when can I start the application process/take MCAT

I am trying to get an idea of when to start the application process and also figure out when I can anticipate starting Med School. Based on my class schedule below, I'll finish with my pre-requs in Fall 2004. Can some kind soul please tell me: When I can take the MCAT? When should I submit applications ? What year could I probably start med school, based on the plan below? Thank you in advance and good luck!
Fall 2003:(Aug-Dec)
1) Biology I
2) General Chemistry I
3) Physics I
Spring 2004 (January-May)
1) Biology II
2) General Chemistry II
3) Physics II-(Can I take the April MCAT, or do I have to finish these courses?)
Summer School 2004 (May-July)
1) Organic Chemistry I
Fall 2004 (Aug-Dec)
1) Organic Chemistry II-The LAST PRE-REQ! (Or should I take the August MCAT now instead of the one in April, above?)
Last question: The schools I looked at have application deadlines of Oct, Nov and December 15 (by which time AMCAS must receive my transcripts, that is). Which means I'd have to send them to AMCAS as early as October- But my final semester won't be over until mid December, after the deadlines, so the transcript they receive will be missing 1 class. Will they let me send them the updated transcript as soon as grades are available , or would I have to wait another year and re-send it?

since you are finishing pre-reqs Fall '04, the earliest you could possibly start would be F’05.
If you want to start Fall '05, you’d be applying in June '04, and taking the MCAT in Apr or Aug '04.
Since you are not starting Ochem until Summer '04, Apr '04 MCAT is probably out - I really don’t think you can do well with zero classroom Ochem - and Aug '04 MCAT would be touch-and-go - you’d have to study for it during your summer OChem session and take it with only 1/2 of the OChem classroom stuff. It could be done - and many might tell you to go for it. Remember - the MCAT is supposed to be a review of basic science stuff you’ve mastered - not a first time exposure to learn the subjects.
If you decide not to apply for F’05 admission, then just advance everything 1 year. Take MCAT in April '05, apply Jun’05 for F’06 admission.
As far as having prereqs done before the app is submitted - it isn’t a problem. You don’t want them to all be “in the future” obviously as the school wants to know how you do in them - but to have 1 or 2 still to come should be OK - and yes, if you are in conversation with a school (e.g. have completed 2nd-ary or interviewed) you can offer to send them an updated transcript directly.
What you really have to decide is whether to take Aug MCAT with your courseload or wait a year. And I’m sure you’ll get varying opinions here and first person accounts of people who took MCAT with varying levels of classroom exposure.

My first thought is to say, don’t rush things. Don’t try to take the MCAT without being enrolled in Org II concurrently, at least. (better if it’s already completed!)
Do you have research experience, volunteer exp, shadowing? If not, the year between finishing your prereqs and applying ( '05) would be an excellent time to beef up your resume and gain valuable experience.
It’s better to delay things by a year and have all your ducks in a row and be ready to devote plenty of study time to the MCAT.
OTOH, if you have all the exp. and volunteering and are a great test taker, you could take the MCAT in August '04 with only Org I.
Ya know, that just sounds like too much when I write it out. I’m going with Lisa. Finish your coursework. Take MCAT spring '05 and apply in June '05.
My 2 cents! wink.gif

I'm with Theresa and Lisa on classes vs. MCAT. Get them all done prior to the test. Put the ammunition in your belt for use on the test. Not having Org I/II is like having an empty gun or no gun at all. My MCAT prep is teaching me how important this really is.
Hey Lisa, I love your avatar. I hope you don't mind me selecting it from the available choices. It really fits my Ortho goals.