jv00927

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By the end of this semester, I would have finished all my pre-reqs for med school. However, I do not have any upper-level bio classes under my belt. I am planning on taking some upper-level bio classes and biochemistry during the upcoming school year. My question: Is it a good idea to take the MCAT this august or would it be more beneficial for me to wait until april next year?
:confused: (I'm currently a sophomore, btw)
 

virilep

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jv00927 said:
By the end of this semester, I would have finished all my pre-reqs for med school. However, I do not have any upper-level bio classes under my belt. I am planning on taking some upper-level bio classes and biochemistry during the upcoming school year. My question: Is it a good idea to take the MCAT this august or would it be more beneficial for me to wait until april next year?
:confused: (I'm currently a sophomore, btw)
definately study for it and take it. you don't need upper level bio and also the advantages of taking it after sophomore year are reallly realllly good. you can apply early, and you can gauge (if u do bad) of how much more you gotta study. but I think you should take it.
 

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If you can prepare well during the summer, you should go for it. Get some review books and go over things on your own. You don't really need upper division courses though having biochemistry will help you a little bit.
 

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dr.z said:
If you can prepare well during the summer, you should go for it. Get some review books and go over things on your own. You don't really need upper division courses though having biochemistry will help you a little bit.
I agree. If you can get yourself into a position where you are scoring well on practice full lengths, by all means take it in August. This way, if you have an off day or choke, you still have April to retake if necessary. (If you are not doing well on practice tests by August then you can always cancel).
While people who have taken biochem have reported it is helpful, it's certainly not necessary for the MCAT. Probably depends on how good your orgo course was. (I personally never had biochem and still found that the biological sciences section was the easiest of the three sections for me).
 

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jv00927 said:
By the end of this semester, I would have finished all my pre-reqs for med school. However, I do not have any upper-level bio classes under my belt. I am planning on taking some upper-level bio classes and biochemistry during the upcoming school year. My question: Is it a good idea to take the MCAT this august or would it be more beneficial for me to wait until april next year?
:confused: (I'm currently a sophomore, btw)
I'm in the same boat. I was originally thinking of waiting until next April after I finished microbiology, biochemistry and a few other bio courses. But after this semester I will be done with all of my pre-reqs. Do you guys think it is worth it? I haven't had any general bio because my school doesn't offer just a regular biology course...So I took cell and genetics so far....Do you think it matters?
 

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americanangel said:
I'm in the same boat. I was originally thinking of waiting until next April after I finished microbiology, biochemistry and a few other bio courses. But after this semester I will be done with all of my pre-reqs. Do you guys think it is worth it? I haven't had any general bio because my school doesn't offer just a regular biology course...So I took cell and genetics so far....Do you think it matters?
Cell bio, genetics, and A&P are pretty much the only bio on the MCAT anyway.

If you do not learn well on your own (i.e. you learn by listening to lecture rather than reading a book), I would wait until you take biochem to take the MCAT. Biochem, in my opinion, tied everything I learned in all the other prereqs together. I understood why I had to learn all the other information. You can definitely do well on the MCAT without it, especially if you have taken Organic Chemistry, but it definitely depends on your motivation to study on your own.
 

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chicadehuskers said:
Cell bio, genetics, and A&P are pretty much the only bio on the MCAT anyway.

If you do not learn well on your own (i.e. you learn by listening to lecture rather than reading a book), I would wait until you take biochem to take the MCAT. Biochem, in my opinion, tied everything I learned in all the other prereqs together. I understood why I had to learn all the other information. You can definitely do well on the MCAT without it, especially if you have taken Organic Chemistry, but it definitely depends on your motivation to study on your own.

I definately do better studying on my own! My only concern would be the amount of study time...I mean how long did you guys study?
 

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Also, even if you have a job over the summer, it is MUCH easier to study for the MCAT while working than while taking a full courseload. If you've finished your prereqs and are willing to take the plunge, take it in August.
 

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jv00927 said:
By the end of this semester, I would have finished all my pre-reqs for med school. However, I do not have any upper-level bio classes under my belt. I am planning on taking some upper-level bio classes and biochemistry during the upcoming school year. My question: Is it a good idea to take the MCAT this august or would it be more beneficial for me to wait until april next year?
:confused: (I'm currently a sophomore, btw)
You need genetics and/or some physiology course to do the best on the MCAT (considered that you have completed the other prereq's.)

If you have not taken genetics, then you need to do some independent study in order to have an acceptable performance on the MCAT. Consider taking a prep class this summer.
 

javert

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Agreed with about everyone else. August between Sophomore and Junior year is the best time to take the MCATs.

americanangel said:
I mean how long did you guys study?
This is highly variable. If you took the MCATs soon after taking the pre-reqs and you still remember much of the material, then there's no need to spend months studying. I was in this situation, so I just bought a Kaplan comprehensive book and skimmed through it, marking the sections that I didn't know and spent a few weeks just concentring on those. Then I spent the rest of the time just doing as many practice exams as I could.

However, if you don't remember Orgo or Physics or whatever that well because, for example, it's been a while since you took the courses, then you might have to study for much longer. This is why I think taking the MCATs right after Sophomore year is such an advantage.

OSUdoc08 said:
Consider taking a prep class this summer.
I would only recommend taking a MCAT prep course if you need someone to motivate you to spend time studying.
 

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javert said:
Agreed with about everyone else. August between Sophomore and Junior year is the best time to take the MCATs.



This is highly variable. If you took the MCATs soon after taking the pre-reqs and you still remember much of the material, then there's no need to spend months studying. I was in this situation, so I just bought a Kaplan comprehensive book and skimmed through it, marking the sections that I didn't know and spent a few weeks just concentring on those. Then I spent the rest of the time just doing as many practice exams as I could.

However, if you don't remember Orgo or Physics or whatever that well because, for example, it's been a while since you took the courses, then you might have to study for much longer. This is why I think taking the MCATs right after Sophomore year is such an advantage.



I would only recommend taking a MCAT prep course if you need someone to motivate you to spend time studying.
Most people do.
 

americanangel

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Hey thanks everybody!
Yeah I think I'm going to take the MCAT in August and take a prep course in May. Since I'm finishing my organic and physics classes this semester and our finals are comprehensive over both semester, I think it would be the best for me to take it in August. I originally though biochem would be a plus, but if I do take the MCAT in August, I can take a couple classes that I wanted and work on finishing my Biochem degree!!!
Thanks so much everybody,

Did any of you guys take the Kaplan course? Did you like it?
 

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americanangel said:
Hey thanks everybody!
Yeah I think I'm going to take the MCAT in August and take a prep course in May. Since I'm finishing my organic and physics classes this semester and our finals are comprehensive over both semester, I think it would be the best for me to take it in August. I originally though biochem would be a plus, but if I do take the MCAT in August, I can take a couple classes that I wanted and work on finishing my Biochem degree!!!
Thanks so much everybody,

Did any of you guys take the Kaplan course? Did you like it?
I took Princeton and it was very helpful. I've heard a few negative things about Kaplan.
 

americanangel

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I'm going to look into both of them...I don't think there are any Princeton class in my area though!
Thanks for heads up!