post-bacc programs?

Hi everyone. I’m very excited to find this organization. I’ve read several posts and I’m thrilled to find a community of people discussing the issues that I’m facing.

I am hoping to get some feedback on the group regarding post-bacc programs. I did not take a lot of science classes during my undergrad because I did not anticipate a decision to go to medical school. I do believe I have the aptitude, but it has been ages (15 years?) since I’ve taken any science…so I’m prety much starting from scratch. I’ve found a couple of programs that seem designed for people in my situation. I also recently came into contact with another social worker who chose to do all of her pre-requisites indepndent of an organized pre-med program. Any advice from the group on the pros and cons of the options? Experiences with any specific programs?

Hi, I made a new startup from scratch too, or in better words I “had to” for, just like you, I had high school education long ago, appr.20 years…

I make self study, I use the books suggested in the MCAT page of AAMC website and it works…

You say “…I also recently came into contact with another social worker who chose to do all of her pre-requisites indepndent of an organized pre-med program”… is it possible? I mean dont the US universities demand the prerequisite courses to be taken at an approved US or Canada university? If its possible, then thats great

Please share whatever you know about it, I really wonder how long this premed takes…

I took my pre-req courses at a university, but not in a specialized “Post-bacc” program. There was no one to really hold my hand and pick my classes and set up my schedule for me, but that actually would have annoyed me anyway.

Pros for me:

Cheaper tuition.

I was able to keep my job and hack away at the courses part-time (the courses were at the university where I worked and my boss gave me some scheduling flexibility).


None, really. It was the best choice for me.

The greatest tangible difference between the process Denise describes and an official post-bacc is that in the former you will probably need to gather your letters of recommendation yourself, and you will not have a pre-professional office to collate them and write a “committee” letter for you. It means that your recommenders will need to send a signed letter to anyplace you choose to apply, within a set time frame. As such, you will definitely want your recommenders to have these letters written before you actually start to apply. Actually, all prospective applicants should try to do this, but if you’re spearheading the effort yourself, it is even more incumbent that you lock in early on recommenders whom you trust to write a glowing, truthful recommendation (AND TO SEND IT OUT WHEN YOU NEED IT.)

There won’t be a committee to gather your letters, but you may still be able to use your school’s standard letter forwarding service (I was able to use the one in the College of Arts and Sciences, where the Pre-Health Careers advisor was, even though I was a special student taking whatever I wanted), or you can use the commercial service Interfolio. Then your recommenders can send your letters in to the service once and the service can send them out.

Don’t assume you wouldn’t have the services of a committee. By completing 30 credits at George Mason University, and attaining a 3.6 average and over 26 MCAT, I qualified for the pre-med committee evaluation. Referrees sent their evaluations to the committee, which then interviewed me and produced the same sort of committee letter that full-time undergraduates get. I have found, from talking to people and from sitting on my med school’s admissions committee, that this process varies a LOT from one undergrad institution to another.



I am planning to take prerequisites at GMU and apply to GWU–I am so happy to see that you have successfully completed the course I am about to embark on! My question is whether you know if Mason still operates like this–that if you take enough credits and do well you can benefit from the committee. Also, did you take your prequisites part-time or full-time? Did you get accepted to other med schools?

This question goes out to everyone:

I graduated 3 years ago with a 3.39 in Philosophy. I have worked as a Restorative CNA for 8 months and am currently working as a MA in an orthopaedic practice. I am considering becoming an EMT. I am hoping that my science grades will enhance my GPA, and obviously that I will do well on the MCAT. I am having a hard time gauging whether my healthcare experience is really miniscule compared to what an admissions committee prefers or whether I am on the right track. Anyone have any insight?

I don’t have any idea what GMU does now but I would hope you’d be able to find it on their website - look for “Pre-professional counseling services,” or something like that.

I started with just one class, GenChem, taking it in the evening while continuing my regular job. The second semester I also continued working while taking both GenChem 2 and Cell Bio - rearranged my hours and had a pretty understanding employer. The second year I did quit work and go full time. At the time I had two kids at home and one in college; the combination of responsibilities worked fine but I wouldn’t have wanted to add continued employment into that mix. I know there are folks on here taking a full course load AND a full work load; it does work for some but I knew it wasn’t feasible for me.

Your medical experience sounds fine. You don’t need to have tons of it; you need to be able to speak thoughtfully and knowledgeably about your observations regarding health care.