May 20, 2009
7
0
Virginia
Status
Pre-Dental
I haven't really contributed to the forum much, but I have been an active reader of this section particularly and as part of my appreciation for all those active users here, I would like to break down my DAT experience in order to add to the general consensus.

My scores:
PA: 28 (100.0%)
QR: 23 (96.0%)
RC: 28 (99.6%)
BIO: 20 (85.5%)
GC: 19 (70.7%)
OC: 19 (71.7%)

TS: 19 (73.6%)
AA: 22 (95.4%)

Topscore #1 #2 #3
PA 22 - -
QR: 21 21 -
RC: 22 22 -
BIO: 18 18 16
GC: 13 19 16
OC: 16 17 18

I have been studying for the DAT passively since about May when school let out. I picked up my pace a bit in June and heavily in July. I arrived at the testing center about 45 mins early this morning and did some last minute reviewing of road maps and formulas. I went into the test shaking and nervous, it took two tries just to get my fingerprints to register, but the staff was very kind and helpful.

TS: Honestly this is the section that worried me the most. For this section I read through Kaplan BB once. I realized when I had finished reading through biology once and taken a couple of practice tests to see where I fell at the time that I was not retaining much information, so I made adjustments to my study methods. I began correcting practice tests, taking notes on what I missed and what I guessed at. I also read through cliffs ap taking notes. Next I went back to the BB for Gchem and Ochem, but this time I actively took condensed notes while reading each section (which was a feat in itself since I did most of this during lunch breaks at work). Between the ADA practice test and the two Kaplan BB tests, I was ranging between 15-17 science scores and I was not happy with my performance, but I made it a point to go over everything I missed in each. I also used Destroyer, I esspecially liked this for Ochem. I went over this section twice, the second half of it felt easier than the first half, and the mass of questions helped drill in the general reaction mechanisms for me. Some of the Gchem calculations seemed to be too hard to be of much use. I only went throguh this section once. I did about half of the biology within the last 2 days before taking the test. I would have liked to finish this section and gone over it and gchem once more. The true/false format of the questions seemed to help drill in some detailed information. I don't feel that the biology is as random as people say it is. Yes, there can be a few off-the-wall questions, but if you take enough practice tests you start to see a lot of recycled concepts and topics that are likely to be covered. The random taxonomy questions from topscore weren't reflective of the real thing b/c they dont seem to get more detailed than arthropod, echinoderm, annelid, etc.

For the test itself, I felt like a choked under the pressure. I normally fly through biology, leaving plenty of time for gchem and ochem, but this time I was spending too much time on questions that I obviously didn't know. When I was done, I had about 3-4 mins to review my marked questions and I messed up biggg time. I was reviewing an ochem question on acid-bases. I was torn between two answers and in the last 5 secs I went to pick one and I accidently clicked an answer I knew was wronggg.

PAT: For this section, I used the BB tests initially, before bumping up to CDP royal flush. I only completed tests 1,2,3,4 and 9 with scores ranging from 21-25. I consistently missed 3-4 angles and cube counting illusions.

I felt that on the real thing the keyholes were harder and I had to make some judgment calls on a couple. The TFE was definitely easier than CDP and more along the lines of Kaplan TFE. Overall the angles were only slightly easier than CDP. (there were a handful of obvious ones, a handful of ones you could logically select based on the answers given, and then a handful that were pretty hard.) Holepunches was definitely easier and along Kaplan lines except for one which looked like it had trifolds?? Cube counting was simple and I would have kicked myself for missing any of these for a careless mistake. I also felt that the pattern folding was somewhat easier than CDP. I had a few "odd side" questions and mostly shaded pattern questions, which I hated, but had gotten pretty good at picturing from practice with CDP. Overall I went into this section thinking about my performance in the science section and I had to mentally block that out to focus on this. I finished with about 5 mins to review marked answers.

RC: I didn't really study for this section except for topscore 1 and 2. I tried search and destroy on 1 and I got a 22. On TS#2, I tried reading the whole passage with a question at the top of the page and by the time I had finished reading the passage, I had answered about half the questions and when I read the other questions, I either knew the answer and could either quickly confirm it or at least have a good idea where to look for the answer. I still scored a 22, but I felt more confident about my answers and I wasn't as pressured while scanning up and down the passage trying to find an answer.

After a bathroom break and an energy bar, I started this section using the reading method I used for topscore #2. It only took about 17-19 mins per passage to read and answer all the questions. The first passage was about microbes and consisted mostly of direct questions. The second passage was about crocodiles and was similar to the first as far as the questions go. The final passage was about visual sensory and I felt this was the densest of the passages to read. The questions for this passage were not as direct and search and destroy would not have worked for this passage, at least not for a good portion of questions. Even with reading all the passages, I still had about 5 mins to review the marked inference questions.

QR: I never really had any trouble with math. I scored 20+ on Kaplan and Topscore. I went over the stuff I missed, but I kinda ignored some of the more advanced probability equations and other things that I didn't want to take the time to learn. I tried CDM, but that was insanely hard. I tried one Math destroyer test and got an 18. I also went through about half of the DAT destroyer section. Other than this I didn't really focus on math anymore. I have seen where a lot of people did horribly in QR and this kinda worried me and I guess I got the luck of the draw. I had many simple calculations and very few word problems. It really felt like a joke. I had one question that gave me 5 numbers and asked me to find the mean, median and mode. I was able to answer it without even finding the average, based on the median and mode choices in the answers... I managed to finish this section with about 5 mins also to review any questions that I marked.

When I finished the survey and got my scores I was shocked. Other than the QR, I didn't expect to do as well in any of the sections. I even felt like I had bombed the sciences. I was most nervous and rushed during that section but after I got through that I calmed down and was able to focus.

My GPAs are oGPA - 3.35, sGPA - 3.43, and n/sGPA - 3.27. I am a chem major, bio minor, classical studies minor. Lots of dental experience working for a general practice. I am applying to VCU, UMD, UMDNJ, WVU, UNC, and MUSC. I am a Virginia resident and my top pick is VCU.


Testing observations:
Be very careful when clicking answers, because if you reclick on a chosen answer it becomes deselected.

Watch for scroll bars on the screen. For one particular question in the science section, there were 5 choices (not all had 5 answers) but you could not see choice E. without scrolling down first.
 

dfymarine

10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jan 3, 2007
134
0
Status
Pre-Dental
wow.. 28 on PAT? i think this is the highest i've ever seen so far!
congrats on your excellent DAT scores!! :D
what are you talking about?!!

a SDNer named UCS something got 30 on it!

btw, great job! enjoy your time in the summer!
 
Jul 29, 2009
177
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Your PAT and RC scores are straight up dirty, gj man.

I really really hope i get your version of the test =p.
 

polospy

10+ Year Member
Mar 22, 2008
95
0
Status
I haven't really contributed to the forum much, but I have been an active reader of this section particularly and as part of my appreciation for all those active users here, I would like to break down my DAT experience in order to add to the general consensus.

My scores:
PA: 28 (100.0%)
QR: 23 (96.0%)
RC: 28 (99.6%)
BIO: 20 (85.5%)
GC: 19 (70.7%)
OC: 19 (71.7%)

TS: 19 (73.6%)
AA: 22 (95.4%)

Topscore #1 #2 #3
PA 22 - -
QR: 21 21 -
RC: 22 22 -
BIO: 18 18 16
GC: 13 19 16
OC: 16 17 18

I have been studying for the DAT passively since about May when school let out. I picked up my pace a bit in June and heavily in July. I arrived at the testing center about 45 mins early this morning and did some last minute reviewing of road maps and formulas. I went into the test shaking and nervous, it took two tries just to get my fingerprints to register, but the staff was very kind and helpful.

TS: Honestly this is the section that worried me the most. For this section I read through Kaplan BB once. I realized when I had finished reading through biology once and taken a couple of practice tests to see where I fell at the time that I was not retaining much information, so I made adjustments to my study methods. I began correcting practice tests, taking notes on what I missed and what I guessed at. I also read through cliffs ap taking notes. Next I went back to the BB for Gchem and Ochem, but this time I actively took condensed notes while reading each section (which was a feat in itself since I did most of this during lunch breaks at work). Between the ADA practice test and the two Kaplan BB tests, I was ranging between 15-17 science scores and I was not happy with my performance, but I made it a point to go over everything I missed in each. I also used Destroyer, I esspecially liked this for Ochem. I went over this section twice, the second half of it felt easier than the first half, and the mass of questions helped drill in the general reaction mechanisms for me. Some of the Gchem calculations seemed to be too hard to be of much use. I only went throguh this section once. I did about half of the biology within the last 2 days before taking the test. I would have liked to finish this section and gone over it and gchem once more. The true/false format of the questions seemed to help drill in some detailed information. I don't feel that the biology is as random as people say it is. Yes, there can be a few off-the-wall questions, but if you take enough practice tests you start to see a lot of recycled concepts and topics that are likely to be covered. The random taxonomy questions from topscore weren't reflective of the real thing b/c they dont seem to get more detailed than arthropod, echinoderm, annelid, etc.

For the test itself, I felt like a choked under the pressure. I normally fly through biology, leaving plenty of time for gchem and ochem, but this time I was spending too much time on questions that I obviously didn't know. When I was done, I had about 3-4 mins to review my marked questions and I messed up biggg time. I was reviewing an ochem question on acid-bases. I was torn between two answers and in the last 5 secs I went to pick one and I accidently clicked an answer I knew was wronggg.

PAT: For this section, I used the BB tests initially, before bumping up to CDP royal flush. I only completed tests 1,2,3,4 and 9 with scores ranging from 21-25. I consistently missed 3-4 angles and cube counting illusions.

I felt that on the real thing the keyholes were harder and I had to make some judgment calls on a couple. The TFE was definitely easier than CDP and more along the lines of Kaplan TFE. Overall the angles were only slightly easier than CDP. (there were a handful of obvious ones, a handful of ones you could logically select based on the answers given, and then a handful that were pretty hard.) Holepunches was definitely easier and along Kaplan lines except for one which looked like it had trifolds?? Cube counting was simple and I would have kicked myself for missing any of these for a careless mistake. I also felt that the pattern folding was somewhat easier than CDP. I had a few "odd side" questions and mostly shaded pattern questions, which I hated, but had gotten pretty good at picturing from practice with CDP. Overall I went into this section thinking about my performance in the science section and I had to mentally block that out to focus on this. I finished with about 5 mins to review marked answers.

RC: I didn't really study for this section except for topscore 1 and 2. I tried search and destroy on 1 and I got a 22. On TS#2, I tried reading the whole passage with a question at the top of the page and by the time I had finished reading the passage, I had answered about half the questions and when I read the other questions, I either knew the answer and could either quickly confirm it or at least have a good idea where to look for the answer. I still scored a 22, but I felt more confident about my answers and I wasn't as pressured while scanning up and down the passage trying to find an answer.

After a bathroom break and an energy bar, I started this section using the reading method I used for topscore #2. It only took about 17-19 mins per passage to read and answer all the questions. The first passage was about microbes and consisted mostly of direct questions. The second passage was about crocodiles and was similar to the first as far as the questions go. The final passage was about visual sensory and I felt this was the densest of the passages to read. The questions for this passage were not as direct and search and destroy would not have worked for this passage, at least not for a good portion of questions. Even with reading all the passages, I still had about 5 mins to review the marked inference questions.

QR: I never really had any trouble with math. I scored 20+ on Kaplan and Topscore. I went over the stuff I missed, but I kinda ignored some of the more advanced probability equations and other things that I didn't want to take the time to learn. I tried CDM, but that was insanely hard. I tried one Math destroyer test and got an 18. I also went through about half of the DAT destroyer section. Other than this I didn't really focus on math anymore. I have seen where a lot of people did horribly in QR and this kinda worried me and I guess I got the luck of the draw. I had many simple calculations and very few word problems. It really felt like a joke. I had one question that gave me 5 numbers and asked me to find the mean, median and mode. I was able to answer it without even finding the average, based on the median and mode choices in the answers... I managed to finish this section with about 5 mins also to review any questions that I marked.

When I finished the survey and got my scores I was shocked. Other than the QR, I didn't expect to do as well in any of the sections. I even felt like I had bombed the sciences. I was most nervous and rushed during that section but after I got through that I calmed down and was able to focus.

My GPAs are oGPA - 3.35, sGPA - 3.43, and n/sGPA - 3.27. I am a chem major, bio minor, classical studies minor. Lots of dental experience working for a general practice. I am applying to VCU, UMD, UMDNJ, WVU, UNC, and MUSC. I am a Virginia resident and my top pick is VCU.


Testing observations:
Be very careful when clicking answers, because if you reclick on a chosen answer it becomes deselected.

Watch for scroll bars on the screen. For one particular question in the science section, there were 5 choices (not all had 5 answers) but you could not see choice E. without scrolling down first.
Do you think CDM was a good indicator of QR?
 
Jul 9, 2009
50
1
Status
Dental Student
How did you prepare for the Pattern folding section? I would really appreciate a response!
 
OP
H
May 20, 2009
7
0
Virginia
Status
Pre-Dental
I took one CDM and I stopped after that. I was crunched for time and the calculations and math involved with CDM seemed crazy as hell. I felt my QR was much more simpler than that one CDM I took.
 
OP
H
May 20, 2009
7
0
Virginia
Status
Pre-Dental
For pattern folding, practice, practice, practice. I really liked the questions with the different shaped boxes because you could quickly pick out the sides that gave the box it's distinct shape. The various shaded boxes, dice, and boxes with lines were where I had trouble. I basically just picked one vantage point on the pattern (a blank side or whatever) and I would try to fold it up and see how the various patterns would be oriented. I would compare this to the answers and eliminate choices that did not match up. Usually 1-2 could be quickly eliminated and then you had to carefully look at the remaining choices.

At my pace, I could usually get to this section with about 20 mins remaining so I could focus on the hard ones, I made it a point to look at each answer and see whether or not I could eliminate it as a choice. Even if answer A looked like it would work, I would look at the rest of the answers also just to make sure.
 

r8 dds

10+ Year Member
Oct 11, 2008
183
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Killer scores man! Apply and let the interviews role in! :thumbup:
 
Jun 19, 2009
26
0
Status
Dental Student
congrats. you well!!

hey for top score #2 what do you mean by reading the passage and then with a question at the top?? thanks.
 
OP
H
May 20, 2009
7
0
Virginia
Status
Pre-Dental
I meant that when you first get to the RC section, the first page is just the passage, but if you click next, the first question is at the top of the page, and the passage is underneath. I would read the first question, then I would read the passage and answer the questions as I found the answer.
 
Last edited:
Jun 19, 2009
26
0
Status
Dental Student
I meant that when you first get to the RC section, the first page is just the passage, but if you click next, the first question is at the top of the page, and the passage is underneath. I would read the first question, then I would read the passage and answer the questions as I found the answer.
Hamster, thanks so much that's a really good methodology.
heyy, i also wanted to add that I'm a fellow Virginian too and would def like to go to vcu as well :cool: