Getting Ready to take the DAT for the first time, any advice on study jitters?

Barbie DDS

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This is my first time on sdn and I found it very helpful. I'm glad to know that there are others out like me that are going through the same process. At my university there isn't alot of pre dental majors.
 

eran76

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Get access to Kaplan (or other) computerized sample DATs. Do one Saturday, study Sunday, then do one, Mon, Tues, Wed, at the same time as your actual DAT. Take the DAT on Thursday. When I did this, I was so used to taking the test by then that on the actual test day I forgot I was taking the real DAT and concentrated entirely on getting as many questions right as possible. For and added bonus, in the afternoons get the correct answers to the questions you got wrong on the sample exam and figure out why you got them wrong.

You'll still be jittery before the test but that should melt away within the first couple of minutes.
 

HangOnSloopy

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I took the DAT three times, and my score went significantly higher on the third try. What was the difference? The first two times I focused more on studying the material and less on practice exams. The third time, I ordered the topscore CD online, and got the Kaplan book and the Barron's book from Barnes and Noble, and I did every question on every one of those tests at least three times. As I did this, I made a list of themes that seemed to be on every practice test (i.e. there was always at least 1-3 questions on cell differentiation in an embryo, there was always an organic chem question about which one is aromatic, always a math question about two people working together and how long it would take them, etc.) and I focused on reviewing these topics as the test day arrived, while continuing to work through the questions. The thing about the DAT is that if you can identify these trends, you can improve by 5-10 questions per section easily, and bring your score way up. Best of luck to you!
 

dentist_to_be?

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wimmcs said:
What study materials do you have for the DAT?
I used the Kaplan book... did really well on the dAT except on the PAT... The PAT section on their tests do not prepare you enough, I learned that the hard way.

Anywas, dont be nervous, and most important: MAKE SURE YOU GET A GOOD NIGHT'S SLEEP. I actually have trouble doing this, as I learned from taking other standarized tests. So I took something to make sure I slept well the night before. It worked well... I did way better than I expected to.
 

bouncy_ball

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I'd recommend not studying the night before. Shut the books at noon, and enjoy the rest of the day. Otherwise you may find yourself up at 3 in the morning worrying about what you don't remember.
 

TX Hopeful

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The night before the exam, I rented a DVD and chilled out. Since I set the test date, I knew I would be ready by the time that date came. Of course, I had my last minute doubts, and I think that's only human.

The only thing that I did the dy before the exam was go over Kaplan flash cards and a couple of subject tests...nothing to intense though.

The morning of the test, I went for a blood rushing run when I woke up to get the blood flowing. I had a quick breakfast of Honeynut Cheerios, a glass of Carnation Instant Breakfast, and a glass of orange juice along with all of my vitamins.

At the test center, I popped a Hydroxycut (don't recommend it if you're not accustomed to it) before I went in to take the test. At the break, I had a BabyRuth and another Hydroxycut (Ephedra Free, of course) prior to the RC and QR section. I was so surprised how relaxed I was once I got to the testing center.

So my recommendation is to do your best to relax if you've been doing decent on practice tests. Watch a movie, have a nice dinner, walk the dog, etc. Oh...and have as many people that you know say a prayer for you...that worked for me too.

Good luck, and let us know how you do.
 
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Barbie DDS

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Barbie DDS said:
This is my first time on sdn and I found it very helpful. I'm glad to know that there are others out like me that are going through the same process. At my university there isn't alot of pre dental majors.
So far all that I've accumulated for study is the DAT study audio tape series and a Barron's study guide. I'm waiting on funds to attend the Kaplan course in a few months, but I know there's more to preparing than that. Any one out there with a little help for a future Dentist?
 

champSJL

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So Barrons is good for sciences review EXCEPT prepping for the PAT? What's good for the PAT?
 

HangOnSloopy

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champSJL said:
So Barrons is good for sciences review EXCEPT prepping for the PAT? What's good for the PAT?
Topscore's PAT section is as close to the real thing as you can find anywhere. My advice to you is to do the practice questions, then go back and look at them untimed and understand why you got each one right or wrong, even if it involves staring at them and making some sketches.
 

2pac

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Barbie DDS said:
This is my first time on sdn and I found it very helpful. I'm glad to know that there are others out like me that are going through the same process. At my university there isn't alot of pre dental majors.
u know donot touch your books a day before u take the test. Sleep and restup as much as u can. Visit church, temple, mosque, singauge, gurudwara and prey to God and ask for mental strength. I bet u will crack the test. :) :thumbup:
 

Aero047

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2pac said:
u know donot touch your books a day before u take the test. Sleep and restup as much as u can. Visit church, temple, mosque, singauge, gurudwara and prey to God and ask for mental strength. I bet u will crack the test. :) :thumbup:
Well said!
 

jk5177

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2pac said:
u know donot touch your books a day before u take the test. Sleep and restup as much as u can. Visit church, temple, mosque, singauge, gurudwara and prey to God and ask for mental strength. I bet u will crack the test. :) :thumbup:
There are different strategies, and mine was different. I studied the day before, because if I don't then I feel nervous; somehow I need to be studying.
The day before is good to touch up on all the memorization that needs to be done... say bio. So I sprint through the bio section in kaplan and basically glimpsed at all the bolded words in kaplan bluebook.
 

Profchaos

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Barbie DDS said:
This is my first time on sdn and I found it very helpful. I'm glad to know that there are others out like me that are going through the same process. At my university there isn't alot of pre dental majors.
The best advice I can give you is to buy a topcore disk. The cd that you can buy for 10$ from ADA is great also. With the help of these, I had 22 22 20 on DAT.
 

stoshic

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I recommend doing something that calms you... If it is studying.. then go for it. I studied the night before and got up early to look over photosynthesis crap since I never actually sat down to learn it. It worked out and I actually felt that cramming helped a lot , at least 3 questions from bio I didn't know until that morning , it was crazy. good luck