Here it is in a nutshell. First I want to say that this is a great organization. It is helping me stay motivated and encouraged about the goals I have for myself. Anyway, When I graduated from undergrad. my GPA was only a 3.11. I did not considered that good enough to apply to medical school. So I attended graduate school and ended up with a 4.0 gpa. Now I decide to take the MCAT. I had taken it twice and recieved the same score (don’t want to share that score). Then on my third attempt. I got a 22. I did not get accepted into any medical school. This is not something that I take lightly. I am currently teachng at a college. But I am not happy where I am. I know where I should be. But getting there is so hard. I am about to turn 27. I hae a small family. I really want to go to medical school. What do I do?
Have you considered an off-shore medical school. I don’t know that much about them, but I know a couple of our members have or will be attending them.
Have you talked to admissions counselors at medical schools? If not, make an appointment with one and have them evaluate your application. Perhaps your application is weak in other areas and they can recommend a course of action to improve it (clinical experience, volunteer work, retaking science pre-reqs or taking advanced science courses).
Maybe investing in a professional admissions advisor would be worth while for you.
Testing ability is important. Medical schools may look at that and think that you will be unable to pass licensing exams.
I would echo Amy’s thoughts. Although I’m only in the preliminary decision making process of where I’ll apply (am considering both on and offschore schools,) there does seem to be a stigma attached to an offshore school. As I’ve been working through it, though, I’ve kind of come to the conclusion that it comes down to the scores for me. If I feel I can match scores by going to an offshore school then I will consider that school. If not, I won’t. My belief is that those people who have issues with offshore schools even after proving oneself on the tests will have issues regardless–they’ll just choose some other area rather than your choice of med schools.
As a professor you understand the many problems with testing. If you believe that you have maxed your score, an offshore school may be your only option. But that choice need not be a negative one–there are always benefits to any given situation over another.
Best of luck in your quest.
You may want to invest in an MCAT prep course at this point. Don’t take the exam until you figure out why you are scoring so low. With your background, the reasons for you poor performance may be something that can be easily worked out. I doubt that is it lack of fund of knowledge because your GPAs are good. (Even the undergraduate is not poor but not stellar).
If you have a family, I would advise against trying to go to an offshore school. There are plenty of problems trying to get back into this country to practice and financial aid can be a huge problem. The regulations concerning FMGs (US citizens included) are changing everyday and you take a huge risk that may be expensive and you may wind up with a degree that you don’t want and can’t use.
Try to figure out why you are not doing well in the MCAT. It’s a test of test taking ability and application of knowledge as opposed to memorization. (Similiar to USMLE but not predictive). With most folks, doing plenty of practice tests works but you may have other problems that need investigation. Look into this before you invest anymore money in applications or head offshore (uprooting your family) for a diploma mill that may sell you something very expensive that is relatively useless.
Good luck and keep us posted as to how you work through this.
Have you checked out any of the DO schools? They are more willing to overlook a low stat if everything else is great. DOs are fully licensed physicians just like MDs. The schooling is very similar except DOs get extra training in OMM (Osetopathic Manipulation Medicine). DO and MDs work side by side.
Here are some web sites if you are interested.
I would personally suggest you check out DO schools before venturing off shore.
The founder of this Old premeds web site is a DO (OldManDave).
I would be happy to give you info about DO schools if you are interested. Just PM me if you have any questions.
You mention you’ve taken the MCAT three times. Although the MCAT folks say that you can ONLY take it three times, that rule is, in fact, regularly waived for folks who need to repeat. So if you are assuming that you can’t take the MCAT again, that’s incorrect.
You’ll need to do just what Nat is suggesting about tackling the MCAT and doing better on it. Good luck!