Some thougts please

I have taken all the prereqs a long time ago and just started repeating some of them independent study without the labs from accredited schools, LSU and OU. I did this to prepare for the MCAT and review the material. Is it advisable to take upper level classes such as biochem and genetics before taking the MCAT? My plan was to finish all the prereqs by independent study, sit for the MCAT and then apply to a special masters program to boost my gpa. I am also trying to move quick because I am concerned about the age cut off for med school. I have been in health care for a long time now and have known for a very long time that this is what I want to do for the rest of my life. However because I chose a differ path when I was younger, I have obstacles to jump over, such as a less than stellar gpa, but repairable, and an age issue too. I do not care where I go or even if it is DO or MD, just long as I get in somewhere.

If your pre-reqs are from a long time ago then some schools (quite a few actually) require that you retake the pre-reqs.

Independent study will not count unless it provides adequate documentation of satisfactorily completing the class requirements. Also, ALL schools require labs and obviouslyindependent study precludes labs. Keeping those two in mind you may be better off just enrolling in regular undergraduate classes.

I’m not sure I know of an age cut-off for med schools. Do enlighten me.

Last thing: moving quickly = recipe for failure


You have some serious misconceptions. Read the following about retaking courses:…

And this about your “age cut off” = ageism:…………

I agree, dazed. After much reading and research most medical schools want current sciences. The guideline I have read is that any courses 10+ years need to be taken again. That is the reason for the proliferation of post-bac premed/science curriculums. I did not read this on one site specifically, it is the dogma and collected after much searching and reading of medical school web sites. There are, of course, exceptions, but you might as well be as ready and desirable as you can possibly be.

Aime, can you point to specific instances where this is stated? I’ve not seen it spelled out clearly anywhere. I’m curious to know as I have multiple pre-reqs older than 10 years and am currently studying for the MCAT but have not been told by anyone other than this thread directly that retaking pre-reqs is a requirement. It has been suggested as an option, but not specifically stated. If you have any specific schools I would love to read through them.

Medical Schools want to see if you can do the high level work that is required of you. That being said, if it has been quite a long time since you have taken a science course, you may be asked to take graduate level work in order to show that you can handle the work.

There are some schools that, if you have not done any science in a while and your pre-reqs are more than 10 years old will require you to retake them.

If you want to be sure, contact a few of the schools and find out. That is what the admissions people are there for. Do not be afraid of contacting them.

I am in the process of doing just that and will post things as I find them. My collection of information so far has been vague – even when asked point blank about re-req age. The recommendation I have received is to take a course or two to show recent achievement but none have said that it would be a requirement. I’d be interested if anyone has a specific example of a school that clearly ages-out prerequisites. It’s interesting – I will post anything I find.