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Sep 5, 2017
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  1. Pre-Optometry
-LONG POST-
scroll down to see my new scores and recommended study method/guide/my personal tips!!!


soooo i retook my OAT today and felt that I needed to share my experience! i couldn't find anyone on here who may have been in a similar situation as mine so here is my post to be that person for someone else out there. background on me i'm not ur typical "super great at science student". science has never been my strongest suit but my passion for this career has driven me this far! a lot of people who post on sdn have stellar OAT scores and gpa's and they make it look so easy!! i'm here to represent those that need to put in that extra work!!

here are my first OAT scores from 8/24/2018 (tragic really lmao)
BIO: 260
GC: 260
OC: 300
QR: 290
PHY: 290
RC: 360
280 TS/290 AA

v v sad scores. made me question if i was cut out or not for opt school and got p sad around this time. i mean who wouldn't retake w/ those scores, but i thought maybe my above average gpa (~3.6) could help me out but ya kno, u gotta do what u gotta do!!!! hustle!!! the school i rly want to go to highly suggested to retake, it took me 3 months to decide it, but by the end of october i made it my month goal for november to be my OAT study month, then take it in december

here's my study plan/breakdown reviews for the first time i attempted the oat & then reviews for my retake!:

*what didn't work the first time
-studying for 2-3 mos: i knew i was going to take an important grad school test the summer after my junior year, so i purposely blocked those summer months to study. do i regret that? kinda. after my most recent time studying for my OAT, i can definitely attest that studying for 2-3 mos for 5 hrs a day for this test is definitely unnecessary. a month is truly all you need! on my 3rd month of studying, i definitely felt unmotivated, tired and burnt out.

-kaplan book/course: my friend let me borrow her online self paced course to try for a few days and definitely felt like it wouldn't have been that helpful so i decided to just stick with the book. after a few days of trying to study fr the book, i realized i wasn't retaining anything either. so i did more research on alternative resources to match my learning style. additionally, i read plenty of sdn reviews saying to -not- do the kaplan course for the oat. maybe it could work for you, but it was def not for me.

-not utilizing coursesaver better: coursesaver was NOT THE BAD IDEA, but i wished i utilized it more seriously and continued watching the videos and taking the quizzes. i went thru the videos in 2 weeks, but forgot most of everything by aug bc i wasn't actively practicing.

-not taking enough serious practice tests. i put myself on a practice test schedule but then i'd be on my phone, get bored or would just give up. then i'd come back to it and review it but that didn't help. def do ur practice tests seriously and once you've built up on content, do it timed!!!

so i went into my first OAT aug 24th (8 am) dreading it and lowkey knowing it would be a nightmare, but still had this false confidence that i'd be fine. LMAO then ofc that didn't end up well. sooooo~

*what worked the second time
-studying for 1 mo only! i scheduled my test for december 17th. keep in mind, i'm still a senior in undergrad, so i was balancing studying for my final exams while studying for the OAT! i treated it as if it was another final i had to take in december, so i began to re-study for the OAT around nov 4th or 5th. for the first 2 wks, i watched coursesavers videos for gen chem & physics & ochem while going thru ferallis notes for bio. then i had a week of finals so i wasn't going too hard on OAT studying. finals were over and i was STRESSED. i had one wk to extensively study for OAT but again, hustle!!

the last wk before my test, i isolated myself from everyone except my close friends and studied for almost 8-10 hrs a day. i did practice test after practice test. this is where i felt the knowledge i learned in the past 3 wks showing.

the materials i used and loved!!!:
-DAT BOOTCAMP!!!!!!!!! my close friend def recommended this to me after she took her DAT. she crammed and studied only for a few wks but still managed a v good DAT score, so i went ahead and got a subscription. i love love love dat bootcamp and i definitely attest it to my increase in scores. since the DAT and OAT are both made by the ADA, our tests are actually very similar except we have a physics section. this was the best thing i decided to use for sure.

-practice tests!!!! practice tests!!!! practice tests!!!!! do them seriously and timed with no distractions!
apart fr the dat bc question banks, i had some kaplan pdf practice tests i utilized. i would do 2 practice gen chem & ochem tests a day during the final week before my OAT. i took the ADA test and 2009 DAT test 2 days ago as extra practice too!

-coursesaver i def liked chad for his gc & oc videos overall for content review. esp if u learn best by someone else teaching you rather than reading it from a prep book!!

yesterday i went into my test feeling way better. my test was at 12:30 this time so i was able to wake up and freshen up without having to rush. and so....

here are my new scores as of 12/17/2018!
BIO: 320
GC: 370 !!!!so proud of this one!!!!!
OC: 330
QR: 290
PHY: 280 *went down oops LOL*
RC: 400
320 TS/330 AA

this comes to show that thru smarter, efficient studying, an excessive amount of motivation, a few mental break downs here and there, you CAN raise your scores!! studying while in school wasn't as bad as i thought it'd be. i definitely liked being in the set school mode that i ended up just incorporating a few hrs of my day for the OAT. i had the best support system here for me and setting that personal goal to do better for my application definitely fueled me this past month.

and now for a breakdown on the subjects -

bio: wasn't bad at all. on my first OAT, i felt like i definitely knew nothing that was going on but this time it wasn't like that. i was cruising thru the q's and stopping here and there for a bit. i remember a lot of cell & organelle info being tested, a few aerobic respiration stuff, and just a bit of everything, but nothing toooooo detailed. i definitely stand by the "breadth not depth" mindset for bio. i trained myself to try to get thru the bio section in 25 minutes w/ the dat bc tests. what i used for bio: read through ferallis notes once thoroughly then skimmed thru it a second time. i did all 10 dat bootcamp biology question banks that had 40 questions each & timed myself. once i finished them i'd go thru the review that included detailed explanations for alllll the q's. this definitely helped reinforcing things i learned thru ferallis. i also recommend watching bozeman science for harder to picture concepts, like the physiological systems!!

gc: i was so scared for GC at first bc of how horrible i did the first time but after a few weeks of reviewing chad's outline as well as doing dat bootcamp gen chem practice sets and another 5 kaplan chem pdf sets, i figured out the pattern of the questions. by the 16th (a day before my test), i was getting about 23-24/30 on kaplan practices. (felt like a boss tbh) during my OAT, the gc section felt like a breeze. nothing too hard. know ur gas laws, P1V1/T1=P2V2/T2, trends, ksp, equilibrium, etc. what i used for gc: chads outline/vids for gc were the best!! kaplan by subject practice tests were what solidified GC for me. dat bootcamp chemistry by topic question banks were great too!

oc: my ochem background 1) sucks and 2) sucks. i got a C in chemistry my sophomore year and dreaded this section the most. i still dnt kno how i managed to 300 on my first oat lol. some things looked familiar while some things i straight up guessed on. wasn't feeling too great about this section either, but somehow i made it thru! i think my reaction/product recognition was truly what saved me. what i used for oc: i watched a combination of mike and chads videos. along w this i made flashcards for all the reactions as recommended by a friend which DEFINITELY HELPED!!! otherwise i felt my extensive gen chem review tied heavily w/ the conceptual ochem stuff so it helped me a ton! kno ur ortho/para directions, sn1/sn2/e1/e2 stuff by heart, and be able to recognize reactants and products!

phy: physics is obviously the weakest of my subjects and i am def responsible for it!! after my first OAT experience, physics didn't seem so bad i kinda disregarded it. plus my motivation to do way better on the other sciences made me neglect physics a bit this time around. i went thru chads videos and reviewed the outline but thats as far as i did for the section, and the lack of practice def showed. dat bootcamp has a FREE physics question bank here that i used a bit!

qr: i'm not the strongest at math too, and didn't do a practice set at all bc i was so focused on increasing my science scores. not the proudest for that score but at that point i was pretty tired and ready to end the test. what i used for qr: chads outlines and a few of his vids - the ones explaining how to age questions and rates.

rc: ever since i was little, reading has just been my thing. i didn't do any practice tests for reading bc i'm pretty proficient at comprehension. (!!!!wish i was naturally gifted in science tho-___-)) i read through some strategies and saw that "search and destroy" wasn't that recommended, but thats how i do it/have been doing it since i started doing standardized tests in elementary school up until now.

andddd for my last tip: ur attitude and mentality definitely plays a huge part of the OAT. this test isn't that hard, you just need to put in some work and practice. trust yourself. i had a hard time doing that but my support system kept motivating me and reminding me that i could do it. keep urself healthy mentally & physically and don't forget to take some breaks. having to retake the test definitely broke me down a little but from my improvements i want you to know you can do it too.

goodluck and thanks for sticking around to read my novel!



 
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Jun 4, 2018
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-LONG POST-
scroll down to see my new scores and recommended study method/guide/my personal tips!!!


soooo i retook my OAT today and felt that I needed to share my experience! i couldn't find anyone on here who may have been in a similar situation as mine so here is my post to be that person for someone else out there. background on me i'm not ur typical "super great at science student". science has never been my strongest suit but my passion for this career has driven me this far! a lot of people who post on sdn have stellar OAT scores and gpa's and they make it look so easy!! i'm here to represent those that need to put in that extra work!!

here are my first OAT scores from 8/24/2018 (tragic really lmao)
BIO: 260
GC: 260
OC: 300
QR: 290
PHY: 290
RC: 360
280 TS/290 AA

v v sad scores. made me question if i was cut out or not for opt school and got p sad around this time. i mean who wouldn't retake w/ those scores, but i thought maybe my above average gpa (~3.6) could help me out but ya kno, u gotta do what u gotta do!!!! hustle!!! the school i rly want to go to highly suggested to retake, it took me 3 months to decide it, but by the end of october i made it my month goal for november to be my OAT study month, then take it in december

here's my study plan/breakdown reviews for the first time i attempted the oat & then reviews for my retake!:

*what didn't work the first time
-studying for 2-3 mos: i knew i was going to take an important grad school test the summer after my junior year, so i purposely blocked those summer months to study. do i regret that? kinda. after my most recent time studying for my OAT, i can definitely attest that studying for 2-3 mos for 5 hrs a day for this test is definitely unnecessary. a month is truly all you need! on my 3rd month of studying, i definitely felt unmotivated, tired and burnt out.

-kaplan book/course: my friend let me borrow her online self paced course to try for a few days and definitely felt like it wouldn't have been that helpful so i decided to just stick with the book. after a few days of trying to study fr the book, i realized i wasn't retaining anything either. so i did more research on alternative resources to match my learning style. additionally, i read plenty of sdn reviews saying to -not- do the kaplan course for the oat. maybe it could work for you, but it was def not for me.

-not utilizing coursesaver better: coursesaver was NOT THE BAD IDEA, but i wished i utilized it more seriously and continued watching the videos and taking the quizzes. i went thru the videos in 2 weeks, but forgot most of everything by aug bc i wasn't actively practicing.

-not taking enough serious practice tests. i put myself on a practice test schedule but then i'd be on my phone, get bored or would just give up. then i'd come back to it and review it but that didn't help. def do ur practice tests seriously and once you've built up on content, do it timed!!!

so i went into my first OAT aug 24th (8 am) dreading it and lowkey knowing it would be a nightmare, but still had this false confidence that i'd be fine. LMAO then ofc that didn't end up well. sooooo~

*what worked the second time
-studying for 1 mo only! i scheduled my test for december 17th. keep in mind, i'm still a senior in undergrad, so i was balancing studying for my final exams while studying for the OAT! i treated it as if it was another final i had to take in december, so i began to re-study for the OAT around nov 4th or 5th. for the first 2 wks, i watched coursesavers videos for gen chem & physics & ochem while going thru ferallis notes for bio. then i had a week of finals so i wasn't going too hard on OAT studying. finals were over and i was STRESSED. i had one wk to extensively study for OAT but again, hustle!!

the last wk before my test, i isolated myself from everyone except my close friends and studied for almost 8-10 hrs a day. i did practice test after practice test. this is where i felt the knowledge i learned in the past 3 wks showing.

the materials i used and loved!!!:
-DAT BOOTCAMP!!!!!!!!! my close friend def recommended this to me after she took her DAT. she crammed and studied only for a few wks but still managed a v good DAT score, so i went ahead and got a subscription. i love love love dat bootcamp and i definitely attest it to my increase in scores. since the DAT and OAT are both made by the ADA, our tests are actually very similar except we have a physics section. this was the best thing i decided to use for sure.

-practice tests!!!! practice tests!!!! practice tests!!!!! do them seriously and timed with no distractions!
apart fr the dat bc question banks, i had some kaplan pdf practice tests i utilized. i would do 2 practice gen chem & ochem tests a day during the final week before my OAT. i took the ADA test and 2009 DAT test 2 days ago as extra practice too!

-coursesaver i def liked chad for his gc & oc videos overall for content review. esp if u learn best by someone else teaching you rather than reading it from a prep book!!

yesterday i went into my test feeling way better. my test was at 12:30 this time so i was able to wake up and freshen up without having to rush. and so....

here are my new scores as of 12/17/2018!
BIO: 320
GC: 370 !!!!so proud of this one!!!!!
OC: 330
QR: 290
PHY: 280 *went down oops LOL*
RC: 400
320 TS/330 AA

this comes to show that thru smarter, efficient studying, an excessive amount of motivation, a few mental break downs here and there, you CAN raise your scores!! studying while in school wasn't as bad as i thought it'd be. i definitely liked being in the set school mode that i ended up just incorporating a few hrs of my day for the OAT. i had the best support system here for me and setting that personal goal to do better for my application definitely fueled me this past month.

and now for a breakdown on the subjects -

bio: wasn't bad at all. on my first OAT, i felt like i definitely knew nothing that was going on but this time it wasn't like that. i was cruising thru the q's and stopping here and there for a bit. i remember a lot of cell & organelle info being tested, a few aerobic respiration stuff, and just a bit of everything, but nothing toooooo detailed. i definitely stand by the "breadth not depth" for bio. i trained myself to try to get thru the bio section in 25 minutes w/ the dat bc tests. what i used for bio: read through ferallis notes once thoroughly then skimmed thru it a second time. i did all 10 dat bootcamp biology question banks that had 40 questions each & timed myself. once i finished them i'd go thru the review that included detailed explanations for alllll the q's. this definitely helped reinforcing things i learned thru ferallis. i also recommend watching bozeman science for harder to picture concepts, like the physiological systems!!

gc: i was so scared for GC at first bc of how horrible i did the first time but after a few weeks of reviewing chad's outline as well as doing dat bootcamp gen chem practice sets and another 5 kaplan chem pdf sets, i figured out the pattern of the questions. by the 16th (a day before my test), i was getting about 23-24/30 on kaplan practices. (felt like a boss tbh) during my OAT, the gc section felt like a breeze. nothing too hard. know ur gas laws, P1V1/T1=P2V2/T2, trends, ksp, equilibrium, etc. what i used for gc: chads outline/vids for gc were the best!! dat bootcamp chemistry by topic question banks were great too!

oc: my ochem background 1) sucks and 2) sucks. i got a C in chemistry my sophomore year and dreaded this section the most. i still dnt kno how i managed to 300 on my first oat lol. during the test some things looked familiar while some things i straight up guessed on. wasn't feeling too great about this section either, but oh well times up! what i used for oc: i watched a combination of mike and chads videos. along w this i made flashcards for all the reactions as recommended by a friend which DEFINITELY HELPED!!! otherwise i felt my extensive gen chem review tied heavily w/ the conceptual ochem stuff so it helped me a ton! kno ur ortho/para directions, sn1/sn2/e1/e2 stuff by heart, and be able to recognize reactants and products!

phy: physics is obviously the weakest of my subjects and i am def responsible for it!! after my first OAT experience, physics didn't seem so bad i kinda disregarded it. plus my motivation to do way better on the other sciences made me neglect physics a bit this time around. i went thru chads videos and reviewed the outline but thats as far as i did for the section, and the lack of practice def showed. dat bootcamp has a FREE physics question bank here that i used a bit!

qr: i'm not the strongest at math too, and didn't do a practice set at all bc i was so focused on increasing my science scores. not the proudest for that score but at that point i was pretty tired and ready to end the test. what i used for qr: chads outlines and a few of his vids - the ones explaining how to age questions and rates.

rc: ever since i was little, reading has just been my thing. i didn't do any practice tests for reading bc i'm pretty proficient at comprehension. (!!!!wish i was naturally gifted in science tho o(╥﹏╥)o)) i read through some strategies and saw that "search and destroy" wasn't that recommended, but thats how i do it/have been doing it since i started doing standardized tests in elementary school up until now.

andddd for my last tip: ur attitude and mentality definitely plays a huge part of the OAT. this test isn't that hard, you just need to put in some work and practice. trust yourself. i had a hard time doing that but my support system kept motivating me and reminding me that i could do it. keep urself healthy mentally & physically and don't forget to take some breaks. having to retake the test definitely broke me down a little but from my improvements i want you to know you can do it too.

goodluck and thanks for sticking around to read my novel!
(ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

That’s awesome!! Thank you so much for sharing. Retaking mine in a couple weeks and feeling super nervous. I’m using chads videos and doing all his gc/oc/physics questions and practice exams.
Also doing the free DAT physics questions and free practice exams. (Can’t afford to purchase the membership right now).
How did you practice the quantitive comparison on the QR? Does chad have those for practice?
 
Sep 5, 2017
7
10
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Optometry
That’s awesome!! Thank you so much for sharing. Retaking mine in a couple weeks and feeling super nervous. I’m using chads videos and doing all his gc/oc/physics questions and practice exams.
Also doing the free DAT physics questions and free practice exams. (Can’t afford to purchase the membership right now).
How did you practice the quantitive comparison on the QR? Does chad have those for practice?

I would say the QR section through Dat Bootcamp was WAY harder than the actual OAT QR. If you take the free ADA OAT sample test, that QR section i believe is the most representative!! The DAT 2007 exam also has a pretty representative QR section as well if you want more practice. Goodluck!
 

Balleryo

2+ Year Member
Mar 21, 2017
5
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  1. Pre-Dental
On behalf of everyone who doesn’t have an account and can’t like or comment on your post, thank you sooo much for taking out the time to share your tips! It def made me feel better and more hopeful. You’re helping so many ppl out so thanks and congrats on your score!!!
 
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