May 17, 2019
17
4
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  1. Pre-Medical
Hey guys I am a 4th year biomedical science major. I was planning to take my MCAT September 27th but due to low practice test scores and lots of family stress at home I decided to cancel my test and take it in March.

Basically, I started studying in May/June pretty lightly I did the Kaplan books for gen chem, orgo, bio, biochem, and physics. For psych I watched KA vids and tried to read the 300 and then the 86 page documement. I got the EK CARS passage practice book and tried to do a passage a day. Come July I started to study a lot harder but I was also working full-time so I couldn't really put as much time towards my MCAT as I wanted to. Then, my mother had to have heart/vascular surgery and my dad got diagnosed with oral cancer. On top of that, earlier in the year my grandmother got diagnosed with breast cancer (and beat it) and I had a very close uncle of mine get in a horrific car accident. This year has been pretty stressful for me and since I spent so much time taking care of my parents since my moms surgery and dads treatment started the same week I really got behind on my studying. By the time I found out about Anki,and coursesaver, there was just too little time left to improve my score. These are how my practice tests went...


(4/3) NS diagnostic 491 (121/123/123/124)
(8/4) NS FL 1 499 (124/124/125/126)
(8/19) AAMC Sample ~496 (123/125/124/124) used this link to find score--> (9/2) AAMC FL 1 499 (124/124/125/126)
(9/9) AAMC FL 3 499 (127/123/124/125) (WOW ON THE C/P THOUGH!!!!!!!!!!!)

So I have 6 months to study and here is my plan....
1. Go through Kaplan books, make Anki cards on WHATEVER I do not understand or am iffy on
2. watch coursesaver videos (what brought up my CP from 124 to 127 in just 1 week) and make Anki cards on what I do not know
3. read through the 300 page P/S doc and supplement with KA what I do not know. make Anki for what I need
4. finish mile down Anki deck (any other good decks for all around material?)
4. Buy u world (how many of these should I do a day and starting when???) and make Anki cards for all missed questions
5. Do all AAMC material at least twice through and make Anki for whatever I do not get
6. do a jack westin passage everyday and use my EK book too to do extra CARS practice
finish AAMC FL 2 and FL 4 (I will prob take NS FL 1, AAMC sample, FL 1, and FL 3 again some place in my practicing)

My goal used to be a 508 but now I am aiming for 512!! any advice on what I should add or take out??? FYI I am in school until December and I work like crazy in December but I plan to study about 2 hours a day until January and then try to study 5-6 hours a day.

I do not know if I just need to write my thoughts down, need help or even motivation but I will take any advice rn!!!!
 

GoPenguinsGo

2+ Year Member
Dec 19, 2017
281
476
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
1) The AAMC Sample is not scored and has no conversion so don't try to convert it. No conversion exists. Its not even truly reflective of the MCAT, it is just meant to give a taste as to the length of the MCAT.
2) Don't ever repeat FL exams, this just gives you a false sense of how well you are doing. Review the exams, but don't retake them.
3) The big reason people study for seemingly endless amounts of time and dont get the score they want is because they over emphasize content and do not appreciate the weight critical analysis has on the exam (there's literally an entire section dedicated to it).
4) You have six months until your exam and you WASTED two AAMC FL exams. That's awful decision making. Those are the single most valuable resources to guage where you are in your studies. Those NEED to be saved until 2-5 weeks before your exam to see if you need to postpone.
 
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May 17, 2019
17
4
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
1) The AAMC Sample is not scored and has no conversion so don't try to convert it. No conversion exists. Its not even truly reflective of the MCAT, it is just meant to give a taste as to the length of the MCAT.
2) Don't ever repeat FL exams, this just gives you a false sense of how well you are doing. Review the exams, but don't retake them.
3) The big reason people study for seemingly endless amounts of time and dont get the score they want is because they over emphasize content and do not appreciate the weight critical analysis has on the exam (there's literally an entire section dedicated to it).
4) You have six months until your exam and you WASTED two AAMC FL exams. That's awful decision making. Those are the single most valuable resources to guage where you are in your studies. Those NEED to be saved until 2-5 weeks before your exam to see if you need to postpone.

i took those 2 FL thinking my test was going to be September 27..... its not like i took them for my exam in March thats why I postponed, as i stated in my post above. Yeah in hindsight I probably should have not taken the second one but i did and thank you for emphasizing how horrible that is!
 
Aug 13, 2020
11
1
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
4) You have six months until your exam and you WASTED two AAMC FL exams. That's awful decision making. Those are the single most valuable resources to guage where you are in your studies. Those NEED to be saved until 2-5 weeks before your exam to see if you need to postpone.
Im taking this online kaplan course and they want me to take the AAMC baseline FL, I should take that right? Even as I am starting content review?

@GreenDuck12 I also want to know how to make it less active, can you list any recommendations or how you studied? Thanks!
 

GreenDuck12

5+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2014
1,822
1,781
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  1. Medical Student
Im taking this online kaplan course and they want me to take the AAMC baseline FL, I should take that right? Even as I am starting content review?

@GreenDuck12 I also want to know how to make it less active, can you list any recommendations or how you studied? Thanks!

Do not waste a AAMC FL to get a baseline score. Getting a baseline score, IMO, means very, very little. Kaplan wants the baseline score to use for their money back guarantee.
 
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GreenDuck12

5+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2014
1,822
1,781
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  1. Medical Student
How do you suggest i change it?

Passive learning is watching videos or reading chapters of review books and making annotations. It makes it really easy for you feel like you’re making progress without necessarily solidifying your understanding of a concept while absorbing additional details. Active learning forces you to engage with the material in new ways to figure out what you know and don’t know. Examples are drawing concept maps, teaching concepts and pathways to others, writing analogies to concepts that help you remember them. Active learning also involves reasoning through concepts presented in novel ways (this is something the mcat loves to test- actually it is most of the mcat).

For this reason, I recommend ditching the Kaplan books and finding materials that offer much more practice with content and reasoning through challenging passages as you do content review.
 
Aug 13, 2020
11
1
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
Do not waste a AAMC FL to get a baseline score. Getting a baseline score, IMO, means very, very little. Kaplan wants the baseline score to use for their money back guarantee.
I'm not sure what to do, the instructor said it was required and if I don't do it, I can get kicked out.
 

BerkReviewTeach

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10+ Year Member
May 25, 2007
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Passive learning is watching videos or reading chapters of review books and making annotations. It makes it really easy for you feel like you’re making progress without necessarily solidifying your understanding of a concept while absorbing additional details. Active learning forces you to engage with the material in new ways to figure out what you know and don’t know. Examples are drawing concept maps, teaching concepts and pathways to others, writing analogies to concepts that help you remember them. Active learning also involves reasoning through concepts presented in novel ways (this is something the mcat loves to test- actually it is most of the mcat).

For this reason, I recommend ditching the Kaplan books and finding materials that offer much more practice with content and reasoning through challenging passages as you do content review.
This advice is 100% on the mark! Way, way, way too many people set up plans where they read books and watch videos for hours and hours, without doing challenging questions to develop their testing skills and solidify their understanding. They fail to develop the ability to think on their feet and recognize the simple question packaged in intimidating AAMC questions. Green Duck's advice here should be written down and taped to your wall so you can read it at the start of every day before you start your studying.
 

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