Post-Bacc or wing it

I live in Las Vegas, NV (not NM, lol). I am finishing up a bachelor degree and my GPA is abysmal at 2.9 with no science prerequisites. I was thinking of a post-bacc (but I’m not sure UNLV has one). I could also relocate to attend one. I’m liking Texas and the pacific northwest.

Is there a difference with adcoms whether I do one or just a self-guided plan?

I would wing it and if you are going osteopathic utilize grade replacement as much as possible. You always have the option for a formal SMP or masters degree in the future to prove yourself further if needed.

The only issue with the career changing basic science programs is they look for already successful candidates who are only missing the science prerequisites. So it is difficult to get accepted if you have a blemish on your record and nothing more recent to cover it up.

It probably doesn’t matter whether you do a post-bac or DIY. It does matter that you show that you can handle med school’s academic crush.

Considering that you’re finishing up now, maybe it would be better to take a year and work, shadow, volunteer, etc. and then return to the classroom. You’ll get valuable experience you need for med school and maybe give yourself time to regroup. With your GPA, you’ll need to perform very well in your science classes to pull up your average.

Maybe you know why your GPA is where it is and you have figured out exactly how you’re going to change that. But if not, you should take the time to do that so you’re in the best position for a post-bac/DIY and med school.

Just remember there’s no shame and actually a lot of smarts in slowing down, regrouping and positioning yourself to succeed. (And trying out a different area of the country if it strikes your fancy. Pacific NW sounds great to me!)

Oh I know why my GPA is where it is. I simply didn’t care as a 18-24 year old. I’ve been out of school since 2005. I am currently around 33 semester units from my bachelor degree, not including the science classes.

On one hand I was thinking of taking them mixed in with my degree courses. But from what I’ve read here, they deserve undivided attention. That being said, wouldn’t taking them with my other classes show that I can handle a diverse load?

My bachelor degree is in Culinary Arts Management. I was a chef here in town for some years until 2010 when I became a nurse aide at the prison. After that I worked home health. This upcoming fall I am slated for Calculus and General Chem. I need the math and science anyways to graduate, so why not take a prerequisite and put it in there.

The reason I say I’ll be 41 starting MS1 (if all goes well) is that I want to give myself a solid three years to do the best I can in the classes and studying for the MCAT. I figure if I waited this long to start medical school another year or so taken to prepare would be ok.


First off, you can do this!

UNLV has a pre-med adviser that you should talk to. I did a DIY post bacc there and it worked out well for me. Also, it’s great that you have some clinical experience, but it’s probably a good idea to add some volunteering to your CV as well. Good Luck, PM me if you have any specific questions

Thank you very much, DT12.

Gotcha, that clarification makes sense. I think you should go with what fits into your learning style, honestly. (How is that for a non-answer?)

I’m doing a post-bac because I know I’ll already need a lot of support with MCAT studying, for example, and my program has a structured approach. Also because I did school while working before and I couldn’t give 100% to either and I want to give 100% to these pre-reqs.

DIY or post-bac, you’ll just need to show you can handle the coursework. So go after the option that will let you excel at your pre-reqs.

And by the way, agreed - you can do this!