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First Verbal, post-Kaplan Diag.

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by BigRedStress, Dec 27, 2001.

  1. BigRedStress

    BigRedStress AMEX Black 7+ Year Member

    Dec 3, 2001
    Okay, after taking the infamous Kaplan diagnostic, I got a beautiful 5 on the verbal section and 9s on the phys and bio sections. So now that I'm home for the Holidays I've been spreading Christmans joy by going to Kaplan every single day this week for about 6 hours to read and understand the "kaplan method" for verbal. So I took my first full length practice exam this morning and got a 50 out of 65 correct. From all the scaled scores I have in various books, this comes to about and 8... which I'm personally happy about I guess in that it's not a 5, and all that learning of the 'kaplan method' worked to some extent. However, its not a 10 or higher, which is what I NEED. I had trouble with questions where the main idea is needed to be known and where you had impied detail type questions where you cant really go back to a particular section on the passage to find the answer as in detail questions. SO what do I do now? I'm planning on taking another verbal section exam tomorrow morning, but I do I work on my weaknesses? Thanks for your help in advance!
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  3. none

    none 1K Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 27, 2001
    First and foremost...don't trust their (or any other commercial company's) exams! Instead of doing whatever you were planning on tomorrow, go out and buy the AAMC III, IV, or V exam and see how you do on that. For future test-takers, make sure to try out those exams before forking the money over to Kaplan, TPR, or anyone else.
  4. megkudos

    megkudos Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 18, 2001
    New Jersey
    Just keep practicing ....those are definately fine scores to start out with. Besides I have friends who got 8s in Verbal and 10s in Physical SCiences and Bio and got into Med schoo oct 15th at more than one pretty much I guess what I am saying is keep practiving but don't sweat verbal too too much...and yeah what the previos post said too AAMC materials (tests 3, 4 and 5) are very useful.
    HOpe that helps...
  5. Col_4:14

    Col_4:14 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dude, chill! The tests at Kaplan are 147% more difficult than the real MCAT. I OWED points on my diagnostic exam. In the end, I did very well on the MCAT and made it in. There will plenty of more "scares" ahead of you. Try to get used to it. I know its frustrating.
  6. Whisker Barrel Cortex

    Whisker Barrel Cortex 1K Member 10+ Year Member

    Aug 10, 2001
    As a former Kaplan student and now a Kaplan teacher, I can tell you for sure that most of the exams are harder than the actual MCAT. Furthermore, you cannot take the percentage correct from one test and use it to extrapolate a score. Unless a test has a scoring scale based specifically on that test, DO NOT attempt to figure out a score. Especially if you do the topical tests. These tests are meant to challenge you and teach a certain test taking skill.

    That being said, you should do as many of these tests as humanly possible. That is the best way to improve your score. Getting practice at reading MCAT style passages and answering MCAT style questions is the key to acing all sections of the MCAT.

    Good luck.
  7. EpiII

    EpiII Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 26, 2001
    You can just keep practicing. Look at the questions you missed and try to figure out why you missed them and you will begin to train your mind to think like the test makers.

    I agree with None about taking the AAMC tests, but do not go out and buy them, Kaplan has them for you to take - you already paid for them. I would not take them now though, I would intersperse them with the Kaplan full length tests. Make a schedule for yourself and work up to the April date. I took the 5 full lengths and then at least AAMC IV and V if not III as well before my exam.

    One last word of advice, you may want to increase Verbal the most, but do not totally neglect the other sections.

    Good luck.
  8. WISC-ite

    WISC-ite Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Dec 26, 2001
    Left Coast
    Okay, I also had a really hard time with the verbal section and I also knew that I was not alone.

    First, the Kaplan exams are harder and scored differently. However, they are a really good tool to use to learn from. I am currently enrolled in ExamKrackers (I took Kaplan last summer) and love their methodology. To put it simply: if you use something like the Kaplan method you will initially raise your score but it will plateau.

    The way Krackers teaches is to not write on the exam and to absorb the main idea. Then use the question stems (which have a lot of information in them) to help pick your answer. I know I am not doing the course the justice it deserves. I really enjoy Krackers and my scores are improving.

    Also, you may want to purchase the Berkley Verbal review books. They are VERY hard and LONG. However, when you are finished with the book (which is a ton of passages) you will be money on timing.

    Good luck. Any questions just ask. I own ALL the available MCAT material and have taken practise exams from them all. :p
  9. BigRedStress

    BigRedStress AMEX Black 7+ Year Member

    Dec 3, 2001
    Thanks guys....
    I like Kaplan a lot so far,they have some good methods in attacking the verbal section, however after taking two more verbal sections and getting 46 out of 65 right on both of them (which i think may be around scaled score of 7) ... I haven't in fact improved much. So after three verbal sections taken with 50, 46, and 46 right.... I'm not doing as well as I want, moreover I'm not seeing improvement!! I'm getting really frustrated.
  10. WISC-ite

    WISC-ite Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Dec 26, 2001
    Left Coast
    Hang in there...the verbal section sucks for a lot of people. The postives are this: you are starting early and your score can be improved during the next couple of weeks.

    I would recommend sitting down with your verbal exam and SLOWLY going through each question and asking yourself...why is this answer choice not correct? Most people go over their old exams and only concentrate on the questions they got wrong This is not an effective studying tool. Go over the entire exam and get a feel for wrong answer choices. I am sure the Kaplan has taught you the different catagories, but the important part is just recognizing frequent wrong answers and how they are worded.

    Also, I will tell you a little secrete. You are not going to know if your answer choices are always correct during the exam. The verbal section requires some guess-work and you can only become good at this with practise. There is still hope.

    Best of luck
  11. EMTgirl

    EMTgirl Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 30, 2001
    i would just like to add that on my first TPR diag, and on most of the subsequent diags, i received scores of 4-6 on verbal. however, i KNOW that i am good at verbal, and i did not even attend any verbal TPR classes. the only studying i did for verbal was actually doing the practice diags, because i knew i needed to focus my efforts on the science sections. and i got an 11 verbal with no problem. those test prep courses just try and freak you out, don't sweat it.
    just keep doing passages, that's the best way to study. good luck.
  12. E'01

    E'01 1K Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 26, 2001
    I had the same problem BigRedStress (do you go to Cornell??). What I suggest you try is reading the Book review section of the Sunday NY times. These articles are usually wordy and sorry to offend anyone, but boring - pretty much like the MCAT passages if you ask me. I would spend time reading them in a timed manner and then I'd ask myself what the main topic was and what point the author was making. Good luck!
  13. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;) 10+ Year Member

    Aug 18, 2000
    In residency HELL
    I have to agree with the NOT trust your Kaplan diagnostic test! I made a dismal 18 on my first diagnostic and did 11 points better on the REAL MCAT! Just keep practicing...the timing factor is really what you need to get down more than anything!

    Good Luck!
  14. reesie0726

    reesie0726 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 23, 2001
    arlington, tx
    I would not worry about a poor diagnostic score in Kaplan. I barely got a 12 total on the diagnostic. You should see improvement as you progress through the course. Just practice, practice and practice. Do all of the practice passages and tests. Then do the aamc exams also. I am sure you will se improvement. It is great that you are getting an early start.
  15. serpiente

    serpiente Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 28, 2001
    Big Red stress, it really sounds like you expect instant gratification here. Well, there is nothing instant about any aspect of the medical school application process. Just try waiting for your scores once you actually take the MCAT...and waiting to hear from schools etc. Be patient and work at it. You've just begun studying, you shouldn't expect to see improvement overnight. Keep practicing and reading. And as others have said the practice tests (even the ones put out by the MCAT) are not the equivalent of a crystal ball. Use them as a learning tool and don't get so hung up on how many you got wrong etc.

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