FAQ

(Frequently Asked Questions)

  1. What is the difference between MD and DO?
  2. What can I do with this degree?
  3. How is osteopathic medical school (DO) different from allopathic medical school (MD)?
  4. What are the principles of Osteopathic Medicine?
  5. What is on the new MCAT 2015?
  6. How do students at Gustavus prepare for the MCAT?
  7. What is a CNA and where can I go to get CNA certification in this local area?
  8. What is a medical scribe?
  9. What service/volunteer opportunities are available locally with a pre-health focus?
  10. How do I find out more information about various programs?

 

 

1. What is the difference between MD and DO?

Both MDs and DOs are physicians that practice all kinds of medicine. The main difference between them is that DOs have additional training in osteopathic manipulative medicine, which is a unique type of manual therapy. Osteopathic physicians also work with the patients to help them have a high level of wellness by focusing on health education, disease prevention, and injury prevention.

Although there is a difference in the definitions of a MD and a DO, studies show that DOs are becoming more and more similar to MDs in their practices.

The application process to Osteopathic Medical Schools utilizes a different common application site and the requirements are slightly less competitive than that of medical schools.

Source: http://www.aacom.org/about/osteomed/Pages/default.aspx

 

2. What can I do with this degree?

Osteopathic physicians can choose any medical field to go into and can practice anywhere in the United States. Today, statistics show that there are more DOs in primary care than specialized when compared to MDs, but this is subject to change as the DO medical profession continues to rapidly expand.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_MD_and_DO_in_the_United_States

 

3. How is osteopathic medical school (DO) different from allopathic medical school (MD)?

The medical training between these two types of medical schools is virtually indistinguishable except that osteopathic medical schools have additional training in osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM). In OMM training, osteopathic pre-physicians will learn several treatment options to consider when pain is not diminishing such as spinal manipulation. On average, DOs spend more time developing hands-on physical examination skills.

Both schools have the same length of schooling (generally four years) and residency. Both have two years of classroom training followed by two years of clinical training. Following clinical training, students can go on to specialty training in residency and fellowships.

Comparison:

For the Medical Licensing Exam (MLE) Step 1: MD: USMLE required, DO: COMLEX required, USMLE optional.

For the Medical Licensing Exam (MLE) Step 2: MD: USMLE required, DO: varies by program, may require COMLEX or choice of USMLE or COMLEX.

Residency: MD: Allopathic (ACGME), DO: one of either Allopathic (ACGME), Osteopathic (AOA), combined allo/osteopathic, or AOA approval of an ACGME program.

Board Certification: MD: State medical specialty boards, DO: Either allopathic or osteopathic medical specialty boards.

 

 

 

4. What are the principles of Osteopathic Medicine?

Here are four guiding principles of Osteopathic Medicine that differ from Allopathic Medicine. They are used as an underlying philosophy for the education of doctors and the treatment of patients.

  1. The body is an integrated unit of mind, body, and spirit.
  2. The body has self-regulating mechanisms, and has an inherent capacity to heal itself through, self defence, self-repair, and remodeling.
  3. The body's structure and function are reciprocally interrelated.
  4. Rational treatment of patients is based on consideration of the first three principles

source: http://www.anamstudents.org/Websites/anamstudents/Images/Documents/OsteoFAQ2011.pdf

 

5. What is on the new MCAT 2015?

The MCAT 2015 will have a new testing structure.

New Test Structure: Two Hours Longer and items in bold-italics new.

  • Chemistry and Physics
  • Critical Thinking

  • Lunch Break

  • BIO and BIOCHEM
  • Psychology and Sociology

= 6 ¼ hours content

= 7 ½ hours Total

Additional difference:

Testing fee will increase (currently $240)

Test accommodations if needed (will be a two day test)

Old scores MCAT still can be used two to three years (still finalizing)

These next few years (2-3) old MCAT will be used and no more writing section. Test results will still take 30-35 days.

January 2015 OLD MCAT Spring 2015 NEW MCAT

(still finalizing)

 

6. How do students at Gustavus prepare for the MCAT?

There are a variety of methods and ways that students prepare to take the MCAT.
Below is the link to the AAMC's Preparing for the MCAT Exam FAQ section. The three questions addressed:

"When should I take the MCAT exam?"
"Am I ready to take the MCAT exam?"
"Do I need to take a commercial review course?"
Source: https://www.aamc.org/students/applying/mcat/preparing/85556/preparing_prepfaq.html

The AAMC offers a free online practice test, click here for additional details. 

The AAMC offers a free online practice test to everyone. Sign up for the free test, Practice Test 3, to get unlimited access to all the features of e-MCAT Practice, including:

  • timed practice option to simulate the actual exam
  • untimed practice options for review and study
  • options to select subsets of items for customized practice by:
    • difficulty of items
    • exam section
    • content classification
    • cognitive skill tested
    • reading passage type
  • on/off setting for solutions
  • marking feature to identify items for review
  • detailed score report on all dimensions of the multiple choice items
  • ability to review items by category directly from the score report
  • settings for examinees approved for accommodations
  • repeat the exam as many times as you want

Go to www.e-mcat.com to take the free Practice Test.

Click here to hear from Gusties on how they approached preparing for the MCAT.

 

 

7. What is a CNA and where can I go to get CNA certification in this local area?

Click here for additional information

 

 

8. What is a medical scribe?

Click here for additional information

 

 

9. What service/volunteer opportunities are available locally with a pre-health focus?

Click here for additional information

 

 

10. How do I find out more information about various programs?

Attending an information session, preview day, or visiting campus is a great way to learn more. Here are links to various opportunities.

 

 

 

 

Updated 10/9/2013 JMV