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DAT Done 6/16

Discussion in 'DAT Discussions' started by lphiewok, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. lphiewok

    lphiewok ACFAS Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2007
    Fort Polk, LA
    Hey guys, I just finished my DAT.
    I must say I am very relieved.

    I started studying for DAT around March 1, and during school I kinda studied but not too hardcore. But starting the summer break (in mid-May), I started studying for about 10 hours / day for about a month.

    Studying materials used were: Kaplan Blue Book (started with this, very good overall), Barron's DAT (worthless POS), DAT Destroyer (very good but little too hard for the actual exam, but remember all the vocabs and etc.), KAPLAN Practice Exam (they were good practices and little difficult in my opinion), DAT Achiever (very good also but little too hard for the exam), and Cliffs AP Bio (too much detail but try to remember most of them and take notes from it). *BTW, I was already done with Kaplan Blue Book by the time I started studying in May.

    I have read here from one of the SDNers about taking the time log, and I think that was a great idea. Starting March 1, I put the time I started and time I finished on the word file (I always studied with my laptop) and it was a good motivational factor for me. I was able to see how much I have studied or how much I have been slacking off at the same time so if you want, you should try to do this too.

    I have 3.34 overall GPA (with bunch of pointless A's such as APs and credit by exam A's) and 3.07 Science GPA and 3.0 BCP GPA (which was my motivation to study hard for DAT). I go to #1 party school in US, and I really did not have a good GPA trend so DAT was my only way of showing the adcom my capability.

    Starting with test,
    Remember, you have to be there 30 mins prior to your exam time. My test was at 12:30 and I got there around 11:30 AM. They actually let me start on my test whenever I wanted to, so I started my exam around 12:10 ish. At my testing location, there were 2 rooms, and each room was filled with random people taking many different tests. I thought it was going to be group of people taking DAT only but it wasn't. People could come in and out anytime they wanted to but there was a noise-blocker (headphone looking thing) which I guess worked for me. You are allow to take a break anytime you want but your clock will be counting so do not take random breaks I guess, but they were not strict about it at all. During the 15 mins break (after Science and PAT), you are allow to only go to the restroom and your locker, and they told me that I was not allowed to use my cellphone, look at my study material, or take a cigarette break. So if you were planning on doing any of those, I guess there is high chance you probably will not be allowed to do it either.

    Bio: I got the highest score in bio out of all sections. I sucked at Bio. I made C's and B's in both Bio1 and Bio2 but I donno how. It was easier than I expected it to be. Most of questions were able to be answered in about 20 secs if you already knew it (mostly like definition or something similar, but I had one silica gel question).
    I finished bio pretty quick but there was one question which I was not sure and it bothered me the whole time. During my Reading, one of the passaged had the definition for it and I knew I missed so I was getting so frustrated during my reading and it was a horrible idea. Do not worry about the earlier section when you are taking DAT!!! Most questions were definition based, and I think Kaplan + Cliffs AP + DAT Achiever were good combinations to prepare me for this section.

    G. Chem: General Chemistry was one of my strongest section during the practice (because I was good at calculation and etc.). But I did not do as well as I was doing in the practice. Like everyone said, most questions were conceptual and there was barely any calculating questions. I think my mistake was to put too much focus on solving problems and not pay much attention to concepts. I will say I had about 5-6 solving questions (most of them had answer in the forms of equation - so practice writing in that format) and rest were all conceptual. Learn the difference b/w metal, metalloid, and etc also.

    O. Chem: I was not good at O Chem so I think I got the score I deserved. It was much easier than I thought. Everything was based on most of basic concepts and reactions were very simple either one-step or two-step reactions with familar compounds (there was no surprise tricky compounds I believe). Just go over Kaplan and DAT Destroyer and do some practices (Kaplan Subject Practice Exams were good).

    PAT: I think PAT in general was easier than my expectation but angles were definately harder. Key-hole was too simple that I was getting confused whether I was not getting something. TFE was easier than most of problems you will be doing with DAT Achiever. Angle was lot harder than the practice. There were some free ones (where you can tell instantly) but about 70 percent of them were really close ones. I spent more time in angle than I thought I was going to. I also had the bubble screen but I do not think it mattered too much. Cubes were pretty straight-forward with couple tricky ones but I did not have those crazy cubes like some people. Tally method worked fine for my cube section. Paper-folding was easier than DAT Achiever but harder than Kaplan.
    So overall, I would say it's between Kaplan Bluebook and DAT Achiever (harder than Kaplan but easier than Achiever).

    15 Min Break: I did not really do much during my break. I went to the restroom and came back and pretty much started since I was not allow to do any of the things I was planning on doing during my break. You can resume anytime you want from the break.

    Reading: Reading passage was not too bad. All of them were science based but lot of them were overlapping with bio subjects I was studying (like nerves and fungi) so it was not too bad. BUT I always practiced reading section by using the "key word" method but that thing did not work for me! First of all, with the marker you are given, you cannot really put down too many words on it and it just takes TOO long. I used full keyword method for the first passage, and only took down the concept of the second passage and did not use it at all during my third passage. I had 10 mins left by the time I started my 3rd passage, so I just went straight to the answers (since that method took too much of my time). I think using simple words for each paragraph is good enough, since for the answer you will probably have to go to that paragraph anyways, there is no point of taking down terms and etc. (except for initials, names, and numbers, etc.). Length of passages were about 13 paragraphs in average and I thought I did horrible but I did okay. Like I said earlier, do not let the question from earlier section bother you during the reading! There is simply nothing you can do about it so just do not worry about it.

    QR: my strongest section that disappointed me the most today. Problems were not difficult but you need speed and better markers. I was getting most of problems on practices (probably miss 3-4 at most) but I did not do so well today. I think it's because I was so used to using my pencil, it was actually hard to do with the marker. Paper they give you is letter size but on the top they had worthless writings (like testing center, number, etc.) so I pretty much had about 3/4 of the page to use with the marker and I seriously think that affected me the most. Questions were not too hard, none of them asked me crazy trig questions or anything but basic geometry concept needs to be memorized (such as finiding angle and side and etc.) and I had one conversion question but units were given so it was not too bad. I am still bit pissed about this section but yeah, just do it fast! I thought I was fast at math but for some reason, I finished the question right on the dot and had no time to go over any questions.
    *BTW - put the cap back on your marker when you are not using them. You get 2 markers so it did not really matter too much but it can get you pissed off and ruin your testing mood (if you are like me)

    After the exam: once exam was done, there was about 15 seconds of processing break and they gave me 15 question surveys. After the survey, it showed up your score. I was too shocked when I was looking at the score so I kinda looked at it but by the time I went outside I forgot what I had on each section. And I had to wait about 10 mins until this lady was done flirting with another test-taker so during that 10 mins, I was getting very nervous. So maybe it is good idea to write down your scores so you can look at them while the worker is flirting during their hours.

    My scores were better than I expected but I had lower scores in the sections which I believe were my strongest sections and highest on the sections which was my weakest =\

    Here are the scores:

    Bio: 24
    Gen Chem: 19
    Ochem: 19
    PAT: 21
    Reading: 22
    QR: 19
    Total Science: 20
    AA: 21

    Practice Test scores:

    Kaplan Blue Book CD ROM test: (taken on June 06)
    Bio 16
    Chem 20
    Ochem 15
    PAT 22
    RC N/A (I hate reading so I quit but I believe the score was about 11)
    QR 22

    DAT Achiever Test 1 (Taken on June 08)
    Bio 18
    Chem 19
    Ochem 15
    PAT 19
    RC 22
    QR 22

    DAT Achiever Test 2 (I got too pissed off during the test so I just quit and wasted Test 2. Although I took it again but it is not the same once you know the questions on so I will not post it on here)

    DAT Achiever Test 3 (Taken June 13)
    Bio 17
    Chem 17
    Ochem 20
    PAT 18
    RC 23
    QR 21

    Overall, I must say I am pretty satisfied with it although there is that feeling where I feel like I could have done little better but oh well I am glad that I am done.
    BTW I am applying to: UT-Houston, Baylor, UT-San Antonio, NYU, Temple, Howard, and UoP. (If you know any information about these schools, please let me know)

    I will be more than glad to answer any of the questions.

    Good luck everyone and don't forget to relax before the exam!
    (I had to watch Lakers beat Celctics before I went to the sleep, but maybe you should try to sleep earlier than midnight)
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2008
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  3. osimsDDS

    osimsDDS 5+ Year Member

    Jun 8, 2007
    nice would you compare the kaplan biology subject tests (online) to the real exam and also gchem...thanks alot
  4. lphiewok

    lphiewok ACFAS Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2007
    Fort Polk, LA
    Kaplan Bio test was little harder or about that level. I think maybe my test was easier since some people were saying bio is harder, but in my opinion bio on Kaplan was about the difficulties you'll see.

    Kaplan GChem is also good but I had way less calculation problems. So concept quesions are probably good predictor but solving questions were much easier

    hope that helps
  5. topdent1

    topdent1 2+ Year Member

    Aug 6, 2007
    Tremendous scores! Its funny, you are the first person I have come across in the forums whose bio was mainly definitions. Most other people have the 'overall' picture and not specific things type questions. Just a thought. Anyways, good luck with the application process.
  6. TheHITMAN

    TheHITMAN 2+ Year Member

    May 30, 2008
    Congrats on the great scores!

    I'm kind of in the same boat as you in terms of GPA and i'm taking the DAT on Monday. The only problem is that I find myself running out of time.....on everything.

    I know you used a lot of the Kaplan stuff and wanted to get your opinion on the gchem. Almost every g-chem problem is a calculation problem, balancing reactions etc....and it slows me down tremendously.

    Any advice on how to finish each section in time?
  7. allstardentist

    allstardentist All-Star 10+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2006
    Los Angeles
    awesome job. great feedback on your test. it should help alot of people who are preparing for the dAT.
  8. lphiewok

    lphiewok ACFAS Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2007
    Fort Polk, LA
    to Hitman, I think you will not have much problem finishing the gchem section on time as long as you get the type of questions i got.

    yeah when i was studying for DAT, i used to always run out of time and i had about 15 - 20 mins left to finish my ochem section (since i always got stuck at net ionic eq. or soemthing else). but in real test, i had about 10 mins left after my last ochem question and i actually had a chance to go back to each questions upto chemistry.

    i think as long as you're prepared, you should not have problem running out of time. Kaplan test for gchem used to take me about 1 hour or more for just 30 questions and actual test does not give you that many solving problems so it was much easier to finish on time.

    just be ready for the worst scenario (having whole bunch of calculations) but i am pretty sure you'll not have much problem finishing on time. oh and be ready to guess on the questions you have no idea of. I hated guessing on questions but in reality you cannot be 100% prepared for every questions. I think i guessed at least 3 questions in Bio, but guessing based on some knowledge can actually give you pretty good chances of guessing right.

    hope this helps
  9. harrygt

    harrygt 2+ Year Member

    Jun 16, 2008
    Iphiewok, I really appreciate it that you gave us a good detailed feedback about your test. That is what I'm gonna do after I take it on July, 22nd.
    It is so painful to see you score 19 on QR while you have been strong in that section. I usually get all 40 or 39 of the QR questions in 32 minutes on practice exams, and what happened to you really freaks me out. I had predicted that using marker and laminated paper would be troublesome for QR, and I guess that is what exactly has happened for you. Was the marker so Thick or what? It will be a pain in the *** if you get a thick marker for those small laminated papers.
    Also, did you only use achiever and Kaplan blue book for PAT? No CRACK dat pat?
    So far, I have only the Blue Kaplan book. I'm wondering which ones I should get. I get a 20 on Kaplan's Blue book. Getting a 21 on DAT would be a big accomplishment for me on real DAT.
    another question: How was the leverl of difficulty of Gchem? As you said, the questions were conceptual, but I want to know if those questions were clear ones without ambiguity?
    Thanks again!
  10. lphiewok

    lphiewok ACFAS Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 19, 2007
    Fort Polk, LA
    to Harry,

    Markers were not too fat but still thicker than pencils I have been using
    i think it was somethign simliar to this one.
    I guess try practicing with them would be the best idea.

    for PAT, I did not use Crack Dat PAT. Honestly, I was thinking about it but I saw the price and I could not purchase it. I am not sure how much help you feel that you need, but I think DAT Achiever PAT was just enough to help me (although you may want some more practices). I just think for me, PAT and RC were something that you cannot really learn how to do better. It's all upto you, but I would recommend at least DAT Achiever (since that way you can practice all of the subjects not just PAT and it's only 49 bux)

    gchem conceptual questions were pretty clear I believe but some would be little tricky. Equilibrium questions were definately on there and endothermic / exothermic situations so you might wanna practice those. everything else was pretty straight forward.

    hope taht helps
  11. skyNice

    skyNice Banned Banned

    Jul 21, 2006
    Impressive scores! Congratulation, lphiewok.:thumbup:
  12. harrygt

    harrygt 2+ Year Member

    Jun 16, 2008
    WOw, thank you so much for the help. I'm definitely gonna get one of those markers and laminated paper today. I feel like I have to use those for my calculations till I take Dat.
    I'm gonna get Crack DAT PAT, cos It has 10 practice tests. I'm not worried about Bio and chem. Just need to get at least a 20 on PAT, and I'll be ok on other sections.
    Thanks for the help anyway. I might get back to you later if I have any questions.
  13. Dotoday

    Dotoday 7+ Year Member

    May 27, 2007
    These are ubelievable scores. Did you get any interviews yet?
  14. Mstoothlady2012

    Mstoothlady2012 5+ Year Member

    Apr 7, 2007
    OP took the test before 3 days and it takes about 2-3 weeks for the scores to be sent to the d-schools.
  15. Dmitry Malayev

    Dmitry Malayev 2+ Year Member

    Sep 17, 2007
    Queens, New York
    Nice scored. Congrats!

    I'm glad to hear DAT Destroyer and Achiever were harder then the actual exam. I'm using those two to study currently.

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