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Help! Pre-MCAT anxiety!

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Dige747, Apr 15, 2004.

  1. Dige747

    Dige747 Junior Member
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    So I'm taking my pre-tests, and all of a sudden, things are not making sense anymore. I don't feel like I've understudied, but there are so many things that I'm just not as familiar with as others.

    I'm feeling like I will NOT do my best on this saturday's test. I'm applying this year, and wonder how "bad" it would be to eat the 90$ cancellation fee (you get 100 back) and study harder for the August test, as well as perhaps enroll in a study course.


    I've been scoring consistent 10+ on verbal, but my BS and PS scores are hovering around 8-9...and these are PRACTICE tests!

    Here's the scoop on my app file, and thanks for all the advice!

    cum GPA 3.6
    sci GPA 3.8

    "great" ECs...lots of work/volunteer in rehab clinics/hospitals, serve on ACSM student affairs committee, president of two college sports clubs

    I know that I'd ace any interview given, but I have to earn the invitation and am afraid that the test this time around will be a poor indicator of my ability.
     
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  3. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    What practice tests are those? Generally speaking, the AMCAS tests are more realistic, though some people do much better on the real thing than on any practice tests.

    The key on the test is feeling comfortable and calm. Much of what you need to know to answer the question is given to you. If you feel comfortable and don't have many problems with time, you should do relatively well. However, from your post I would say you might not be as comfortable taking the test and you might want to be. If you're freaking out, don't take the test. Anxiety isn't healthy on the test.

    As long as you know you will study hard for the August test, you should strongly consider taking it instead of the April test. Why didn't you study for the April test though? Anyway, you might be at a slight disadvantage taking the August test, but you should still get your fair share of interviews if you apply to a healthy range of schools.
     
  4. mikedc813

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    I think you're just having a panic attack since the MCAT is in a few days. If you've studied hard, done lots of practice tests, there's really nothing more you can do. If you're looking to get into a very competitive school like WashU or Columbia I would say that scores of 8-9 won't cut it unless you're amazing in other areas of your application. However, if you score around 28-30 you should have no problem getting interviews at less prestigious (but still high quality) schools. If you feel TOTALLY unprepared, meaning you didn't study, I would say don't take it because a horrible score will really hurt you. But you said you studied so go for it! Most people do the same or better on test day in comparison to practice tests. So just take a second to relax and know you've worked hard.... There's no point in agonizing over the MCAT until August - it's normal to be nervous so just do your best. Good luck Saturday.
     
  5. getcloned

    getcloned Hilton Magician
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    Go do something fun. If nothing is making sense, you aren't productively using your time anyway.

    Go do whatever you enjoy doing and come back later.
    :thumbup:
     
  6. mackaikai

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    u are fine, don't worry
     
  7. chapinsita

    chapinsita from premed to med!
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    I took the MCAT last april. Before going in to my MCAT on saturday, I took the AAMC 6R the day before (BIG mistake). I scored a 7 on PS and freaked out so much I didn?t continue taking the other sections. After calming down a bit, I decided to go for it on Saturday anyway. Time was called and I had 2 passages left in PS- so naturally I freaked out again and imagined the worse. For some crazy reason I decided to not void the exam- and the whole mess had a happy ending- I scored my highest ever on the real thing!

    Moral of the story? Calm down- use the practice tests for practice and not to make predictions about the real MCAT. You?ve made it this far and sound like a good applicant- I say you just go for it!

    Good luck.
     
  8. I think you'll be fine. Who doesn't freak out right before the test? The rest of your app looks solid, and if you're applying this fall, you're definitely getting everything in order early. Good luck, no matter what happens! :thumbup:
     
  9. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    You ll do fine. :thumbup:
     
  10. Dige747

    Dige747 Junior Member
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    Thanks for all the reassurance. I think I may go ahead and take this one on Saturday. If it helps fill the gaps in my story, I'm looking at U Washington (seattle), Oregon, UCSF, Tulane, Temple, Penn, and Vermont, preferring to stay in northwest. I am from Alaska, so I have the added advantage of applying to UW (#1 choice) through a special AK student admissions process.

    Anyway, gonna go back and look over some optics and electromagnetism, as those have given me trouble consistently. Again, thanks for all the advice and kind words.
     
  11. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    If someone were to take the mcat twice, what score would be counted? The higher score, or would they be averaged?
     
  12. Alexander99

    Alexander99 Ghetto Fabulous
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    It depends on the school but an overwhelming majority will just take your most recent score and ignore the rest. I think a handful will take an average while a few will combine your individual best sections for a new score.
     
  13. UCSF? See, that right there gives away the fact that you must have SOME confidence. :)


    :thumbup: :thumbup:
     
  14. Dige747

    Dige747 Junior Member
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    If I bomb the April MCAT but want to apply this year, should I wait until after taking the August MCAT before applying to AMCAS? I am still pretty dissatisfied with my current level of preparation, as I seem to find more "holes" in my knowledge base with each test passage!
     
  15. jetjulia

    jetjulia Member
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    First off, I scored slightly higher on my actual MCAT than I did on the practice tests. I took the Kaplan class, and it seemed to me that their tests emphasized formulas and other memorized information more than the actual test. The most important thing on the actual MCAT is timing and confidence. You don't need that much outside knowledge, but you do need to go fast.

    If you've already studied, there's no guarantee that a few more months of studying will help that much. Most of us never feel like we're completely prepared. You just need to do it. The same situation could come up again in August if you don't take it now. And if you do have to retake it, it certainly isn't the end of the world.

    If you take the August MCAT, do still submit your AMCAS in June. I don't really know the procedure for that. I took the April test and still didn't submit the AMCAS until September, and it turned out fine.

    So, just try to get some sleep this week. Hang out with friends, relax, get your mind off it for a bit, and good luck. Saturday night, it'll be done!
     
  16. NRAI2001

    NRAI2001 3K Member
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    Yea you could always take the august exam.
     
  17. ImmunoANT

    ImmunoANT Senior Member
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    if you want, you can always take the august mcat but do your amcas application as early as possible and there'll be a place for you to indicate that you are still waiting for the results from august mcat.

    only until now (where everything's settled) did i realize how important it is to finish your amcas application early on.
     
  18. oldman

    oldman Senior Citizen
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    don't worry about those practice tests. i was getting low 20s for my practice tests but ended up above 30 on the real thing. i strongly believe in gameday performance. when you are sitting there, you'll do better.

    also in regards to the can't think, sounds like regular stress. this is a big test. now that it's the final stretch, you have to ease down on your studying. you should do something to release stress

    exercise is a good way. lifting a few weights and grunting is good for one's mental status. video games are also good, blowing up a few bad guys is nice. take in a movie
     

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