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Combining TPRH books with Kaplan practice problems and other materials?

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by DanGee777, May 4, 2012.

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  1. DanGee777

    DanGee777

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    Hey everyone,

    I've been self-prepping for a couple of weeks now with TBR and Nova physics, but I start a Kaplan course next week that runs through end of June. I'm looking at a mid-July MCAT date with about 130 hours prep completed so far and another 600 hrs planned before the MCAT exam.I just got the Kaplan content books, and I gotta say that I strongly prefer the TPRH content books that I already own -- the review series that come with the TPRH course. I love the TPRH bio and the TPRH physics especially, and of course I love my Nova physics. The TPRH gen chem and ochem aren't too bad either (although I do think TPRH bio and TPRH physics are superior) -- I find them to be very accessible.

    Here's the question: Would I mess up my performance in the Kaplan MCAT course if, instead of using Kaplan for content review, I used TPRH books for content review? I'd still do all the assigned Kaplan work as part of the course along with my Nova physics reading+problems (and some of EK 1001s for boning up on content), it's just that I'd be pairing the Kaplan problem sets, quizzes, and FL exams with the appropriate TPRH reading instead of the asigned Kaplan reading (I assume that I can find the relevant chapters in TPRH with minimal difficulty). My primary concern with doing this is if the two companies' prep books cover material quite differently from each other -- I can't ascertain if they do from a quick glance. If the Kaplan online practice materials are geraed to those that have gleaned their info from Kaplan books, then using TPRH books could put me at a disadvantage.The real reason that I signed up for the Kaplan course is two-fold: first, because the instructor is good and I feel like I have some gaps in my basic science knowledge, and I heard Kaplan is good for that, and second, because of all of their online prep materials that they have available.

    Unfortunately, I've also heard that Kaplan's content books can't hold a candle to TPRH's, so I'd rather use TPRH's to plug up holes in my content knowledge. A few people have told me however that Kaplan books are superior to TPRH for content review if you are deficient in some of the basic science topics -- like I am. So I'm wondering if my plan makes any sense at all or if it is likely to lead to disaster? I also plan to stay away from Kaplan's verbal strategy of passage mapping and just do my own thing, because my own way works better, and most of my verbal review is going to come from the TPRH verbal workbook + TPRH in-class compendium + EK101 instead of from Kaplan. I'll only do the few verbal assignments that Kaplan requires in order to stay eligible for the guarantee that I can repeat the course if I'm not satisfied.

    I know some on here will recommend that I stick some TBR in there as well, but I don't see how it's possible. I can't do TBR passages after TPRH reading, can I? I've heard from people that you have to do the TBR readings before the accompanying passages or else you won't get much out of it. Opinions on this are appreciated, however.
    Last edited: May 4, 2012
  2. DanGee777

    DanGee777

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    Bump.

    Cliffnotes for my tl;dr original post:

    Is it okay to use TPRH for content reading to accompany all the Kaplan assignments that are a part of my Kaplan course that starts on Monday? I know most people think that Kaplan content books are mediocre, so can I get away with this mix-and-match?

    Thanks!
  3. kasho11

    kasho11

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    I went through the Kaplan course and did most of the reading, some of the homework. I slacked off so I pushed my January date back until May. After reading through Kaplan to get a good sense of everything I used TPRH for my second run through. I worked through all of TPRH science workbook and now I am going back and finishing the rest of Kaplan's online materials.

    I would recommend following the reading with Kaplan and supplementing with TPRH. If you are truly motivated, read through Kaplan quickly and follow it up with TPRH for a second go around a couple of weeks after reading the corresponding Kaplan sections.
  4. DanGee777

    DanGee777

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    Kasho, thanks for the response. I will most likely have some time to supplement Kaplan readings with TPRH readings. I am also halfway through Nova physics (the readings and the problems) and I plan to finish that in the next couple of weeks.

    I have been doing TBR passages up till now following TBR readings (except for bio, where I use TPRH for content review followed by TBR bio passages.) Do you think it is possible for me to get a lot out of future TBR passages that I do if I paid them with Kaplan/TPRH reading instead of TBR? I want to complete every Kaplan assignment (required and recommended) on top of finishing Nova physics and BR passages, so I doubt I'll have the time to do anymore TBR readings. I only have 70 days till my MCAT. I assume I should ignore Kaplan's verbal advice and strategies, right? Most people think it isn't very good. I need to boost my science scores; my verbal is around 11/12 so it's fine.
  5. DanGee777

    DanGee777

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    Any other thoughts? Much appreciated.

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