Anteing up

I suppose I’m officially joining the race now! Last night I gave my notice at work and will be starting classes full time next month. I haven’t had orientation and advising yet so I have yet to sign up for classes, but it looks pretty science heavy right from the start. Chemistry, Bio, and possibly physics (which would be a refresher).

As I’m planning this out, I am wondering if anyone around has suggestions about courses they wish they had taken or are glad that they took prior to the MCAT. I would think the prereqs would be a no-brainer, but is there any other standout course that would be helpful? Also, any problems with a spring MCAT (like April timeframe) when still finishing up Orgo II that semester?

What about courses to try and squeeze in before matriculation?



Mike - congrats on this big step! I took the MCAT while finishing up OChem-II but I wasn’t taking a full load of classes while prepping for the test. I wish that I had taken Bio Chem before prepping but it didn’t seem to hurt me too much because I did well.

Good luck!

Good question mike, as I’m picking my courses for this fall ( I might take the mcat in december,) i’ve been wondering the same thing.

I’ve asked people who have already taken the mcats and aside from the obvious pre-reqs like you said, microbio and genetics seem to pop up a lot. So, I’ll be adding those courses to the mix this fall.

I had Bio-chem and genetics prior to the MCAT, and I was grateful for having taken them. After the exam I took Immunology, Cell Pathology, and Histo as prep for medical school basics. A friend in medical school said she really appreciated having undergrad histo, and she wished she’d taken human anatomy as well.

You might want to also consider a physiology course.

Biochem and genetics would be useful, though not required. Microbio could be good as well (I didn’t have it before the MCAT, so I had to learn what “Gram positive” meant, heh).

Beyond that, whatever interests ya. Familiarity with the material is good, but it’s really a test of your analytical thinking skills.

Right now my plan has me taking (in addition to the basic prereqs) genetics, microbiology, and immunology either before or during the semester when I will take the MCAT.

During the glide year, I will be finishing up my degree and taking biochemistry, A&P, Endocrinology, and Molecular Bio. So I’ll have those before I matriculate, but not before I apply. I’m wondering if it would be a better idea to move one or more of those to the year before so they will be on the application. For instance, I can move my ecology class to the glide year and have molecular bio in the year I’m taking the MCAT.

Oh, and I already had a continuing education faux pas. Having been out of school for long enough to forget some details, I planned my schedule based on a list of classes, making sure to pay attention to prerequisites. However, I forgot to take into account that every class might not be offered every semester or even every year. Needless to say, there’s been a bunch of rearranging going on!



Congrats on beginning the process! Finishing up O-Chem II shouldn’t be a major issue for the MCAT, you will just need to learn some of the material sooner that you might have otherwise. However, I would caution that you take a lighter schedule the semester you’re going to take the MCAT unless you feel very solid in your abilities with standardized tests.

As I’m certain you’ve gathered from posts here, your score on the MCAT is a VERY important part of your application. You will want to devote a lot of time to studying and doing practice questions. In addition, as mentioned on other posts, give some consideration to taking a prep course for the exam.

Best of luck!