a shot if I take the prereqs and do well on the MCAT?

My advice to you is what I did to prove to myself that I had the aptitude in science… at the very least take a solid Chemistry class and see if you can master it.

If you’ve never had Chemistry, it is worthwhile to take a Chem for non-majors just to make sure that you have all the concepts down pat. A lot of the science you will study is rooted in fundamental Chemistry–these days Biology and Physiology has a lot of molecular focus.

I personally think it would be worth it as well to take General Biology again. If you can get A’s in Bio and Chemistry, you stand a great chance to move forward. Everything builds from there.

My first semester back to school, I went to the local community college and took non-science major Chem, Biology, an pre-Anatomy Biology course, and a Developmental Psych course so that I could see what my aptitude was.

Before that, I had received my Associates Degree in Communications-Literature with a 4.0, and before that I was a 2.5 Electrical Engineering student, so I hadn’t had a regular Bio or Chem class since high school more than 20 years previously.

I was able to get A’s in everything that semester because I recognized that I needed to start at the beginning to ensure mastery of the concepts.

When I transferred to the 4-year program, they let me into Chem II for science majors and allowed me into their new Biomedical Sciences program because of my good grades in science at the community college.

I worked very hard to make the transition, and found to my surprise that my best subjects were my chemistry courses.

Going back was not without some missteps, however.

The first fall semester that I went back to school, I took Human Gross Anatomy without ever having had an physiology course, in high school or otherwise. That was a Gross Mistake for me and landed a C on my transcript. I didn’t realize how much time Gross Anatomy would take or how time-intensive, demanding and competitive (esp. to jockey for position to see the bodies) the course would be.

But you know, you can linger on the past, or simply try to move forward.

I have watched fellow students going through the premed or prevet road with me falter on the dings and either get stuck obsessively repeating courses to get the A’s or veer away from the premed or prenursing route entirely because it was just too hard.

I will make an pulmonary system analogy here… getting where you want to go is by minimizing the turbulence in the airways. Keep the path as narrow as possible and look ahead. If one alveolus doesn’t work as well, there will be another to fill up and give you the O2 that you need to get the job done.

So far in my premed program I netted a C in Gross and a C+ in Intro to Genetics. The rest are mostly A’s with some B’s, so that my GPA at my current undergrad program is a 3.5.

I took the MCAT the Monday after I finished Organic Chem 2 over the summer. I did not have time to take a prep class, but I decided to give it a shot because I couldn’t afford to wait longer. I netted a 27P, which put me just a little above the average MCAT taker, getting dinged on Physics, as I had forgotten some formulas from earlier semesters (I would highly recommend taking a prep class or at least going through Kaplan’s book and CD thoroughly). Most allopathic medical schools are looking for scores in the 30’s and up, but I learned that osteopathic medical schools look for applicants with 24+ and at least an M on the MCAT writing.

Along with my recent experience as a CNA, and a good interview, I was just accepted into RVUCOM for 2008, a brand new DO school that just opened in Colorado, and I find it is a great fit for my own philosophy and values.

So what I’ve learned is this… get a solid foundation in the sciences–Physics, Chem, OChem, Bio, Physiology, Biochem, and keep moving forward. Do your best, and play your hand. I kept backup cards, ensuring that my courses would transfer to a local Nursing program, just in case, but I played my hand and got what I wanted. I am very glad that I didn’t get discouraged and involved in delays retaking courses that weren’t perfect.

This is the long way to tell you that IT IS POSSIBLE to go after your dreams. You have to first prove to YOURSELF that you have the aptitude. If you believe in yourself, you will have the confidence to pull through the hard coursework, and you will gain the confidence of the folks in the admissions department as well.

(Or as Dory says in Finding Nemo: Just keep swimming…!)

Best of Luck.