May 1, 2018
Hey everyone!

I've been studying for the MCAT since mid-Dec and am signed up to take it at the end of March. I took my diagnostic FL in August when I had time before school and got a 506 without studying (124/130/125/127). I've been searching for typical amounts of improvement people have between their diagnostic and actual score, but can't really find much. Obviously this varies person to person, but I wanted to see if there was a general amount a person can expect to improve after completing their study schedule (5 points? 10 points?). Also for background, I'm a decently good student and test-taker, but not stellar (3.7 sGPA, 3.8 cGPA).

Thanks in advance for any feedback!!


5+ Year Member
Mar 30, 2014
Medical Student (Accepted)
A diagnostic is not really something to use to gauge a future score but rather to identify gaps in content knowledge. Some folks increase 20 points, others decrease. You’re score in CARS is excellent which will help you in the other sections of the mcat. Obviously you have content gaps in CP and BB so you’ll want to study those. Your PS score is fine but you’ll want to focus on that section as well to bump it up because to earn a high score on the mcat in that section you are going to need a much higher raw score than for CP and BB.


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Gold Donor
Apr 25, 2019
Medical Student, Resident [Any Field], Attending Physician
Usually, people struggle the most with improving in CARS. Unless your CARS score is an anomaly, then you should be in very good shape. There's no "maximum" amount somebody will improve from their diagnostic. People who start off at a 490 and studies a ton will be able to score a 520, while somebody starting off at a 510 and barely studies might only score a 512.

Kevin W, MCAT Tutor
Med School Tutors
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