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B/B, C/P, and P/S passage strategy?


Full Member
2+ Year Member
May 10, 2019
  1. Pre-Medical
For the B/B C/P and P/S questions that are with passages, what do most people think is an effective way to approach them? I know for cars that people generally read the entire passage first then go to the questions, but how about the other sections? Do you read the entire passage then read the questions, or read the questions first and then the entire passage, or read the questions and only the parts of the passage that you think is most important, etc.? Any input is appreciated, thanks!


Full Member
Feb 5, 2020
  1. Medical Student
I think most people just read the passage first and then read the question. In my case, I approached all the section as if I’m doing CARS passage (marking important details and creating a flowchart in my head). As you do more problems, you’ll get better at recognizing which sentence on the passage will likely be tested. For example, if you see a C/P passage that deals with light, then expect to see a wavelength problem.
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Full Member
2+ Year Member
Dec 5, 2017
  1. Pre-Medical
C/P and B/B passages are usually only a few words with a few figures inserted (tables, graphs, diagrams, and so forth). Reading goes fast. I spent more time looking at the Figure 1, 2, ... and trying to figure out what they were telling me. Many of the questions will be based on the diagrams.
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Top MCAT/USMLE/COMLEX Tutors Answer Your Questions
2+ Year Member
Apr 25, 2019
  1. Medical Student
  2. Resident [Any Field]
  3. Attending Physician
If you find that timing is an issue for you, I would honestly attempt the questions on C/P without even looking at the passage, or by giving the passage a super short skim through just to see what it's about. However, if you find that you're able to read the entire passage and complete the questions, and still have time to spare, then I would continue doing that.

Kevin W, MCAT Tutor
Med School Tutors
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