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Post-Baccalaureate Programs for Students Who Have Completed Their Pre-Medical Requirements
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If you have completed the basic requirements for medical school, but your grades in those courses do not make you competitive for admission, you should take additional upper-level science courses to boost your science GPA before you apply. You can do this by taking classes as a non-matriculating student at a university. Or, you can complete a post-baccalaureate program, which is more structured, and enables you to receive on-site advising.
Some post-baccalaureate programs are non-degree programs; others give students the opportunity to complete a master’s degree. Be aware that the grades for courses taken in a master's/graduate program will not be included in the cumulative undergraduate GPA reported to medical schools. Grades for courses taken after graduation but that do not lead to a graduate degree are included in the cumulative undergraduate GPA.
Of programs that offer a master’s degree, several are at medical schools, such as the Georgetown Special Master's Program and the Drexel IMS Program, where students typically take their post-bac courses alongside medical students. Others, such as those at Harvard Extension School and the University of Pennsylvania, are not affiliated with the medical school.
You should use the searchable database of post-baccalaureate program at the AAMC web site to begin your investigation into post-baccalaureate options. There is a great deal of variation in how programs are structured and what they offer in terms of advising, academics, and application support. Moreover, some schools offer multiple post-baccalaureate study tracks with different academic options. Be proactive about contacting programs for detailed information and feel free to make an appointment with a pre-health advisor to discuss your options.
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