More bad grades/news . . .where to go from here?

So, I wanted to end my post-bacc on an upswing, but instead it is ending on a downswing.

I got my grades back from this past semester.

Instead of improving my post-bacc GPA, my GPA went down. I got 2 A’s, 1 B (pathology), and 1 C (bacterial genetics). I did a lot worse on the pathology and genetics final exams than I had expected. The bacterial genetics final was very hard for me; the pathology final was not that hard, but I had difficulty remembering all the material. I received C’s on both final exams.

That additional C brings my total number of C’s in post-bacc to 6. I have numerous B’s, and a smattering of A’s. It seems the more science courses I take, the worse my GPA gets.

My inability to excel in the sciences has ruined a perfectly good chance to make myself an attractive candidate for medical schools. All that is left is the MCAT, but I am so depressed that I have no energy or motivation to study for that right now.

What do you all suggest I do?

Start over again?

Move onto to something else besides medical school?


You obviously want this so badly, I say before giving up you just go for it and see what happens! You’ve fought so hard, go for it!

Not every MCAT of 36 and GPA of 3.8 will get accepted. Not every MCAT of 22 and GPA of 2.7 will get rejected.

Go for it. You won’t be satisfied until you do!

Don’t give up!


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My advice is to sit still for a week or so and do nothing. Don’t think about med school, don’t think about your grades, just be still. I’m going to let the wiser folks chime in.

I think you’ve tried to let this med school thing go. I think you’ve tried to find something else, somewhere else to stoke the passion you feel for medicine. You, as I, took a year off - completely away from here, med school, premed, etc. And yet, here we are.

While I don’t know what the answer is, and I don’t know how to help (I wish that I could!!!), I do believe you NEED to be doing something in the field.

Someone, or several, have the answer - it make take pieces and parts of everyone’s thoughts to help you create the “right” path for you.

On your side!

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I agree with this - You seam to be little burnt out. You should enjoy holidays and go somewhere or stay at home and watch lots of movies and after new year decide which direction to go.

What is Your total GPA? there is PA program and later there is bridge for PA into DO - this may be option. There is nurse practitioner, or Anestesiologist assistant.

There are plenty of options. It depends what kind of work you like to do and how much time you want to spend studying.

I also messed up my finals and I am mad at myself - got B in biochemistry ( missed by 8 points out of 420) and B in AP II ( missed by 1!!! point - I had 625 and needed 626 ) and got B in speech( do not know even why ) .

What kind of post back are You doing ?

Take time off!! Decompress and enjoy life for a bit. When you are done, start studying for the MCAT, and start building a success-story application. The one thing you control in the application process is applying at all…so apply, and apply broadly. The only thing you can be sure of is that, if you do not apply, you stand no chance of being accepted at all.

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Thanks for your advice on PA and FNP. PA won’t work for what I want to do because I still requires a doctor’s supervision and where I want to work there are no doctors, but FNP may work because I can work independently at least in some states. But I also want to continue to do health work outside the U.S. I need a licensed medical degree that I can use both in the U.S. and have clout outside the U.S., so I can continue to start and run health projects (which I have been doing for years but without the proper degree, but it would be much easier with an appropriate degree.)

Thanks for all of your advice. Since last posting, I have taken some time off; I have not studied for the MCAT at all. Instead, I have been (once again) looking at the mistakes I have been making and trying to figure out “why” I keep making them. And once again, I have also been looking at ways to boost that GPA.

For those courses in which I received a C, should I retake those? I did retake Biochem II but still got a C each time.

I received B’s in Gen Chem II, Calculus II, Ochem I and II, and General Physics I. It always bothered me that I got those B’s because these were pre-requisites for medical school; I really wanted A’s. Should I retake those, and if so, should I do them at the same school (4-year school) or at a community college? Although my post-bacc is done, I may be able to retake these courses through their extension school, although my chances of getting admitted into a class are lower due to lower priority. Would there be a problem in the eyes of the AAMC by retaking those courses at a CC/JC if I had already taken a similar course at a 4 year school?

Maybe your school was just harder. If you got numerous A’s and B’s, especially on your prerequisites, it could be possible that you really knew your stuff. Take some time to de-stress and rock the MCAT.

I wouldn’t worry about the biochemistry too much because that is a medical school course. You’ll have to take that again anyways. I got into medical school just by taking the pre-requisites in community college and doing well on the MCAT.

Thanks for your advice, AD04. What you did is what I should have done: take pre-reqs at a CC and rock the MCAT.

Does this mean that you suggest that I do not bother trying to take more courses, or re-take courses in which I earned a B, to improve my pre-req GPA?

Datsa -

I hope Judy weighs in on this. To my way of thinking, retaking a course just to up the grade from your postbac is probably not a great course.Retaking at a community college would I think be a red flag for med schools.

The time, effort, and money as well as possible boredom retaking same classes are all arguments against retaking them. If, however, there was a specific class where you feel you didn’t “get” it and wanted to retake to really firm up your grasp on the material, I could see doing that.

I’d concentrate on really excellent MCAT prep, taking MCAT in the spring, and applying early and broadly.


Okay, Kate…Judy trying to weigh in here.


repeating courses isn’t a good idea at all UNLESS you received a C- grade for a required pre-med class. (Then most med schools will require you to repeat the class.)

And to repeat courses at a jc/cc after taking at a four-year institution is really a bad idea. Red flags all over everywhere. It says that you can’t do the work at the bachelor’s level, and insinuates that you therefore wouldn’t be able to do it at the graduate level.

Remember, for MD schools, all grades, including repeated courses and their original grades, are included in your calculated gpa. You cannot choose to “forget” what the original grade was. For DO schools, the repeated grade is handled differently.(Usually replaces the original grade.)



Thanks Judy That was my take but I knew you’d have more definitive knowledge.