DAT Breakdown (25AA/24TS/25PAT)

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Alaskanskiier

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I took the DAT on May 31, 2023, and I couldn’t be happier with how it went. I studied for about 8 weeks using DAT bootcamp!
My scores were:
PAT: 25
QR: 22
RC: 27
BIO: 24
GC: 24
OC: 26
TS: 24
AA: 25

I began studying two weeks before my spring semester ended, and was planning to take the DAT after 12 weeks of studying. However, I chose to move my test dat up in order to get my application in sooner. I started out following the DAT Bootcamp 12 week schedule exactly, and after I got a feel for what I needed the most work on and what I didn’t I adapted the my studies. For the first four weeks I was finishing up my classes, so I did 2-3 hours a day 6 days a week of DAT study. The remaining 4 weeks I studied around 6-9 hours a day 6 days a week leading up to my exam. The day before my exam the only studying I did was to take a practice PAT because that is a subject I need to practice everyday or else my score declines.

PAT 25 (Bootcamp score always 21)
There is a really steep learning curve with the PAT. When I first started answering practice questions I was really discouraged, but consistent practice with the strategies outlined in PAT Academy was super helpful. My biggest recommendation with this section is to complete 5-10 question of every question type on the PAT every study day. Doing this helped me to see common patterns and made me comfortable with the questions. My main strategy for this section was to eliminate answer options that were clearly wrong and doing this I was able to narrow it down to at least two options every time. As I said earlier even one day without practicing for this section decreased my confidence with it so I can’t stress daily practice enough.

QR 22 (Bootcamp scores 19-21)
This was definitely the most difficult section for me because I haven’t taken a math class since my junior year of high school, and I had to do a lot of relearning. My biggest recourse for this section was practice questions. I went through the question banks to figure out what I was missing, then watched the QR academy videos on the topics that I was consistently missing. I reviewed my tagged questions frequently, and through consistent repetition my score and confidence slowly went up. The key to this section for me was managing my time and skipping questions I didn’t know how to answer.

RC 27 (Bootcamp scores 24-28)
I tried most of the DAT Bootcamp methods to figure out what I liked best, and I found many of them made me too stressed while taking the exam. I don’t remember the name of the method I ended up using, but what I did was read the first question and keep that in mind while I was reading through the passage. When I found the answer I read the second question, answered it if I already knew it and if not continued the passage from where I left off. This method worked well for me but may not be for everyone. Practice tests and passages are the best way to improve in reading comp because they helped me learn what information was important to mark and focus on and helped me improve my reading speed.

BIO 24 (Bootcamp Scores 22-24)
The breadth of the biology section makes it extremely overwhelming and intimidating when studying, but Bootcamp definitely provides you with everything you need to do well. During the review portion of this section I skimmed the Heigh Yield notes for the chapter I was going to learn, then I spent two days memorizing the Bootcamp biology Anki deck for that chapter. I can’t stress enough how helpful Anki is for this section. All I did to study bio was study Anki then take practice questions, and use those to solidify what I learned through Anki.

GC 24 (Bootcamp Scores 22-24)
For this section I watched all of Dr. Mike’s videos, and they are so helpful at emphasizing the highest yield material for the DAT. After watching the videos I just completed and tagged all of the practice questions, and I tried to review at least 40 of my tagged practice questions everyday. Frequently reviewing the subjects that were difficult for me helped solidify the material very well, and the tagging system in DAT Bootcamp is perfect for this.

OC 26 (Bootcamp Scores 22-27)
I finished ochem II a month before my exam so that was very helpful with keeping the material fresh in my mind, and for that reason I didn’t watch any of the ochem review videos. In this section I just did as many practice questions as I could, and I used the tagging system to help me solidify the difficult topics. Consistent practice and exposure to the material is so important for the ochem section so practice questions and practice tests are the most important.

Academic Average 25 (Bootcamp Scores 22-24)
When studying for the DAT I think knowing how to take the test is just as important as knowing the material on the exam, and full length practice tests helped me solidify my method when I took the exam. I tried to simulate the real exam experience as much as possible so I took them all at the school on a computer I was unfamiliar with, I wore earplugs during the exam like I did in the testing center, and I did all of my scratch work on laminated graphing paper with expo markers. When taking the exam I found it was best for me to start with the ochem section, then complete the biology, and leave myself with a lot of time left over for the gen chem section. I finished to total science section a little early so I used my extra time at the end of this section to draw everything I needed for the PAT, which was super helpful in saving valuable time for that section. Some final suggestions I have for the exam is to make sure to bring a toothbrush and brush your teeth during your break and do as little studying as possible the day before. Good luck to everyone taking the DAT! It’s intimidating, but you can to it!

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