ABCs of the Medical School Application

January 30, 2012

Below is information on the 3 major parts of the medical school application process. For those just starting out, it is important to know what process entails. I pray you find this helpful and enlightening .

 ~KeAndrea “Kiki” Titer

A ~ Awesome MCAT

MCAT Basics-

The MCAT is given from January to September.  It is best to take it in June or July. Try not to take it later than August. The MCAT is broken down into the following sections with score ranges as follows:

  • Physical Sciences (G. Chem and Physic)- 1-15
  • Verbal Reasoning- 1-15
  • Biological Sciences (Biology and O. Chem)-1-15
  • Writing Sample- J(low)-T(high)

The MCAT is a 4 hour and 20 min test. There are 10 min breaks available between each section. There are 52 multiple-choice questions in the Physical Sciences and Biological Sciences section. Most of the questions are “passage-based,” meaning they refer to short passages of text formatted like scientific journal articles, research reports, data analysis or scientific editorials.The Verbal Reasoning section is similar to the Reading Comprehension sections on the SAT and GRE, but the passages selected for the MCAT are little denser.  There are 40 questions which test your ability to recognize main ideas, identify the author’s tone, draw conclusions, break down arguments and apply information from the text to new hypothetical situations. The Writing Sample consists of two half-hour essays in response to two short prompts. The Writing Sample Tests your ability to formulate and communicate an argument in standard written English and to support your argument using logical and relevant examples. It is VERY important that you do many practice question and sample full length tests in order to get comfortable in taking the test.


B~ Beastly AMCAS

The American Medical College Application Service® (AMCAS®) is a non-profit, centralized application processing service that is provided for those seeking entrance into a U.S. medical schools. Most medical schools use AMCAS as the primary application method.

Sections of the AMCAS

  1. Beginning the Application The first three sections of the application are Identifying Information, Schools Attended, and Biographic Information. In these sections, you’ll supply information about who you are, where you went to school, where you live, and how you can be contacted.
  2. Entering your Course Work The Course Work section is often reported as the most difficult section to complete. You should start by requesting a personal copy of your official transcript from each school you attended after high school. You’ll then use those transcripts to enter detailed information regarding every course in which you enrolled at any post-secondary institution.
  3. Work/Activities The Work/Activities section gives you the opportunity to enter up to 15 experiences (work, extracurricular activities, awards, honors, publications, etc…). You’ll be asked to supply the date of the experience, hours per week, a contact, the location, and a description of the experience.
  4. Letters of Evaluation The Letters of Evaluation section is where you will enter information regarding each letter of evaluation being sent to AMCAS. Up to 10 letter entries may be created. Letter entries may continuously be added throughout the application process; however, after submission of your application, letter entries cannot be edited or deleted. (Tip: Tell you teachers about the LOE NOW!! Send them you academic info, AMCAS’ generated LOE ID and Password, and submission deadline) Give a deadline at least 1-2 weeks before you actually plan submitting your AMCAS.

5.      Medical Schools– The Medical Schools section is where you will select the schools to which you will apply.

6.      Essays– The Essay(s) section is where you will compose your personal statement explaining any pertinent information not included elsewhere in the application.

7.      Standardized Tests-The Standardized Tests section is used to enter or edit future MCAT test dates, as well as review previous MCAT scores, and enter any additional test information, such as GRE scores.

8.      Submitting your Application– Before submitting your application, we strongly recommend using the “Print Application” button on the Main Menu for proofreading purposes – very few changes are permitted after submission. Payment is due at this time as well.


C ~ Charming


 Interview Preparation Advice

1)      Research the details of the schools programs.

2)      Write down any questions or concerns you have about the school. And take notes as the interviewer answers your questions.

3)      Write down all the things you like about the school.

4)      Reassess why you are you good candidate for the school and write them down.

5)      Think about five positive things about yourself.

6)      Go over your application because anything you have on your there is fair game in the interview.

7)      For ladies you may want to bring some flats because you will be doing some walking during the tour of the school.

8)      Make sure you have a portfolio to take notes as you go on the tour of the medical school.

9)      Review potential interview questions, however do not memorize scripted answers.

10)  Relax! Getting the interview is half the battle won, all they want to do now is see your personality and make sure you’re not crazy.

How to Pack Your Bag – Item # 3

November 28, 2011


*The 4th week of every month,  1st year medical student KeAndrea Titer writes about one of the items that are essential to pack in your bag as you journey  to / through professional school.  Check out her September and October posts.*


The Journey to Medical School: How to Pack Your Bag
Item #3: Attitude of Contentment
I remember the day I got my first acceptance letter to medical school.  Others I knew had already heard back from that particular school  and I semi-patiently waited for the email alerting me that a decision had been made. I was concerned about receiving the “Second Round” of decisions for I thought surely that meant my application and acceptance had been denied. Well, Judgment Day had arrived. I opened up the email, prayed for God’s will to be done, and EAGERLY typed in my password and user name to see what decision had been made. After only reading “Congratulations!” I burst into tears. I cried like a baby for several moments. I was SOOO happy at that moment for it was as if  light from heaven had just shone on me. God had answered my prayers and I thanked Him for His goodness and mercy toward me.
It was easy to be happy in those moments; moments when I saw God’s plan for my life unfolding in front of me. The difficulty came in maintaining a spirit of contentment when it seemed as though God was not listening to my prayers. I would constantly express to God the woes I experienced during the application and waiting processes. I could very easily grumble about the tedious secondary application essays and rejection letters received. I was an ungrateful mess!  I soon became so fed up with my complaints that I decided to just be content despite the adverse situations and requirements I faced.  I packed my medical school bag with an attitude of contentment, knowing that I would need to use it daily.
I wasn’t quite sure how to truly be content; for to me contentment was synonymous to happiness. And I knew waiting to hear back from a school was not what I would consider a happy time! I searched the scriptures and found an attitude-changing verse. Paul tells us in Philippians 4:12, he has “…learned the secret of being content in any and every situation; whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” He concludes with this well-known verse found in verse 13, “I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength!” These verses helped to change my attitude about the application process. I discovered that God would give me the strength to finish those essays, wait patiently for a response from a school, deal with the rejections, and most importantly learn how to be content with my circumstances daily.
 Now as a medical student, an attitude of contentment is an item I frequently pull out of medical school bag. During this roller coaster ride called medical school, I have had plenty of high and low days. There are days when I recognize God’s hand in piecing the concepts together and allowing me to retain difficult information. Then, there are days when I am completely lost in class and can’t seem to focus enough to accomplish 30min of productive studying. Through it all, I have come to hold on to Paul’s words in Philippians 4. God continually gives me the strength daily to handle the joyous and disheartening events in my life. He can and is willing to do the same for you if you only let Him. Will you?
 May God bless and keep you, as I know He will, and grant you an attitude of contentment despite the circumstances you face.
Look out for the next item to be discussed soon. I wish you all the best 
~ KeAndrea “Kiki” Titer

Welcome! Welcome!

September 5, 2011

Help me welcome, two new contributors to HealthOU, Ms. Natacha Pierre and Ms. KeAndrea Titer.

Tacha is a Haitian sensation, who LOVES to travel.  She’s lived in Korea,  visited more countries than she can count on her hands ( and maybe even feet) and loves trying new things. She brings with her the unique perspective of being an international medical student.  After doing her pre-clinical years in England and St. Maarten,  she is now starting her clinical training.  She’s a great writer, very insightful and is sure to bring both entertaining and informative information to HealthOU.

Our second contributor / blogger is KeAndrea ( KiKI) Titer, a first year medical student at Loma Linda University School of Medicine.  She hails from Florida and carries a contagious passion for helping to increase the number of successful grad / professional school applicants from Oakwood University.  She along, with other members of the outgoing senior class in the Biology department took an active role in trying to motivate and advise underclassmen about the tools for success when applying to medical / dental school.  She’s excited about living in California and getting one step closer to pursuing her dream and the one thing she can’t live without (after God, of course) is cookie dough ice cream 🙂

Please join me in welcoming them both to the HealthOU family and be sure to check out their first posts in the coming weeks!