Career Change as a Reapplicant


I am 25 and have worked in the software industry for about 2.5 years. Also, I am currently studying for a Master’s in Software Engineering (SE) where I will graduate in Spring 2018. Despite all this, I am considering reapplying for medical school after listening to the OldPreMeds podcast.

My undergrad was in Electrical Engineering, but I did pre-med simultaneously (all the required courses for Texas medical schools). Ended with a 3.6 GPA. I did apply in 2013 but was most likely screened away due to my MCAT verbal reasoning score of 8. I’ve taken the MCAT twice, 27 the first time, and 29 the second time.

I am looking to apply in 2018, and plan to take Kaplan to prep for the new MCAT in 2017. Also, I will look into volunteering and shadowing experiences next year. I would love to apply in 2017, but I have learned rushing medical applications is worse than taking it steady.

I am very close to finishing my Master’s in SE and my company pays for it, so logically I would like to finish it.

Some questions I have

  1. Since it’s technically my 3rd time taking the MCAT, are my chances of getting in slimmer? Is everything riding on my next MCAT score?
  2. Should I retake any courses? A post-bacc?
  3. Does completing a MS in Software Engineering help/hurt my chances?


    3.6 undergrad (engineering + pre-med)

    4.0 grad (engineering, may drop to 3.8 when I graduate)

    27, 29 MCAT
  1. You should definitely prep for this test like it was one of your last shots. Your previous scores aren’t terrible, they just happen to be below the mean of those that matriculate. You could very well have been picked up for school with a 27 or 29 depending on the school and the rest of your package… I would shoot to be in the 75th percentile or better to increase your chances. No idea what that is on the new MCAT.

  2. If you have all of the prereqs done, there’s no point in redoing them. You’ve done some recent academics and done pretty well. Assuming you didn’t bomb your prereqs, it would be a waste of time in my opinion. Even still, it’s not like one or two classes is going to affect your GPA much.

  3. I can’t think of a reason why it would hurt. The only way it will help is if you can explain why it would help…don’t assume the person reading your file understands what that degree means or how it is applicable to the medical field. I got an MBA 4 years before applying and had an interviewer lock into why I got an MBA if I wanted to be a doctor (literally asked me 3 times).

I answered this on tomorrow’s (1/4/2017) podcast! Check it out!

Hey Kenny, thanks for the advice. I will try my hardest on my next MCAT! It’s awesome to hear you pursue a master’s in something else, and then decide to go to medical school.

To MSHQ, wow thanks for answering on the podcast! I was listening to today’s episode and thought, “Wow this guy sounds a lot like me…Wait, it is me!!”

I’ve decided to self study for now and forego Kaplan’s prep course. It has been a while since I looked at this stuff, so I’m not sure if either Kaplan or Next Step will help at the moment - I will need to do some reviewing first. If things do not improve, I will consider Next Step’s private tutoring.

My science GPA was around 3.75. My weakness is verbal…that’s why I majored in Engineering. :slight_smile:

I still strongly believe that applying in June is really early for my timeline, so I am willing to wait a year. I did not practice enough last time for the MCAT so I really want to make sure I have enough time to prepare.

Thanks again for the episode!

For what it’s worth, the Kaplan course assumes you have seen the material before but have forgotten how to do any of it. The explanations are good, and the info comes back pretty quickly for the most part, at least it did for me. Granted, this is all from their “old” MCAT course, and I can’t speak to the “new” MCAT course.

I pretended like I was going to self study, started reviewing old textbooks and the non-course Kaplan books. I quickly found out I didn’t have the willpower or organization to attack it on my own. I used Kaplan for the MCAT, and I continue to use them for Step 1 type questions alongside my med school coursework. I think they have great products (not a paid spokesman), but I never looked at any other company’s MCAT prep stuff.

Hey Kenny, I’ve read several reviews talking about the Kaplan course not being effective, but I’m glad it worked out for you. I’ll definitely consider them again if self study doesn’t work out. Thanks!