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Do You Map? Lots of Threads but do you Map?

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by hansen44, May 9, 2008.

  1. hansen44

    7+ Year Member

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    I have read the other threads about mapping including Bloody Surgeons and I know there are alot of them. However, they dont tell me what I want to know, for those of YOU who started mapping with low verbal scores did YOUR verbal scores improve because of the map? I map a passage and I dont even look at it, it doesn't help me find answers it pretty much just tells me what I already know, I have a good memory for placement so I know were stuff is without looking at the map. But I tend to read over the passage and consistently get answers wrong even thought I have practiced alot and its the same with or without a map. So now I am questioning the idea if a map is a good idea, so for those of you who started mapping with low scores and improved, was it the map in your honest opinion or just because you practice alot and got used to reading and understanding the material. If it was the map than maybe my mapping skills are just crappy or maybe I just need to continue practicing more and more until im finally consistent with a 10. Your experience with this matter would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
     
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  3. msw27

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    I searched the threads to see if I could find anything on mapping passages but nothing came up. What exactly is mapping?
     
  4. hansen44

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    mapping is reading the verbal passage and by paragraph writing down a sentence, word etc summarizing the paragraph. Then writing the scope, purpose, or theme. Everyone doesn't go to this extent but thats what mapping is.
     
  5. BloodySurgeon

    Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    I was going to add it to my strategy guide (I actually will in a sec), but I'll tell you it first. Mapping in the beginning of your studies is a good idea, because it gets you in the habit of thinking while reading. You'll constantly think to your self, "what should I write here, or what do I need to extrapolate from reading this." Most people who are not casual readers have trouble mental mapping and your memory fills in the gaps causing a lot of bias assumptions (which the mcat loves to test you on). Personally at the beginning I had trouble categorizing each paragraph, and mapping made answering questions easier because the choices reflected a more specific topic on a more general paragraph topic within a centralized theme. However, after a lot of practicing with mapping on the paper you'll get into the habit of mental mapping and you'll probably not need to write anything anymore. And since you are not going to write anything, you could spend that extra 20 seconds on selectively highlighting and rethinking questions.

    Another point I want to add is that the purpose of mapping is not to know where things are necessarily... because most of us know where's what. The point of mapping is to take that 2 seconds after a paragraph to analyze what that passage was about. Questions and analyzing (critically reading) is essential what puts the mcat VR apart from any other standardize reading test.
     
  6. BloodySurgeon

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    There is no miracle way (pill) to consistently score 10s. It will come down to practice as with everything else in life and on this test. You practice your VR by doing passages, with or without strategies (the way you feel most conferable) and then review your answers throughly after your done. This include the questions you got correct and the one you didn't. I also like going over the other answer choices and try finding the answer by knowing all the wrong answer choices.
     
  7. han14tra

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    Go with EK method for verbal. Just took the MCAT today and the passages are MUCH longer than what they are on the practice tests from AAMC. The only revision to EK method I would make is to spend 5 sec after each paragraph and think about the main point of that paragraph. EK recommends spending 20 sec after you read the whole thing (I didn't really get a lot out of that). Mapping takes entirely too long. I started using EK and got a 10 (averaged about a 9 over 6 tests). I tried the princeton review mapping strategy and got a 6. I ran out of time to read the last 2 passages. Just read how you would normally read. Asking yourself questions while you read will help you understand it and keep focused.
     

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