Oct 29, 2010
28
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Well It's done and over with. not the worst scores in the world, but I am beyond disappointed in myself. I have flat out busted my A#$ for this f-ing test and it barely paid off. Angry doesn't even begin to express how I feel. Top score was accurate in some areas and waaaaaaay off in others.

heres my breakdown:
AA:17
TS:18
Bio:19
GC:16
OC:18
PAT:25
RC:19
QR:15

Topscore predicted pretty accurately for the sciences, and the math was about the same too. HOWEVER, they only got the scores right. topscore concentrates HEAVILY on taxonomy in the bio section. There wasn't one question on the actual test about it and the wording of the questions compared to the real thing was NOT the same. Most of the questions I feel I missed could have been answered correctly had I been used to seeing them in that format.

In the G-chem section, I honestly didn't feel like I did badly in it. I knew how to do almost every problem they asked me, but there wasn't enough time and some of the questions were worded funky. Honestly I just plain needed to study for this better. Its the same score I got on all three topscore tests.

The O-chem section was the same score I got on all three practice tests as well, but I had never seen half of the things they were asking me about! Any question that wasn't a reaction I can confidently say I got right. I was pretty confident with almost every possible type of reaction going into the test and then out of nowhere they start asking me to identify intermediates?!!!? That was just plain dirty. I had at least five of those things. other than that I was asked some of the most obscure concepts that I doubt any review would cover. That pisses me off that they do those things.

The PAT. Man what can I say here. I heard person after person complain about how the real thing is so much harder than topscore, but I straight up blew this thing out of the water! 99th percentile!! To be honest, the angle ranking on topscore was waaaay harder and the small window they give you for the test is awful to look at, so a nice big screen for the real thing was nice. Also, the apertures were nastier than topscore to figure out, but they usually only had one viable answer which made it easier to figure out while topscore had four answers that were all very similar making it harder. The folding's were quite a bit more elaborate than topscore also, but I felt well prepared for it and they made more sense than top score also. cube counting and hole punching were the same.

The QR section was absolutely ridiculous!!!!! Believe it or not, the math I had on topscore was ten times harder than on the real thing. and I blew threw every problem. So why did I score so low? because even though I went through each problem quickly, there just was NOT ENOUGH TIME!! They generously offered a calculator this year thinking it would help, but its a basic style and is basically worthless with algebra. I dot care how good you are at math, this was flat out impossible.

My RC was almost the same as Topscore, but honestly topscore never asked me one tone or inference question so I was a little at a loss for those, but they weren't awful. They didn't make it easy to answer though. almost every question was asking me about something that you needed to verify from another section of the reading which took forever.


Honestly, the testing center was pretty nice. The two guys who ran it were really helpful and made sure it stayed quiet the entire time. I was never distracted or anything.

I don't know what I could have done differently. Gchem was my biggest nightmare. It always has been. I just don't know how to get better at it! I'm sure theres a lot I could do but I'm still too steamed to think of it right now. I'm screwed for this entire year, and Im sick of sitting around while slackers make it into dent school and bomb everything and party all the time. I would kill to be in their shoes and they take every second for granted.

I know there not the worst scores in the world, but there just not competitive. Knowing that answering 4 more questions right would have gotten me a 19 enrages me. Its going to take me a while to get over this.:mad::(
 

punchdrunk7

7+ Year Member
Sep 15, 2009
342
13
Status
Dentist
Hey sorry to hear about that. But for GC and OC the best thing for me was Chads Videos. They are the best investment I ever made, much much cheaper than Kaplan and far better. Keep your chin up, if you stick with it you will succeed!!
 
Apr 9, 2010
356
1
Status
Pre-Dental
Ah, dude.. I was really hoping for the best for your test. Regardless, as you stated, they aren't the worst scores! Look at the positives, you killed the PAT and scored 19 in both Bio and RC which are pretty important! Your lowest scores are in the areas that are considered less important.

With that being said, you do realize that these scores do show potential. The first time I took the test, I scored slightly similar with 18AA/18TS/19BIO/19OC/19RC/20PAT/17GC/16QR. If you re-study and use additional materials, you will conquer the test and schools will be like, "Wow, you must have a huge amount of dedication and potential!".

The test is over and done with and now you need to plan a strategic schedule. While we both know these test scores are not competitive, its NOW about what you do after something difficult occurs. This is what shows true work ethic and character development and you will gain a lot of attention if you conquer the test. One year is not a big deal in the big picture, I assume you are a male therefore we don't necessarily have internal biological clocks.

How long did you study last time and what materials (practice tests,etc) did you use?
What was your method of studying?

Did you rely heavily on Kaplan's Blue Book?
 
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MatthewLeeDDS

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jan 5, 2009
302
24
Status
Dentist
I know you're frustrated about TopScore and how they emphasized different things (especially bio) but keep in mind that the DAT covers a HUGE range of topics. I had 0 plant questions on my real DAT and I know some people that had as many as 5. It is totally luck as to what "types" of questions you'll get in bio. The practice tests are designed to simulate a difficulty, not a specific point of emphasis necessarily.

With that said, keep this all in perspective. I know it sucks to do worse than you expected, but you have 2 more chances at this thing. Focus on what you did wrong, and study like you would for any other test. One thing you might want to do is look at the scores you're not doing so hot in. Something I noticed was you said that the TopScore score pretty well matched your DAT score... but you were upset about your DAT score. If you weren't getting what you wanted on TopScore, you should have (I know, I know... hindsight is 20/20) considered moving your test! The practice tests are there to see if you're ready for the real thing and if you score something on a practice test that you would be disappointed about on the real thing, then move your test and study it more!

You'll be fine... you've got one under your belt and you know what to expect now. Good luck!
 
OP
L
Oct 29, 2010
28
0
Status
Pre-Dental
Ah, dude.. I was really hoping for the best for your test. Regardless, as you stated, they aren't the worst scores! Look at the positives, you killed the PAT and scored 19 in both Bio and RC which are pretty important! Your lowest scores are in the areas that are considered less important.

With that being said, you do realize that these scores do show potential. The first time I took the test, I scored slightly similar with 18AA/18TS/19BIO/19OC/19RC/20PAT/17GC/16QR. If you re-study and use additional materials, you will conquer the test and schools will be like, "Wow, you must have a huge amount of dedication and potential!".

The test is over and done with and now you need to plan a strategic schedule. While we both know these test scores are not competitive, its NOW about what you do after something difficult occurs. This is what shows true work ethic and character development and you will gain a lot of attention if you conquer the test. One year is not a big deal in the big picture, I assume you are a male therefore we don't necessarily have internal biological clocks.

How long did you study last time and what materials (practice tests,etc) did you use?
What was your method of studying?

Did you rely heavily on Kaplan's Blue Book?
thanks glo1984. I appreciate the support. Yes I know they have huge potential and yes, Im a male. and no, a year in the big picture is not a big deal at all. Problem is, it's been "only a year" for years. Im about to turn 32 and Im sick and tired of waiting to have a future. I was in the Marines for 12 years, got into the work force and left to pursue dentistry. you think undergrad was hard? try doing it after being out of highschool 8 years. anyway, I digress. sorry. What Im getting at is my bio and g-chem classes are going to expire in the next year (the year i'm about to be rejected from) and I have absolutely no way to afford to retake them. I know I could boost my score up to a 19 in 2 weeks, but what good would it do? Im completely screwed.

FYI, no I didnt rely on kaplan heavily, it became pretty apparent after my first practice test that it was not sufficient. I used orgoman/destroyer kaplan, my bio text book and exam krackers for g-chem and ochem. also topscore. i simply cannot afford anything else. Im so bummed and feel hopeless here. Schools are so heartless, they don't care about anything but perfect scores and could give a crap about real life. I digress again.

Thanks agian for all your help. anyother tips?/advice
 
OP
L
Oct 29, 2010
28
0
Status
Pre-Dental
I know you're frustrated about TopScore and how they emphasized different things (especially bio) but keep in mind that the DAT covers a HUGE range of topics. I had 0 plant questions on my real DAT and I know some people that had as many as 5. It is totally luck as to what "types" of questions you'll get in bio. The practice tests are designed to simulate a difficulty, not a specific point of emphasis necessarily.

With that said, keep this all in perspective. I know it sucks to do worse than you expected, but you have 2 more chances at this thing. Focus on what you did wrong, and study like you would for any other test. One thing you might want to do is look at the scores you're not doing so hot in. Something I noticed was you said that the TopScore score pretty well matched your DAT score... but you were upset about your DAT score. If you weren't getting what you wanted on TopScore, you should have (I know, I know... hindsight is 20/20) considered moving your test! The practice tests are there to see if you're ready for the real thing and if you score something on a practice test that you would be disappointed about on the real thing, then move your test and study it more!

You'll be fine... you've got one under your belt and you know what to expect now. Good luck!
actually, I did move the test. I was supposed to take it two weeks ago. I improved my score considerably and was left with no choice but to take the test today or miss every application deadline I have. While topscore did ALMOST match the DAT score, I scored 2 points higher on average and thought I may score at least one point higher than that.

Its over now, nothing I can do aout it. I'm boned for 2011. my problem now is figuring out what to do about the fact that my 1st year undergrad classes are "expiring" the most ridiculous concept Ive ever heard of. I cant afford groceries none the less $10,000+ to retake my entire freshman year! anyone ever dealt with this before?
 

hoylematt

10+ Year Member
Nov 23, 2008
420
3
Status
Pre-Dental
You will be depressed about your scores for a while. You will eventually pick yourself up and put on your DAT studying pants again. This time you will make the first time look like you didn't study at all. As a retaker myself, half of the battle is getting over the fear and anxiety of the first take. Now that your done with that crappy part of it, you will be able to focus and win at the DAT.

Remember this: Chances are you probably wouldn't have made it in this cycle anyways because of how late you were taking the DAT (unless you had some insanely high DAT score). Prepare for June 3rd of this next cycle because that is the date you should be looking at.

Bottom line: cry a bit, hit a few walls, then pick yourself up and get back to work. You'll know what you need to do.
 
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OP
L
Oct 29, 2010
28
0
Status
Pre-Dental
You will be depressed about your scores for a while. You will eventually pick yourself up and put on your DAT studying pants again. This time you will make the first time look like you didn't study at all. As a retaker myself, half of the battle is getting over the fear and anxiety of the first take. Now that your done with that crappy part of it, you will be able to focus and win at the DAT.

Remember this: Chances are you probably wouldn't have made it in this cycle anyways because of how late you were taking the DAT (unless you had some insanely high DAT score). Prepare for June 3rd of this next cycle because that is the date you should be looking at.

Bottom line: cry a bit, hit a few walls, then pick yourself up and get back to work. You'll know what you need to do.
Thanks hoylematt,
why june 3rd? shouldn't I be looking to take it as soon as I can? assuming Im ready of course. three months is a long time and I would want to do its sooner not only because it's still fresh in my mind, but because in the horrible chance that I would have to take it again, I would have time to still make it in that cycle.
 

hoylematt

10+ Year Member
Nov 23, 2008
420
3
Status
Pre-Dental
I think what I mean by look at june 3rd, is have everything ready to go to submit by that date. There is a ton of stuff to prepare before that June 3rd opening date of the next cycle begins--some of which include Writing a fantastic personal statement, gathering letters of recommendation, Studying your butt off for 3 months and taking the DAT, Shadowing Dentists, and fitting whatever else you need to in there to polish your application.

The whole Idea is that you want to shoot to submit that day, which takes a heck of a lot of preparation over the next 6 months. If there is one thing I learned from applying this cycle is that I wish i would have submitted day 1 and been fully done with everything on that date.
 
OP
L
Oct 29, 2010
28
0
Status
Pre-Dental
I think what I mean by look at june 3rd, is have everything ready to go to submit by that date. There is a ton of stuff to prepare before that June 3rd opening date of the next cycle begins--some of which include Writing a fantastic personal statement, gathering letters of recommendation, Studying your butt off for 3 months and taking the DAT, Shadowing Dentists, and fitting whatever else you need to in there to polish your application.

The whole Idea is that you want to shoot to submit that day, which takes a heck of a lot of preparation over the next 6 months. If there is one thing I learned from applying this cycle is that I wish i would have submitted day 1 and been fully done with everything on that date.
Ahh yes of course. Well good thing Is my applications were done long ago and It wont take much more than a few emails to get everything set for next years cycle. I have met with the dean of admissions several times casually and he assures me my app. is quite satisfactory, so Hopefully all my hard work paid off this time around. I do agree with you though, I wish I could have gotten everything in on time but I did pretty good considering I literally made the final decision to enter into the field in july. Thanks for your help!