24 Jun, 2021 12:05 PM

Is getting a degree at Harvard Medical school a waste of money, does it matter where you go to medical school?

I'm planning to apply to 13 different medical schools, among them are Harvard and Columbia, but does it really matter where a doctor goes to medical school? Would I really be heads above other people when applying for positions with a degree from an Ivy League school?

See Answer 10 Add Answers
Answer
Answer
AX
24 Jun, 2021 12:05 PM

All medical schools are created equal and that equality is assured by the National Board of Medical Examiners and the accrediting authority, the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.  People who allege one medical school is better than another, based on the education provided, are wrong.  If any medical school was inferior to another it would lose its accreditation or, stated another way, no medical school is permitted to graduate a majority of "C" students while other schools graduate a majority of "A" students.  All medical schools are required to administer the NBME's Shelf Exams at the end of each class.  These exams are scored by the NBME, not the schools.  If Harvard produced superior results to the Medical College of Georgia, do you think that MCG wouldn't adopt Harvard's curriculum or that MCG would be continued to be allowed to produce inferior doctors?  

Would you accept that a Volkswagen was the best car based on 5 people saying that it was the best car?  Would your opinion change if all 5 worked for Volkswagen?  Many people respond to questions about "the best medical schools" and cite the US News and World Report's annual article about medical school rankings.  They don't have a clue how the magazine made those determinations.  In the most recent published rankings list there were as little as five respondents and those were all medical school college Deans.  Hardly a statistically valid sampling, wouldn't you agree?  Why were there so few respondents?  Because the Association of American Medical Colleges objects to the criteria used and the method of sampling, so the majority of medical schools refuse to participate.

If you're going to become a physician you need to know the source of any data you're going to rely on or prove it yourself--and in this case, the information is readily available on the Internet--all you have to do is Google it.

To correct some other misinformation--all medical schools have to have research opportunities available for medical students (it's an accreditation requirement).  At primary care oriented schools the research is an option.  At research oriented medical schools it is mandatory and the focus for the students is not the research itself but the proper scientific method for conducting and reporting how research is done.  The research is done by both instructors (that's one of the carrots used to attract top research scientists to teach at medical schools) and paid researchers.

In addition, most medical researchers have advanced science degrees, not just the MD.

So why do the Harvards and Johns Hopkins of the world have reputations as being "the best"?  It's a three part answer.  First, the "best" known names have earned their reputations on the quality of the residency programs provided (and residency programs have nothing to do with a medical school), the quality, number and types of research conducted (again, nothing to do with the medical school itself) and the medical centers associated with each program.  Secondly, the history of the Ivy League schools arises from over a century ago when only the wealthy could afford to go to college.  As the economy changed and more of the 'common' people could afford college, the "Ivy League" schools raised their tuition to keep out the riff-raff, thus maintaining their standard of catering to society's elite class.  But many of the programs at Ivy League schools do produce superior graduates.  The MBA programs at Harvard and Wharton are the 'Gold" standard in business.  The law programs at Princeton and Yale are also "Gold' standards.  the same for engineering, physics, etc,, but not medicine.  Medicine is the only specialty that has a quality assurance governing authority.  Third, reputations are really marketing's sleight of hand.  For example, the National Insitute of Health is the other often-cited ranking system for medical schools.  However, this 'ranking' is based on the amount of research dollars given to each school, which, again, has nothing to do with the quality of the education provided at a school.  But that doesn't stop some schools from claiming "We're # X according to the NIH".

So, to answer your question in a different way, would you be heads above other people with a degree from an Ivy League school?  Maybe to the naive.  But the medical community only cares where you did your residency, as that denotes the quality of your education.  You can spend $50,000/semester at an Ivy League school or less than $20,000/semester at your own state's university medical school and both will get you to your MD.  The name of the school on your diploma doesn't get you into the better residency programs.  What does get you in are the scores you obtain on the USMLE exams and the quality of the reviews you received during your clinical rotations.

One last little poke in the ribs--UCLA came to the University of Maryland to copy UM's Emergency Medicine residency program and that's why the University 

JA
24 Jun, 2021 12:05 PM

This Site Might Help You.

RE:

Is getting a degree at Harvard Medical school a waste of money, does it matter where you go to medical school?

I'm planning to apply to 13 different medical schools, among them are Harvard and Columbia, but does it really matter where a doctor goes to medical school?  Would I really be heads above other people when applying for positions with a degree from an Ivy League school?








WE
24 Jun, 2021 12:06 PM

Not necessarily. It is not quite so simple.  First it depends on what residency you want to do--some residencies don't even match full.  It also depends on what kind of doctor you want to be.  A top researcher probably would benefit from Harvard, but the vast majority of physicians would do just fine at any other number of medical schools (many many are very good & certainly cost a lot less). When you look at the number of residencies & consider the size of the Harvard class, obviously there are more residencies than that; so a top med student in many med schools have the possibility of matching to their first or second choice residency. Once you enter practice; it may be nice to say you went to Harvard; but you will still make a good living & be in demand as long as you are a good doc. So, its something you can only answer for yourself...can you foot the bill comfortably as well? That's a major consideration to not be taken lightly. One of the top ER residencies in the country is LAC + USC; and there were no Harvard graduates in it for the 3 years I was there. So it really does depend on a number of factors. Good luck.











XI
24 Jun, 2021 12:06 PM

Anybody with a need to publish for a living or at the quite least do this as a pastime does at times have to look close to at what is offered. The purpose for this is to get a feel of what type of creating jobs are available and what to actually write about that individuals are ready to pay for. If you are one of Those people than you should give it a try at this site Real Writing Jobs, https://tr.im/hd9Sc .

RealWritingJobs is an online resource that will permit you to choose diverse writing projects that will enable you to do typing function from residence. Many different businesses check out RealWritingJobs hunting for experienced writers to finish projects for them. There are several varieties of tasks you could pick from which includes proofreading material, report advertising, reviewing and proofreading websites, study and react to emails, create blogs, and considerably more. Win money depends only on you, you pick if you want to be looser or a winner with Real Writing Jobs.











MA
24 Jun, 2021 12:06 PM

The people who go to the better medical schools have a better chance at getting the internships and residencies that they want.  That allows them to earn more in the future, and also to practice the area of medicine that they want.

So -- yes, it does make a difference.