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just took my kaplan diagnostic on saturday... 16-bio, 13- ochem, 13-gchem, 17- RC, 17- PAT, 13- QR. i haven't done any studying yet, but i'm taking the kaplan class and will be studying intensely for the next month and a half before i take the DAT in early May. as far as the o-chem and g-chem go, i just forgot all the rules and formulas. hopefully, with my studying it will come back to me. what do you think of these scores? i'm aiming to make a 18 or above on all the sections. thanks for the input ahead of time!


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I am very familiar with the Kaplan curriculum. Here is what I see for your situation:

Let me preface by saying that I hope you take my criticism constructively :)

Based on your current score, I think it will be hard for you to get 18's in all categories in 1.5 months (not impossible, just very difficult). Time is the big factor. It takes time to incorporate the concepts. To get 18's across the board, the big areas of concerns are: GChem, OChem, QR, and PAT. Think about it: QR is fairly basic math. Based on your QR score of 13, you will have a lot of general math work just to get up to par. This is not a skill that is learned in a short amount of time. You will have to work very hard to get that score up. Also, to get from 13 to 18 on GChem and OChem, is also hard to do in a short amount of time. OChem requires a lot of memorization, and that takes time. All sections will take a lot of practice that your time schedule does not afford.

But here's my question to you. Why not buy an extra month and wait to take the exam in mid-June??? Why the rush to take it in May? It sounds like you want to submit your application on June 1. If that is the case, you should submit your AADSAS application on June 1 without your DAT scores (they are unofficial in AADSAS). It will take AADSAS approx. one month to process your applicaiton. Then, you can still take the DAT in mid-June . It will take ADEA approx 2 weeks to send your DAT scores (in the meantime, Fax over unofficial scores to the schools your applying). This will buy you an extra month of study time. And in this way, both your application and DAT scores reach the dental schools at approximately the same time.

If you still will not change your mind and still intend to take the DAT in 1.5 months, you will have to get way ahead of your Kaplan class. I'd recommend watching every video ASAP, instead of waiting for your actual class. Start working on TopScore, maybe one per week, starting in April, so you can get used to the computer part of the exam. And definitely, without a doubt, starting working the Kaplan Subject Tests, with multiple repetitions.

Some points to note (as you will find if you search other DAT threads): Most everyone who takes the diagnostic test will get relatively low scores. Definitely with study, your scores will go up. Also, most people will typically get actual DAT scores higher than their Kaplan scores (except for the PAT). Based on my experience and reading other threads, if you can score consistently at a certain Kaplan score or TopScore score, your actual DAT score will likely be the same or go slightly up (except for the PAT). That being said, if you start getting 18's on TopScore or your Kaplan midterm or final and if 18's are what you want, then I think it would be fairly safe to take the DAT at that time.

Good luck.
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