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Rollerssb

4th MCAT retake

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Hello everyone,

I'm having severe trouble in getting even a passing score on Mcat. First time i wrote in 2017 I took the Kaplan prep course (cost around 2k) and in the end recieved a score of 495. The next year in the summer of 2018 i wrote again, this time without a course and only self study. I recieved a score of 493. This year after self studying all summer, i again recieved a similar score.

When looking back at the percent correct in each section during my practice exams, i seem to be getting around 50-60% however this translates to a much lower percentile on the actual mcat. 

 

So now, I'm willing to write the mcat again in the summer of 2020, I was hoping if any of you had any sort of strategy i could implement, extra resources to be recommended, and whether or not i should take another prep course in order to improve my score. 

 

Thanks in advance :)

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I would not recommend a prep course. I started in the 490s as well and was able to improve to up to a 510 just by using AAMC/Khan Academy material. The MCAT isn't very knowledge based, its mostly applying concepts and thinking critically. So I would recommend doing a lot more practice questions and sticking to AAMC material. Don't rely on Kaplan too much. Just read the books and take notes on things you're not familiar with. Use the AAMC flashcards! I would also recommend looking over your practice tests and seeing which kind of questions you are getting wrong. Then create a strategy from there. 

 

Good luck :)

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Yes that may be a good idea. I think I've been focusing too much on trying to learn the material rather than practicing what I've learned. I will definitely try to do more practice exams. 

 

Also you mentioned Khan academy, do you know of any other free resources online that could help?

 

Thanks

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I did the practice test from Next Step too, they also have free discrete questions which they email you everyday. I used **DELETED** for CARS practice which has tons of free questions. Altius also has a free practice test and you can buy more if you like. Most resources aren't free unfortunately :(

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On 9/14/2019 at 9:21 PM, Rollerssb said:

Yes that may be a good idea. I think I've been focusing too much on trying to learn the material rather than practicing what I've learned. I will definitely try to do more practice exams. 

 

Also you mentioned Khan academy, do you know of any other free resources online that could help?

 

Thanks

Use Uworld if you have not already. I would do Kaplan books for a quick content review (don't spend more than a month), Anki to keep up your knowledge, do Uworld WHILE practicing, start doing nextstep/Altius/EK FLs (don't bother with Kaplan or TPR, they're too hard/underrepresented), and AAMC stuff in the last 4-5 weeks.

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uworld was a great supplementary tool for me, it helped a lot and it doesnt cost much compared to other companies. I used kaplan self-paced package, completed 90% of the adaptive bank, completed all of AAMC materials and used uworld ( I only practiced psychology, biology, biochem and CARS bc of time). I first started attacking my weak points using kaplan adaptive bank and watched videos and review books/notes from previous mcat writing. I practiced aamc materials at the same time. Then after I finished with kaplan, I stated uworld (you need to make a base for yourself and then add to it, I made the base using kaplan and then switched to uworld). Uworld was great. I suggest writing a full length everyweek after you make a base for yourself. 

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On 9/14/2019 at 10:19 AM, Rollerssb said:

Hello everyone,

I'm having severe trouble in getting even a passing score on Mcat. First time i wrote in 2017 I took the Kaplan prep course (cost around 2k) and in the end recieved a score of 495. The next year in the summer of 2018 i wrote again, this time without a course and only self study. I recieved a score of 493. This year after self studying all summer, i again recieved a similar score.

When looking back at the percent correct in each section during my practice exams, i seem to be getting around 50-60% however this translates to a much lower percentile on the actual mcat. 

 

So now, I'm willing to write the mcat again in the summer of 2020, I was hoping if any of you had any sort of strategy i could implement, extra resources to be recommended, and whether or not i should take another prep course in order to improve my score. 

 

Thanks in advance :)

Not to be mean here but practically if you have written this 4 times and can’t do better than 50th percentile should you maybe look at different career paths? Medicine isNt necessarily for everyone. 

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It would be helpful to know your exam breakdowns, but I started with a 21 (6/6/9 before the new mcat came out) and then got 514 (127/129/127/131) on my second attempt using TPR (aim for 127 on each section as that correlates to a bit higher on the actual MCAT). I also used EK for CARS and found between TPR and EK and the AAMC practice exams, I was ready. A big portion also is your test taking skills, time management, ability to stay focused for the length of exam. 

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Just FYI, there's a lifetime limit on how many times you can take the MCAT. I believe its seven times. I think you should make sure you're scoring well on the practice tests before you write again.

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On 3/27/2020 at 12:52 PM, pretty pea said:

Hi all

I was going to consider starting a pre-group for the MCAT online, because study groups in person cannot happen anymore. I was going to facilitate one on a site called www.joinhowdy.com that lets you make free study groups and meet with video chat.

Is this something people would be interested in?

Let me know!

 

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On 9/14/2019 at 10:19 AM, Rollerssb said:

Hello everyone,

I'm having severe trouble in getting even a passing score on Mcat. First time i wrote in 2017 I took the Kaplan prep course (cost around 2k) and in the end recieved a score of 495. The next year in the summer of 2018 i wrote again, this time without a course and only self study. I recieved a score of 493. This year after self studying all summer, i again recieved a similar score.

When looking back at the percent correct in each section during my practice exams, i seem to be getting around 50-60% however this translates to a much lower percentile on the actual mcat. 

 

So now, I'm willing to write the mcat again in the summer of 2020, I was hoping if any of you had any sort of strategy i could implement, extra resources to be recommended, and whether or not i should take another prep course in order to improve my score. 

 

Thanks in advance :)

I took the MCAT 3 times and improved my score from 494 to 510.. I will send you the link to the r/MCAT post I made with tips on how I improved. 

Anyone else also interested, feel free to PM me.

 

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i wrote it twice (510-->518) and the biggest mistake i made the first time was not practicing enough. I focused too much on content and only wrote 2 practice tests, hence my score on cars was below 50 percentile. (no prep course)

the second time - i reviewed all content quickly and went back to it as needed while continuing to do tons of practice questions and practice tests weekly (did 9 practice tests in total). you need to practice in testing conditions and make sure that the actual test just feels like another practice test. (bought Princeton online prep course just for practice materials). if you do get stuck on questions, flag them and move on - timing is especially important to prevent panicking at the end of a section where you have 5 min to read/answer the questions with a passage.

reviewing practice tests is important to find out where you are making mistakes in critical thinking/need to review content.

hope this helps!

 

 

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What is your daily study regimen? What are your weak subjects?

You should consider doing  passages (e.g.: Examkracker 1001 physics/biology, etc.) to study and do questions, using Anki to consolidate the information, and taking AAMC practice tests to simulate the real deal.

If you can incorporate all 3 into a weekly study regimen, you should be golden.

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I used the self-paced Princeton Review course and absolutely LOVED it. It was super challenging, but I felt like it over-prepared me and I ended up scoring very well. I must say, though, that I did one book at a time (not swapping between topics as it reccommends), made my own summary sheets of important concepts, spent approx 8h per day for 3-months, and did several practice exams between review sessions (after completing a first study of all the materials). I was lucky to have won funding in my masters that extended past my early thesis defence, so I was financially supported for a summer of not working. For those that are unable to take the time off for studying, I think it would still be possible to put in a few hours after work each day to keep yourself on-top of the material and continuously building upon what you just learnt!

Good luck!!! I'm sure you'll kill it next time.

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