How to Get Into Medical School | 6 Reasons for Rejection

How to Get Into Medical School | 6 Reasons for Rejection

November 29, 2019 100 By Stanley Isaacs


More than 50,000 premed applicants apply each
year to medical school and less than 40% get accepted. More and more applicants are applying each
year, and the matriculation rate has been trending downward. Every program receives thousands of applications
each year and can only accept a handful of students. I want to help you maximize your chances to
get you accepted. Stay tuned! What’s going on guys! J from MedSchoolInsiders.com. In an ideal world, there would be a perfect
way to select applicants who would make great physicians. Unfortunately, we do not live in an ideal
world. So programs have to operate with incomplete
information about applicants and their potential to succeed in medical school and afterward
as compassionate and competent physicians. Here are six common reasons medical school
applicants are rejected. If you can address all 6, you’ll be in great
shape during your application cycle and maximize your chances of acceptance. The first reason is a Low MCAT. Unless you have a very strong GPA to compensate
for a low MCAT, you should consider retaking the test. If you’re not sure what constitutes a low
score, check the statistics on average MCAT scores for matriculants at schools you are
interested in and consult your academic advisor. Don’t be discouraged if your first test
did not go as well as you wanted – taking a standardized test like the MCAT is a skill
that can be learned – meaning you can improve with the proper mindset, work ethic, and focus. Retaking the test is understandable. While it is preferred to do it once and be
done with it, don’t think that schools will automatically reject you for retaking the
test. I have gone over my own success with the MCAT
as well as overviews of materials and study schedules to help you also achieve a killer
score. Check out my MCAT playlist for a good starting
point and tips on materials, study schedules, and test day advice. Reason number two; Low GPA with a decreasing
trend: if your GPA is low, it should at least be showing an upward trend with improving
grades as you progress through college. An upward trend demonstrates improvement,
resilience, and work ethic. And that’s sexy. If you have a low GPA without an increasing
trend, strongly consider a postbacc program to strengthen your application. If your grades are suffering, it’s not a
question of intelligence but study habits. Medical schools want to make sure you can
handle the academic rigors necessary for a career as a physician. Medical school is very different from college. You won’t necessarily be learning more difficult
concepts – that depends on what your college major was – but you will be learning much
more volume in a shorter period of time. Therefore mastering your study habits in college
is crucial. I’ve made a few videos on study habits – check
them out to increase your efficiency and effectiveness. Number three is weak personal statement or
secondaries: while the majority of your application is objective test scores, the personal statement
and secondaries are your chance to let your personality shine through. These essays should not be taken lightly as
they hold significant influence. We all know to get our personal statements
reviewed, but I would extend that to say that many of your secondaries should be as well. Thoughtful introspective writing will go a
long way – confusing or incomprehensible writing will get your application thrown out. At the same time, be true to yourself. If you try to portray as someone you are not,
it is very likely to backfire on you. I go over what makes for a memorable and effective
personal statement in this video above. Suboptimal letters of recommendation. Letters of recommendation can make or break
your application. If you look good on paper but someone says
you’re terrible to work with, good luck getting into med school. Be careful when selecting who you are going
to ask to write your letter. It is better to obtain a letter from someone
who knows you well and can write a strong letter versus a big name who doesn’t know
you as well. Also, it doesn’t hurt to have a few extra
letters of recommendation so you can tailor which letter goes to which school. For example, you may want to submit different
letters to different institutions based on your professor’s connections and where they
trained. This is a minor point though, remember the
most important factor is that the person writing the letter knows you well, thinks you would
be a great medical student and physician, and is able to portray that convincingly in
their letter of recommendation. Learn how to secure strong letters of recommendation
and who to ask in this video above. Number five: Lack of Extracurriculars. You are a multifaceted person and there’s
more to you than just numbers. Be sure to adequately demonstrate this on
your application. While not absolutely necessary, having research
or healthcare related experiences will greatly increase your chances of success. Relevant extracurriculars such as clinical
volunteering or research demonstrate you have some understanding of the medical profession. The key here being quality over quantity. Being well rounded also means having non-medical
extracurriculars. If you play a sport competitively or started
a club for something not healthcare related, be sure to mention it. The application committees definitely want
to hear about it! Learn more in the extracurriculars video I
made above. And this last point is huge; the interview
day. Getting your foot in the door with an interview
is only half the equation. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by failing
to prepare adequately for the interview. Prepare for common questions, know the program
and why you want to go there, and be calm and composed. I created summary sheets of my own research
and important points on healthcare reform, which was very relevant at the time, and still
is. Using these review sheets before interviews
helped me speak eloquently about my research in detail and come across as well informed
regarding healthcare policies and the future of medicine. Also, I highly recommend doing some mock interviews
with your school career center which should be free of charge. And remember to be professional even when
you’re not in the interview room. Behaving unprofessional at any point during
the interview day is a sure way to get rejected. Even when you’re not at the school, a faculty
member or other person affiliated with the school could be nearby. Whether that’s on the plane, on the train,
whatever. So if you act like a terrible person, do not
be surprised if you do not receive an acceptance letter. That is it for this video guys, thank you
all so much for watching. If you liked the video, make sure you press
that like button. New videos every week, so hit subscribe if
you have not already and I will see you guys in that next one.