MedicineNutt

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I took the AAMC #6 Practice test today and scored 8PS/4VR/9BS

My VR score always fluctuates...usually between 4-8 (with 8 being the best)...I've tried too many strategies, and have NEVER found one that works to decrease time I spend reading passages. I just don't know what to do. I'm this close to giving up because of the verbal section :(

My recent strategy I like very much involves passage mapping...where I jot down main ideas from each paragraph; however, it is WAY too time consuming. I had to guess on 2.5 passages because I was crunched for time! I could have gotten at least a 7 if it weren't for the time.

Anyone have a strategy I can use?? I'm running out of time!
 

SN2ed

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The main problem you've run into is going through too many strategies. You should stick with one good strategy and master it. Unfortunately, I think it would be wise to not have your test scored. It is unlikely that you'll score your highest or above in verbal with that level of fluctuation.

Check out Vihsadas's verbal guide:

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showpost.php?p=6022602&postcount=96
 
May 5, 2009
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I took the AAMC #6 Practice test today and scored 8PS/4VR/9BS

My VR score always fluctuates...usually between 4-8 (with 8 being the best)...I've tried too many strategies, and have NEVER found one that works to decrease time I spend reading passages. I just don't know what to do. I'm this close to giving up because of the verbal section :(

My recent strategy I like very much involves passage mapping...where I jot down main ideas from each paragraph; however, it is WAY too time consuming. I had to guess on 2.5 passages because I was crunched for time! I could have gotten at least a 7 if it weren't for the time.

Anyone have a strategy I can use?? I'm running out of time!
Ok so I'm not gonna sit here and pretend like I'm a pro at verbal either... but one thing that I did notice that does actually help is to AVOID MAPPING via paper and pen style! Instead, try to map the passage in your mind; take mental notes after every few sentences, e.g. "what did I just read? what is the author's main argument? ..." you will find that this helps you memorize and retain information as you read and also allows for you to adopt a critical thinking approach to reading the context and helps you answer questions more efficiently. If a question asks you about a certain famous persona mentionned in the passage and you remember it being somewhere in the second paragraph, go back there instantly and try to figure out what the question is asking about it... As you read,
try highlighting key words, important names ... anything that might seem relevant to a question. Also try and focus as much as possible while you read, and I know this can be quite hard, so maybe try getting some earplugs to tune out everything else in your surrounding environment... the best thing to tune out though is your own thoughts!;) So try working on that if it's an issue for you. Also, another thing that may help you focus is to silently say the words you are reading (ok I know this sounds contradictory but try to say the word, without actually saying it, as in make out the shape with your mouth, but do not emit any sound while doing so or else you might get evil stares on test day:smuggrin:) Also, I would suggest doing as many verbal passages as possible... I know you're kinda stressed in time but perhaps devoting a couple of days to only verbal might be beneficial in your case...

Good luck with the rest of your studying :)... I'm sure you can pull up a couple of points between now and test day. Just remember that it IS do-able and that you can do it too, it's just a matter of finding a technique/strategy that works for you!

Mel:luck:
 
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MedicineNutt

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The main problem you've run into is going through too many strategies. You should stick with one good strategy and master it. Unfortunately, I think it would be wise to not have your test scored. It is unlikely that you'll score your highest or above in verbal with that level of fluctuation.

Check out Vihsadas's verbal guide:

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showpost.php?p=6022602&postcount=96
so you're basically suggesting that I shouldn't show up to my scheduled test date? I'm a little confused...
 

ncguy2005

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No, since you can't cancel it, you might as well get the MCAT experience. Just void your test in the end.
I agree. You get to eliminate the jitters of taking the MCAT for the first time, and you're not wasting your money. Verbal is pretty important, an interviewer told me last year that the BS and VR scores are the most important thing they look at when they consider MCAT scores (PS is still pretty important though).
 
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MedicineNutt

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No, since you can't cancel it, you might as well get the MCAT experience. Just void your test in the end.
i really wish i could do that, but I've already submitted my application...schools are waiting for my MCAT score. so, that's advice i cannot use. good try.
 

G1SG2

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i really wish i could do that, but I've already submitted my application...schools are waiting for my MCAT score. so, that's advice i cannot use. good try.
Don't be nervous. Just clear your head and focus-you might get an 8, your best score. I realized that you focus so much more on test day because it's the real thing. Just sit up straight, read actively, and really think about what the author is trying to tell you.
 

Palaver87

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This is my strategy. I raised my score from the 4-5 range to about 9 so far

1. Read every passage (Reason: if you want a good score, you have to read every passage and answer all questions, so do them all)

2. Quickly jot down main point of passage when done if you are a little confused about passage (Reason: many questions are based off of the main idea of the entire passage)

e.g., Red is better than blue

3. Most important: Note all the questions you got wrong, understand why you got them wrong, then understand how you can apply that new knowledge to other questions. Put all these in a journal. Review them every now and then. (Reason: maximize ability to learn from mistakes)

E.g., next time, be sure to differentiate between "usually" and "sometimes" in questions and answer choices



You'll eventually have a list of mistakes several pages long. Some questions can get annoying because, even after knowing the answer, you still cant figure out why you got it wrong, or how you can apply this to other questions. I improved rapidly with this strategy. The improvement of this and any strategy probably follows the reaction rate vs substrate saturation curve in enzymes if you know what I mean :p
 

SN2ed

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i really wish i could do that, but I've already submitted my application...schools are waiting for my MCAT score. so, that's advice i cannot use. good try.
Regardless you should delay your test to late August at least. A low MCAT will only work against you. It doesn't matter when you apply if your MCAT isn't good. Furthermore, a verbal score 6 or below would automatically get you screened out at most schools.
 
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MedicineNutt

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Regardless you should delay your test to late August at least. A low MCAT will only work against you. It doesn't matter when you apply if your MCAT isn't good. Furthermore, a verbal score 6 or below would automatically get you screened out at most schools.
Ok so, how do I reschedule?
 

vandyam

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Go to the website where you signed up for the MCAT and reschedule -- the option is right there when you log in. It will cost you $55, but worth it to avoid a 4 on the MCAT if you are still scoring around this.
 
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Here is what I do, and it's been pretty successful thus far (VR scores on practice 11-13). I hope this helps!!

1. SPEED READ. Practice this. Many people backtrack when they read without realizing it, push yourself to keep on with the sentence and you'll be surprised that you can understand everything you've read without having to re-read parts. Also, sometimes people "vocalize" the passage in their head - as if you are reading it aloud, but to yourself. This is also a source of slow reading. Once again, push yourself to just focus on the text and move swiftly through it.

2. Jot down main ideas. Mapping is a really great way to save time when answering questions, but when you map, use symbols. For instance, instead of "red is better than blue," write "red>blue," or even better, "R>B."

Also, other tips that I learned the hard way through my MCAT: use ear plugs. By the time I got to my VR section, other people were already starting their WS. The click click clicking and typing sounds because totally distracting and I had opted our of the ear plugs. I attempted to use the head phones, but they didn't fit my head very well (and I could still hear everything).
 
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Hey just to let you know, i was also scoring crazy low numbers, 5 and 6, on verbal days before my test. When i took the test i did so much better. On test day you are so much more focused and it is just easier i think. Just dont let the nerves get to you but usually they are calmed down after the PS section. I didn't use any special techniques jsut read the passage and then answered the questions.
 

quynhhuong

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Hey just to let you know, i was also scoring crazy low numbers, 5 and 6, on verbal days before my test. When i took the test i did so much better. On test day you are so much more focused and it is just easier i think. Just dont let the nerves get to you but usually they are calmed down after the PS section. I didn't use any special techniques jsut read the passage and then answered the questions.
Omg, u've made me felt so much better. I suddenly scored a 5 on AAMC and it's freaking me out. :scared: VR is my greatest enemy and I'm hoping for a 9. An 8 would satisfy me.
How many points did u improve on the real test?
 
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i just got an 8 on AAMC 9, and a 7 on AAMC 10...I pretty much guessed on the last passages for both exams... My exam is in four days, Im averaging 11-12 on Bio and 10's on PS...but I'm really scared verbal is gonna hold me back....

I must say that I am retaking for a third time, previous i got 9,10 on my verbals, but that was 2 years ago....

You guys think I should score the exam?
 
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MedicineNutt

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haha i just took AAMC 7

I got my highest score yet....a 9 VR

seriously, this section is just a mental challenge for me. it's soooo easy to tune out! zzzz i don't even read for fun unless it's a science/medicine-related article.

yo POWP, you should score it in my honest opinion. you'll probably do better than you think with a past history of scoring a 10...i, on the other hand, probably need to work on consistency in the few days leading up to the real deal.
 

ODorDO

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Hey just to let you know, i was also scoring crazy low numbers, 5 and 6, on verbal days before my test. When i took the test i did so much better. On test day you are so much more focused and it is just easier i think. Just dont let the nerves get to you but usually they are calmed down after the PS section. I didn't use any special techniques jsut read the passage and then answered the questions.
awesome! do you mind telling us how much did you improve?
 

ShoeFactory

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I did like 3 EK 101 passages and read the explanations behind each correct AND incorrect answer and I improved my verbal from 9 to 12 (granted, this is probably partially because 9 was from TPR3 and 12 was from AAMC9). But EK101 seems to be a great resource for the reasoning behind each answer.