shoshoyi

7+ Year Member
Nov 24, 2011
96
34
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Finally...time to burn all my notes!!!!

1st time taking DAT 1-11-14
PAT: 19
QR: 26
RC: 19
BIOL: 20
GCHEM: 20
OCHEM: 23
TS: 21
AA: 22

2nd time taking DAT 9-8-14
PAT: 21
QR: 24
RC: 22
BIOL: 22
GCHEM: 22
OCHEM: 25
TS: 23 :soexcited:
AA: 23

I had been advised several times to NOT RETAKE and perhaps, after seeing my new scores, those that suggested this to me would still stick to their initial suggestion since my scores didn't improve significantly (plus I spent an obscene amount of money buying all the materials, booking the test, and rescheduling :arghh:). However, I'm still incredibly happy that I did because I felt that the first score just did not do the effort I had put in justice. On the other hand, I'm very satisfied with my second set of scores as they are much more balanced and are all over 20 (yay!).

Before taking the exam, I honestly did not feel ready. I had originally planned to take the exam on July 11th, then ended up procrastinating and postponed it many times till Sept. 8th. One of the main reason I postponed so many times was because I was PETRIFIED of potentially scoring lower than my first time. But by my final rescheduling, I was getting so tired of letting myself down, that I was like, "screw this, I don't care, I just want to get this over with" and decided that it would be better to take this test already and potentially do badly than to keep this torture on forever. The night before my test day, I was actually looking forward to taking it despite still having HUGE blank spots on anatomy, physiology, and plants in bio as well as some other miscellaneous topics in Chem and OChem...thankfully, I wasn't tested on any of those topics.


So in preparing for this exam, I bought EVERYTHING. I got Crack DAT (the most expensive/comprehensive version), DAT Destroyer, Math Destroyer, the Odysessy, AP Biology Cliffs, TopScore Pro, 7 test Achievers, DAT Bootcamp, DATQVault (the whole thing), and Chad's (thus the obscene amount that I spent for this beast of an exam). The sad thing :bucktooth: is that I ended up using very little of these materials. I ended up leaving DAT Destroyer more or less untouched, as well as a majority of DAT QVault (like the Bio parts which were recommended by practically everybody :(), over half of Achiever's, Math Destroyer, almost all of Odysessy, and half of TopScore Pro...

The verdict after using all this?

If you're poor or want to spend more wisely unlike me :depressed:, just get DAT Bootcamp and Chad's:love:, that's all you need to do well on this exam. If you suck at math though, you may want to get Math Destroyer. Now, to go into more details...

PAT: DBC (most representative for me) > Achiever's > Crack DAT PAT

Most useful and representative is DAT Bootcamp (DBC) - awesome explanations, and ESPECIALLY awesome for Keyholes, plus you get the angle generator, the hole punch generator, pattern folding generator, and cube generator. Special shout out to @Ari Rezaei for his wonderful customer service. He's the man!!! You get three months, and then an additional week right before your exam if your subscription expires. He graciously did this for me and some more because I ended up rescheduling. He's just absolutely wonderful, I can't sing out enough praises for this man, for the work he does, for the speed in which he responded to my emails, and for his fantastic customer service.

If you need more practice, you should get Achiever's. Achiever's PAT is quite good preparation as well and has FABULOUS explanations, especially for TFE. If both of these are too hard for you initially, you should try Crack DAT PAT. That's sort of like the Level 1 version while Achiever's and DBC is the level 2 version. To give you a sense of the difference in difficulty, by the time I was about to take the exam, I ended up getting around 23-25 on Crack DAT but only 21s on DBC and Achiever.


For "skills" I used in each section:

Keyhole: practice, practice, practice, DBC!!!!
TFE: imagine the shapes in 3D, it takes awhile, it will click as you would notice in my excel sheet
Angles: never got this, this was basically where my chances of getting right/wrong was probably equal to flipping a coin
Hole Punch: these are freebies, learn the symmetry rule
Cube: another freebie, use Crack DAT PAT or DBC cube generator to get this down solid
Pattern Folding: practice practice practice!!! and DBC pattern folding generator - the program literally FOLDS the shape for you!!

OChem/GChem: Chad, his quizzes, and DAT Bootcamp (most representative for me)

Chad's, he's just fantastic. I have probably watched each of his videos at least three times. His quizzes are excellent too. If you know everything in his video, you will definitely be able to get at least a 20, if not higher.

Something different in my experience compared to many other people though, is that I DIDN'T USE DESTROYER. I know a lot of people did, sweared by it, and basically made it their DAT Bible, but I didn't use it. I had gone through it once long time ago, but that was for the first time I took it. I didn't touch the Bio section and probably only went through 1/3-1/4 of the ochem section. I found that it was incredibly discouraging on my confidence and there were also many times where I was frustrated with the lack of explanation provided.

Bio: Chad's videos, random youtube videos, AP Bio Cliff's

Honestly, I got lucky here...I mean, I know 22 isn't a high score or anything, but I was seriously expecting a score in the teens because I basically did not touch Bio until the last week where I just crammed EVERYTHING. I ended up not even finishing Cliff's Bio let alone go through it once. What I found helps me learn the best though, is through videos (Chad's, CrashCourse, and other random youtube bio-related videos). Thus, I crammed a few of Chad's videos during the last couple of days, and no, I didn't finish those either. So yeah, I just got incredibly lucky and got tested on quite a few math stuff as well as topics that I just happened to study the few days before...

RC: Crack DAT Reading or Top Pro Score (most representative for me)? ... maybe DATQVault

If you want practice for this, you probably want Crack DAT Reading. But it's actually not that representative for my test. It sounds like a lot of people have different reading experiences; mine was mainly search and destroy (S&D) with just a few on tone and other questions not directly in the passage. I also got really lucky with my passages as they were quite interesting.

Crack DAT Reading, Achiever's, and DBC will be good for the tone and other questions that aren't S & D. Top Pro Score and DATQvault are great for S & D.

QR: Math Destroyer, DBC, Crack DAT Math (most representative for me)

I didn't really study much for this section...math has always been my strong suit. But if you're weak in math, then do everything you can get your hands on. They are all good practice. Go through Math Destroyer, DBC, Crack DAT Math, DATQVault Math, Achiever Math, TopScore Pro math..they're all good practice and fair game. My practice tests gave me, on average, a range of 24-27s (so I'm a bit sad about my actual score...but oh well...I guess I got tired from concentrating for so long). I think the best, comprehensive practice would be Math Destroyer. That and DBC will be good in letting you practice the different concepts you should know in the test. For getting your timing down, Crack DAT Math and QVault can help you with that and give you a more representative score. I got a few unit conversion problems which I probably messed up because I forgot about them, so be sure to know those as well.

Overall/Quick Run through of materials: The most representative test is definitely Dat Bootcamp. If you're low on money or don't want to end up bankrupt like me, just get that and you'll be fine. In addition to that, get AP Bio Cliff's (which is free) as well as Chad's videos. His DAT Ochem/Chem and MCAT Bio videos are absolute gems. :love:

Crack DAT: the only worthy components in this program are the PATs (if you need to start from level 1, the math tests (there are 25 of them!!), and the reading passages (if you'd like to practice for tone, etc.) I stopped using the science tests after a while because I felt the other science resources I had were enough.

DAT Destroyer: not necessary to do well, an "overkiller" as quite a few people said. There are ochem reactions that you will most likely NEVER see on the actual exam.

Math Destroyer: necessary if you suck at math

Odysessy: totally unnecessary. You'd be better off using your time to memorize Chad's Ochem videos

AP Biology Cliffs: great resource if you learn through reading and if you'd like to supplement this to Chad's Bio videos

TopScore Pro: Good for science. Sucks for PAT as it doesn't have ANY explanations for answers, so many times, I was left wondering why an answer was what it is. Math isn't too bad (but I mean, if you buy the full version CD with the 25 math tests, I don't think it'll be necessary to buy TSP only for the math). Reading is good for practicing S&D.

7 test Achievers: Good for PAT as it has absolutely FANTASTIC explanations, especially for TFE (though I admit, sometimes I was a bit confused by its explanations because it seemed two answers are still equally good...but this happens rarely. Pretty harsh confidence destroyer on the sciences. Good for practice skill set on math and practicing tone questions/reading in general on the reading section.

DAT Bootcamp: JUST GET THIS!!! YOU WON'T REGRET IT!!

DATQVault: Probably just get the Bio section as I've heard there are quite a lot of "gems" in there which was found on their tests...personally, I didn't use this resource very much though.

Chad's (MCAT Bio, DAT Ochem, : THIS IS A MUST FOR YOU VISUAL/VIDEO LEARNERS!!! Use it, memorize it, love it.

Another special shoutout to @Glimmer1991 for providing such an intensive Ultimate Breakdown Collection where I was able to browse through the experiences of so many incredible test takers. Couldn't have done this without y'all!!

Extra: Because I'm a huge stats person and I remember really appreciating it when other student posters provided excel data sheets, I've also attached one myself of my progress throughout this crazy journey (starting from the very first time I started studying for this beast). I would recommend making something similar for yourself as a way to keep track of your progress. Cheers!!:hello:

Also, if anyone is interested in buying Destroyer/Odyssey/Math Destroyer from me, I'd LOVE to sell it!!! PM an offer if interested :D
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Asata

5+ Year Member
Aug 16, 2012
5
0
Status
Congratulations! That's a fabulous score. How many schools did you apply? I'm sure it doesn't hurt to include your latest score.
 
OP
shoshoyi

shoshoyi

7+ Year Member
Nov 24, 2011
96
34
California
Status
Pre-Dental
Congratulations! That's a fabulous score. How many schools did you apply? I'm sure it doesn't hurt to include your latest score.
Thank you! I ended up applying to 27 schools...yeah, I know, it's a total overkill:( ...I initially applied to 20, and then after having not heard from them at all in the middle of August, I freaked out and applied to 7 more...now that I think of it, it's probably a total waste to do that seeing as it'll be late for those schools anyways. Coincidentally enough, the day after I paid for the 7 additional schools, an interview came from one of the 20...go figure :yeahright:
 

mkhan27

5+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Mar 18, 2011
331
80
Status
Pre-Dental
@shoshoyi Congratulations on the scores. Your previous test scores were pretty good too. I think you'll definitely get into most schools even if you had a 22, but with a 23 your in good hands. Keep in mind that a lot of schools do their application cycle pretty late til April, so you will be fine. Congrats again!
 
  • Like
Reactions: shoshoyi

jaf004

2+ Year Member
Apr 30, 2014
133
44
Status
Pre-Dental
@shoshoyi Congratulations on the scores. Your previous test scores were pretty good too. I think you'll definitely get into most schools even if you had a 22, but with a 23 your in good hands. Keep in mind that a lot of schools do their application cycle pretty late til April, so you will be fine. Congrats again!
Although this is off topic on this breakdown, which schools that you know of do their cycles pretty late? I am not even retaking my DAT until october 22nd and since I already paid for applications I wouldn't mind sending my new scores where they would count for something
 

mkhan27

5+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Mar 18, 2011
331
80
Status
Pre-Dental
Although this is off topic on this breakdown, which schools that you know of do their cycles pretty late? I am not even retaking my DAT until october 22nd and since I already paid for applications I wouldn't mind sending my new scores where they would count for something
I knew there were a couple like in BU and Tufts. I wrote them down somewhere but I can't find where I put that list. I don't want to give the wrong school info, but I would definitely recommend calling up some of the schools and checking with them. That's what I did around May-June before applying. I know BU and Tufts were definitely on that list though. By the way your test date isn't super-super late. You might not get pre-December interviews, but you'll definitely get post-December interviews. I'm taking mine around the same time so we are in the same boat. Just ace that DAT and your set. Good Luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: jaf004

jaf004

2+ Year Member
Apr 30, 2014
133
44
Status
Pre-Dental
I knew there were a couple like in BU and Tufts. I wrote them down somewhere but I can't find where I put that list. I don't want to give the wrong school info, but I would definitely recommend calling up some of the schools and checking with them. That's what I did around May-June before applying. I know BU and Tufts were definitely on that list though. By the way your test date isn't super-super late. You might not get pre-December interviews, but you'll definitely get post-December interviews. I'm taking mine around the same time so we are in the same boat. Just ace that DAT and your set. Good Luck!
thanks so much for the confidence boost! especially since I am DYING to go to tufts. I will just keep at it and then jump on the supp apps right after