wizenedone

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How does one treat it more of a fun thing to do rather than a chore? I am taking MCAT 4+ months from now but having tough time starting off somewhere. I am so confused, where do I begin my MCAT studying? How to treat it more of a fun thing to do? I am not getting excited about starting to study for this. How does one build in the belief that he/she can get an awesome score (34+). I've heard from people who have done well on the MCAT that you need to treat it like a game you are trying to beat - but how??

Edit - I want to add something: There are times I feel excited about studying for it as I think of it more of a puzzle putting pieces together but then there are times I feel so down about studying for this beast? Is this normal thing that I am feeling down? How do you overcome this feeling?
 

paranoid_eyes

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scrolling through the 30+ thread gets me kinda motivated...
 

Chuckwalla

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good point but for when ...I don't have access to MCAT forums, I need other solutions
The 30+ thread is a sticky in this forum. How can you not access it? I can do it when I am not logged in.
 

craniotomy30

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You just have to set yourself up a schedule first, and then stick to it. To be honest, these past few months were anything but fun....but I still woke up every morning and studied hard. As to where to start, you need to organize a schedule to study a certain subject every day until you have reviewed all the content. Then start taking tests like crazy. Good luck.
 

scaredoflife

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I am with wizdone, how do you get motivated. I mean I love biology, and I love science, but how the heck do some of you motivate yourself to study?
 

craniotomy30

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You get motivated by picturing yourself obtaining your ultimate goal. Ask yourself, "Do I want to get into medical school"? Well, the only way to do that is to take the MCAT and do decent on it. Just start slow and while studying, picture yourself getting a great MCAT score. Thats all you can do :D
 
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wizenedone

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I am with wizdone, how do you get motivated. I mean I love biology, and I love science, but how the heck do some of you motivate yourself to study?
I think the deeper question is "How to build a belief that you can achieve a great score?" because quite frankly if we are guaranteed a certain good score, we will do whatever it takes and be motivated to put in the time. The key is to build that belief that you can do well on the MCAT. I am interested in hearing from people who got awesome MCAT scores and to know how they went about doing this.
 
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wizenedone

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You get motivated by picturing yourself obtaining your ultimate goal. Ask yourself, "Do I want to get into medical school"? Well, the only way to do that is to take the MCAT and do decent on it. Just start slow and while studying, picture yourself getting a great MCAT score. Thats all you can do :D
:thumbup:
 

Artimacia

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You get motivated by picturing yourself obtaining your ultimate goal. Ask yourself, "Do I want to get into medical school"? Well, the only way to do that is to take the MCAT and do decent on it. Just start slow and while studying, picture yourself getting a great MCAT score. Thats all you can do :D
I agree. Although it's early for my to start deep studying, I know I will eventually have to. To be honest, I like studying in general because I'm generally bored (I don't do much, :() But when I hate studying, and I feel I will for the MCAT, I do what cranio says, just picture myself doing well and believing I can. Plus, other things you can do is turning it into a game, like Jeopardy, and use mnemonics and other things like that. Also, don't dig so deep for hours, take breaks and relax. :thumbup:
 

droyd78

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For me, taking practice exams has been crucial. The studying you're doing begins to serve a purpose. If there is a game aspect to this, I think this is where it comes in. Take a practice test, see where you are making mistakes, try and correct those on the next practice test you do. The fun (if there is any) is in seeing your scores rise. I also think this helps you keep focused in your studying because you can target the areas where you are weaker.

I think the verbal section can be somewhat game-like too, especially using the examkrackers approach to pick apart question stems and answer choices.

As for getting a good score, I can't speak with too much authority since I take the test next weekend but my practice scores have been good. I do think it begins with a mindset, though. You have to approach the thing with the attitude that you are smart enough to answer the questions. It is written to test basic science concepts but they package those questions into complicated passages to mess with you. Don't fall for their tricks. Same with verbal. Read those passages knowing you are going to see right through to the author's bias. Soon enough you will be picking out the biases behind all the passages and all those "what would the author say..." questions become a lot easier.
 

CTT

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How many AAMC practice tests are there?
I had 10 AAMC and 10 Kaplan and I worked through most of them. There are 10 AAMC that I know of, there may be older ones but what's the point, take the CBT ones bc that makes the most sense.
 

Revilla

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I had 10 AAMC and 10 Kaplan and I worked through most of them. There are 10 AAMC that I know of, there may be older ones but what's the point, take the CBT ones bc that makes the most sense.
I thought there were only 8 AAMC tests -- 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. Which ones am I missing? Or did you get your hands on 1 and 2 as well?
 

CTT

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Your right, but I thought there were other AAMC materials people used; someone told me that there are other practice tests that aren't in CBT format but are in paper format. I don't know to be honest
 

mterp45

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I went on for seven months. I think seeing my scores increase was certainly my biggest motivation to keep fighting. However, for the times when I simply didn't feel like studying, or doing anything MCAT related, I had a really hot study partner that I would study with occasionally. There was just something about her that always got me going on days when everyone was out partying.
 

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For me it's knowing that once I finish the test, the exciting part will be beginning (secondaries, interviews, hopeful acceptances). I guess I also really enjoy the material on the test, so it doesn't feel like a chore to study.
 

supafield

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I was motivated by practice test scores.... and seeing improvement....

so after i got a decent way into the material I started showing semi respectable scores.... and nearer to the end my study motivation was I knew each of the last chapters I was doing could potentially put me over the top ....
 

nomis

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If motivating yourself positively doesn't work, try scar tactic. Tell yourself that if you don't start studying now you'll do bad on the MCAT and every day and every hour you waste is taking another point off from your score.

lol, I'm just kidding. I know motivating yourself is hard and it doesn't work for everyone. If you don't have a good self-discipline, sign up for a intensive review course or I heard TPR has private tutors for each topic. I have a friend who did it (paid nearly 6000 dollars!!) and she improved from 17 to 28 and from what I know, she's a serious slacker.

But in the end, you just have to push yourself, HARD!
 
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wizenedone

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If motivating yourself positively doesn't work, try scar tactic. Tell yourself that if you don't start studying now you'll do bad on the MCAT and every day and every hour you waste is taking another point off from your score.

lol, I'm just kidding. I know motivating yourself is hard and it doesn't work for everyone. If you don't have a good self-discipline, sign up for a intensive review course or I heard TPR has private tutors for each topic. I have a friend who did it (paid nearly 6000 dollars!!) and she improved from 17 to 28 and from what I know, she's a serious slacker.

But in the end, you just have to push yourself, HARD!
I know what you mean, but my question was more of like How do you ENJOY studying for MCAT and not making it a chore?
 

QofQuimica

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I know what you mean, but my question was more of like How do you ENJOY studying for MCAT and not making it a chore?
Positive reinforcement and association. I like the ideas others have posted about thinking of your ultimate goals and how you're going to succeed at getting into med school, but the problem is that those thoughts are pretty far off and abstract for where most of you are right now. Most people need something more tangible to motivate them on a day to day basis.

Here's my suggestion: every week, you should make a study plan, as others have said. You should also have a night off each week where you "reward" yourself for having accomplished your study goals for that week, ex. going to a movie or for dinner with your friends. Plan the reward into your schedule each week so that you always have something coming up that you can look forward to. The only thing I'll caution you about is that you need to make your schedule realistic--don't think that you can study 16 hours straight every day without fail. My experience is that however long I think it will take me to read something, if I double that amount of time, I usually wind up with a reasonable schedule. :p

Best of luck to you all. :)
 

physics junkie

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I treated the MCAT like a game and did pretty well by your standards. In the beginning it was a chore to me until one of my close friends told me that if I got to studying a high MCAT could compensate for a less than stellar GPA. At that point I figured why not and went full steam ahead. Seeing all 33+ scores on my AAMC practice tests motivated me to go for the 40. I don't know how you could treat it as a game if you're not already motivated by your improving scores or high starting scores.

After I realized 35+ was easily within grasp then it became a game to get the highest score possible. I just wanted to get the highest score to show everyone that in spite of my GPA/laziness that I'm pretty ****ing smart. My MCAT didn't particularly matter because I'm applying to a caribb. school where the mean MCAT is 25. Maybe you too can be fueled by your desire to stroke your ego :laugh:.

I think one of the most important perspective shifts you need is that there is a finite amount of material on the MCAT. It is not a vast endless terrain of topics that you can only barely get acquainted with. You can master all of it if you put the time into it. The test doesn't require intellect--it requires time.
 

DocSoMa

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I think with any subject, whether it's Ecology or the MCAT, I tend to brainwash myself into thinking that the subject matter is interesting. I wake up in the morning and look at myself in the mirror, telling myself "Dammit, I like studying for the MCAT. I want to prove to myself how much I know and how well I'm going to SPANK this thing." Like many things in life, the MCAT is a hurdle that I can't wait to jump over. Don't think so much about HOW you're going to get over the hump, but focus on the outcome of overcoming the obstacle and visualize success!

Wow, my psychology class has really come in handy...it really does work miracles if we all become optimists rather than pessimists.