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  1. #1
    2WandertheWorld is offline Newbie 510 points
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    MUA Pre-Med Quality of Education at Risk?

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    MUA has been a strong school. However, I'm not sure what is happening in the last year, because the quality of education, especially in the pre-med program, is rapidly declining.

    Fewer and fewer experienced Ph.D. faculty are teaching, being replaced by MD's with primarily M.B.B.S. backgrounds. Twenty professors have "left" MUA med and pre-med programs in the last 18 months. What is the big deal, you ask? Faculty that were trained in USMLE testing have left the campus. The existing faculty, mainly from outside of the U.S., arrive with little or no experience with USMLE prep work or content areas. The alternatives are slim. While MUA offers a Kaplan "course" during the medical program, it consists of students watching mandatory Kaplan videos during the entirety of class time.

    If you are someone that has a hard time understanding different accents, I would strongly recommend visiting campus and sitting in on some of the existing lectures to get a feel for style of teaching at MUA. While most professors have their heart in the right place, language barriers have posed a significant problem. Slides and exam questions don't always make sense, as English is a second language for some teachers. This wouldn't be a problem, as long as there were peer reviews of the content and exam were proofread PRIOR to their distribution. There is a serious challenge to learning when students don't grasp the content of class notes and fail to understand the material being assessed on exams.

    Little oversight is happening on the part of administration. There haven't been any classroom "site visits" by the Deans this semester. Another challenge is that several professors have show up late to their own exams (at least three times since December). On a similar note, during the last set of block exams, testing times were rescheduled the day before the exam. An email went out the evening before the exam!

    Also, please be aware that while the material is comprehensive, the pace of pre-med program is intense. Be prepared for block exams every two weeks in three subjects. Typically, professors will cover up to 4 chapters every 2 weeks. Also, be aware that unlike other medical schools, pre-med students are required to be in class from 9-2 or 9-4 EVERY DAY in Pre-Med 1 and 2 respectively, leaving little time to study on your own and between lectures.

    On a cautionary note, students in the pre-med program have been questioning whether the program is intentionally designed to make students fail. It seems like nothing but a revenue-making venture. Think about it. MUA offers the Dream: Get into Med School quickly, without needing the MCAT and other rigorous background requirements. Yet the program is set-up in a manner that doesn't allow students to succeed. Pre-med students are being "weeded out" left and right, having to re-take courses or walk away, often losing thousands of dollars, knowing that their pre-med classes are not transferable elsewhere. As of today, I know of 5 students who are flunking out this semester and it's only Block 4. These students aren't the ones "partying."

    MUA hangs their hat on their low attrition rate, but that figure doesn't factor in the students that started the pre-med program or early on at MUA and ended up flunking out, it only counts the students in their last semester that finish. Of course the figures look great. However, if you counted in the other stats, WHOA!
    Last edited by 2WandertheWorld; 03-02-2010 at 12:18 AM.

  2. #2
    BP87's Avatar
    BP87 is offline Member 513 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2WandertheWorld View Post
    MUA has been a strong school. However, I'm not sure what is happening in the last year, because the quality of education, especially in the pre-med program, is rapidly declining.

    Fewer and fewer experienced Ph.D. faculty are teaching, being replaced by MD's with primarily M.B.B.S. backgrounds. Twenty professors have "left" MUA med and pre-med programs in the last 18 months. What is the big deal, you ask? Faculty that were trained in USMLE testing have left the campus. The existing faculty, mainly from outside of the U.S., arrive with little or no experience with USMLE prep work or content areas. The alternatives are slim. While MUA offers a Kaplan "course" during the medical program, it consists of students watching mandatory Kaplan videos during the entirety of class time.

    If you are someone that has a hard time understanding different accents, I would strongly recommend visiting campus and sitting in on some of the existing lectures to get a feel for style of teaching at MUA. While most professors have their heart in the right place, language barriers have posed a significant problem. Slides and exam questions don't always make sense, as English is a second language for some teachers. This wouldn't be a problem, as long as there were peer reviews of the content and exam were proofread PRIOR to their distribution. There is a serious challenge to learning when students don't grasp the content of class notes and fail to understand the material being assessed on exams.

    Little oversight is happening on the part of administration. There haven't been any classroom "site visits" by the Deans this semester. Another challenge is that several professors have show up late to their own exams (at least three times since December). On a similar note, during the last set of block exams, testing times were rescheduled the day before the exam. An email went out the evening before the exam!

    Also, please be aware that while the material is comprehensive, the pace of pre-med program is intense. Be prepared for block exams every two weeks in three subjects. Typically, professors will cover up to 4 chapters every 2 weeks. Also, be aware that unlike other medical schools, pre-med students are required to be in class from 9-2 or 9-4 EVERY DAY in Pre-Med 1 and 2 respectively, leaving little time to study on your own and between lectures.

    On a cautionary note, students in the pre-med program have been questioning whether the program is intentionally designed to make students fail. It seems like nothing but a revenue-making venture. Think about it. MUA offers the Dream: Get into Med School quickly, without needing the MCAT and other rigorous background requirements. Yet the program is set-up in a manner that doesn't allow students to succeed. Pre-med students are being "weeded out" left and right, having to re-take courses or walk away, often losing thousands of dollars, knowing that their pre-med classes are not transferable elsewhere. As of today, I know of 5 students who are flunking out this semester and it's only Block 4. These students aren't the ones "partying."

    MUA hangs their hat on their low attrition rate, but that figure doesn't factor in the students that started the pre-med program or early on at MUA and ended up flunking out, it only counts the students in their last semester that finish. Of course the figures look great. However, if you counted in the other stats, WHOA!
    ouch! seriously?
    "The risk of a wrong decision is preferable to the terror of indecision"

  3. #3
    ProspectiveMUA is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Someone else with more experience needs to justify these claims. These are strong accusations.

  4. #4
    BrendaB_MD is offline Senior Member 510 points
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    ...................

    .....................
    Last edited by BrendaB_MD; 08-29-2010 at 12:43 AM.

  5. #5
    joe soap's Avatar
    joe soap is offline Senior Member 512 points
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    Ok bub. listen up. Either you are a disgruntled ex-employee wanting to pepper the school with some fresh manure or you are a student in pre-med failing out. I completed the pre-med at MUA and made it all the way through without failing, passed the mighty NBME comp shelf in the mid 70's and passed Step 1 1st time with a competitive score. I have done well in clinicals and have no hesitation that I will get a decent residency match. I know other students like me that have made it all the way.

    Now here is the truth with pre-med....ready.....its a very tough do or die program. Designed to see if you can make it in the med program before you rack up many thousands in debt. They are very clear about what you need to make it to Med 1, in essence they are making sure you dont get over your head. They can monitor your progress per se. Another problem is that they let anyone with a pulse in, a wide spectrum of talent (including the guy that needs one more O Chem or the guy that has none). I experienced this first hand, was excited to be admitted until I saw the "tools" with me in the program, folks that should never have made it to med school, most didnt, rightly so. Others that squeaked in flunked out and headed to Windsor, UMHS or wherever.

    All that read this hear ye hear ye.....MUA pre-med is an option for those that only need one class or remedial classes (old premed credits, community college, poor grades) not those that need them all (beware).

    AS for the faculty, many schools have MBBS or overseas MD faculty, who cares they are MDs, far better than some PhD Profs in my opinion. As you progress through med school you realize you need to stop expecting someone else to spoon feed you stuff anyhow.

    MUA has a great track record and students are doing well on boards, clinicals and residency, because of their own study discipline.



    Quote Originally Posted by 2WandertheWorld View Post
    MUA has been a strong school. However, I'm not sure what is happening in the last year, because the quality of education, especially in the pre-med program, is rapidly declining.

    Fewer and fewer experienced Ph.D. faculty are teaching, being replaced by MD's with primarily M.B.B.S. backgrounds. Twenty professors have "left" MUA med and pre-med programs in the last 18 months. What is the big deal, you ask? Faculty that were trained in USMLE testing have left the campus. The existing faculty, mainly from outside of the U.S., arrive with little or no experience with USMLE prep work or content areas. The alternatives are slim. While MUA offers a Kaplan "course" during the medical program, it consists of students watching mandatory Kaplan videos during the entirety of class time.

    If you are someone that has a hard time understanding different accents, I would strongly recommend visiting campus and sitting in on some of the existing lectures to get a feel for style of teaching at MUA. While most professors have their heart in the right place, language barriers have posed a significant problem. Slides and exam questions don't always make sense, as English is a second language for some teachers. This wouldn't be a problem, as long as there were peer reviews of the content and exam were proofread PRIOR to their distribution. There is a serious challenge to learning when students don't grasp the content of class notes and fail to understand the material being assessed on exams.

    Little oversight is happening on the part of administration. There haven't been any classroom "site visits" by the Deans this semester. Another challenge is that several professors have show up late to their own exams (at least three times since December). On a similar note, during the last set of block exams, testing times were rescheduled the day before the exam. An email went out the evening before the exam!

    Also, please be aware that while the material is comprehensive, the pace of pre-med program is intense. Be prepared for block exams every two weeks in three subjects. Typically, professors will cover up to 4 chapters every 2 weeks. Also, be aware that unlike other medical schools, pre-med students are required to be in class from 9-2 or 9-4 EVERY DAY in Pre-Med 1 and 2 respectively, leaving little time to study on your own and between lectures.

    On a cautionary note, students in the pre-med program have been questioning whether the program is intentionally designed to make students fail. It seems like nothing but a revenue-making venture. Think about it. MUA offers the Dream: Get into Med School quickly, without needing the MCAT and other rigorous background requirements. Yet the program is set-up in a manner that doesn't allow students to succeed. Pre-med students are being "weeded out" left and right, having to re-take courses or walk away, often losing thousands of dollars, knowing that their pre-med classes are not transferable elsewhere. As of today, I know of 5 students who are flunking out this semester and it's only Block 4. These students aren't the ones "partying."

    MUA hangs their hat on their low attrition rate, but that figure doesn't factor in the students that started the pre-med program or early on at MUA and ended up flunking out, it only counts the students in their last semester that finish. Of course the figures look great. However, if you counted in the other stats, WHOA!
    Joe Soap MD Hidden Content
    Attending Physician

  6. #6
    Sharky's Avatar
    Sharky is offline Member 514 points
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    As for being at MUA for 17 months, I can say that there have been 7 1/2 professors that have left, 1/2 because there was 1 professor that left after a few months, couldn't take the island life. I would also say the professors that have arrived lately are better than the ones they replaced. The school has been adding more faculty than I have seen in the time I have been here. Which adds a new dynamic to teaching, getting the ablility to ask questions of more than 1 professor for the subject.

    As some have said, only YOU can put the effort into becoming a Doctor with your own study habits, to paraphrase Joe, you won't be spoon feed baby food here.

    If your concerned with being in class from 9-4 then wait til you get to MED 1, thats 8-5 or later. 5 days a week. As a premed student you get more free time to study than Med 1 students ever do.

  7. #7
    anshi21 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    I;ve heard its a good school...from current doctors and so on.

  8. #8
    SouthPacific is offline Junior Member 511 points
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    Hi Joe Soap,

    I am very interested in your experience with Pre-Med Mua and going on from there.
    You said that the Pre-Med is NOT for students who didn't do the basic required courses in college.
    Based on what you've seen there, I would value your advice.

    I am a Ph.D. candidate in medical anthropology and I do NOT have the usually required basic sciences in my background. I was hoping that the MUA Pre-Med would prepare me for the MCAT and Med school after. I would have to study Physics on my own. I have no problem prepare on my own though...passing the Ph.D. comprehensive exams has taught me some skills in that department.

    Are you really saying that the Pre-Med program at MUA is inadequate for career-changers who need to missing background?

    Thanks for your help.

  9. #9
    oinkmoowoof is offline Newbie 510 points
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    SouthPacific,

    I am currently in the third week of their premed 1 program. The instructors are for the most part good. Their Premed is not an mcat prep class. Think of it as a introduction to med 1 that is at a slower pace than you will see in med 1. If you are missing requirements for med1 - it should be a good fit. It is not for everyone though, we have close to 1/5th of our class scoring below an 80% now which is required for automatic admission to med1 but, the majority are doing fine.

    This school offers a second chance to people who would not otherwise get into medical school. They also deliver results - check out their 2010 match results on the MUA website for proof.

    If you want to be a doctor and the Caribbean is probably where you will end up (aka you cant get into a US or Canada school for some reason) I would recommend MUA Med1 or Premed.

  10. #10
    deepk is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    All the medical schools have a combination of good and bad professors.

    Atleast MUA is lucky to have the best pharmacology and histology professors in the world.

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