Oops seems like my original post was in the wrong place. Let me try this again.
An oldie here 29 years old I have been a lurker on and off for about 7 years. My intention was to go to medical School after I graduated college but a few detours, majority of it due to my then fear of the process. I currently hold a BA in Psychology graduated with a 3.9 GPA. I have not taken a science course in about 8 years and plan to begin all the pre-reqs this year. I am considering two options 1 year do it yourself and a 2 year do it yourself. I will be attending school full- time and working part-time. All thoughts are welcome, I am open for feedback.
Summer 2011- Chemistry I &II
Fall â€“BIO, Physics, Ochem, Pre-Cal
Spring- BIOII, Physics II, O-chem II, MCAT Study
Summer -2012 MCAT
Fall- BIO, Chem, Pre-Cal
Spring- BIO II, Chem II, Cal
Fall- Physics I, OChem I, Microbiology
Spring-Physics II, OChem II, MCAT Prep
Summer- 2013 MCAT
Either plan is doable, but the 1 year is going to be rather grueling. Summer courses can be very difficult during a condensed summer term (especially with labs). I don’t know how much you are working, but it is going to be tough to work too much. I did a one year schedule, except with Ochem over the summer instead of gen chem. I will tell you that there were weeks that it was very, very difficult to stay caught up with three lab courses and pre-calculus. Do not underestimate the amount of time you will need to labs and homework in order to do well in all of those courses. I can almost guarantee you that with bio, physics and ochem you will have little time for MCAT prep.
I agree - I’d say with the 1 year plan it might not be possible to work part-time and still do well. Bear in mind that doing well in these classes is of the highest priority. If a 2 year plan makes it possible for you to do better, the time will be well worth it.
I DID go for the 1 year program and did the Gen Chem I and II in the summer, but it was brutal. I had intentions of working parttime in that year but borrowed more money in order to concentrate on my classes and do better. On the up side, it was good practice for medical school!
I agree that the 1-year plan sounds pretty brutal. (Just so you know, I’m doing a 2-year post-bac plan myself, so I might be a little biased. )
In your 1-year plan, you are studying for the MCAT while taking bio, physics, and ochem. That does sound pretty challenging – this fall semester, I took physics I, bio I, and gen chem I (much less time intensive than ochem, obviously), and I have no idea how I would have fit in MCAT studying in that schedule. So I’d imagine with ochem in there, it would be even harder.
Another reason for the 2-year schedule – you get an upper-division course in there (microbio). Med schools like to see that you can succeed at those harder courses.
In addition, you will want to have time for volunteering and shadowing in your post-bac “career.” With the 2-year plan, you could accomplish those things during the summers if you don’t have time for them during your fall semesters. If you do the 1-year plan, it would be really hard to volunteer or shadow, IMHO. You’ll be pretty crunched for time.
You’re 29 – exact same age as me, so I feel I can comment on this – which means I don’t think you have to be in a super huge hurry to get this done. Rather, it’s more important to get it done RIGHT. And do well. Because grades are so important. Thankfully, you have a stellar GPA from undergrad; you don’t, however, want to screw that up now!
One more thing – be cautious about trying to work while in school. I know people who are doing it, but they are struggling to keep up. Time is precious when you are a student, and for me, it’s worth borrowing that extra money so I can study those extra hours every week and get those A’s instead of B’s. Again, that’s just me.
Best of luck to you! Keep us updated.
Thank you everyone for your input.
I am beginning to think that the one year thought doable would put me in a Churn and Burn situation. I do plan to work part-time on Weekends 20-25hours. Now that I give that some more thought would that too many hours for work?
It all depends on balance. 20-25 hours of work might not be too much depending on how many and what type of classes you are taking. I will say that if you need to work from the start I would take a light load to see how the two work out.
My first semester back I took 12 credit hours (3 science courses and 3 labs), worked about 20-25 hrs/week, and volunteered a few hours/week. I came out with all A’s but it was a pretty rough schedule. So if you do something like that, prepare to be very busy.