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DAT Breakdown 24AA/26TS/26PA

Discussion in 'DAT Discussions' started by CornHusker, Aug 20, 2015.

  1. CornHusker

    2+ Year Member

    Jul 10, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Just finished the beast and have arrived on cloud nine! All glory goes to God!!!

    PA: 26 :laugh:
    QR: 22
    RC: 20
    BIO: 27
    GC: 26
    OC: 26
    TS: 26
    AA:24 :D

    Before I say anything, the test did not feel that difficult in all. Collectively, easier than practice tests. You can feel it while taking the test. Some questions are stupid obvious, but more so, I never felt like there were any crazy left-field questions. I felt like the typical DAT resources mentioned on this site covered the info completely. Also, I am not some naturally gifted guy with above average intelligence. Just an average joe with a strong drive.

    Blah, blah, blah stuff :
    Originally, I never planned to do a breakdown but after reading probably 100 of them, I figured I would contributed to the crazies like myself haha. Also, this website is my #1 resource to which I attribute my scores. I would have been lost without it.

    So I am going to be a senior this semester, biology major (although I don't believe this really helped that much with the bio portion), and and have 3.9 GPA. I studied for about 3.5 months, but the first 2 months were spent doing full time research with graduate students. This made things pretty stressful as I would wake up at 7 and go to work, study during periods of free time, come home at 5 and study until 11-12, sleep, wake up, repeat. I felt pretty burnt out by the time I was finished but trudged through the remaining 1.5 months, studying probably 8ish hours a day. I also didn't really take any days off. However, I always stopped around 9ish and watched netflix for 2 hours and just vegetated until I fell asleep. I also worked out a lot and found time to see friends occasionally. With all that being said, I highly recommend you don't let yourself go nuts. Still do the things you enjoy that relieve your stress. Do not completely give them up, just cut back on them is all.

    Destroyer / Math Destroyer:

    I loved these books for GC, OC, and QR. I did regular dest 3-4x. They give you difficult versions of test day questions that really help you feel comfortable with the material. Ya it's kinda hard the first time through and should only be used after stuff like chads' videos and cliffs/feralis, yet well worth the time and money. Also, Dr. Romano and his wife are great people that really care about us dental students and I tip my hat to them and their dedication. They spend more time on these forums then we do and have a good understanding of the types of concepts tested on.

    However, for the dest bio section, the test is no where near as hard as dest questions. So much easier. Destroyer here is absolute overkill in my opinion and does distract from the basics you need. If you have the time for it, ya practice is practice and will benefit you. If not, I recommend focusing more on feralis, qvault/BC test explanations, and cliffs/barrons.

    The Test:

    So the day before the test I only studied in the morning and took the rest of the day off. I did a bunch of physical outdoor stuff and watched a movie to keep my mind off the test. The morning of, I have never been so calm before a big test. I felt complete confidence, blaring "I Believe," by KB (seriously, youtube this song and get turn't up for the test haha) as I walked in the doors.

    They had me in a room with six other people and they gave me ear plugs and head phones. I used both because I didn't want to know if someone forgot to eat breakfast or something. They were pretty comfortable but I've done a lot of mowing over summers and was use to wearing ear protection. The proctors were great and explained things thoroughly, but they did point out that I wasn't allowed to write during the tutorial. I anticipated that and was prepared to draw my grids during the sciences. It's seriously not a big deal, don't let that bother you.

    I also had a cup of coffee before the test and a 5-hr energy at the break to push through. These saved my butt as I woke up in the middle of the night and never fell back asleep. I'm a caffeine addict and couldn't go without it, so I just made sure to use the bathroom before and during the break. Not a big deal in my opinion.

    BIO (27):

    So it was a mix of softball questions that a 5th grader could answer (not an example form my test but a comparison: "What is a ribosome's function?") and a few that required a step up in the thinking department. After hearing the dreaded stories of how random and hard this section is, I felt like it was not too bad at all. I would not use the word random like so many other people have thrown around on these forums. I believe random = "I didn't prepare for the biology section to the best of my abilities." I realize there are different versions but it'd be like a qvault or bootcamp test. Did you ever really take one of those and think, "Wow! This is way harder than the other ones." Maybe some of the questions were more difficult because you didn't know the material, but the difficulty is pretty constant throughout.

    I would say the test was at the difficulty of qvault and BC. I also used my A&P and bio text books and google to clarify concepts. Again, dest is overkill in my opinion. There were some application questions but that's kinda the norm for a typical biology question relating to undergrad classes. They were nothing to stress over.

    Fearalis: Feralis is my bio MVP! I went through cliff's briefly and then memorized feralis to its core. I am so thankful he decided to take the time to create these notes and believe they should be everyone's center piece for bio. People get intimidated by the shear volume of information but you just need to plan it out and take it slowly. I only tackled like 2.5 pages a day. Then, I continually went through the notes the days leading up to the test, by not just reading them but trying to recite the info in them without looking and then double checking to make sure I understood it properly. Glazing them over and not taking the time to absorb the bio info (as vast as it may seem) will lead to a stressful test. I also probably supplemented the notes with about 30 condensed pages of my own info acquired from other resources.

    GC (26):

    So although I have a good GPA, I took gen chem in high school before I knew what I was going to do with my life and got B and C's in it. Then, I trashed all that I had learned about it haha. It was pretty ugly, like "What are these things called ions and do they explode" bad. I was clueless. Enter Chad. It has been said before and I'll say it again: Chad covers what you need to know to perform well. Your job is to learn from him and then practice with Destroyer and other resources. Take good notes and really pay attention to his explanations. I always kinda doubted people about this but now see it was dumb to stress over this.

    This was the section I feared most but I really had no reason to. There was one hard conceptual question but otherwise it was at the difficulty of Qvault tests/ chad quizzes and easier by far than BC tests, but the type of questions hit on were most representative of destroyer and chad quiz questions (not so much Qvault). I had a good 50:50 mix of conceptual and math problems, where about half of the math ones were set up equation style and the others had easy numbers to work with.

    OC (26):

    Questions were at the difficulty of chads' quizzes, BC, and qvault (I felt like these were all pretty similar in difficulty). They did throw in some tough problems here though, over abstract organic topics and two "tricky" questions that I caught but could see people easily overlooking, so be alert! I was OC student of the year at my university and got A+'s both semesters so I felt good going into this section. This is my favorite subject and would study this when stressed with other materials. I did want a 30 but am more than happy with a 26. If you want to get good at OC....PRACTICE! I believe this holds true more so than GC and BIO. OC needs lots of practice to get good at and it doesn't happen by skimping on it. Even though I knew the stuff pretty well, I still gave OC a lot of study time.

    Got done with the sciences with about 40 minutes left and had ample time to check over my marked questions and make sure I didn't make and stupid mistakes. Then I drew my grids for PAT with 5 minutes left.

    PAT (26):

    Lolz, still can't believe this. Nice time to score the highest I've ever scored. When I started this sections, I think the mental fatigue from the sciences hit me and I felt like I was doing awful throughout the PAT. After I got done here, I figured I had scored under a 20 and was praying it wouldn't be below 18. But even though I felt bad, I've read about people's shock after seeing how much better they did then they thought they would. You just have to have amnesia and move on to the next part! Don't ever dwell on something during this test!

    Comparisons relative to BC:

    Keyholes: A little easier than BC but weird stuff. I did get a rock looking thing but I could easily eliminate the wrong answers. Also, their proportions are just weird. I think BC's anal proportions are a bad thing because you second guess yourself on the real thing because their proportions are not so carefully accounted for. This is what set off my meltdown during the PAT section but after taking time at the end to review the questions here, I realized they were easier than I thought.

    TFE: Same

    Angles: Easier (this is probably why my score was so high compared to my BC scores). I know this section sucks but I swear the continually practicing really trained my brain to distinguish subtle differences.

    Hole Punch: Same, but I now know what people mean by the hole being punched between lines. That kinda ticked me off. (Used the line of symmetry method).

    Cubes: Same

    Folding: Easier. BC explanations are amazing to get good here.

    RC (20):

    So when I got done with the first passage here I figured I was retaking the DAT. I had trouble focusing on the first passage and honestly just started answering questions without even reading haha. I honestly just relied on a good dose of common sense and critical thinking. I don't recall a single S&D question in this passage. The middle passage was a piece of cake and all S&D. The last was a mix of both.

    BC comparison: I actually think Ari and his team are spot on here despite what I have read from others. I had a lot of first statement true second false junk (more so than BC even throws at you). I hate to freak anyone out but I felt it was a little harder than BC, yet the passages are shorter and easier to navigate through. I do believe there is a lot of variability on the difficulty of the test based on your version. I would tell you my method but I honestly abandoned it and went almost pure S&D haha. I think the fatigue from the earlier sections screwed me up a little and I was having trouble focusing. Switching to S&D saved my score though despite the question style (not that I recommend S&D at all). Being adaptable/flexible is a good thing here. Dr. Romano said that and he wasn't kidding.

    I am not a fast reader and my comprehension is very weak. But I do believe you can improve a lot here despite what others may tell you because I know it did. You just gotta practice reading fast and to comprehend at the same time. Don't procrastinate this section.

    QR (22):

    Flashback 2 months ago to when I called my mom with tears in my eyes (I'm a sissy >.<) saying there was no way I could ever learn math this fast and I might as well not try. By far my weakest section going into studying, even more so then Chem. Math Destroyer and regular destroyer math are gold. I did each about 3-4x and actually studied the answers. The actual DAT is easier than Math Dest but with similar questions. People bag on Qvault but it was probably the most similar to the level of difficulty here. WAY easier than BC. I actually felt like I did better but maybe made dumb mistakes. There was no single question that I had no clue how to approach. Most of them can be solved by just stepping back and looking at it from a common sense kinda perspective (if that makes any sense). I think the 5-hr energy kicked in here because I had zero fatigue rolling through this section.

    I also made a notebook of all the problems I struggled with and continually reviewed these. I would definitely recommend this. For anyone out there like me that hates math, keep practicing and you will surprise yourself. Stay confident!

    First time practice Scores (in order from test 1, 2, 3, ect). As you can see, my real scores match up pretty well.

    QV Scores:

    BIO: x/x/27/30/25/30/27/27/30/25 Avg: 27.6 Real bio: 27
    GC: 24/29/26/29/29/21/26/26/29/29 Avg: 26.8 Real chem: 26
    OC: 26//29/29/29/30/30/24/29/29/23 Avg: 27.8 Real OC: 26
    RC: 21/24/21/21/24/18/22 Avg: 21.6 Real RC: 20
    QR: 21/21/24/23/24/23/24/27/25/30 Avg: 24.2 Real QR: 22
    PAT: 20/21/21 (that's all I did)

    I highly recommend QV and think it's great practice and pretty similar in difficulty to the examine (except the RC was too easy for me).


    BIO: x/30/29/30/30 Avg: 30
    GC: 25/25/26/26/23 Avg: 25
    OC: 30/30/25/29/30 Avg: 28.8
    RC: 21/18/22/23/23 Avg:21.4
    QR: 23/22/x/x/x
    PAT: 20/20/21/20/20/21/20/24/21/21 Avg: 20.8 Real PAT: 26

    This is a must have and is great to prepare you. The explanations in each section are invaluable. Don't just use this to gauge yourself, but study the answers and explanations.

    I also used CDP and scored anywhere from 17-23 when first learning. It's ok but BC is better.

    Feel free to ask any questions.

    Attached Files:

    #1 CornHusker, Aug 20, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2015
  2. DentalLonghorn2014

    2+ Year Member

    Dec 11, 2013
    Likes Received:
    "Also, I am not some naturally gifted guy with above average intelligence. Just an average joe with a strong drive."

    Love it. Congrats Cornhusker!!!
    510586 and CornHusker like this.
  3. FloorMatt

    2+ Year Member

    Jul 6, 2015
    Likes Received:
    What average Joe gets 30's across all the sciences on BC and QV on there first try?! He's a wizard Hairy
  4. orgoman22

    orgoman22 DAT DESTROYER
    Lifetime Donor Vendor Sponsor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    Likes Received:
    Congratulations CornHusker !!!!!!!! :clap::clap::clap::=|:-):

    Your scores are blazing!! You you slayed the DAT Beast and sent it running in fear...Your scores will get you in to Ivy League if that is what you desire. You strong drive more then compensated for being an average Joe. I truly believe hard work and determination will pay off HUGE!

    Thank you for the detailed breakdown and advice to students yet to face the "Beast".

    Wishing you the best in your journey to becoming a dentist!

    Dr. Jim Romano and Nancy
    CornHusker likes this.
  5. CornHusker

    2+ Year Member

    Jul 10, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Feralis covers a lot of the bio BC/qvault topics so that definitely fluffed my practice scores being honest. OC is just my jam though.

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