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PCAT study tips from "the 99%ile club"

Discussion in 'PCAT Discussions' started by wmw, Aug 5, 2010.

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  1. PharmaMaya

    PharmaMaya Pre-Pharmacy Student

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    Hey, I've been there, serisouly I have...and even though I loathe using them, I think this might justify putting it on the credit card? But thats just me, like I said. Some people don't even get a lot out of Dr. Collins's stuff. But it was worth it to me. And I'm a lady, bro. :D
  2. Ji the Captain

    Ji the Captain The Unbreakable

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    aww bummer :( sry i call everyone that...

    good luck studying
  3. Goriyor

    Goriyor

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    I am going to take the PCAT exam In october but im having a hard time studying.....can someone plz help me make a schedule for me to follow with grasping alot of information plz??
  4. Ji the Captain

    Ji the Captain The Unbreakable

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    To be honest with you. only YOU know your own study habits and no one else does. Therefore, it is your job to sit down and work out a efficient study schedule that suits your habits and needs. No one knows your work schedule or what is going on in your life.

    The best way would be to take some exams and see where your weaknesses are at, and then work from there. Good luck;)
  5. Ji the Captain

    Ji the Captain The Unbreakable

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    To be honest with you. only YOU know your own study habits and no one else does. Therefore, it is your job to sit down and work out a efficient study schedule that suits your habits and needs. No one knows your work schedule or what is going on in your life.

    The best way would be to take some exams and see where your weaknesses are at, and then work from there. Good luck;)
  6. Goriyor

    Goriyor

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    thank you.........one more thing, u think studying 5 hours a day for 5days a week good enough to be ready for the october exam?
  7. CutaneousRabbit

    CutaneousRabbit

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    IMO, that's way overkill. I probably studied 8-10 hours a week for the two weeks prior to the test, plus an hour here and there before that two week mark. All in all, I'd guess I put in under 30 hours studying for the PCAT.

    Your mileage may vary.
  8. pch

    pch

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    I honestly don't thinkthe number of hrs= how much success. I mean some days i study for 6 hrs straight and I still feel like I learned absolutely nothing. some days, only 2 or 3 hrs but I feel like I know a lot already.so it really depends. my suggestion though, make a schedule. make sure u follow it.. it doesn't matter how many hours you study a day but make sure you get what you need to cover for THAT day done.
  9. wmw

    wmw

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    i studied ~90min/day for ~30 days
  10. Goriyor

    Goriyor

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    Thanks for all the advice :)
  11. eyes12

    eyes12

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    Where can I buy Dr. Collins book?
  12. wmw

    wmw

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    its not a book, its a series of packets of information/problem sets.
    You buy it online from pcatprepclass.com it costs $325
  13. Ji the Captain

    Ji the Captain The Unbreakable

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    :smuggrin:
  14. eyes12

    eyes12

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    Do we have to know constants?
  15. delano2000

    delano2000 D-Mod likes to parTAY Moderator Emeritus

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    Are you talking about constants in Chemistry? If so, then yes you do need to know them or at least understand them.
  16. wmw

    wmw

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    anyone with any questions for saturdays test?
  17. nycrxdream

    nycrxdream Scholar

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    Well I did all the above, for the verbals I just did the practice exams for Dr Collins and pearson, the biology, I did the practice exams for Dr Collins and Pearson, the Chemistry the same thing, The math im sticking with Collins; the pearson one is too complicated, and the reading is omg... I dont know how to study for it! I did Collins, but ultimately Im going with the pearson exam. Im just going to look over some of the questions. I went through Dr collins over and over. Im just worried about the verbal a bit... just I just memorized it and tried to understand the meaning... I dont know how to study for the reading... I used Kaplan and it was too hard, I used the prep course kaplan for reading also... Im a bit worried, but Im sure everything will work out. :thumbup:
  18. wmw

    wmw

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    Well sounds like youre preparing as well as you can. good luck
  19. Smallmac

    Smallmac

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    Is it worth spending any of these last few hours going over spec readings? I got the McGraw Hill review and their Ochem is ridiculous, but I'm not sure if I need to recognize bands and groups and whatnot. I just have a vague understanding i.e. which spec is used best for finding which results.
  20. wmw

    wmw

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    I would use the last time you have going over bio concepts you don't understand well, also ochem functional groups. If you feel good on those two areas then practice reading comp problems
  21. xprettygirl11

    xprettygirl11

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    Any last minute time saving tricks for handling integrals, limits, and derivatives? I really need to improve in Quant, and last during the last test, I had to run back and fill in about 10 questions. :(
  22. wmw

    wmw

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    I didn't face any terrible integrals or derivative, limits are not bad if you check the collins and work the examples there, try cliffsnotes for integrals/derivatives.
  23. nycrxdream

    nycrxdream Scholar

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    I just dislike the implicit diffusional on one of the Collins problems, along with a chain and a quotient -____-. Im fine with them alone, but simple diffusional and intergals I can do :xf:
  24. bballa99

    bballa99 wait what

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    In all honesty, I think that your performance on the PCAT is obviously related to your educational experience (1st/2nd/3rd/4th year). As a 1st year I took the PCAT using just the kaplan book and scored a 75, this is with knowledge of calc I and first year bio/chem/phys. If you were say a 4th year, you would honestly not need Dr.Collins and would do amazingly well with just review and practice tests..
  25. Rubisco

    Rubisco

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    Possibly. Collins does offer a lot of extra practice though. I think, on top of the experience like you said, one of the most important factors is timing. Most of the material isn't so bad, sometimes it's just finishing it on time and developing a good pace. but if you can figure all that out within the three pearson practice tests, then you're set. If you want more practice, extend to Dr. collins.
  26. CHeart21

    CHeart21

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    I studied mostly through the Collins packet because everyone on here kept mentioning it as having the exact questions and material...I just took the Oct PCAT and it did not help me at all. It was false hope, the math was nothing compared to Kaplan or Collins, the chemistry had maybe 2 of the same questions (not exactly the same), biology had maybe 4, the rest of the questions were random diseases and microbiology. The essay topics I got were not on the Collins either. I'm probably going to have to retake it. It's a hit or miss each time you take it, because I've taken it in Jan. too and the material was focused on different subjects than this past Oct. one.
  27. johnnytinx

    johnnytinx

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    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011
  28. chemguy79

    chemguy79 New Member Moderator Emeritus

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    WORD to everything that you stated! I used Dr. Collins' study guide and scored at the 99th percentile, 99th percentile in Chemistry & Quantitative, 96th percentile in Biology, 92nd percentile in Verbal, and 84th percentile on Reading.

    I really think that some people don't understand what Dr. Collins' study guide is intended to provide. It seems as if some people are expecting to see the exact same questions and you will be extremely disappointed. It is all aboutthe types of questions and deciding whether or not you understand those concepts.

    If you score poorly after using Dr. Collins' study guide, I think that it's important to find out what you were expecting from the study guide, where you think that it feel short and most importantly, determining how you can remedy those issues before taking the PCAT again. There are many people on the board who have used his study guide successfully and it wouldn't hurt to ask them not only what they did to do well on the exam but HOW they used his guide so one can follow in their footsteps to receive a great PCAT score. :)
  29. Astridb12

    Astridb12

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    Hey guys! I really need advice. I took the August PCat and here is was I got:

    Verbal : 45%
    Math:50%
    Bio: 51%
    Chem: 43 % ;(
    RC: 10% WTF??
    Comp: 33%

    Anyway October PCAT came around and I froze, I chose the no score option. Im taking it in January again and this time I will be fully prepared. Thing is Janu PCAT is Jan 22 and deadline for applications in Jan 5 for my school (although they do accept January) should I even still apply for Fall 2011 admissions or should I just apply for Fall 2012??I already got my LORs which sucks cause I would have to get them again and I'll be so embarrassed to ask. What should I do?:(
  30. johnnytinx

    johnnytinx

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    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011
  31. sayeobrid

    sayeobrid

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    Here are my 2 cents..

    Pick 3 books
    1. Dr. Collins Self Study Guide
    2. Kaplan PCAT
    3. REA Flash Cards
    4. Pearson Practice Tests

    First, complete the reading from Kaplan PCAT book. Read all sections thouroughly. If possible, then read in details from your college notes along with Kaplan book. Just read and read. Read it, just to get familiarity with all contents and topics specially Biology, Chemistry and Math. Read tips for Reading section and Essay writing from Kaplan book.

    Second, start with Dr. Collins sections. Wait a minute..! Do not touch any tests yet. You are not yet ready for it. Complete all sections from Dr. Collins. This time, if possible make notes. Read, Understand and by heart it. You need to by heart all meanings of verbal's word lists and analogies. Create your own word list by adding new words, you don't know. Best method is is write and write again.

    Third, take REA. This is to test how well you are ready. Nope.. not the time for any test yet. Try to answer all questions in REA without checking answer. Test your self and note down where you are making mistakes. REA is good for verbal and maths. It will give you good practice.

    Now its the time for tests. Start from Collins tests. Make sure you have around 20 days remaining for the actual PCAT exam. Now start giving all sections tests in a day and review your answer in next day. You need to give all tests again and again even if you have already done it so. PLEASE DO NOT ANSWER BY LOOKING AT THE ANSWER, IF YOU ALREADY KNOW THE ANSWER. TRY TO RECALCULATE IT. This technique will improve your confidence, answering method and speed. This is why it is important to give more and more tests. Give them again and again.

    After Dr. Collins, take Kaplan book and give tests. ALSO PLEASE BUY TESTS FROM PEARSON SITE. These tests will give you similar experience to actual PCAT exam. The score from these tests will give you an idea in what range you fall in.

    That's it. Have a cup full of Sundae and watch nice Vampire movie. Top Pharmacy Schools are in line to welcome you.

    Good Luck....
  32. jennyaudrey

    jennyaudrey

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    sayeobrid,

    So how many months do you think it's good enough to finish all what you suggested?
  33. sayeobrid

    sayeobrid

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    For a fresher like me, it may take maximum 2 months.

    But for genius, it may take a month. 15 days reviews and 15 days tests.
  34. johnnytinx

    johnnytinx

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    Last edited: Feb 27, 2011
  35. infodeji

    infodeji

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    Hello,

    My main concern is the biology and reading section. There is just too much information in the biology section for me to memorize. Like how much in depth should one study it. Also for the reading section. Any tips?
  36. jack rabbit

    jack rabbit

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    For Biology you need to go in depth, study/memorize/know/be able to recall every single detail (don't ignore tables and diagrams) in the book. I recommend McGraw Hill's Biology and A&P section. Also, review plant biology in Kaplan or some other book. I'm not in the 99% club, but I was able to pull off a 90+ in Biology.

    I have no tips for the reading section. I never really studied for it. But you def should.
  37. FuturePharmD81

    FuturePharmD81

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    .....
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2011
  38. JohnnyRomanes

    JohnnyRomanes wussup doge

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    Thanks for the tips! I live near where Dr. Collins offers his course so I'll be taking that during the Summer.
  39. infodeji

    infodeji

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    Thanks a lot
  40. harmonidrum

    harmonidrum

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    I bookmarked this thread when I originally found it a month or two ago. I wanted to be a member of the club in a very bad way.

    So anyways without further ado here are my scores.

    VA-461(99)
    Bio-447(96)
    RC-449(97)
    QA-429(84)
    Chem-463(98)
    Comp-450(99)

    I highly recommend Dr. Collins' packet. Although I'm pretty confident I could have scored in the high 90s without it, the 99th percentile is indubitably due to his packet.

    My study routine was fairly consistent over 4.5 months, taking full-time classes and working 20 hrs a week the entire time. I spent an average of 2-3 hrs a day the first few months, then really picked up my stride a for the last two months. The last month I put a good 5-7 hours/day most every day. I went over every Collins test timed twice, and then reviewed recalcitrant problems that I highlighted in the back of the subtest a couple days before the exam. I also went over the Pearson exams after I took each one, and made sure I understood the material conceptually for every problem.

    I also pretty much memorized the Kaplan bio, which wasn't really all that helpful. As far as the verbal section goes, I memorized about 4000 GRE words, which was immeasurably helpful on the verbal. (I scored 99th and finished with ~15 minutes to spare on that particular section).

    Hope this helps you join the club!
  41. gotgame740

    gotgame740

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    I took my PCAT today. Although I didn't think I would be anywhere near this "club", I ended up pretty close.

    Here are my scores:

    VA-437-92%
    Bio-440-94%
    RC-449-97%
    QA-441-93%
    Chem-463-98%
    Comp-446-98%

    I would HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend Dr. Collins study material. Helped me immensely on the test. Many of his questions showed up again on the test. Also Pearson practice exams were pretty helpful. Make sure you time yourself though. Make note of any weak areas and go over them.
  42. dudecoolname

    dudecoolname words under my username

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    Wow, congrats. Your effort is definitely representative of your scores. I studied 2+ hours a day for a couple moths and got an 83. Did you do anything special for Reading or do you just read often? It was by far my weakest area but I didn't prepare for that section much. I figured it wasn't an area you could really improve quickly....However, I think if I retake the PCAT ill definetly do more to prepare for it.
  43. JyNadaril

    JyNadaril

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    Hi, Congratulations on your results =] What sources/books did you use to learn your GRE words?

    Thanks,
    DJ
  44. Iqra

    Iqra

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    Hey!
    I am an avid reader and have done really well in all my English classes. For some reason, I absolutely suck at the reading comprehension portion of the exam. I have no clue as to what I am doing wrong.
    Can someone suggest any websites/other material that will help me improve?
    Thanks!
  45. loquaciouss2000

    loquaciouss2000

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    hi guys, i was just wondering if 53 composite score good....My previous score was.

    OLD..................... New Score
    VA:17.................. VA: 40
    Bio:25................. BIO:94
    RC:8....... ............RC: 34
    QA:24..... ............QA:36
    CHM: 32.............. CHM:48
    Composite:15.......... Composite:53
  46. harmonidrum

    harmonidrum

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    No, a 53 composite is not good. While you might be able to eek out an interview at a few fringe schools, most are going to frown at that low of a score, seeing that you only scored well in one section.
  47. chemguy79

    chemguy79 New Member Moderator Emeritus

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    I wouldn't say that the poster's chances are THAT bad. Remember that GPA factors into the equation as well. The score has improved drastically, but still below the average by quite a few schools by 10-20 percent.

    If you don't want to take the PCAT again, roll the dice. However, be prepared to hear that your PCAT is a deterring factor for some schools.
  48. MsMaafu

    MsMaafu

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    I feel personally offended by this post. You really have no right to suggest other people can truly afford something when they say they can't. You obviously have a steady income, probably from your parents. But some of us, such as myself, are struggling to even pay for the PCAT registration fees. I rely on scholarships and federal grants to pay for tuition without a penny from my parents. If I had the money for Collins I would get in in the heartbeat, but my first priority is finding the money for application fees after barely being able to afford my housing, transportation, and textbooks. :(
  49. thesituation559

    thesituation559 Ready for whatever

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    I don't think he meant to offend anyone, I believe he is trying to say Dr. Collins packet is extremely helpful. He shouldn't have said it they way he did as some people really can't afford it and it's a shame that some people have to go thru that.
  50. xNeenax

    xNeenax Delano's Minion

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    Hi I need your advice.
    I had to make one choice buy the collins book or take the Kaplan class. My mom said the Kaplan class was better because she heard of someone passing the PCAT with a very high percentile after taking the course. I chose the Kaplan class. Now that I've looked into it more I should have bought the book instead, however, I can't change my decision now.
    I'm half way through the course and my score on the practice exams are
    Verbal: 362
    RC: 302
    Bio: 343---I haven't taken Bio II yet
    QA: 389
    Chem. 399

    I need a high score (like a 444 or above) to overcome my low gpa, What do you suggest I should do without having to buy more material. I have to pay for tuition and textbooks, so I need something that's available in the library or online.
    Also, I'm taking the PCAT in September, so how should I be studying?

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