Apr 3, 2010
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I am a sophomore, looking to take the MCAT in 5 months. I have finished all of the required classes (except for the second part of physics, which I will take in the summer), and I am working through the TPR Hyperlearning Biological Sciences, yet the highest I can seem to score is a 9/10 on the AMCAS. (I have taken Genetics, which is a help on it)

Time is not an issue - I usually finish with 20 minutes to spare - but it's the details that I miss, especially since this section is at the end of the test.

The organic chemistry isn't much of a problem, either. I missed 4 questions on that the last MCAT I took, but missed 9 biology.

Any hints? Any suggestions? I'm having similar issues with the Physical sciences, but most of the questions I miss there are concepts I haven't yet covered, so I am not as concerned (and I'm getting the BR physics books). I am looking to get a solid 12, 11 at absolute minimum.
 

SN2ed

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First off, you should not even be glancing at the AAMC practice tests, let along taking them. They should be used when you're much closer to your test date. If you are taking these, it is an enormous waste of resources and you need to stop.

Secondly, using up practice problems when you're 5 months away from your test date is also a waste. The only studying you should be doing this far away is content review. Even that isn't helpful. You need 3 months of concentrated studying.

I suggest you stop studying and regroup once you're closer to your test date. At the very least you must stop using your practice passage resources because using them this early is a complete waste.
 
Apr 3, 2010
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What studying I do now will not be the only thing I do. Now that I know where I am weak, now is the time where I want to solidify weak concepts, so that in the summer I can do concentrated intense studying.

Your point about using the resources is taken. I took them as an assessment to see the strengths of my foundation. Due to that, I know that I don't have to look at verbals more than casually (I got a 12 and a 13 without studying) and what sections of biology/physical sciences are most weak, so I can get the necessary books for when I am ready to intensively study. I do plan on buying all of the AAMC tests, and I will save them until I am much closer to the actual test date.

Thanks for the response.
 

bigballer27

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its not bad to study now if u want to, but be aware u will most likely have to start over with ~3 months before your test, so keep that in mind before using up some of the really good resources out there. maybe just get a review book (EK, TPR, BR, etc...) and just go through some concepts in the meantime
 
Apr 3, 2010
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I said in my original post that I had the TPR Hyperlearning Biological Sciences.

The BR physics are in the mail, as is EK Bio. I also have the entire EK 1001 series, and the EK osmosis is also in the mail (I got a great deal on that and I do a lot of long driving).

All I want to do before I start intensively studying is bring up my weak points to the level of the rest of my knowledge so that I don't have to spend a disproportionate amount of time on them later.
 

Drexon

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I am a sophomore, looking to take the MCAT in 5 months. I have finished all of the required classes (except for the second part of physics, which I will take in the summer), and I am working through the TPR Hyperlearning Biological Sciences, yet the highest I can seem to score is a 9/10 on the AMCAS. (I have taken Genetics, which is a help on it)

Time is not an issue - I usually finish with 20 minutes to spare - but it's the details that I miss, especially since this section is at the end of the test.

Stamina building helps here. After a solid 4 ish hours of test taking you're going to be tired. Thus this is why they placed bio at the end. Because it's a strong subject for many people and why not quiz people on their strong subject when they're already exhausted and tired. Perhaps after some stamina building you'll be able to spot the details that you're missing.

The organic chemistry isn't much of a problem, either. I missed 4 questions on that the last MCAT I took, but missed 9 biology.

IMHO I think it is something you should be worried about. Since Ochem is worth 25% of the bio section you'll get 12-13 problems of Ochem per BS section. Getting 4 wrong out of 12 or 13 means you're getting 25% of your Ochem wrong. That seems a bit excessive to me. If you look at the AAMC tests for 3-10 you'll see that in order to score a 11+ you have to miss 10 or less in some cases.

Any hints? Any suggestions? I'm having similar issues with the Physical sciences, but most of the questions I miss there are concepts I haven't yet covered, so I am not as concerned (and I'm getting the BR physics books). I am looking to get a solid 12, 11 at absolute minimum.

Can't really comment on this because you still haven't reviewed all your physics yet.
Best of luck studying. I'd follow Sn2ed advice on taking tests closer to your test date. At this point you should be focusing on content and doing practice problems not taking full length tests.
 
Apr 3, 2010
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Drexon, I see your point about the o-chem. Looking back at the problems I missed, two were stupid mistakes (my bane), one used different terminology than my class, and the other I just didn't know.

Thanks for your suggestions. I just found that link to the percentages for the tests, so I see what you mean.

It sounds like I have to continue doing what I am doing - going over content, and finding my weak points to correct them, so that when school is over for the summer, I'll be able to build stamina and study more intensively.