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Questions to answer in medical school personal statement

But you also have to watch out for two potential problems: Tell us not only why you want to be a doctor but what you have done to test your decision. Have you had some experience? Have you observed doctors? Telling a story is the best way to guarantee that your discussion stays grounded in concrete evidence.

In this paragraph he does not tell another story, but still stays focused on details by describing some of his responsibilities and naming procedures he observed.

  1. The important point is that he plans to be part of the solution. Have you observed doctors?
  2. The purpose of this tactic would not of course be to rail against the medical profession, but rather to show how a disappointing loss inspired you to join the struggle against disease and sickness.
  3. Notice again that the second paragraph shifts to the trial stage, emphasizing action rather than dwelling on passive response.
  4. The important point is that he plans to be part of the solution. Saying that you found material fascinating is presenting your passive response to it.
  5. Perhaps someone close to the applicant was very ill once or died, and the experience with that person or with his or her doctors became very significant.

Although your own details might make the difference between a good and great essay, you can ensure a solid result simply by avoiding the above pitfalls as this applicant did. On the first issue, he uses a specific story to make a typical idea his own personal point.

On the second issue, he uses his childhood fascination only to describe the roots of what will grow into a more mature commitment. The result is a compelling explanation of his motivation to become a doctor.

If It Runs in the Family… Some applicants will cite their parents as reasons for their choice. Here again you have to be careful not to sound juvenile or over-simplistic. The mere fact that one or both of your parents were doctors does not explain why you would want to follow in their footsteps.

Describing the direct impact a doctor had on your life or the life of someone close to you can be a very effective way to demonstrate what draws you to medicine. Perhaps someone close to the applicant was very ill once or died, and the experience with that person or with his or her doctors became very significant.

After having read many statements, I believe these are the sorts of experiences that make people aware of what they themselves could do in medicine. These experiences can be very powerful material for the statement. First, the fact that admissions officers have seen this approach many times means you have to find a unique, personal story to tell. He provides useful details such as the illness that afflicted her and the specific qualities that impressed him most.

Although there is enough substance in his first paragraph to make a strong point, you may want to use even more details in your own essay. For example, you could describe a specific episode and the actions that your doctor took in treating your illness or easing your concerns. Notice again that the second paragraph shifts to the trial stage, emphasizing action rather than dwelling on passive response: The purpose of this tactic would not of course be to rail against the medical profession, but rather to show how a disappointing loss inspired you to join the struggle against disease and sickness.

For one, I have memories from a very young age of my grandfather in Czechoslovakia, disabled by a stroke, his problems unmitigated by any attempts at physical therapy.

Why Medicine? – 6 Ways to Answer This Med Application Question

I will never forget the devastating consequences of this. The important point is that he plans to be part of the solution: So as always, you need to show rather than tell us about your commitment. Community service is very important in our process because this is a profession devoted to serving others.

Here we are concerned with why you want to help, and why through medicine.

Although both of these essays deal with caring for relatives, there are many other angles you could take. If science were your sole calling, then you would most likely pursue a PhD.

  • Tell us not only why you want to be a doctor but what you have done to test your decision;
  • What matters more is your ability to write than the content you choose;
  • Notice again that the second paragraph shifts to the trial stage, emphasizing action rather than dwelling on passive response;
  • For one, I have memories from a very young age of my grandfather in Czechoslovakia, disabled by a stroke, his problems unmitigated by any attempts at physical therapy.

That said, showing a strong commitment to science can enhance your candidacy, especially if you have demonstrated an interest in research. The challenge is how to show passion rather than simply tell the reader about it.

If It Runs in the Family…

He does a good job of emphasizing the qualities that appeal to him — problem solving, competition, the broad scope of issues — but still is essentially telling and not showing us anything. A point that has come up before and will come up in the next section is the importance of action: Saying that you found material fascinating is presenting your passive response to it.

Active details are of course helpful to have in every point you make, but they come more naturally when describing a volunteer or work experience. Here you have to make a special point to ensure that you demonstrate a passion for science through your active engagement with it. The other alternative, though less effective, is to convey enthusiasm through spirited language.

What matters more is your ability to write than the content you choose. You might, for example, ask insightful, probing questions about your chosen area, or you could simply describe an issue or discovery in vivid detail. Again, you should attempt this approach only if you know you are a strong writer.