advice please-retake mcat?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by petros, Oct 28, 2000.

  1. I am a biochemistry student at UC Berkeley with a 3.92 cumm GPA, 3.94 science. I am also minoring in Spanish Linguistics. I just received my MCAT scores and I'm not sure whether or not to retake them:
    V8/PS12/BS10/S
    I know these are good scores, but I don't feel they match my ability. On my AAMC practice tests I consistently scored about:
    9-10/12-13/11-12. I asked my premed counselor if I should retake it and he said unless I could guarantee a 10 on the verbal, it would be silly to retake it no matter what. What I don't understand is that if I feel I can retake and get a 32, and my first choice school (UCLA) has an average of 32, why wouldn't I take it again? Considering I want to go to first tier schools like UCLA, Stanford, and UCSD, should I retake? Thanks.
    (P.S. I really don't want to take that test again unless I absolutely have to!)
     
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  3. gower

    gower 1K Member

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    An average of 32 means that some of he accepted scored below 32 and some above.

    On a retake you are as likely to lower your score as to raise it.

    My advice, for what you may think it is worth, don't retake.

    There are many other factors that enter into medical schools' decisions whether to interview or not, and if interviewed, whether to accept or not. Even the luck of the draw: who interviews you and what that interviewer is looking for, how you hit it off.

    Your world will not end if you don't get your medical education at UCLA. And who knows, you might even find that where you do go to medical school was the best thing that happened to you. The future is seen through a glass darkly. In life, serendipity plays a role: finding agreeable things unsought for.
     
  4. MSepo

    MSepo Member

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    30 is a respectable score. Unless you're positive of making the jump from 30 to say,40, you're really not going to impress anyone by moving up a couple of points through a re-take. Plus, do you really want to go through another grueling test not to mention the several months of studying just to raise it by a few points?
     
  5. Vi Carious

    Vi Carious Junior Member

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    I would agree with the other replies that it would probably not be beneficial to retake the MCAT. It is my understanding that an improvement of 2-3 points is not considered that spectacular. And think of the downside potential! A classic risk/reward analysis yields that you're OK for getting in somewhere -- probably not top ten, but who knows - maybe. A retake would be just something else to explain.
     
  6. lilycat

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    I know this doesn't guarantee anything, but I thought it might be a little confidence booster -- I know someone who applied two years ago with a slightly lower GPA than yours (~3.85) from a top-10 undergrad school and a 29 MCAT, and ended up getting waitlisted at Stanford and matriculated at UCSD. I also have another good friend with a 3.8 from UC-Davis, and a 29 MCAT, who got in/waitlisted at several top tier schools. Essentially, you have a very good GPA and a solid MCAT. With the chance of scoring lower, it seems risky to take the MCAT again. If the rest of your application is solid, you should be fine in the admissions process, even for some of the more competitive schools.
     
  7. do you think i'll least be able to get secondaries from the top schools? i think if they get a closer look at me I'll look more attractive.
     
  8. lilycat

    Moderator Emeritus

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    Are you applying in this cycle? If so, the biggest factor working against you is that you took the August MCAT (delays, rolling admission, etc.) Otherwise, based on your numbers alone, it seems pretty likely that you will get secondaries from a lot of top tier schools that screen -- maybe not Stanford, but most of the UCs. (PLEASE NOTE - I am only basing this opinion on my experience and the experiences of friends)
     

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