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  1. Hi everyone! I am currently an 11th grade high school student and I was wondering when should I start preparing for the MCAT? Is it beneficial to start now or should I wait to finish the high school biology curriculum for a better foundation? Thanks!
  2. I decided to make this thread for applicants that are thinking of, or have already started, working towards a second degree in the hopes of applying to McGill. I found McGill's website to be quite jumbled regarding this topic, so hopefully that information can be summarized here in a clear and concise way. If you notice any errors, please comment below and I will edit this post accordingly. I would also encourage second degree applicants to ask their questions here, if only for the sake of keeping information in one easily accessible place. Basic Science Prerequisites & the MCAT: The MCAT is not required to apply to McGill, but if you have already completed the basic science prerequisites, it may be in your best interest to write the exam. Every applicant MUST complete the prerequisites by January 15th of the year they plan to start medical school, and a maximum of two prerequisites can still be outstanding by the application deadline (November 1st). However, if your pre-requisite science GPA (sGPA) is significantly below the average of 3.80, then a strong MCAT score can be used in its place. Currently, a competitive MCAT is a 33, and this score should be as close to 'balanced' as possible (11/11/11). *Pre-requisite courses 'expire' after eight years, so make sure to repeat those courses if they will exceed the eight year mark by November 1st. List of Prerequisites: 6 Credits Biology (Introductory) w/ Labs 6 Credits Chemistry (General or Physical) w/ Labs 3 Credits Organic Chemistry w/ Lab 6 Credits Physics (Introductory) w/ Labs GPA: Before we get into GPA, it's important to emphasize that you are NOT a second degree applicant unless you COMPLETED your first degree. For example, if you left your first degree early and pursued another degree, then the following information will not apply to you. Your GPA will instead be calculated based on every course you have completed, in both degrees. Those who have completed a degree, and are now working towards another, will have their GPA calculated differently then applicants in their 'primary' degree. For starters, even if you received transfer credit from your first degree, those courses will NOT be included in the GPA calculation. Only the courses you have completed while enrolled in the second degree will be considered. The year you apply, you must have completed at least 45 credits (15 courses) before the application deadline (November 1st), and at least 60 credits AND your degree by July 1st. This means that your second degree needs to take at least two years to complete, but if you were paying attention to the deadlines, you'll realize that if it only takes you two years, you likely won't be able to apply until after you've graduated. There are ways to get around this (i.e. overloading semesters, spring/summer courses, etc), but keep in mind that you need to maintain a competitive GPA, so don't get overzealous. On that note, a competitive GPA is a 3.80, but if you're an OOP applicant there's a limited number of seats. **Those 60 credits need to be completed in consecutive years or you risk your application being rejected Conclusion: This concludes the second degree specific information. I hope it will provide some insight for future applicants and help you move one step closer to achieving your medical school goals. Good luck! Class Profiles - Admissions - Accepted/Rejected/Waitlisted Thread - Admission FAQs - Dark
  3. Hi, I just completed my 2nd year in biochem in ON and have a few questions about medical school applications and preparing for that. 1. As someone with somewhat of a science background, which prep books are the best to prepare for the MCAT ? I am leaning towards ExamKrackers but I've read about how it's riddled in errors. 2. Are MCAT prep books useful for CARS prep ? If so which ones did you find useful ? 3. To preface, unfortunately as someone will minimal ECs after high school (2 long term activities and 3 short term jobs), I know it's going to extremely hamper my chances of getting into medical school. It's been quiet demotivating applying to multiple executive positions at uni and being consistently rejected. I also feel like my volunteer experiences are more of me just helping out where I can and I haven't really had the opportunity to display any leadership (which I have read medical schools look into). To get into my actual question, up to when do medical schools look into volunteer experience, if I choose to apply in fourth year ? Do they only look at everything till 3rd year as you apply for med school in the fourth or do volunteer experiences in fourth year count ? Insight is greatly appreciated.
  4. Is there any major advantage to taking an undergraduate degree in biology or medical sciences for applying to med school? Because they say they want all-rounded students but would taking a medical related undergraduate help for the MCAT? Thanks!
  5. I wrote the MCAT 2 years ago and scored at 508 (all sections above 124, with 126 in CARS) and Im trying to decide if I should attempt to re-write it this summer. I'm worried about doing worse, as I would only have between now and mid-August to prepare (and I work full-time). For UBC, is it possible to become ineligible? If say, I got an overall score that was higher, but one section had below 124? Any insight into how they look at it if you do worse? Apparently you have to release all MCAT scores to UBC. Or if you have at least one MCAT that meets their requirements (all sections above 124) then you are all good? I just dont want to risk becoming ineligible for the upcoming cycle, seeing as I've made it to the waitlist for UBC this cycle with my 508 score. I'm IP Any advice much appreciated!
  6. Hello wonderful people! I just finished my 4th year at a University in Canada - I'm a Canadian citizen, and I am currently planning to do my 5th year to boost my GPA and build up my ECs. I am almost done with my primary application for AACOMAS (DO schools), but I am a little hesitant to apply for AMCAS as well. Given that my stats are 3.65 cGPA with a strong upward trend (3.2 - 3.7 - 3.7 - 4.0) and 508 MCAT (127 125 127 129), should I give it a shot for US MD schools for this cycle? I am just worried because I heard US schools don't like to see reapplicants, so I was wondering if it would be better to wait and apply next cycle with a better GPA and a new MCAT score as a first time applicant. (I am rewriting my MCAT in September for Canadian schools, and I'm not going to declare that on my US applications to avoid any delays) I'm not really sure of my chances in the States as a Canadian student. [my EC: 2 clinical research experiences - one paid, one volunteer - with a publication, hospital volunteering for a year, international student training at a hospital, shadowing, executive positions at 2 school clubs, years of community volunteering] Any insights would be greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance!
  7. Selling my 10th edition Exam Krackers. This will include:-Exam Krackers Complete Study Package 10th edition-101 passages in MCAT verbal reasoning-Prep 101 course texts/notes (included for free)Some practice exams lightly marked in pencil.$150 OBO or trade (seriously, make me an offer)Pickup preferred
  8. Selling: Examkrackers Mcat Complete Study Package (6 books)- 9th Edition (Used-great condition) $170 Examkrackers MCAT 101 Passages: CARS $65 (Used- like new) Examkrackers MCAT 101 Passages: Biology 1 $65 (Used- like new) Examkrackers MCAT 101 Passages: Biology 2 $65 (Used-like new) Examkrackers MCAT 101 Passages: Physics 1- SOLD Location: Downtown Vancouver https://imgur.com/a/ZeqToZ5
  9. CARS I have over a year of experience tutoring in CARS and achieved a score of 129 myself. I provide you with CARS passages written by me and vetted by other top scorers in CARS. You can write these passages live and explain your thought process, and I will help you to learn which strategies you should have used, and where your thought process went astray. Past students have found this to be an excellent way to improve your score. I charge $40/hour for new students and $35/hour for regular students. CASPer I have helped several students with the CASPer test in the past, and am now offering my services to the general public. I offer several services to help you improve your CASPer score: 1. One-on-one lessons in which we discuss general strategies that have worked for students in the past, question types, and formulate a study plan. The CASPer also requires you to be self-aware of the experiences you've had in the past, so we will go through your extracurriculars and find examples where you've demonstrated CASPer-worthy skills. I charge $40/hour for this service. 2. A package of three practice CASPers. Once you have taken each practice CASPer, we will do a phone call and I will provide you with individualized feedback. This package costs only $150 for all three practice CASPers and unlimited feedback. 3. Additional practice CASPers cost $75 each including feedback. I write all of my own practice CASPers, so you won't find duplicate questions! MCAT I achieved a 519 (129 C/P, 129 CARS, 130 B/B, 131 S/P) after having studied for the MCAT for only four months and also working full-time. I used a highly efficient strategy called retrieval learning. Message me and we can discuss how you can improve your score as well!
  10. Hi there, I'm a 1st year Mechanical Engineering student although first year is just general. But, I do also hold a Bachelor of IT, Game Development & Entrepreneurship degree which I graduated from last April with a 3.81/4.3 GPA. I also didn't take biology in high school as I didn't express much interest towards it then until now but did take physics and chemistry. As a background, I felt that Game Dev was not for me early in my degree but as I was being pressured to finish it off and also not having the grade 12 chem prereq at the time, I forced myself to go through with it which I now regret as those were the worst 4 years of my life. I knew engineering was for me for a while which is why I pursued it now, aiming to work as a mechanical engineer in the biomedical/biomechanical field. But, I did have moments throughout where I felt that being doctor might fit me more from my life experiences but was always under the impression that it required many prereqs for med school so didn't consider it until I just realized now that McMaster doesn't require any at all. I know that it is stupid of me to not find this out earlier before starting my engineering degree but my engineering prereqs were expiring so it was like now or never for that and I would've found it very risky to reject it as I know that getting into med school in Ontario is real competitive and if I would've failed at that, I would have no back up. So, my plan now if I decide to apply is to leave my engineering degree for med school after my 2nd year ends next April if I somehow get in as doing so would back me up with engineering if I fail at getting into med school. But, given my background and me dealing with a full course load this summer (20 credits but 5 courses at a time since 2 are S1/S2 ones), I don't know if it really is possible. One of those courses is chem and another one is a physics course, and I have already taken one physics already this past semester, so hopefully these should help. Also, I have taken courses such as Psychology and Sociology in my Game Dev major which may also help. In terms of my study routine, I was planning on around 10 hours a week over the course of 3-4 months before my 2nd year of engineering begins. Another thing is that I don't have much in terms of extracurriculars/volunteer work as I didn't consider med school until now so I was planning on getting some of those in the 2nd half of the summer but given the COVID-19 situation, that may or may not be possible. But, I read somewhere that Mac doesn't strongly consider ECs as much and mainly just care about other aspects like the GPA although I may be wrong which is why I'm asking for help here. Below were my questions: 1) Is it possible for me to be ready for the MCAT in this 3-4 months time given my situation or am I just being foolish to even be considering it? 2) I read somewhere that Mac only considers the Verbal Reasoning component and Critical Analysis and Reasoning Section for MCAT so given my limited time, would it be a good idea to just study those as I would only be applying to Mac? 3) Is it possible to just use Khan Academy and try to fill in any parts I don't understand through like YouTube or something? I really prefer to not spend money on anything to prepare for it unless absolutely necessary as my chances of getting in seem real slim to me anyways. Any help would be appreciated and sorry if I sound really dumb to even consider applying with my situation. I'm unsure as I've seen similar posts online with mixed responses. Sorry for the long read, I was just trying to explain my situation as best as I could. Thanks a lot in advance!
  11. Hello! I applied to 1 med school this cycle and received an interview (yay!). I'm waiting for the results in May, but I thought maybe I should start prepping for the MCAT in case things don't work out this year. I was thinking of writing the test (for the first time ever) in August (the very last date I possibly can) so I can apply again in fall 2020 to schools that require the MCAT. Is it a good idea to write it the very last test date? Or should I write it a bit earlier like early to mid August? Thanks.
  12. Hey everyone! I recently graduated from a nursing program in Ontario and have decided that I want to write the MCAT this August. The problem is that my nursing program barely covered any of the prerequisite courses that are important for the MCAT - I have two sems of psych/soc, one sem of human biochemistry, and perhaps some physiology- and microbiology-related stuff covered by a couple of my other classes. But I have zero chem, organic chem and physics prereqs. I really can’t afford to take these courses and am hoping I can self study this info with Khan Academy and Kaplan. Just wondering if anyone has done something similar or has any advice for going this route? Thanks in advance!
  13. Hi all, I got accepted to med school in Canada this year first time applying, and since then I've been working on a massive premed package that includes all the Khan Academy (KA) notes (complete), supplemented with a personal spin to make things easy. The package also includes my schedule, my activity log, a score predictor, 100 helpful reference documents with mnemonics and graphics of common topics, formulas, interview prep, cars tips ethics... everything that got me from premed to admitted, and now I'm passing it on to you. You can find the post here on Reddit Wordpress (easy link is tinyurl.com/MCATguide) I hope this is helpful for you all! Please let me know if you have any questions or queries.
  14. I'm currently in my 2nd year of undergrad. planning on writing the test my first time end of august 2020. I wanted to get your thoughts on studying for CARS long term. I want to dedicate an hour or so every morning during my commute to university to do practice CARS. then when April rolls around, I will likely study MCAT full time. Is this a good idea? I plan on using EK101 and JW for my morning readings and then transitioning to Q packs by the time summer rolls around when I'm doing MCAT full-time.
  15. Hello! I have the opportunity this summer to have my own research project. It will likely be a 9-5 with about 3 hours of commute a day. Is it possible to perform well on the MCAT while doing this (520+ with a 129+ CARS)? or should I just use my summer to study full time (summer meaning may-august exactly, looking to write at end of august). As a reference, by the end of this year (2nd year), I would have taken: 2 courses gen chem 2 courses anatomy/physiology 1 course biochem 1 course organic chem 1 course physics (basically kinematics and dynamics only) 1 course sociology I have a choice to do my research the summer after, and don't have to do it this summer.
  16. Does anyone else's MCAT score show up on OMSAS in the document tracking? I sent mine from AAMC a while ago and they still aren't there. Thanks! edit: just read this "OMSAS will not upload MCAT scores until October 18, 2019. The deadline for the receipt of MCAT scores is November…"
  17. Hello everyone, I am a Canadian applicant who graduated in 2018 with a 3.69 cGPA/3.8 GPA to Western/Queen's & 3.7 GPA to US schools. My MCAT is 516 (129/127/130/130) (2019) (Past: 509, 512) and I have a very strong EC and research experience with no publications. I had no interview invites the last 2 years (Canada & US) and I'm afraid it was due to my low GPA for Canadian schools. For US schools, my options were very limited as I did not meet some course pre-reqs, and I understand space is limited for Canadian applicants. I feel like I'm getting no where in my 3rd application cycle and I thought of some future plans, but not sure if these would be helpful 1) Should I retake the MCAT (Feb/Mar) and aim for a CARS 128+ (Would open up Western) 2) Should I go to Grad School (2yrs) would this investment be worth it (Would make it easier for UofT & Queen's). Also wondering if there is a disadvantage to a course-based grad program. 3) Instead of Grad, should I go back to school to meet pre-reqs for US schools? Even with them would it really increase my chances? 4) Should I apply abroad (Ireland, Australia, etc)? I heard there are 6 year programs which would take the same amount of time as going to grad school here + 4 yrs med. I'm also afraid of the debt I'll be in as well as having to live in extremely rural areas. I know this is what I really want, but I feel like I'm spending too much time stuck in the application cycles and want to find a way to be more beneficial to my application. I'm wondering if there are truly no options for a student who is stuck with their GPA. Any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks!!
  18. I am a UBC Medical School (Doctor of Medicine) graduate and experienced tutor offering tutoring as well as application review and interview preparation services. All ages welcome. --Services offered--High school: English/Math/Science/Calculus/Biology/Chemistry/PhysicsCollege/University:Calculus/English/Biology/Chemistry/Physics/Anatomy/Physiology/Psychology/PharmacologyPCAT (Pharmacy College Admission Test) preparation - all subjectsMCAT (Medical College Admission Test) preparation - all subjectsInterview Preparation - Panel/Traditional and Multiple Mini Interview (MMI)Application Review - Academic and Non-academic/Extracurricular/Personal Statement ReviewResidency Interview (CaRMS and NRMP) application and interview preparationBase rates:$50/45min - high school level$75/45min - college/university level$90/45min - application review + interview preparation Summary of Qualifications: 1. Experienced tutor/coach2. UBC MD graduate3. Over $75000 in scholarships4. A+ average throughout university5. Stellar PCAT and MCAT scores6. Got into pharmacy school age 197. Got into medical school age 22 Able to provide service in-person and virtually. Flexible scheduling. Group discounts available. Please PM with contact number and basic information regarding desired services. Alternatively, you can email me by visiting my CL ad: https://vancouver.craigslist.org/van/lss/d/ubc-md-graduate-offering-tutoring-and/6988648830.htmlHave a nice day!
  19. Has anyone taken MCAT prep course with 99point9? 99point9 is a prep course company based in Toronto. you pay a one time fee of about $1000 and you can keep on retaking the course until you get your desired mark
  20. The No-Nonsense, Definitive Guide to Acing The MCAT in 3-4 months. Hey folks! Since you helped me so much I figured I HAD to give back. Here’s 90% of what I learned when getting ready to start my MCAT. I’ve distilled all this down from the HOURS of study I did on premed forums to ascertain the BEST strategy that has many things in common with what top scorers do. Use it at your own discretion and remember that the best strategy and schedule is one that you can consistently stick to! DO NOT follow this if it doesn’t work, just adapt the parts that make the most sense. Also, feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions or want any tutoring! This is my last summer before med school in Ontario so I figured it'd be fun and useful for others if I revisit the MCAT trenches. I scored 97th% with 518: 129/128/130/131 so I couldn't quite clinch the 99th% everyone loves to drool over since I had a job and was taking some courses but I think this plan can get anyone to the 99th%, and if I had added 6 weeks to my schedule (see below) it would have been easy pickings! So I'd advise taking the full summer if you can since so many others STILL do bad after 4 full months of study. First, I want to talk about the most useful ideas I took going into the test and then I’ll discuss what I think is the optimal schedule. Overview of the test The first thing you must DRILL INTO YOUR PUNY, UN-CARS ADAPTED CRANIUM: There is always a right answer. You need to turn yourself into a MACHINE that does EXACTLY the amount of work and thinking to get the right answer no matter what using 4 things: 1. The barebones of foundational science 2. basic data extraction skills 3. interpretation skills, 4. common-sense logic to discern the right answer. Think of this ENTIRE process as honing those 4 skills and you will easily excel at this test. Barebones foundational sciences tips. From my experience the actual content and detail-oriented questions are minimal. It is a very problem-solving oriented test. As such, there’ll usually be 1-2 out of 5 questions that’ll straight up ask a fact you’d have to have memorized. So, STOP BEING A WUSS WHO’S AFRAID OF NOT HAVING MEMORIZED THE WHOLE KREBS CYCLE OR EVERY ORGO REACTION!!! IF 20 % OF THE TEST IS MEMORIZATION, SPEND ONLY 20% OF YOUR TIME MEMORIZING YA DINK! Data extraction tips: Take the SIMPLEST meaning you can out of every sentence, ESPECIALLY for CARS. They pick convoluted passages to throw you off, but there usually isn’t a deep philosophical meaning; what the author is trying to say or argue is usually VERY straight forward. The biggest thing that got me from a 126 level to a 128 almost instantly was quickly going over each sentence in the simplest way possible. A representative self dialogue that I trained to happen automatically would be: “oh dood, the author wants to talk about cats now. The author is just saying he likes cats. The author is just restating his stupid idea about cats. The author’s making a second point about why cats are cool. This shit is BASIC”. Doing this sounds like I’m teaching you to read at a 4th grade level, but it REALLY is that simple. Don’t over complicate it. UNDERSTAND what you’re reading, if a sentence confuses you, STOP DEAD, take the simplest meaning away from it (but don’t make shit up, ACTUALLY understand it) then move on. If you move through 2-3 sentence you didn’t understand, you fucked up. SO. STOP. DEAD. Just take it SLOW! You’ll find you get faster and faster as long as you focus on UNDERSTANDING Even further, the more questions you do, the better you can calibrate how much you really need to read into each sentence and paragraph. Which is surprisingly, not much! PM me for specific CARS and science interpretation strategies. 3. Interpretation tip: ALWAYS know exactly what the question is asking. The easiest thing to do is to Rephrase it simply in your head if it’s a complicated question, taking the EXACT meaning of it away. I did this as a practice until it came naturally to me. JUST ASK YOURSELF WHAT THE QUESTION IS ASKING BEFORE YOU ANSWER IT BEFORE YOU GET CONFUSED AND HAVE TO PROVE TO ME YOUR INSUFFERABLE DINKINESS BY READING THE QUESTION AGAIN. IF YOU RAD SLOW AND KNOW EXACTLY WHAT THEY WANT, YOU WILL KNOW EXACTLY HOW TO ANSWER, SO DON’T BE A DINK AND FIGURE OUT WHAT THEY MEAN FOR EACH QUESTION BY ANY MEANS POSSIBLE. 4. Logic pro tip: Always know EXACTLY why you’re picking an answer, and PRECISELY why the others are wrong and you will ALWAYS get the answer right. If you have to think it out loud, think “oh, A is wrong for this reason, B is clearly not in line with this, C is true for such and such reasons”. Practice will fine tune this skill. It’s THAT simple. Last pro tip about the test: Because it’s a Standardized test: The question types are VERY similar to one another and you have to cater your approach to these types. The more practice the do, the more you will start to see patterns in the types of mistakes you make and the types of questions you see. Review your mistakes PROPERLY so that you can not only solve that question you see again, but every question like it! By doing this you will develop a bullet-proof system for pulling the answer out of every single question, every time. More on this in the review section Mentality You have to forget about how prepared or unprepared you feel when it comes to ANY of the material or any of the questions, you have to become a MACHINE at picking the right answer. Don’t EVER be intimidated and know that you can almost always rely on common sense, and critical reasoning skills to pick the best answer, even with minimal studying. If a question is hard, EVERYONE finds it hard. Keep your head, logic your way through it, rely on common sense, cancel 2 options, bubble the best answer, know why it’s be best option and go! IF YOU DO THIS, YOU WILL DO BETTER THAN MOST PEOPLE 99% of the time: This is a 99th% percentile scorer’s mentality Study Process Do whatever it takes to get through the material as fast as possible, making sure to solidify the FUNDAMENTALS, and then backfill details. ONLY STUDY WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW. DO NOT waste time on concepts you have mastery or competence on, which will be way more than you think. Best approach IMO is to go through the list of AAMC topics and see which ones you need the most refreshing on. MARK THEM DOWN! Then take prep books (Kaplan explanations are meh but the organization of the index is fantastic) go through ONLY the summaries and read through to verify whether you know it or not Then do the diagnostic multiple choice at the end of each chapter. If you got a question wrong because you didn’t understand the content ONLY take notes and do a deep dive on a chapter if you are genuinely unfamiliar with the concepts therein or have COMPLETELY forgotten what it’s about (I had never taken Psych so I did a more detailed study of it. Even then I learned most from questions then from the content text books). Try to get through it in a month to 6 weeks max, know that you can ALWAYS backfill any knowledge you’re missing. Don’t half-ass it by rushing. The approach is more about getting the essentials, making sure you know them by verifying with diagnostics. Review process: THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF THIS DOCUMENT Allows you to: Test your knowledge/ figure out which concepts need more studying Tweak your respective strategies for EACH section (CARS vs science has a slightly different approach that you will build through practice!) Find WEAKNESSES and hammer them all summer. It’s painful but it must be done Track PROGRESS, are you improving in terms of score, knowledge, methods, speed, accuracy? Allows you to shape the direction of your study so that you know what to read, how to spend your time, what practice to do, what works, what doesn’t Allows for REFLECTION! Lessons Learned EVERY single person who does well on this test has some sort of formal review and error reflection strategy, so think hard about how you will develop yours and hold accountable to make changes in your study to fill in holes/weaknesses. I made up a document for EVERY mistake I made on every question I got wrong for EACH section, for Each major test, and for each practice bank (Khan academy, TPR, etc.) So I could quickly reference my newfound strategies, areas of improvement, things I needed to restudy, etc. I would add to the document every single day after a study chunk, would itemize what I had to do based off these errors (to do list, plan for next day), and once a week I would reflect on my ENTIRE Lessons/error list and see if I needed to shift my study plan/ question answering methodology based on that. Error methodology I would categorize errors based on type and label them: C, I, F, R C: Conceptual failure (either I learned the idea wrong or misinterpreted the concept and have to go restudy), I: I interpreted question wrong (I had to think of a way not to make the interpretation error again) F: I really fucked up. I was negligent and didn’t read all the answer stems, I didn’t check a certain thing, I didn’t read the axes on a graph properly. This is like misinterpretation on steroids: ONE of my systems or strategies failed, so I have to remind myself to do it properly (example: Read EVERY answer stem before I choose) or I need to think of a new strategy to avoid this type of mistake again. R: Recurring: Some people put dots, others star, I just put Rs. If I repeated a mistake or a type of mistake, I'd put this so I could easily identify STRONG gabs in my strategy/knowledge For CARS in particular, I would take the mistakes and group them on even deeper categories. This will be based on passage/question/answer types which you can read about in the Examkrackers strategy book (ONLY solid one IMO out of kaplan, TPR, and EK) Practice Passages C/P Not gonna lie, some of the Khan academy passages are a bit goofy and overly complicated, but are still PHENOMENAL compared to . I have 99 % scoring friends who only used khan academy for everything so DON’T neglect how useful it is The Princeton review ones I felt were most solid in teaching foundational concepts rather than science interpretation but were still IMMENSELY useful Examcrackers, but only for their 30 min. passage exams. These were EXTREMELY solid for scientific interpretation. Definitely find a way to get a copy of these and mix it in with KA + TPR. Maybe you can use these as a test of your knowledge once you feel you’re prepared for the subject that each of these tests focuses on (physics, bio, etc.) CARS: I would advise against going insane with the practice, because most of the 3rd party material is just NOT going to train you to the AAMC style. No offense to Examkrackers (I know some people swear by them) but I was doing a CARS practice test by them and got confused because it seemed like the test was pulling new question types out of thin air. So focus HARD on doing high quality material and instead making the REVIEW process of your mistakes the focus of your CARS practice to build a solid strategy for when you’re tacking the more representative AAMC CARS. It’s VERY important to aim for quality not quantity. For sure start with Khan academy, as it’s the most representative other than AAMC Mix in TPR CARS book Do the CARS AAMC question packs 6 weeks out from your exam, then again 2-3 weeks out AGAIN to solidify your understanding of the B/B Same as others, Do KA, TPR handbooks, EK 30 min exams Always go back and relearn and detail work yu need to like the enzyme pathways. 4 months is a long time to retain that info so make sure it’s always fresh without taking away from practice to memorize. P/S: All I did was the TPR handbook, the Khan academy passages, and a few next step tests and I got 131 on this section. If you know the definitions inside and out and your interpretation skills are on point, there’s no reason you won’t easily get 129-130 + . Go through the 100 page doc on **DELETED** Use or make flash cards Mix it in with the very limited passage practice on KA, TPR, EK 30 min tests Buy the AAMC stuff right away, all of it except the flash cards (What I mean is buy all question prep). Some people use it as a diagnostic but I think it’s better to save near the end, once you’ve trained all the basic skills Practice tests I’d do at least 2 on top of the AAMC stuff. Aim for 2-8 (MAX). You’re only doing these to find weak points and to emulate the testing environment/build endurance so I’d advise against cranking away at them, as the most important thing is that you review practice you do properly. So do one every 2 weeks, MAYBE every week if you’re super ambitious I found Examcrackers were the most rigorous in terms of Science problem solving and data analysis, which is the most important part of the test to train on the Full lengths, since most of the practice from other companies don’t emphasize this (which is the biggest part of the test!). The CARS wasn’t AS representative, but the science sections make up for it Next step tests are cheap to buy in a bundle and I thought were fairly representative. Their Psych section was incredible. Bringing it all together First 4 weeks Do 2 science chapters and an hour of CARS a day until you’re done. There’s 60 Kaplan science chapters so do 2 a day if you can. If not, extend this to a max of 6 weeks. Focus on VERIFYING your understanding of major concepts rather then taking notes, memorizing, etc. ONLY study what you don’t KNOW!!! (so obvious but so important) Make sure to do all M/C at the end of each chapter to verify whether you know it or not. Mix in some passage practice from Khan academy of TPR if you HAVE TIME! I would really just take the time to focus this month on verifying your knowledge and building that foundation if you’re rusty For CARS, focus on consistency and quality: Interchange doing 3 Khan academy with 3 TPR CARS companion passages a day. Up it to 4-5 passages a day if you feel you need it. Keep in mind that if you’re spending 30 mins doing 3 passages, you should spend as LEAST as much time digging deep into the reasoning you had for the WRONG answer and the reasoning you needed to get the right answer. This is why the KA passages are so useful since they have detailed explanations for every answer stem!!! Pickup the Examcrackers CARS strategy guide: the only one I found to have consistently good tips If you’re a go getter do one diagnostic halfway through, but it may be a stupid idea since most people still have gaps and panic when they get basic science questions wrong. Every week you should take at least a half day or full day off, and one day where you reflect/review your mistakes and lightly study. You could even combine the reflection with the relaxation day: but take the reflection VERY seriously A typical day for me: SKIP straight to summary of kinematics chapter. Blitz through it, look at the equations. Do I know them and how they work? YES Can I apply them to problems? YES. Do the multiple choice, get one wrong because I’m a fool who can’t even listen to his own advice. I DIDN’T simplify the question and misinterpreted it. Minus points as an MCAT guru. Then I see another question I got wrong because I was confused about mechanical equilibrium. I GO BACK, read that section and do a few khan academy M/C on it. Look at Stoic section in chem. Understand it instantly because who can’t do Stoic? I do the questions in the back, perfectly. I do some Khan academy M/C to solidify my understanding and there’s one tricky problem I can’t do. I write down how to do it in my lessons portfolio. DONE LIKE DINNER, I’M NOW A KINEMATICS/STOICHIOMETRY GRANDMASTER Do 3 Khan academy CARS passages and sulk at the silly mistakes I make but spend 30 mins going over those mistakes and why I made them until I KNOW I’ll never make them again Bad day for me: Need to relearn Electricity and magnetism. STILL start with the summary, realize I need to go back and read most of the chapter. STILL only read the sections I don’t understand, maybe play around with the equations so I know exactly what they’re used for. Do the multiple choice. IF I get anything wrong because of conceptual error, HAMMER it with some khan academy M/C, maybe even watch a khan academy video. MAYBE I’ll revisit a specific topic again if I was still utterly shit after practicing it for an hour. I didn’t practice AS much this day since I had some serious gaps to work on in physics knowledge, but all in all I did what I needed to have a solid understanding of today’s chapter. Did some Biochem, EZ WORK FELLAS. Read summary, wrote down some KEY details, maybe read one section of the chapter ONLY. Did the multiple choice, get a perfect score like my premed-ass should PROOOO TIIIIIP! Try to do one easy subject that youre good at with one you anticipate you’ll have trouble with each day (Biochem with Physics, Chem with Psych, etc.) Keeps it interesting and allows you to focus on the thing you’re weak at so you don’t spend 8 hours a day learning unfamiliar garbage and being depressed while you regret deciding to be a premed in the first place. Did 3 TPR CARS FINAL LESSON: The key here is to only study what you need to, and go deeper on your weaknesses. Catalogue your progress and adjust how much you put into each chapter, and into each section accordingly! I know you filthy premed love studying the amino acids over and over with flashcards but recognize that you will FLOP test day if you double down on strengths instead of weaknesses. The key is to always be tackling weak points in knowledge this month until you’re solid enough to do the REAL work with the practice passages and full length tests. Passage practice and full length phase: Next 6 weeks (if your content review takes too long and you truly feel unprepared to do practice tests, first off stop being a dink, second off, squeeze this next section to 2-4 weeks if you absolutely need to, but mix in passage practice with t Do Khan academy and TPR Passage practice every day, starting with subjects you KNOW you’re weaker in based on first month of content THIS is when you start doing practice tests once a week to once every 2 weeks Take a FULL day to review the test right after, or maybe even a day and a half I’d start with the next step diagnostic test, then work my way alternating examcrackers with next step tests since they both are fairly representative but have different strengths and weaknesses (Physics and Bio are VERY good for EK, CARS and Psych are better for Next Step) Typical day for me: 30 mins doing bio passage practice (EK/TPR/KA) 15-30 mins reviewing it 1 hour doing discrete M/C on KA to fill in the gaps 30 mins doing chem passage practice (EK/TPR/KA) 15-30 mins reviewing it 1 hour doing discrete M/C on KA to fill in the gaps 1-2 hours CARS (TPR handbook) 1-2 hours reviewing it As time went on, I did less multiple choice and more straight passage questions. Bad day: Maybe I’d have to go back and restudy a chapter since I had no Idea what I was doing for some passages. That’s OKAY, it’s all about having that solid foundation then doing as much passage practice as possible. 1 hour chem reading chapter / doing M/C discretes 1-2 hours CARS (TPR handbook) 1-2 hours reviewing it Last 6 weeks This is your AAMC TIME!!! First off, shutup your stupid brain for thinking it matters what order you use these materials. You don’t know how many people ask me what the best order is to do this stuff. By FAR, it matters most how you use the materials and what you learn form them, rather then being perfectly prepared based on doing the CARS qpacks before your first full length. HOWEVER, I do believe it’s important to space out the AAMC full lengths and to save them near the end as they are the best guage as to what your actual score will be. The goal should be to do have at least a full week between AAMC full lengths, and to space other AAMC materials in between so you can get BETTER and see score improvements! Do NOT cram all 3 tests right before, it’d be better to move your test date than do that, since if you have to rewrite you’ve just ruined the validity of these tests, the best possible resource to study for the ACTUAL test. Take this time to get down in the damn TRENCHES when it comes to the MCAT. I know I was going 8-10 hours this month every single day. This may or may not be you since I started AAMC stuff 3 weeks out. If I were to do it again, I’d devote it 6-8 weeks straight to deep study of AAMC. The moral of the story however is to LIVE AND BREATH THIS STUFF BOI. Do the official guide. Some do this right off the bat the first month, but I think it works better to Segway you into the period where you’re only focusing on AAMC. Do the Qpacks. These serve as a beautiful refresher to verify one last time whether you know the foundational content. Do the CARS Qpack2 too. It shouldn’t take more than a week. Extend the time if you need to to REALLY hammer home your understanding of the CARS QPACKS and fill any foundational gaps! Do the sample test, review it for 1-2 days Do the section banks and the 1st CARS Qpack. Your grain will grow by 80% in mass if you study these 2 things properly Do FL1. Take 2 DAYS to look it over and spend the next week filling in ANY gaps at all that exist. Refer back to your mistakes and past notes frequently to crystalize the lessons from this test! Do FL2 Same protocol for FL1 except don’t spend a whole week Do the section banks and CARS packs AGAIN Do FL3 Do whatever YOU feel is right leading up to the exam. For me, the most comfortable thing was doing another scan of my “lessons learned” error documents, reading the Kaplan quick sheets, going over some basic orgo and biochem memorization stuff, knowing the physics equations inside and out. Final notes: Orgo’s fun and all, but I had 2 questions on my exam, so it’s almost a NON-issue. Some people tell me otherwise, but just consider that it only constitutes 10% of the section and usually half of that 10% is almost undoubtable from the first 3 chapters of any orgo prep book. Just know the basics and memorize the reactions near the end. This is the only time I’d say not to focus too much on a weakness, FOCUS ON HIGH YIELD WEAKNESSES, NOT LOW YIELD ONES MAGGOT! If you take anything away form this; TLDR; get through content review as fast as possible with the foundational stuff, review your mistakes properly, make a good strategy for ALWAYS getting the right answer no matter what. Don’t be afraid, have fun! This process is sick and I miss the days where I’d rip through a bunch of passages teaching me about Pavlov’s sweaty dogs, That dood who gave himself an ulcer with H. Pylori, and that STUPID FUCKING PICASSO MOTHERFUCKER (TRIGGER WARNING) Just have fun with it, put in the work above and you’re almost guaranteed to get 90+% on this test.
  21. Hello all, after receiving feedback from many of you, I have decided to revamp the MDbuddy webapp. MDbuddy webapp link Mdbuddy phone app link What can MDbuddy 2.0 do? Calculate cGPA and all wGPAs for medical schools in Canada. Provide an analysis for MCAT scores AAMC full length scores. This analysis might show you what your real MCAT score might be compared to the AAMC practice FL. Provides list of requirements for each medical school in canada such as: minimum GPA, minimum MCAT and CASPER. What is new about MDbuddy 2.0? Dynamic database that updates whenever OMSAS updates there website. A simple account system which allows for you to save all your course grades on the website. This way you don't have to type 50 grades every time you want to look at your GPA (this was the case for the old webapp had you not used the 'download grades' feature. Added a conditional wGPA calculator. This means that if you don't qualify for UOFT wGPA because you don't have a full year schedule, MDbuddy will tell you that you don't qualify for UOFT wGPA. Added a list of useful resources which for each medical school in Canada. MCAT analysis, which might provide you guidance on your AAMC-FL scores. More statistics! Simpler, cleaner, more intuitive UI. Why use MDbuddy 2.0? Keeping track of GPA of courses with different weightings, and a changing OMSAS scale system can be confusing! Information on minimum GPA, minimum MCAT, CASPER for ALL Canadian medical schools is provided one a single page. If you like statistics you will like MDbuddy! MDbuddy 2.0 Preview! If you have any feedback or future suggestions for the app, please leave them down below or send an email to: mdbuddyca@gmail.com. All feedback and suggestions are appreciated. If you see any errors please let me know! Note: for those who have messaged/emailed me to monetize/put ads on my work, thank you, but MDbuddy will remain a free community driven webapp. MDbuddy webapp link Mdbuddy phone app link
  22. Hi, first of all thank you for taking the effort to help me out I am an UofT student entering my fourth year UG. I have a 4.0 cGPA and have some research, work and volunteer experience. I wrote my MCAT last summer (did not prepare as I had hoped to ) and my score was 509 (CARS -129, PsychSoc - 125, Bio -127, PhyChem -128). I am an Ontario resident and I hope to apply to all Ontario med schools, UBC. I would really really like to study at UofT or Mac. Do you think I must retake the MCAT? Once again, thanks for your help!!!!
  23. I wrote the MCAT in Aug 2017. Would my scores still be valid for application in the upcoming AMCAS and OMSAS cycles?
  24. Background When I was in high school, I wanted to be nothing but a doctor, then after high school, I wasn't able to get into medical school in India. I decided to pursue Biomedical Engineering, enjoyed it wanted to do more. Did Masters in Biomedical Engineering, enjoyed research even more decided to do Ph.D. in Biomedical engineering, specializing in medical imaging. During Ph.D. moved to the US to pursue the remainder of my research towards the Ph.D. program. While working at a hospital in my research and final year of research, I felt an urge to pursue medicine instead of doing post-doc or industry job. Right now I am in Boston, would be finishing my Ph.D. program by December 2019. Due to my visa restrictions, I have to leave the US for 2 years. I have got Permanent residence in Canada through express entry. I would be moving to Canada as soon as I finish my research work Education All are from India Undergraduate: Biomedical Engineering- Equivalent GPA in Mcgill- 3.7 Masters: Biomedical Engineering- Equivalent GPA- 4.0 Ph.D - Biomedical Engineering - Equivalent GPA - 4.0 Experience 3 years of research experience at Boston Children's Hospital, Harvard Medical School Distinguished Toastmaster- Public Speaking, Non-Profit for >6 years Volunteer experience- 3 years in working for a Non Governmental organization Research: 2 first author publications, 4 Posters and 1 conference publications Questions Do I stand a chance to get admission in a medical school in Canada? Which Province I should choose strategically which will help me with admission? I can choose a province to stay in as a permanent resident Can I get a Scholarship in Canada? What should be my target M-Cat Score? What would be the minimum score which will help me in getting an admission What's your opinion about taking up Medical school after PhD Thank you in advance for patiently reading and responding to my queries
  25. Hi! I'm debating whether if I should take the MCAT this summer (I just finished my first year of undergrad). My reasons are: 1) I'm mostly free during this summer and I'm not planning on taking any summer courses (since I have credits from AP). 2) I have a research position at a lab and currently part of a project (spending at least 30+ hours a week) and I don't think this will take most of my time during the summer. 3) I'm planning on using the MCAT for preparation for my second year courses. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The reasons why I'm not going ahead with this at the moment is because I heard: a) It's way too early for me to take the MCAT + it'll be an absolute waste of my time to spend the summer studying for it because by next year I'll with a more concrete understanding of ochem, biochem, etc to study for it. b) It will lower my gpa?? (saw multiple comments alluding to this but I really don't see how studying for the MCAT earlier over the summer will impede me from doing better in second year courses). c) I can be doing paid work (paid work as in like an internship or a job where your work is impactful to the community). ---- I can see how this is a better use of my time, but I am 100% sure I don't have any chance in getting into an internship because I'm pretty sure the deadline for most was in January. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- IN SUMMARY, I want to study for the MCAT to prepare for my second year courses since I'm not doing anything special this summer and I don't know if this is a smart idea. Thoughts?
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