intro and bad Physics grade

So, I’m almost in my mid-30’s. Several years ago, I enrolled in a post-bacc. program at a local college. In my undergrad. years I took one year of Chem, one year of Physics and one semester of Bio. During undergrad, I received B’s in Chem., and C- grades for Physics as well as a D in the one semester of Bio. In my post-bacc program, I got the following grades:

Bio grades of A and B (for the 2 semesters)

Chem. A- and A for the (for the 2 semesters)

Then, I foolishly retook Physics. The post-bacc advisors told me I didn’t really need to retake Physics.

The first semester of Physics, I got a C. (compared to a C- in undergrad)

When I retook the second semester of Physics I got an F.

I still have to take Organic Chem.

Are my med. school dreams all but over because I failed the second semester of Physics? (even though I got a C- the first time I took it in undergrad.)

I’m not offering excuses for myself, but I failed the class because that semester, one of my co-workers was dismissed at my job. My fellow co-workers and I had to make up the work that still had to be done. I just couldn’t devote enough time to studying for Physics and working hard for my job.

Also, I was an undergrad. Math major.

It’s my understanding that D.O. programs (as opposed to M.D. who take every course into account) offer grade replacement. That may be your best bet if you can truly buckle down and show some good physics grades. Physics is all about practice. I just finished physics I and what worked for me was just doing problems over and over again. Eventually, you’ll break through!

best wishes,


That sounds tough. I cannot predict whether the low grades would eliminate your chances or not, but I can only give simple advice if you plan to take Physics – or any other course – again, to try to up your grade. Here it is:

During courses, we are all rushed. In your case, having to work full time while enrolled in the post-bacc courses, you have even less time than most others.

Have you considered using some downtime in advance of a course to purchase the textbooks, get a copy of the current syllabus from the instructor or other students in the course now,

then studying the entire course before it even starts? That includes working all the homework problems and outlining all the lab exercises, too.

In that way, you will have the advantage that before you walk into every lecture and before you do each homework assignment, you have already learned the material and done the work, so the class time is simply reinforcing review for you. Multiple repeats of exposure to the material is reinforcement that enhances learning.

Another way to ensure you know your stuff cold is to work with other students in a structured study group where each of you co-teaches the others in review. Many people, myself included, learn more when having to explain the principles and work out the problems out loud and write the material on a big whiteboard (math, calculus, physics, chem, etc.) so others can understand it.

Of course, make sure you access all published past review summaries by this professor and any publicly available past exams, work them out for yourself and attack any areas you don’t understand. This may seem elementary, but if it adds up to better grades in problematical courses, then good for you!

Just sayin’ . . . And best of luck. Don’t give up!

Thanks to both of you who replied. I’ve actually decided to retake Physics and take my chances with Osteopathic schools. Let’s see what happens! I’ll remember your suggestions.