Quantcast

How to approach B/B passages

BeMo Free Repeat™ On Us + MCAT 520 Challenge™
This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

artist27

Full Member
5+ Year Member
Joined
Nov 21, 2015
Messages
239
Reaction score
307
How do you guys usually approach these detailed passages? Do you read the experiments very closely, making sure you understand everything, or just skim and go back to the passage depending on the specific questions?
I usually find myself skimming it and not really understanding what's going on. If I try to spend more time reading the passage, I always am worried I'll run out of time. Any suggestions on what's the best approach?

I don't really have this problem with any of the other sections, it's just the B/B passages that seem so technical and dense to me :(
 

Roayer

Full Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2015
Messages
352
Reaction score
144
I read them like CARS. If there are a thousand acronyms I draw a pathway map. I draw a lot of arrows up and down if something increases or decreases, if its pathways I draw arrows and then if something inhibits a step I draw an arrow to that steps arrow and put an X through it. I also had a lot of serious trouble with B/B until I read up on a bunch of lab techniques and a few research papers on proteins. Learning how ELISA, Western Blot, PCR, Immunoprecipitation, Electrophoresis, Radiommunoassay, FRET, GFP etc are used in research enabled me to understand what was going on in the passage. I would only outline the most difficult passages normally because reading B/B like CARS enabled me to make huge jumps in my ability to analyze passages. I got over 90% on B/B for EK3 and EK4 once I figured this out and am really hopeful I did well on this past MCAT.

Seriously take some time learning Biochemistry research methods. It will help for both C/P and B/B

I used Lehninger's principles of Biochemistry for this because I was pissed about how confused I was during my 5/20 MCAT.
The green boxes in the book show relevant biochemical lab techniques as applied to medicinal biochemistry.
 

alpha-GTP

Where's my 5' UTR?
Joined
Jun 16, 2016
Messages
389
Reaction score
521
I just skimmed the passages and highlighted any key terms. When it came to charts/tables/graphs, I barely looked at those. I waited until I started answering questions to look at experimental data. The reason for this was that 1-2 questions per passage can be answered without the passage, and this gives you quick freebie points. Also, there were a few cases where a particular graph, etc. wasn't even referenced a the question. In the latter case, focusing on data would be a huge waste of time. I would also answer the freebie questions first and I would have 5+ minutes to come back to do the ones that require interpreting data to form conclusions. The most important thing to remember is to pay attention to p values and whether there was a statistical significance between control and experimental groups. This can save you from losing points on data interpretation questions. This strategy worked pretty well for me and I ended up with a 132 in that section.
 

Roayer

Full Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2015
Messages
352
Reaction score
144
How do you guys usually approach these detailed passages? Do you read the experiments very closely, making sure you understand everything, or just skim and go back to the passage depending on the specific questions?
I usually find myself skimming it and not really understanding what's going on. If I try to spend more time reading the passage, I always am worried I'll run out of time. Any suggestions on what's the best approach?

I don't really have this problem with any of the other sections, it's just the B/B passages that seem so technical and dense to me :(

Here is an example of an article:

http://www.jbc.org/content/early/2016/07/20/jbc.M116.732529.full.pdf
 
Top