This last year I started back to School in a DIY post bac and have worked on my Gen chem, gen biol, and math classes that are the required prereqs. I have maintained a 4.0 GPA on this program. I know I will need a BioChem class and my school only offers it in the fall and requires O Chem 1 as a prereq. Soooo I’m looking at taking the O chem this summer. I have two options 1) drive 2 hours each way, 2 days a week and do o chem 1 and lab. or 2) drive 2 hours each way 3 days a week and do o chem 1 and 2 lecture only during the summer. option 1 I would also take the required physics class online during the summer and option 2 I would take the traditional physics class in the fall along with ochem 1 lab and biochem. Feeling stuck.

Do you find the cost of commuting prohibitive or just irritating? I think that makes a big difference here.

I’ll also toss in that OChem is one of the harder courses you’re going to encounter in your post-bach. Taking it with a compressed schedule during the summer does not make things any easier.

Not to say that it can’t be done, but it will keep you extremely busy with studying. I took OChem 2 + lab over a 5 week summer session last year and it was rough. Our lecture was 5 days a week and lab 3 days a week. It was a tremendous amount of work to keep up with.

Of the options you present, I’d favor going with OChem 1 and lab over the summer to make things a little easier on yourself rather than trying to take both of those courses over the summer.

Also, when are you planning on taking the MCAT? Sounds like you’ll be mostly ready in the fall.

Just to throw the idea out because it’s what I did…

I took OChem I/II and biochem through the UNE COM distance learning program. Upside is it’s on your schedule. Downside is no face-face with teachers and some schools don’t accept online prereqs. Not sure if that’s doable for your post bac program or for the schools you’re looking to apply to.

I’m going to hi-jack this thread and ask another question about pre-reqs.

I just got accepted into a postbacc (waiting to hear from another) so I’m tentatively planning my schedule within this program. Because of summer course scheduling and my current job, I am more limited in my selections.

Is it necessary to have the prerequisites BEFORE applying to med school or can I still have a few “in progress” while I’m applying? Obviously I know I need to be prepared for the MCAT, but set that aside for a second and can someone just let me know if I can still be working on them once I’ve applied, assuming my MCAT score is high enough based on the classes I’d taken up to that point?

I ask because I took some science courses 7 years ago in undergrad and I’m deciding if I should retake them or not to get through the program quicker and with less expense. Also, I can’t leave my job early enough for the double session of summer courses because I am under a commitment with Teach for America and I want to honor that commitment and receive my student loan award for completing it.

Thanks in advance.

It’s not strictly necessary to have your prerequisites done before applying to medical school but in some cases it’s necessary from a realistic standpoint. Say that you’re interviewing somewhere in January and have literally all of your prerequisites done except for Physics II, which you’re currently taking. All your other prerequisites are done as well as a bunch of advanced science courses and even a publication. If the school wants to accept you, they’re probably willing to take on faith that you’ll finish the course satisfactorily. You’ll be extended an offer of admission that’s contingent on finishing your final semester’s courses with certain benchmarks.

If you’re in a post-bacc it may be different. If your undergraduate major was communications and the sum total of your undergraduate science education was “General Bio for non-majors,” then you’re going to have a very difficult time getting an acceptance. If you have very little track record on science then schools aren’t going to have a great deal of insight into your aptitude. There’s nothing for an ADCOM to look to and say “s/he’ll finish all those prerequisites just fine.” This is a big part of why a lot of students take a glide year and why a number of PB programs are 2 years.

Think of it like this. In the bigger picture, when you apply, will the remaining pre-requisites be something your application is really hinging on? Or are they just some boxes that need to be checked? This comes down to how you’re making your case that you should be admitted to an MD program.

Your new program should have an admissions advisor somewhere on staff. Get in contact with that person and find out what they think about your current situation given that you have some science in your background but it isn’t very recent.