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I'm a sophomore from Oregon State University. In my first year of school I slacked and ended up with a 3.0 GPA. The highlights of this would be two C's in pre-req science, a C in math, and a D in another math course. My sophomore year I've started an upward trend with consistent 4.0's. My question is, should I bother retaking any or all of these classes, or should I just focus on taking upper level classes to prove that I can make the grades?

A lot of premedical student think that retaking a class will be beneficial. Of course, you'll better learn the material and figure out what you did wrong. However, I suggest its better to NOT retake these courses. Even if you do great in these classes, the former grade will always appear on your transcript. Medical school admissions officers may ask "Why did you retake this course?" With two courses of the same name on your transcript, it will be more obvious to admissions officers that an attempt to cover up that grade was attempted.

Instead, take upper level science courses. For example, say you did poorly in General Biology. Then sign up for say, Molecular Cell Biology next semester(a more intensified course that focuses on biology at the cellular level). I'm not going to lie, it's going to be more challenging but form study groups, find a premedical tutor---ANYTHING it takes to excel in this class. Spend more time studying and living in the library. Sometimes, your environment will affect the effectiveness of your study habits.

Understand WHY you slacked off and try to remedy the situation. For example, spending more time with friends than studying can be very detrimental, especially if you are a premed student. If there was a family emergency, that is understandable and should be reflected in your personal statement to medical school.

If you do well on upper level courses, medical schools admissions committees DO notice this. So you have a little slump in the beginning, but you hit the ground running and do better. Medicine is about falling down and picking yourself up again. In my experience, getting into medical school is NOT about being the PERFECT applicant. Rather, its a matter of working with what you have.

I am a freshman at Xavier major is biology premed. I might change that major. In order to enter medical school and stand out what science (health) majors can be looked upon? And is there such thing as prehealth or premed major..instead of biology premed. What do think about biochemistry(premed), biomedicine, biomedical engineering, neurobiology and natural sciences? And how can i be a successful competitive premedical student?"

@ Dr.Divita
Any of those science majors are great for med school. One of my good friends graduating this year was a zoology major, another an economics major doesn't really matter as long as you do well in the classes and do well in the prereq's.

Some schools have a premed major and I never really understood that.

Being a successful premed applicant includes:
-high grades
-meaningful extracurricular activities
-great letters of recommendation
-a great personal statement
-solid shadowing experience

if you would like more individualistic advice, I'd be happy to help. MedicalInk911 does request an honorarium for its services. Please take a look at services/fees and I'd be happy to delve in detail.

Also, one of my contributing physician writers is currently forming a comprehensive article on how to obtain a strong letter of recommendation..etc. I know you're a freshmen but this becomes important when you are a soph and jr.If you're interested, please let me know!

I am very excited about attending, but was wondering what advice you have for students entering med school to succeed!

Thank you for offering to pass on MedicalInk911 to other premed students!

Here some advice for medical school:
1. Enjoy the summer! relax and go on vacation, enjoy yourself and DO NOT STUDY prior to med school. You'll get enough of that while in medical school.

2. Obtain audio lectures of Goljan. This is especially helpful when learning about diseases. He is a Medical Professor Also in gross anatomy, find a good group of people to study with, especially for the lab section.

3. Watch anatomy videos while learning gross anatomy. It helped me visualize tons!

4. Sleep when you can. Eat when you can. Don't forget to eat while studying!

Stay tuned as another article will be featured related to this topic!

I hope this helps!
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-Dr. Divita