I thought I'd come on here and give people some of my opinions - I am a recent 5th semester grad. This is going to be a really long post but hopefully it will give future applicants something real to base their decision on. If you want more info, please feel free to PM me. The basic summary: Don't go to Saba, go somewhere else even if it costs more.
In my 1st or 2nd semester, I would have still told my friends or colleagues to come to Saba, but now I can't do that anymore. This school has gone overboard in terms of failing and cutting people out. Now I know that people will just call me a whiner or tell me that those students can't handle it or w/e, but I just don't think that's the case anymore. I was fortunate to make it through all 5 semesters without a hiccup...wasn't even close to failing anything ever. But when I hear about the exams and class averages of the semesters below me, it is definitely a concern. I don't know that I'd even make it through anymore with the way it is now...I'll give some reasons about why I'm not a fan of this school anymore:
Students are failing courses like micro because they end up with 74.x - yes, technically there has to be a cutoff, but what I don't get is if these students could pass with an 85 or 90 on the presentation in micro, why not give it to them so they can pass? But nope, this school won't do something like that. They'd rather fail the kids - and at least for us and the semester below the presentation grades wouldn't even get posted until after shelf grades are back so it would be easy to adjust the presentations and let people pass.
Still on micro...Dr. J that teaches bacteria - my goodness I can't believe they allow him to teach. He's never had a class avg above 80 on his block in 3 semesters. He can't teach and he can't write questions. What's worse is that now the virus guy is gone too so this clown might teach more of that which is just bad news for students. But there's no accountability for him...when students get below 75, they fail - when profs write exams that have averages below 75 it's apparently the students' fault.
There seem to be more and more class averages that are in the high 60 or low 70 range. I'm sorry, but when that happens either the prof can't each or their exam was too hard. Class averages should never be that low because the students simply aren't that dumb. The only time that an average like that might be acceptable is in the beginning of 1st semester when you still have people here that shouldn't be and when people haven't learned that you actually have to study in medical school.
Next semester the 3rds will be going 8-5 until June...why!? 3rd semester is really rough - IMO the hardest semester that there is, now you keep them in school for longer and take away their study/relaxation time? The school had it right when it moved ethics to 1st block and had psyc blocks 2-5 so now it just reverted so both classes stretch the whole semester. And they throw in an extra micro lab on Tuesdays just to boot...what a useless waste of time.
One more thing I don't understand is why low yield courses are so hard here now. Histo used to be a joke when I took it, but apparently now they claim that it's important for path so they've clamped down on it a lot. What a load of garbage...you learn the histo that you need to learn in path. I've had something like 20 pure histo questions out of 2000 on my qbank. Same thing goes for genetics - there's no reason why 10+ people out of a class of 70 should be failing a course like that...but they do because it's unnecessarily hard. Histo had a few class averages in the 60s and low 70s this semester and a bunch of people failed/dropped genetics - I guess it's life, but I don't like it. Our class had 7 people fail histo with no one dropping and 4 people fail genetics with no one dropping - those are much more acceptable numbers.
Then we get to the exit...so for the last few semesters the raw score needed to pass has been a 65. Last semester it was 66 but then was brought down to a 65. This semester...boom we're up to 68! And according to Dean L, it's staying at 68. The worst part of it all is that one person actually got a 65 and would have passed in any other semester, but they failed the person this semester. I couldn't believe that...you can't just let the person pass and start your new rules next semester? Nope, that would be too nice of them. Though I will point out that from the info we received, that decision was made by the higher powers in Devens, not by anyone on the island. Regardless, I guess it shows you how much the leadership of the school cares.
While I'm at it...the research paper - so they want us to do a research paper...ok, fine - but they won't even give us proper access to articles so we can get the appropriate information we need to complete it. Instead we're stuck bugging the librarian or our friends who go to universities with proper access to articles to get what we need.
Our class was lucky...we graduated with 78 people. I think the new 5ths are down below 50 now. The new 4ths can't have more than 60 I'd imagine. The new 3rds...well who knows - from what I heard, 20+ of them are leaving the school and a bunch more failed something in 2nd. What's the point of those numbers? Over 50% of people will either fail out or leave - and I'm not counting people who just fail one course and still make it through. If that was in 1st semester, I'd chalk it up to people coming to the school that should have never been there, but it seems more and more like people are failing after getting by 1st no problem.
There are many more things that I could add to the list, but they've escaped my mind for now. Like I mentioned at the start, do yourself a favor...go somewhere else for medical school until Saba gets its act together and goes back to being the tough but fair school that it once was.