Posted March 28, 2017 by admin in articles

What to Know Before Applying to Med-School


Exclusive article by Lindsey Patterson at

If you’re planning to be a doctor or a nurse, then you’re going to need to attend medical school after you complete your prerequisites in college. Many students end up a bit shell shocked when they first make the transition from college to medical school, as the two are very different. Here’s what you should know before you apply to medical school:

Volunteer in the Medical Field First

The reasons to volunteer at a health care facility before applying to medical school are two-fold:

  • For valuable experience to put on your application
  • To ensure that you can handle that type of environment

Obviously, when you have experience at a health care facility, that looks good on your medical school application, making it more likely that you’re accepted. It’s also important to get a feel for the healthcare environment. You’ll be able to see how everyone interacts and decide if this is something you can do the rest of your life. Also, if you can’t handle seeing blood, rashes, a toenail fungus, or anything else on a regular basis, it’s definitely best to find that out before you send in your application.

Prepare for the Interview

The medical school interview is a critical part of the admissions process, which also means it causes quite a bit of pressure. Your interviewer is going to want to see that you have the empathy and communication skills to be an effective medical professional. The best way to get ready for your interview is frequent practice. Have anyone who is willing perform mock interviews with you. It’s helpful to research the admissions process for the medical school where you’re applying so your mock interviewer can ask you the right questions. You won’t be able to completely rid yourself of your nerves on the big day, but you’ll significantly improve your overall interview performance.

It Will Take Up a Huge Amount of Time

You can’t underestimate the type of commitment that medical school requires. Remember those times in college towards the end of the semester, when you had to write several essays and prepare for final exams? That’s what every week is like in medical school. You’re likely going to have weekly exams, you’ll constantly be learning new things, and all the studying you have to do is going to affect your sleep schedule. Expect the first two years to be the most difficult, as that’s when you spend most of your time in the classroom.

Exams Are Pass or Fail

Don’t expect to get a letter grade or a percentage on your medical school exams, because teachers grade them on a pass or fail basis. This means that you’ll need to be able to handle failing the occasional exam. Obviously, you don’t want to get into the habit of failing exams, but when every exam is pass or fail, it’s probably going to happen eventually. Prepare yourself mentally so it doesn’t ruin your confidence, and remember that it’s common to fail an exam when you’re just starting out.

Expect to Expand Your Horizons

Medical school is going to change you. You’ll be meeting and interacting with all kinds of new people from different backgrounds. You’ll also most likely have to find new ways to study and learn new material, as medical school pushes your limits in that regard. Be ready to go with the flow, as that will give you the best chance at success.

It’s a huge commitment when you go to medical school. It’s also one of the most rewarding things you’ll do in life. Make sure you’re prepared for the experience so you can get the most out of it.

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