10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
May 2, 2008
Okay, so a lot of recent test takers have been saying two things that sort of worry me: 1) the passages are longer (I've been hearing this for a while, so this is sort of expected) and 2) the question stems are longer. A few of my friends who took the MCAT recently also said that some of the question stems/answer choices for verbal were ridiculously long, and by the time they got done reading the last answer choice, they sometimes forgot what the question was really asking :eek:. Also, some of my friends have also said that the verbal reminded them of TPR verbal :scared:(the online/full length TPR verbal, not the stuff in the verbal workbook).

How should one cope with this? I'm averaging a 10 on AAMC verbal right now, but that doesn't sound like the verbal people are talking about. The question stems are not long, and the passages are not that long either. Should I give myself an extra minute on the first passage, just to get used to everything? I'm afraid I'll freak out and mess up the verbal section because it's not going to be like what I've been practicing with. I don't want to end up with like a 7 or something-it'll kill me. I've been studying the whole summer, and this is my only shot for the 2010 cycle since I'm testing on 7/30. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.


Evil in the making...
7+ Year Member
Jul 15, 2009
Evil Residency
Resident [Any Field]
Hey Pookiez88, I have taken the MCATs a couple times and from what I have noticed is that the length isnt necessarily longer than the practice exams through AAMC, but rather have passages that take on odd formats. For instance, I took the March 28th administration of the MCAT this year, and I had like two passage that contained around 8 or 9 paragraphs. Granted, each paragraph was only a couple of sentences in length, but when your using the Kraplan technique for mapping, it consumes way too much time. These passages also had a couple questions that were extremely long. Obviously, these passages were placed in there to trip you up and make you waste time. From what I have seen on AAMC practice exams (and I have done all of them multiple times), I never came across anything that simulated this.
I also took the June 18th MCAT, while I didnt come across any passages with 9 paragraphs, I did have one which was extremely wordy and difficult to follow. It was like it was written by a two-year-old with an extremely good vocabulary. If I remember correctly, it also had a couple questions that were extremely long and specific.
The majority of the passages however, took me around the same amount of time to read (~3 mins) and answer questions (~5 mins) as the ones I practiced on in AAMC.
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