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If u got 128 + on cars, can u PLEASE answer this question for me?

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Hi everyone.

I am writing the MCAT in a few weeks. I am doing ok on CARS overall... I sometimes have to make educated guesses though. I end up getting 1 or 2 questions wrong per passage. Sometimes I am on a streak and then its like a hit a block and have no clue what the answer is to the question. 

If you got 128+ on the CARS section of the exam, could you please answer these questions for me:

When you were writing the exam, did you feel pretty confident answering EVERY question? Did you ever have to make reasonable guesses? If so, roughly how many? 

I am starting to wonder if making educated guesses aren't normal with CARS and if I am just unprepared or something??

 

Thank u!!

 

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1 minute ago, TheOne said:

Hi everyone.

I am writing the MCAT in a few weeks. I am doing ok on CARS overall... I sometimes have to make educated guesses though. I end up getting 1 or 2 questions wrong per passage. Sometimes I am on a streak and then its like a hit a block and have no clue what the answer is to the question. 

If you got 128+ on the CARS section of the exam, could you please answer these questions for me:

When you were writing the exam, did you feel pretty confident answering EVERY question? Did you ever have to make reasonable guesses? If so, roughly how many? 

I am starting to wonder if making educated guesses aren't normal with CARS and if I am just unprepared or something??

 

Thank u!!

 

Guessing is bad for any exams. You must have some level of abstract thinking that is appropriate for 128 score in CARS.  

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31 minutes ago, TheOne said:

Hi everyone.

I am writing the MCAT in a few weeks. I am doing ok on CARS overall... I sometimes have to make educated guesses though. I end up getting 1 or 2 questions wrong per passage. Sometimes I am on a streak and then its like a hit a block and have no clue what the answer is to the question. 

If you got 128+ on the CARS section of the exam, could you please answer these questions for me:

When you were writing the exam, did you feel pretty confident answering EVERY question? Did you ever have to make reasonable guesses? If so, roughly how many? 

I am starting to wonder if making educated guesses aren't normal with CARS and if I am just unprepared or something??

 

Thank u!!

 

Definitely felt comfortable with all questions. My feeling was that I could always justify my answers in some way. If you feel like you are guessing too many questions, I would go over those questions when practicing and try to explain why the correct answer is correct.

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25 minutes ago, biochem4 said:

Guessing is bad for any exams. You must have some level of abstract thinking that is appropriate for 128 score in CARS.  

I definitely have "some level of abstract thinking," but by no means do I feel solid about every CARS question I answer. 85% at best. I am wondering if getting 128+ on the CARS section means feeling confident about virtually every answered question, or if students who scored 128+ still made a handful of educated guesses. 

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3 minutes ago, iFlayx said:

Definitely felt comfortable with all questions. My feeling was that I could always justify my answers in some way. If you feel like you are guessing too many questions, I would go over those questions when practicing and try to explain why the correct answer is correct.

Thanks, i've been studying my incorrect answers for awhile. I thought I made some improvement because I was only getting 1 question wrong per passage (sometimes not even 1) for a few weeks. I've had an off 3 days for sure. I might postpone my exam so I can practice more. 

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2 minutes ago, TheOne said:

Thanks, i've been studying my incorrect answers for awhile. I thought I made some improvement because I was only getting 1 question wrong per passage (sometimes not even 1) for a few weeks. I've had an off 3 days for sure. I might postpone my exam so I can practice more. 

The thing is everything judges themselves differently. The best if you are consistently scoring 129 or higher on the practice exams, then it should demonstrate that you can perform equally well on the actual MCAT.

 

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To be honest, I felt very good about pretty much every answer I had put for my CARS during the actual test day and I scored a 129 despite some unfortunate circumstances (servers going down mid-CARS leading to having to wait, lose momentum, and rush a lot of questions as a result). However, my performance and confidence in CARS definitely increased with every passage and question I would do; going from sub 125 in the first practice exams to 127 in my last practice exam (3rd one) to 129 on the final, so practice does help a lot. Ultimately, the goal should be to be able to deliver answers with 100% confidence as you would for any other section for which you would study for (ex.: for biology/physics/chemistry, if you study for it, you can generally give answers with confidence).

I believe that what stops people from being confident in 100% of their answers in CARS (as they would be for another section for which they have studied extensively for) is their inability to separate something that they assume when reading a text from what the text explicitly says. Oftentimes, you will feel torn between two answers, and will have to make a guess. But with each passage and question where I guess wrong between these 50/50s, I look back and ask myself: "This answer (the wrong one) looked so right to me before. How come?" And this way I was able to find out what biases/assumptions my brain would automatically make when reading these texts; and by recognizing them, I was able to filter the wrong answer out for every 50/50 question that I had during the actual test. Hope this helps. 

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Well, how confident you feel about your answers can be misleading. To this day, there are still explanations I don't agree with in the practice tests I've taken (very few, but still). In any case, if your confidence somehow reflects how well you did (and that's not a given), you should definitely feel very confident on most passages, and then maybe 1-2 passages where you think you might have made some mistakes. Sometimes I was making only 3 mistakes and getting 129-130.

Best of luck!

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I had a 132, but still felt uncertain on a fair number of questions. It don't think anyone ever feels confident in the MCAT the way you do in normal tests - every time I wrote a practice exam I'd feel like I failed and then get like a 518-523. On the real thing, I had quite a few 50/50s in both CARS and psych/soc, plus some utter confusion in c/p and b/b, but still somehow did very well throughout. 

I think what helped me with CARS was just having a really strong background - a lot of reading, AP English in high school (catch-22 is WAY harder to read than any CARS passage lol), and taking a challenging philosophy course the semester before to tune up my skills.

 

I also used a strategy where I'd pick which answer seemed the most right, explain to myself why it seemed right, and then go through and try to figure out what was wrong with all the others. If there wasn't anything wrong with one of the other options, I'd reassess my first pick. This led to quite a few questions where I felt like several answers could be right, but it let me see the strengths and weaknesses of each option so I could make an informed guess. 

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15 hours ago, TheOne said:

Hi everyone.

I am writing the MCAT in a few weeks. I am doing ok on CARS overall... I sometimes have to make educated guesses though. I end up getting 1 or 2 questions wrong per passage. Sometimes I am on a streak and then its like a hit a block and have no clue what the answer is to the question. 

If you got 128+ on the CARS section of the exam, could you please answer these questions for me:

When you were writing the exam, did you feel pretty confident answering EVERY question? Did you ever have to make reasonable guesses? If so, roughly how many? 

I am starting to wonder if making educated guesses aren't normal with CARS and if I am just unprepared or something??

 

Thank u!!

 

I got a 129. I generally found that the worse I felt actually correlated with a better mark since the right answers often left me feeling uneasy, whereas if I felt too confident, it was often due to choosing "trap" answers that seem great on the surface, but there is something wrong with them at a basic level. So, my confidence was not too great, but at the same time, I kept a positive attitude by reminding myself that I often do well on CARS even if I felt bad about a lot of my answers. I would say I ended up making "reasonable guesses" on the majority of questions (i.e. usually I could rule out 2 options, and was stuck choosing between the other 2).  

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On 7/9/2018 at 11:34 PM, TheOne said:

Hi everyone.

I am writing the MCAT in a few weeks. I am doing ok on CARS overall... I sometimes have to make educated guesses though. I end up getting 1 or 2 questions wrong per passage. Sometimes I am on a streak and then its like a hit a block and have no clue what the answer is to the question. 

If you got 128+ on the CARS section of the exam, could you please answer these questions for me: 

When you were writing the exam, did you feel pretty confident answering EVERY question? Did you ever have to make reasonable guesses? If so, roughly how many? 

I am starting to wonder if making educated guesses aren't normal with CARS and if I am just unprepared or something??

 

Thank u!!

 

I feel like it depends on the passage. I made 1-2 mistakes in some of the more abstract/difficult passages during practice tests and would guess occasionally, but with passages that I felt more comfortable with (due to the author's writing style or the topic), I would usually get no more than 1 question wrong. In the end I got 128+, but going into the exam I didn't think I could score above 127. The exam definitely wasn't easy and I did make some educated guesses here and there, but sometimes your performance during test day can surprise you. Overall though, do your best on the AAMC practice tests, and based on that you'll see approximately where you stand in terms of CARS.

Best of luck!

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