Frequently asked questions
Q. What is the focus of this program?
The Postbaccalaureate Program is designed to help you improve your academic profile for medical school admissions and to teach you solid academic skills to help you prepare for rigorous medical school curricula. This is done through 6 major components: 1) intensive summer learning skills workshops, 2) preparation for the August MCAT, 3) assistance in AMCAS preparation, 4) weekly seminars on health care issues, 5) mock interview workshops, and 6) enrollment in competitive, upper division science courses.
Q. When is the deadline to apply?
The online application will become available in January 2012. We will begin reviewing complete applications immediately. It is to your benefit to complete your application early. Applications must be received by May 13, 2012 to be considered.
Q. What are the GPA requirements for the program?
There is flexibility in our GPA requirements. Typically, our successful applicants have science GPA’s between a 2.5 and a 3.2 and overall GPA’s of at least a 2.7. There are exceptions to these guidelines—the deciding factor is whether or not the program administrators feel that an applicant will be in a position to be a competitive medical school applicant at the end of the program.
Q. Can I retake courses in which I previously did poorly?
Generally, no. For most courses in which you have done poorly it is usually a better strategy to do well in another course in the same department/field. This shows that not only have you mastered the new material well enough to be successful, but you have also mastered the old material necessary for the new material. The exception to this is a medical school pre-requisite course. It may be advisable to retake these courses if you have failed them.
Q. What if I am not disadvantaged? Can I still participate in the program?
The primary mission of our program is to assist students who have a strong commitment to return to medically underserved communities as physicians. Our focus on disadvantaged students reflects, in part, the fact that people who come from these communities are often a) disadvantaged and b) tend to go home to these communities as medical professionals. However, we also recognize that people who do not come from a disadvantaged background may also have a strong commitment to practicing medicine in these communities. If you are not disadvantaged, we will carefully consider your volunteer and other extracurricular activities to assess your commitment to practicing in shortage care areas.
Q. Are first-time applicants required to have taken the MCAT?
No. All students in the program are advised to take the MCAT in August after completing our intensive summer learning skills workshops and MCAT prep.
Q. Can I take only the summer or only the academic components? Can I join the program mid-year?
The answer to both of these questions is no. The only time that students may join our program is once yearly, in June. We expect our students to complete all components of the program unless they are accepted to medical school and have a matriculation date that falls during the program.
Q. When will I know if I have been granted an interview?
Once we have received all of your application materials, your application will be considered complete. After the online application becomes available in January 2012, applications are reviewed in the order that they were completed. If you are granted an interview, we will notify you by phone or email. All applicants will receive notification of their status by late June.
Q. When do students apply or reapply to medical school?
Since the deadline to apply to the UC Davis School of Medicine and other medical schools has moved to an earlier date, October 1, students accepted into our program are advised to apply to medical school after they have completed the postbaccalaureate program year.