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APRIL MCATers Club!!!!

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Tweetie_bird, Jan 5, 2002.

  1. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Future physicians for class of 2003--

    Are you ready??!? Are you pumped???!! Ok, so it's obvious we need this thread since a lot of us are going through the MCAT blues, and once in a while, we all need inspiration. So, let me kick off this (hopefully soon to be booming!) thread. If you feel angry, sad, elated, or just need a plain ole' MCAT punching bag, this is your place to be!

    Here's my first question:
    I just took AAMC Test 1, and totally bombed it. Yeap, my first MCAT experience. I got 2-3 points above the MEAN PERCENT (of that MCAT administration) each time, as was listed in the back of the book. Did you guys know that if you hit the mean on the MCAT, you are in the 45-56th percentile!?! :mad: :mad:
    just what would that mean, in terms of numbers on an MCAT? a 7? an 8??
     
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  3. megkudos

    megkudos Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    530
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    Dec 18, 2001
    New Jersey
    The national average is an 8 in each section...so thats probably what you got. Not a bad start though...a lot of people start off there and end up pulling higher than a 30...good luck with your studying!!!!
     
  4. tBw

    tBw totally deluded 7+ Year Member

    5,442
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    Oct 6, 2001
    infront of an iMac
    Hey tweetie...well I don't think you should be too hard on yourself for getting 'average' of the real thing on your very first practice...on my first practice I got half way through, realized I had not answered half the questions even from the first half, and had run out of time. I didn't even bother scoring it it was such a pitiful showing!
     
  5. spanky

    spanky Member 7+ Year Member

    93
    0
    Sep 2, 2001
    I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one spending my holiday break studying for the MCAT. I'm doing great on the verbal reasoning and biology sections, but terrible in physical sciences. The Kaplan physics questions are unreal. Anyone have any tips?
     
  6. simpleton

    simpleton Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    225
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    Jul 20, 2001
    For all you future MCAT takers I would suggest taking AAMC Test IV and V. If you are interested I have both tests with solutions. Private Message me if you are interested.
     
  7. UCLA2000

    UCLA2000 7+ Year Member

    2,315
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    Dec 19, 2001
    the hospital
    I posted a lengthy reply to a similar post on a thread two weeks ago. Long story short...don't look at the scores from practice mcats because they are misleading.
    Take the practice tests, see what concepts you are missing, and review them. Do that for every practice test you take.
     
  8. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

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    Jun 3, 2001
    I agree with the Physics thing & Kaplan...however, part of the problem is that I don't remember ANYTHING about physics and am so uninterested in re-learning it! Ah well, time to go pick that book up again.
     
  9. bentz

    bentz Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Sep 17, 2001
    NJ
    I will start studying today. I procrastinate a lot about studying for the MCAT. I know I will definitely start today and don't stop til April. I am planing on doing a half test every day and going over every single question. I believe that best way to study for the MCAT. What's the point of reading the whole review books, when you already know or familiar with most of the materials. By going over every questions, I think I will catch on or relearn the forgotten areas. Since I need to improve my verbal score; I will do verbal every day with either bio or chem. That's my strategy to prepare for the test.
     
  10. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Hi guys
    Thanks for the feedback in regard to my AAMC 1. I am feeling a bit better now that I seem to have a grip on life!!

    I am taking Kaplan too, and I feel so happy to know that I am not the only one suffering Physics Related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I guess for now, we just keep trotting away on our work. Hard work always pays off, right?
     
  11. Jalby

    Jalby I fight crime at day when Batman are sleeping. 10+ Year Member

    Two Words. Berkeley Review. If your in Cali, take this class over others. I think it was the best far and away. Their Verbal absolutely sucks, and the bio is a bit to in depth, but if you want to score really good, take this class. I would put Kaplan as Second. Has really good verbal and just good sciences.
     
  12. alright, enough! I have come to shed light on this matter.

    no, i'm kidding, my answer isn't better than anybody else's. BUT before you buy in on some company, check out the TPR/Hyperlearning Science Review book. not the little one that sums up everything (equivalent of kaplan's crappy books), but the BIG Daddy. the one that's like five inches thick. TPR teamed up with hyperlearning and they have the BEST (never seen Berkeley) review book out there. plus you can do practice questions at your leisure, which means at 11 pm in the library, not in some dorky kaplan center at 8 cuz they close at 10, using markers cuz you can't write on their practice stuff and every sheet is covered in plastic. tpr rocks, before you jump off that cliff and spend the cash, check out that big tpr book. best coverage of the sciences, esp. phy and chm and bio. go check that out and tell them Large Marge sent you.
     
  13. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Maybe it's cuz I am a girl or maybe it's cuz I love chocolate, but anybody notice any urges you've been having while studying for the MCATs?? I'm noticing a lot more unhealthy activities in myself...I've stopped running my daily 4 miles....I don't even care enough to watch how much chocolate I consume while I study for D-Day. My theory is that kaplan physics tests are making me go crazy.
    ::sigh:: just wanted to vent.

    back to the books!
    Freddie, if you read this message PM me.

    Tweets
     
  14. BigRedStress

    BigRedStress AMEX Black 7+ Year Member

    153
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    Dec 3, 2001
    Ithaca
    Have people in Kaplan been doing those Verbal resaoning exams? Well... Verbal Reasoning exam 3... holy ****! IT was all humanities/social sci questions!! all 9 of them! not one natural science. I took it timed and got 21 wrong!! My worst performance to date on an exam... albeit a practice with only hard ones and hopefully!! not like the real thing. Also I took nine passages from the AAMC practice Items and they seemed pretty easy (I got from 11-13 wrong). I'm only three weeks into studying verbal, but I just dont know! Kaplan verbal exams are scary and hard!
     
  15. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    Wait till you try Kaplan Physics!!
    I owe 3 zits and probably 5 pounds of extra weight gain to that :mad: :mad:
     
  16. Sm00th13

    Sm00th13 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    how did people do on the KAPLAN MCAT diag?

    VR:5
    PS:8
    BS:8

    Hope to improve by 10 pts. max. :cool:
     
  17. tnk1000

    tnk1000 New Member

    4
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    Jan 2, 2002
    Boston
    Hey I'm taking the April MCAT as well... starting Kaplan as soon as I get back to college... been reading the HUGE TPR book, it's pretty comprehensive!

    G'luck everyone.
     
  18. Street Philosopher

    Street Philosopher freebird 10+ Year Member

    6,279
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    Aug 10, 2000
    ann arbor
    Only 21 wrong on verbal was your worst score? That's pretty impressive. I missed about 20 on nearly all practice verbals I took, and ended up with a 10 on the real thing. (my bio sucks so I need to take the test over though. :( ) Maybe I just got lucky? <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
     
  19. gizzdogg

    gizzdogg keeper of the three lions 7+ Year Member

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    Nov 15, 2001
    hey spanky and the rest,
    you asked for some pointers, so here i go. If i seem cocky at all, please don't be offended. It's just that i think i was really fortunate to find some effective study methods for the MCAT--most of which i never use when i study for regular exams.

    Firstly, i agree with caveman's advice about TPR/Hyperlearning. I know there are a lot of people who don't see the point of review courses, which is cool for them. But for those people who are interested in taking a course, i definitely recommend TPR. Their Verbal Workbook is impossibly hard (it almost caused a nervous breakdown on several occasions!), but it helped me get a 12 on the real thing after i got an 8 on AMCAS V (which i took before i began my preparation). I had to work so hard on verbal, but with TPR, i was able to get a solid score.

    Plus, TPR has so much practice materials. I read the science review book once, made note cards of all the concepts and important bio facts that i didn't know and knew i'd forget, and then never looked at the review book again. Of course, making these note cards took about a week, but it was well worth it. It helped me when i went through all the practice material that TPR had (about a thousand pages of practice passages). And that's pretty much all i did the last month before the MCAT--practice passages and reviewing note cards. By the time the MCAT rolled around, i could review the difficult concepts from each section (Physics, Gen Chem, O Chem and Bio) in about an hour per section with my cards.

    So Spanky, here's my advice:
    1. Read a big fat science review book and make note cards of all the physical and biological science concepts that you definitely don't have committed to memory already. Leave out all of the concepts that you know well already.

    2. Screw marking important parts in your review book as a substitute--this probably won't be as effective as making note cards.

    3. After you make note cards, practice passages as much as possible. This is why i recommend TPR--the practice materials they give their students. Seriously, i could care less about the classes. I basically paid $1000 for the materials, and i don't regret it.

    4. Verbal is the most important section to study for. If you improve your skills for Verbal (i pretty much mean getting good at passages), you will also do better on the other sections as a result. It's not so true the other way around. I spent about half of my time studying for verbal.

    After 6 weeks of studying with the note cards and practice tests/passages, my mcat score had peaked out. Between AMCAS V and the real MCAT, i improved 13 pts.
     
  20. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    wow, you guys have some awesome advice. I took AAMC 1 last week and was consistently missing 15-20 quesions from each section. That turns out to be an average for the test administration in that year.

    Quick question--english is my second language, and I NEED to do more Verbal. I am already taking Kaplan, but I have a feeling its not getting me ready enough to do well in Verbal. Where can I get a TPR verbal book??? Does TPR put out a comprehensive book like Kapan?

    Happy Studying.
    Tweetie
     
  21. BigRedStress

    BigRedStress AMEX Black 7+ Year Member

    153
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    Dec 3, 2001
    Ithaca
    How frustrating!! I took Kaplan Verbal test 4 today, and got 20 wrong.. again! what the hell?? I'm really pissed right now, because I have no idea how else to improve!!!!! argh.
     
  22. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:

    How dare you guys let this thread die??!?
    From now on, I demand atleast one new post on this thread each day, ok? :D

    In all seriousness, we need people who really talk day to day about what they are studying...how they are keeping sane...etc, don't let the community spirit on this thread die, people!!! ::sigh::
    nobody listens :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

    I just had a bad baa--aad MCAT Verbal day. I need to vent.
    Tweetie
     
  23. gizzdogg

    gizzdogg keeper of the three lions 7+ Year Member

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    Nov 15, 2001
    tweety,
    i remember those days when i would get absolutely pissed at verbal! Keep up the hard work! I promise you it'll pay off. I consistently missed around 20 for the longest time--then one day it clicked and i moved up to missing about 12. I also read and dissected NY Times articles (free on the web) for practice. Oh, and when you start off, concentrate on getting the right answer. Don't worry about timing so much-- so give yourself a few extra minutes per passage. Good luck with the studying! -gizz
     
  24. Gizzdogg,
    13 points?!! what was your mcat score?
     
  25. Elysium

    Elysium Not Really An Old Beaver 7+ Year Member

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    Dec 5, 2001
    Austin
    Hello All,

    I too am taking the Dreaded Exam this April! I start TPR on Saturday. Just glad to know there are others are suffering like me!

    Tiffany
     
  26. amonkeybutt

    amonkeybutt Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Sep 25, 2001
    portland, oregon
    okay since i stumbled upon this thread (i was still thinking last april instead of this one), i will add my .02. i'm too embarassed to state what i got on the Kaplan diag. let's just say it was around 4-6(on each section), not a pretty picture. but then again, it pushed me towards studying hardcore and was such a motivating factor for the rest of the time. i took the kaplan course and ended up doing okay (30 total), so good luck to you all ;)


    btw, anyone interested in buying my kap books?
     
  27. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
    2
    Nov 20, 2001
    Ola Amigos!

    Rise and shine to another MCAT full length day! I am taking test two today...we'll see how that one goes.
    To Gizz: Thank you!!! I really needed to hear what you said. Verbal is just a b----! My problem is the kinds of questions that say "what is least likely" or what is "Most likely" or "what can you infer"....I know what that means. I can't do questions where you can summarize the article, and I think it should come with practise. NYT is going to be my best friend henceforth. Any other good journals/news papers?

    I also realized something about myself. I tend to do well in Gen Chem and Orgo. Last night after a horrible Verbal day, I ended it with a 2 or 3 passages of Gen Chem and did quite well on it! Let's just say it helped me boost my spirits. to those of you that have a bad MCAT day, my suggestion is to end it with something you know you are good at. Positive reinforcement always helps!

    Tweetie
     
  28. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    MonkeyButt--
    You're not alone. My Kaplan Diagnostic was a 5-7-7. That has been my motivating factor for the last two months. Anyway, quick question about Kaplan Verbal and Essay--How well did they prep you? I don't think I am getting much out of the Essay section from Kaplan yet, or maybe it's just b/c our classes have just started. would you do anything differently, having tried kaplan?

    Thanks!
    Tweetie
     
  29. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
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    Nov 20, 2001
    lol lol LOL Javert...do most people ask you about "Walden Pond?" or does it go unnoticed?
     
  30. BME All-Star

    BME All-Star Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    16
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    Dec 19, 2001
    New York, NY
    I'll add my little advice to this thread.

    I took Kaplan, got something like a 23 diag.

    August 2001 V:10 P:13 B:13 R

    Basically, I followed my own study regimen and went to class for material refreshing, doing problems, and to check out girls.

    For the first 2-3 weeks, I basically read everything they gave me material-wise and kept a notebook to take notes on each chapter. You gotta be pretty anal, so organize yourself well.

    After getting all the material in my head, I spent the long process of doing practice problems. I used to go to Barnes and Noble, take study guides off the shelves and do problems. I switched up the sections each day, but I focused mainly on verbal and physical sciences.

    Last week before the test I did AAMC 1-5, one test a day under testing conditions.

    Anyways, I hope that helps a little. Don't sleep on the verbal.

    peace.
     
  31. BME All-Star

    BME All-Star Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    16
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    Dec 19, 2001
    New York, NY
    Oh yeah, I would really pace myself on doing the problems and tests....save them as april approaches, or else you'll just run out of things to practice, as well as many opportunities to have a social life.

    peace.
     
  32. amonkeybutt

    amonkeybutt Senior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Sep 25, 2001
    portland, oregon
    tweetie, i'm probably not a good person to ask about the writing section since i got a very ****ty score on it. but i have to say that the writing sample prep for kaplan is very poor. i did fairly okay with the practice tests' samples but then again they were scored by the teachers who may not really be good representative of an average MCAT scorer. if i were you, i would practice writing and find good samples to read. but i think this is a section that you cannot TRULY prepare for, either you have it or don't. but you know, don't sweat it. spend your time working on the verbal, ps, and bs (these are most important). as for the verbal, do the practice tests and i mean a lot of them. even if you do well while practicing, imagine being so nervous that your pencil shakes as you write down notes (which is what happened to me) during the actual thing. always time yourself too. i would also play around with scanning all the passages and not scanning them at all before you begin. kaplan teaches to scan them all and do them in order of preference. but you know what, that just wasted precious time for me. so experiment a bit with that. sorry i can't offer you any more advice than this. good luck!
     
  33. Nomemory

    Nomemory Member 7+ Year Member

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    Dec 14, 2001
    Hey guys-
    I'm curious to see what everyone is taking classwise this quarter. Honestly, I have no idea how people pull off stuyding for the mcat while taking a full load of sciences! So, if anyone's in my boat, please let me know. This quarter: O-chem II, physics (EM), molec/cell bio. Will BEGIN studying for the mcat tomorrow. I'm shooting for april but holding my breath is looking like a worse and worse idea. Thanks.
     
  34. Sm00th13

    Sm00th13 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    I don't know if anyone checked out Examkrackers Verbal, but applying their methods seems to help out alot, but then again, its probably just me. Let me know what you guys thought about their stategies. :cool: :cool: :cool:
     
  35. Elysium

    Elysium Not Really An Old Beaver 7+ Year Member

    2,014
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    Dec 5, 2001
    Austin
    Hello All,

    I just took my first diagnostic MCAT through TPR today. I don't know what I made yet, but I think I might actaully get a negative score on a couple of the sections (PS comes to mind). The verbal section was crazy! There were two passages that were so esoteric I can't believe the authors knew what they were talking about! Honestly, the first paragraph started with "The vigilance task has been regarded as providing the fundamental paradigm for defining sustained attention as a behavioral category..." What? What are they talking about?? Good Lord, I can see this is going to be an uphill battle.
    I'm taking Orgo II, Orgo lab, Physics II and Physics lab this semester. Game on!
    Hope everyone else is having better luck!
     
  36. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    2,193
    2
    Nov 20, 2001
    Hey TEDilliard,
    Althouh I am taking Kaplan, I believe this advice goes for a lot of prep companies. They like to make their diagnostic a bit harder, to have the "shock value" of students saying "wow, I increased my score THIS MUCH since the diagnostic." It's sorta like a self fulfilling prophecy. Finally, UNLESS students have actually been studying BEFORE taking the diagostic, they are not going to have a difference in scores by much. Hence, you are in the same boat as a lot of other people. My point is, don't psych yourself out yet. The game has only begun! let's kick some MCAT ass by the time it's April!!!

    Tweetie
     
  37. spanky

    spanky Member 7+ Year Member

    93
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    Sep 2, 2001
    Just curious - how many of you are taking the MCAT for the second time? Do you think it will be easier for you now that you know what to expect?
    For anyone that has taken the MCAT more than once, do you suggest retaking it again in August if you just get average scores in April?
     
  38. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

    1,041
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    Jun 3, 2001
    Don't let this thread die out! How's studying going...does anyone have any pointers, problems, complaints, inspirational stories?!
     
  39. Medical123

    Medical123 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    829
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    Dec 4, 2001
     
  40. Jameson

    Jameson Member 7+ Year Member

    94
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    Jun 26, 2001
    NW
    NoMem - Am I in your boat?...you bet ya'. Currently taking 18 credits, though two of those are for working in a clinic and teaching in high schools. But none the less, it's kinda of nuts at times balancing all of the that in addition to studying for the MCAT. May the force be with you :D
     
  41. newfocus

    newfocus Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Feb 4, 2001
    Kansas City MO
    I take a full length diagnostic exam this saturday with TPR which marks the start of my course. Im actually pretty excited! 12 hours a week prep course for 3 months...hopefully that will get the job done.

    newfocus out~
     
  42. Glry Rjtd CrnrStn

    Glry Rjtd CrnrStn Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    13
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    Oct 16, 2001
    Cerritos
    for those who think the kaplan physical section is really hard, that's b/c it is. i took the mcat this past august and i took kaplan to prepare. i'm pretty good at sciences and i thought the physical section stuff at kaplan was really hard. i trained myself to finish the kaplan stuff w/ like 10 minutes left to check answers and i managed to get like 13/14 on all the kaplan practice tests. but when i took the real test, i finished the physical section in like 40 minutes b/c i had paced myself for the hard sections that kaplan puts out. i got a 12 on the real section b/c i know i missed some easy questions b/c i was rushing. so don't let the same happen to u guys. first train w/ the kaplan stuff, b/c u'll learn a lot from them. but u should pace urself w/ the practice AAMC stuff, b/c that will probably b closer to the real thing than kaplan is. good luck.
     
  43. newfocus

    newfocus Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Feb 4, 2001
    Kansas City MO
    I have a question for all you April MCAT'ers. How many hours are you taking this semester and what science classes? I have 17 hours with Biochem II and Physics II

    newfocus out~
     
  44. BigRedStress

    BigRedStress AMEX Black 7+ Year Member

    153
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    Dec 3, 2001
    Ithaca
    Guys,
    I am STILL getting around 19-20 questions wrong each time I take the Verbal section exam from Kaplan. After four weeks of hardcore studying, hardly any improvement! Has anyone been in this situation? What did you do, just keep practicing? Argh.
     
  45. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

    1,041
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    Jun 3, 2001
    Have you tried verbal passages from other books? Maybe they're extra hard?
     
  46. Pinki

    Pinki Sassy Member 10+ Year Member

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    Sep 3, 2001
    Nomem - Newton - esteemed fellow testtakers
    I was beginning to think I was crazy, too!
    I've got Organic II, Organic II lab, Physics II, Physics II lab and Cell Bio.
    I was enrolled in TPR, but backed out for $$$ reasons, so I'm spending 2 hours a day, 7 days a week doing MCAT. I dunno if 14 hours will hack it, but I'm feeling overwhelmed already on day 3 of class.
    I'm sure that I, like many people, are keeping an eye on Plan B, i.e. the August test.
     
  47. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Feb 20, 2001
    Kansas City
    Ah, Fredonia...

    I'm glad to hear your schedule! I am taking Organic II, Physics II, and Biolo II. (with labs). Since I work 40+ a week as well, it is my hope that the content of these classes will be somewhat helpfull in preparing me for the MCAT! Now if I could just find some free time to study...!

    Good luck everyone :D

    Kirk
     
  48. Jameson

    Jameson Member 7+ Year Member

    94
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    Jun 26, 2001
    NW
    Kirk, Fredonia, The rest of the Club -
    Though I am not taking OChem, I feel your pain because along with seeing patients in a county clinic re: STI testing, teaching, research, 18 credits, and studying I tutor Ochem. Which I hope will make for good review. My fellow future co-workers (with hope and little dash of luck) I wish you all the best....and some rest....and some jest...and I think I'll stop there!

    For those who are having trouble with the verbal, Lord knows I have had my struggles with it (still do), try reading the old (85' - 95') editions of the Smithsonian or Harpers review. In the back of the AAMC IV and V it has a reference to these mag's because they have been used before. The articles also appear rather similar in structure, i.e. 10 words per line, same print, etc.) That is about all I have for now. Over and Out :D
     
  49. gatepig

    gatepig Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    11
    0
    Jan 13, 2002
    NC
    Hey everyone!
    I'm new here. This is my first post. I am taking 17 hours this semester-Genetics, Biochem, and Physiology (all with labs). I don't have the money to take TPR or Kaplan so I am studying on my own. I have a 2 year old, I'm a TA for general bio, and I have other ec's that take up my time, so I am finding no time to study.
     
  50. simpleton

    simpleton Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    225
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    Jul 20, 2001
    For anyone who wants to avoid the high costs of a MCAT review course I would suggest purchasing review material from someone who has already completed the course. I am selling the entire 2001 Princeton Review Materials:

    Science Manual
    Science Review
    Verbal Workbook (NEW)
    Science Workbook
    In Class Compendium
    Science Strategy Guide
    Diagnostic Tests 480,483,484,485 all new with solutions

    I will sell for $150 plus shipping. I will ship which ever method you prefer
    and promptly. Private Messag me if you are interested or have questions.
     
  51. Jameson

    Jameson Member 7+ Year Member

    94
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    Jun 26, 2001
    NW
    Gatepig - let me be the first to say WELCOME aboard! :D
     

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