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The Experiences section in the AACOMAS application asks you to list your non-academic work, including healthcare-related work, non-healthcare work, volunteer work, and extracurricular activities. The Achievements section is the space for you to include academic honors, awards and scholarships. Below are five tips for completing this section of the AACOMAS.
1. Categorize your activity by type.
The AACOMAS application doesn’t let applicants list hours twice. If you experience includes two different types of activities – like research and clinical work – divide the experience and hours into two separate categories (e.g. 10 hours research and 30 hours clinical work). The AACOMAS doesn’t have a section for publications and poster presentations. You should put them in the Achievements section.
2. Focus on quality, not quantity
Admissions committees aren’t impressed by a large number of activities that require minimum commitment. Instead, they look for depth of experience and time dedication.
3. College and post-college experiences only
Don’t include experiences from high school.
4. Do not include future experiences
If you haven’t started an activity yet, you should not include it in the AACOMAS experiences section. Hypotheticals, theoreticals and “not yets” aren’t experience.
5. Write in complete sentences
When you describe your experiences, use complete sentences rather than bullet points. This simply adds to the professional appearance of your application.
Remember that the experiences section of the AACOMAS is your opportunity to present non-academic achievements to the admissions committee. Use the space to impress the committee with your dedication, your compassion, your communications skills, and your leadership – with the non-academic, qualitative and human side of you.
Use the Achievements section to highlight academic achievement that goes beyond good grades and a solid GPA.
You need to work hard if you want to submit a winning AACOMAS (or AMCAS or AADSAS) application — and we can help! Check out Accepted’s Primary Application Package to receive complete application guidance from conceptualization to final review. Your experienced consultant will guide you through the entire primary application, ensuring that you make the best use of your time to create a compelling portrait of yourself as a future leader in the medical field.
Jessica Pishko graduated with a J.D. from Harvard Law School and received an M.F.A. from Columbia University. She spent two years guiding students through the medical school application process at Columbia’s Postbac Program and teaches writing at all levels. Want Jessica to help you get accepted? Click here to get in touch!
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