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N

nwdmd

AA 20 TS 21
I've been enjoying the weekend after taking the big test on Friday!
I've been snooping around these forums for awhile, wanted to share my experience.
Please post test-related questions here rather than messaging.

Rough study plan:

I started with the Kaplan online program. It probably wasn't necessary, but it was definitely nice to keep me on schedule early in the study process. I moved on to Destroyer during spring break (3 weeks ago), it was great at finding holes in my understanding. I reviewed/enhanced my notes and took achiever/topscore tests during the last 2 weeks. Scores were generally ~19 in the sciences, ~18 QR, 21+, 22+ RC. I can look up the specific scores if requested.

A few things that I found helpful:

Stay healthy:
About 10 days before my test I hit a wall, I felt like a space cadet, and did poorly on a practice test. What helped me regain my composure was exercising, eating more regularly, and relaxing with my friends. Don't forget that humans are social/active creatures.

Pick a test date early and put together a schedule: It really helped to have a date scheduled. It allowed me to set rough goals for each week.

Practice like you play: I'd take the practice tests at the same time, in real test situations. I went to the library and sat next to people who were typing (during the DAT, the girl next to me sounded like she was trying to break the keyboard), used only a 15 minute break, etc. I think it helped me keep my composure during test day.

Materials:
Bio: Cliff's AP, Kaplan, Destroyer, Wikipedia
Gchem: Kaplan, Destroyer
Ochem: Kaplan, Destroyer

Complete scores:

AA 20
TS 21

Bio 20
Gchem 25
Ochem 20
PAT 20
RC 20
QR 14 (!!!)

QR concerns:

I'm very worried about my low QR, I've been researching these forums and pre-dents... and the ADEA guide. I was hoping to get additional advice.

Is it possible to explain a low QR score to schools? I had been scoring 18+ on practice tests and wasn't too worried about this section. Even though I lost track of time and had to blindly guess on 5 questions, I did not feel this section was overly difficult. The 14 was definitely a shocker.

Posts regarding strict cutoffs are inconsistent, and pre-dents has a few examples of exceptions. (i.e. "sailfish024")..

I've called a few schools and each has said that QR is generally the least "critical" section, but still suggested a retake if I was hoping to get first round interviews.

It seems that when in doubt, admissions advisers will probably suggest a retake. But if a 14 QR was the only red flag in a complete application... Would they really not consider me competitive until I retook?

I'm prepared to retake if necessary. However, I can't retake until mid-July. I'd REALLY like to avoid changing my summer plans (which was my initial reason for taking the DAT "early").

Other info:
I received A's in calc 1 and 2.
GPA: ~3.75
Meaningful ECs
Planning to submit my complete app. right around May 15.

Thanks for any advice! This forum has been an incredible resource!
 

SanOnofre2002

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I think you'll be in great shape. From what I've read on SDN, score cuttoffs are not strictly enforced at the schools that have them. Since your GPA is excellent and your other DAT scores very good, you look to be a candidate for an "exception". The overwhelming consensus is that QR is the least important section too. So I'd recommend not retaking, but I'd still apply to about 15 schools.
 

smile101

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Great score overall. Its looks like you will be fine due to ur above avg GPA and above 20s in other ones.

I wonder though...I am taking kaplan online right now and they have tons of math practice (some DAT like q's) online that are not in the kaplan book. Did that not help you at all??? That would have me worried because I thought these were great practice. Please let me know.
 
N

nwdmd

I wonder though...I am taking kaplan online right now and they have tons of math practice (some DAT like q's) online that are not in the kaplan book. Did that not help you at all??? That would have me worried because I thought these were great practice. Please let me know.

You're on the right track! Make sure you're timing the tests(~1.12 min/question).
I didn't complete many of the subject tests for QR. I really should have practiced QR more often for speed purposes. I merely went through the lessons to review trig and whatnot. I was doing fine on practice tests and didn't give that section enough respect..it bit me pretty hard.
 
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CannabisWERD

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Can you list your topscore and achiever scores for the sciences for each section gen chem o chem and bio please. much appreciated. thanks
 
N

nwdmd

Can you list your topscore and achiever scores for the sciences for each section gen chem o chem and bio please. much appreciated. thanks


topscore 1/2/3

AA: 19/20/19
TS: 18/19/19
BI: 20/18/20
GC: 17/17/18
OC: 17/19/19
PAT:25/22/23
QR: 18/18/19
RC: 23/29/21

ach 1/2/3 (used mostly for sciences)

TS 18/16/17
BI 17/16/15
GC: 18/16/19
OC: 17/15/18
QR: 18
 

alanan84

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topscore 1/2/3

AA: 19/20/19
TS: 18/19/19
BI: 20/18/20
GC: 17/17/18
OC: 17/19/19
PAT:25/22/23
QR: 18/18/19
RC: 23/29/21

ach 1/2/3 (used mostly for sciences)

TS 18/16/17
BI 17/16/15
GC: 18/16/19
OC: 17/15/18
QR: 18

How'd you pull a 25 in Gen Chem? Was it easier or did you guess well or did you just get lucky in terms of what questions were on there?

Nice job! I think schools will overlook the lower QR
 
N

nwdmd

How'd you pull a 25 in Gen Chem? Was it easier or did you guess well or did you just get lucky in terms of what questions were on there?

Nice job! I think schools will overlook the lower QR


As you've heard in other posts, gchem questions on the DAT were more conceptual compared to topscore/ach. If you knew how to setup the appropriate equations, the calculations usually weren't tricky.

Also, gchem was the subject I was most worried about initially, as I didn't pay attention as a freshman. I made sure that I understood all of the concepts listed on the DAT topics list. I found multiple websites to be very helpful for this section (google the topics).
 

rushang

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looking at your practice test scores...that is some insane RC scores....can u enlighten us with ur strategy pleasee....thanks
 
N

nwdmd

The kaplan method wasn't efficient enough. I usually scanned ~5 questions ahead, and kept keywords in mind while hunting for answers..

I'd skip questions if I couldn't find the answer in 2 scans. I'd keep the keywords in mind, and usually ended up stumbling upon the answer in future scans.

I found that by scanning and reading the first/last paragraph I was prepared to answer the inference questions.

The real DAT was slightly different than topscore/kap. I didn't scan ahead enough on the real test and during the last article, time became an issue.

I wrote this really fast and feel like I said "scan" 30 times. Hope this makes sense!
 

CubbieDentist

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Hey dude/dudette,

My score are almost exactly identical to yours. I took my DAT on friday as well! My QR was 16 and that is awfully bad. I just posted a few before your post and most of the people said that is fine. I doubt I'm gonna take it again.

You should be solid. My GPA and yours are nearly identical, mine is a 3.73 and my DAT scores are the same as yours (not sure about your PAT)

TS - 21
AA- 20
PAT - 20

I thought I'd do better. I was getting 19's and 20's on TopScore and all I used to study was the Kaplan book.

Nice job!
 
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