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Is MedSci at Westren a waste?

Is it worth studying medsci at Western, I heard it deflates GPA which would make applying to health care professional programs very difficult and possibly pointless. (and almost everyone doing medsci wants to go to med school/ dental school…)

11 Answers

  1. No offence, but you don't think students in other science programs are also aiming for medical school? Aren't McMaster health sciences, integrated sciences, and Arts & sciences,  the only grade inflation programs in the country? If you are struggling to pull an A average in 3rd and 4th year at Western, then what makes you think that you can do so anywhere else? Remember, med sci does not actually start until 3rd year when people have been weeded out, class sizes are smaller, and the grading curves are much higher. If you are frankly struggling in Western sciences then you are not cut out for a health care professional program.
    As an example, I was talking to my buddy in York chemistry and he showed me his transcript. Majority of the class averages are in the 50s and 60s. Is this due to grade deflation or the simple truth that high school grades are inflated and not everyone has the ability to perform at an A/A+ level in university? Remember, people with 80s and 90s in high school still go to York. There are 55,000 students at the school and it would be false to presume them all to be weaker students who had 70s in high school. 
    Western sciences I have heard is very fair. It is not U of T. If you are unable to pull A's at a school with fair marking schemes then you won't do the same anywhere else. 

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    • Thanks for replying! I see your point, I've applied for MedSci at Western (but was discouraged against it earlier), I applied to U of T for Life Sciences, and McMaster for Life Science as well, and I'm having a hard time deciding what would be the best pre-dental undergrad for me ( which I can maintain a high GPA in) 
      I plan to apply to some other programs as well but haven't decided which ones yet, do you have any recommendations?
      Thanks again.

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    • ^
      You applied to three of the most competitive science programs in the country. U of T and Mac life sciences are brutal programs. In order to be competitive for dental school, you will need a minimum of a 3.8 GPA which essentially means straight A grades. I have seen you post this a couple of times now. Honestly, if you just need a higher GPA for dental school admissions then why did you not apply to schools like Lakehead, Trent, Laurier, Brock, Windsor, Guelph, Ottawa, etc.? What is the point of applying to the most competitive life science programs in the country, and asking anons online where you can get a high GPA? I go to Mac and life sci has a high dropout rate and class averages in the C range. Seeing as how everyone came in with high 80s and 90+ averages you can be damn sure that the competition is real. I have heard very negative things about U of T life sciences as well. 
      You want my honest advice? Apply asap to a lower standard school with small class sizes – Windsor, Guelph, Trent, Laurier, etc. And go there. If you are as smart as you think you are then you should have no problem getting a straight A average. Otherwise, chances are likely that you may not even make it to dental school given the current competition. Only two dental schools in Ontario with a cutoff of 3.8. That is the cutoff, majority get in with well above 3.9. Do the math. 
      In university, the top 5% of your class can get a 3.8+ GPA. How confident are you that you will be in the top 5% of your class at Western, McMaster, and U of T. I am surprised that you are even asking this question repeatedly when the answer is staring at you right in the face. You take a huge risk by going to these competitive schools. 

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  2. Hey thanks for making me aware of this. I will definitely apply to less competitive schools, but does less competiton mean easier GPA? When applying to dental schools would'nt they look at what school you did your undergrad at? 
    Also what about all the people that did apply to competitive programs, don't they want to get into med/dental school ?  (BTW what made you choose McMaster life science?)

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    • Dude (or dudette), do some research. Like I'm reading your questions and the responses from that other Mac student and thinking to myself, holy, this person wants to go to medical school or dental school but he can't do simple research? And I'm not talking about undergraduate admissions. I'm talking about spending even 10 minutes going on the dental school admissions websites and reading up.

      It took me a minute to google this and the link provides a vast amount of information. It answers many of your questions as well. So, if you are serious about becoming a doctor or dentist you should be looking at actual admissions requirements for these programs RIGHT NOW. Only then can you make an informed decision on where you should go for your undergraduate degree, AND for what program. 
      The reason that professional schools in Canada don't care where you went for undergrad, is because how can the difficulty be quantified? People can apply to medical and dental schools with arts degrees and business degrees. You did know this, right? So, how would we quantify the difficulty of a Rotman commerce graduate versus McGill Life science graduate? Especially when we run in a PUBLICLY STANDARDIZED, GOVERNMENT FUNDED EDUCATION SYSTEM? These are not private colleges but uniformly standardized schools. People have different strengths and while one person may be really good at math, another person may be good at essay writing. How do we quantify this difference? 
      I will definitely apply to less competitive schools, but does less competiton mean easier GPA?

      So, you think the difficulty in attaining high grades in McGill life science which attracts some of the smartest students in the country, and where everyone comes in with 90+ averages (therefore high achieving students)… is the same as say Algoma or Lakehead which attracts people who got 60s and 70s in high school? This is common sense so I don't even get why you need to ask this question. When you compete with weaker students on average, then you have a higher chance of getting better grades. This is like comparing Unionville High School to one in Jane & Finch. Which high school do you think is easier in terms of grading because you have less competition to stand out from the crowd?

      The honest truth is that less than 10% of all applicants even get into medical school and dental school in Canada. Who knows, you may be a brilliant student that falls into this category. Or, more realistically you may never get in. Thus, you need to be smart about how you go from here because simply studying life science at U of T, McMaster, and Western is not getting you a job. These are unemployable degrees. You can't just go in with the mindset of doctor/dentist/or bust. This is a foolish mindset. At least have a backup plan and go somewhere where you can perform well academically, and at the same time have a decent backup plan if you don't make it. 

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  3. I appreciate your response. Now I'm thinking to follow either one of the following paths:1) Apply to a less competitive undergrad + Apply to dental schools in Canada 2) Continue with competitive undergrad + Apply to dental schools in Canada and the US (with a HUGE loan)

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    • This is where your logic is misplaced. US dental schools can be equally as competitive as Canadian dental schools. In either case, you still need to be pulling A's. We're not talking about the Caribbean or European schools here. Yes, my friends who did not get into Canadian schools also applied to the States and did not get in there. This is a pretty customary practice since most serious med school and dental school hopefuls are aware of the low acceptance rates in Canada and apply to some schools abroad primarily in the States as well. Remember that you would be applying as an international applicant and thus be held to a higher standard (unless you have citizenship there than regular applicant procedures apply).
      In any event, why are you so hung up on a competitive undergrad in the first place? Really, nobody cares if you went to U of T or Calgary for a Bachelor of Science. And this is excluding admissions personnel and employers. The regular public is not going to be impressed by it either. I remember last year how someone said they interviewed at Value Village and there was a Mac life sci graduate there with them. This is the sad reality of people who pursue these types of degrees. If you're wondering why I went into life sciences, my expectations are more reasonable and I'm a public health officer with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (student role at the moment, likely full-time upon graduation). 

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  4. I've seen all of these links before,  but thanks anyways. Look, what I don't understand is that if Canadian Universities don't care what undergrad you do then why are there still hundreds and thousands  of people applying for competitive programs like life sciences at u of t (especially when its an unemployable degree)!?!?  Surely they aren't all crazy!

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    • You've seen all of those links and still ended up applying to programs like U of T and McMaster life sciences and have to ask whether dental schools care where you went for undergrad? These questions are plastered all over those links I provided above which took me less than 5 minutes to google. 
      Look, what I don't understand is that if Canadian Universities don't care what undergrad you do then why are there still hundreds and thousands of people applying for competitive programs like life sciences at u of t (especially when its an unemployable degree)!?!? Surely they aren't all crazy!

      Because these are 16/17/18-year-old high school students who are not thinking 5 to 10 years down the road. These high school students live in a superficial land, where rather than looking at admissions requirements for medical school and dental school, they stick to researching basic requirements for life science programs. Let me tell you that in my first-year life science class, almost everyone thought they were already doctors. Literally, they would ask me how much money we would make once we became doctors, and then jokingly bash arts students for being in unemployable degrees. It's like they were blind to the fact that BSc degrees are also equally as useless. This does not make them crazy, This just makes them naive and short-sighted. Not many people in our society are looking years into the future and making a plan that is best for their future. 
      You probably think that I am being harsh on you, but that is because I've seen your exact same questions and mentality with thousands of other prospective doctors/dentists by now. Most of them did not end up going to med school or dental school. Not everyone can be a genius who pulls all 90s in U of T life science. Be smarter than that, be strategic, and have a good backup plan in case things do not work out as you had envisioned. 
      My honest opinion is that if you're one of these become a doctor, dentist, or bust people, meaning that you really have no other plan and are putting all your eggs in one basket, then go somewhere easier. If you are potentially fine with pursuing academia or less competitive graduate programs, in case medicine and dentistry do not work out, then absolutely consider U of T, McMaster, and Western. Actually, I think Western is pretty fair like the above poster stated, Forget about U of T and Mac. Yes, it may suck to end up going to Guelph or Lakehead, but really nobody cares. Want evidence to this? – Brock Biomed, McMaster medicine 
      Lakehead and then Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Diagnostic Radiology Residency program at McMaster – Guelph, Ottawa MD Guelph, Ottawa MD Guelph, McMaster MD Guelph, U of T MD U of Saskatchewan, Windsor MD Ryerson, Ottawa MD Ryerson, U of T MD Ryerson Journalism, McMaster MD York BSc, UBC Medicine

      I think from here on out you've received enough advice to actually make a decision, If you've done actual research and looked through all the links that schools provide you with online, then you shouldn't have a cause for making multiple threads asking the same questions. 

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      • Thanks for being straight up! Like I was thinking the same, like why does everyone apply to hard programs and not easy ones. So personally I have applied to fairly non-competitive programs. I have been doing A LOT of research, literally stocking people’s Linkedin and asking a lot of questions of Reddit. Something that I cant find out is if a program is really hard or not. For example, York has a bad reputation, but people told me Biomed at York is actually hard and you won’t be able to get into a Med school going there. Online for a lot of programs some people say it is very hard, some people say it is easy, so its a bit confusing to tell which programs are easy. A stat like the average grade would be nice but I cant find that anywhere too, I only found a getto website for Queens (a relatively competitive program). So would you have any advice on any programs you know are relatively easy and do you have any links on that?

        Also, you said Western was pretty fair, I was thinking of going there, do you have any comments about Western or Ottawa. Those are my top choices rn, with the aim being med school.


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  5. Oh I though US would be easier to apply to since I'm an American citizen, but if that doesn't give a huge advantage I guess its better to apply to a  less competitive undergrad like York, and Guelph biochemistry programs. 
    And your right in the long run no one cares what uni you went to at undergrad.Thanks for replying.

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