RokKidA

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I was wondering if you think that self confidence and the feeling of being "ready" is crucial to doing well on the mcat (30 or above)? Or do you think that it's just an unnecessary sense of security to calm yourself down while taking the test?

So far, I've been studying the content review/doing practice problems and don't know if I will ever have a strong sense of confidence in all the topics for this test by april 23. But many other pre-meds that I know of took the test when they felt they were not totally ready and comfortable with all the topics of the mcat and they did just fine.
 
Jan 7, 2010
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I was wondering if you think that self confidence and the feeling of being "ready" is crucial to doing well on the mcat (30 or above)? Or do you think that it's just an unnecessary sense of security to calm yourself down while taking the test?

So far, I've been studying the content review/doing practice problems and don't know if I will ever have a strong sense of confidence in all the topics for this test by april 23. But many other pre-meds that I know of took the test when they felt they were not totally ready and comfortable with all the topics of the mcat and they did just fine.
I can only let you know on April 27th...but that'd be after you took your exam.

Try reading through the 30+ thread and see if you can PM some of those individuals about it.
 

illegallysmooth

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Well, you have to accept the fact that the MCAT tests you on topics you do not know. Obviously, you have to APPLY your knowledge to those topics. But you really have to get over the initial shock of seeing something on the screen that you don't even recognize. If you want to call that confidence, then yes - I think confidence is important.

Secondly, I think having a strategy is even more important. I took a Kaplan course and raised my score 7 points, and I think 4 of those points were due to strategy.
 

erskine

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i never really felt totally confident with the mcat material. I was comfortable with it, but knew that AAMC specialized in springing unorthodox questions/passages on their test, so there was always that little "what if" voice nagging in the back of my mind in the weeks leading up to the test. There's just so much information that you have to have in your mind at all times, and i ended up making 3 passes through content review.

i think being confident is necessary, if its only for the reason of calming yourself down during the test. In any test where time is a factor, confidence in your answers is important since you don't really want to be dillydallying between choice A and B while the seconds tick away. You want to have the confidence to pick an answer, AND MOVE ON, not spend all your time fiddling with numbers or whatever. I think there's a difference between being confident in the content and being confident in yourself (ie your test-taking skills) if that makes any sense. i was fuzzy on the former but good on the second (egotistical, narcissistic jerk that i am).
 

Colin86

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It might help but it won't guarantee anything. I felt very confident going into my MCAT but I don't think I did well. If anything, confidence sets you up for being blindsided, for at least in my experience the true MCAT is was not designed as well as the AAMC MCATs. The real MCAT does not rely much on an understanding concepts the way the AAMC tests do. Learn to work well under pressure and learn to relax and you will do much better than the guy who knows the material. Knowing the material too well actually cost me a point on one BS question and made me spend a lot of extra time on two other BS questions due to "overthinking." I also lost points due to panic on the PS section due to a calculation error and due to difficulty reconciling the fact that I thought the text and the graph of a passage were giving conflicting information. I never lost points because I didn't know something, because what I knew hardly mattered. Everything you need to know is given to you in the passage questions. So if you are to be confident, be confident from within, not based on what you know.

EDIT: It turns out I did very well on the MCAT. Perhaps due to nerves our perception of the real MCAT differs from that of the AAMC practice tests, but alas they are quite similar.
 
Last edited:
Oct 9, 2009
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I was wondering if you think that self confidence and the feeling of being "ready" is crucial to doing well on the mcat (30 or above)? Or do you think that it's just an unnecessary sense of security to calm yourself down while taking the test?

So far, I've been studying the content review/doing practice problems and don't know if I will ever have a strong sense of confidence in all the topics for this test by april 23. But many other pre-meds that I know of took the test when they felt they were not totally ready and comfortable with all the topics of the mcat and they did just fine.
If confidence helps you study better; and, if studying better helps you do well on the mcat; then, by corollary the answer is yes. :luck:
 

AH3

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I wasn't confident with all of the material- it's a lot of stuff that can go pretty in depth if you want it to. The thing that helped me was taking a lot of practice tests and becoming confident that you know the test format and style. That being said, I didn't walk out of the MCAT site feeling great- partly because I had seen my score immediately after every practice exam and then had to wait a month on the real thing :scared:. I'd suggest waiting a few days after some practice tests before checking your score just to get used to not knowing immediately. I'm happy with my score so it all worked out in the end.
 

Oncoloman

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I wasn't confident with all of the material- it's a lot of stuff that can go pretty in depth if you want it to. The thing that helped me was taking a lot of practice tests and becoming confident that you know the test format and style.
Same here. That was the confidence booster. Knowing what type of questions I would be asked. Its true that no one will ever know the content but after doing so many practice AAMC's I just knew what type of passages they like to give. Solubility experiment, Physics I experiment, and a few content based ones as well for the PS. I swear they must be in LOVE with solubility problems. "What color is the precipitate after..bla,bla,bla" . :thumbdown: boo.
 

NYR56

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I was extremely confident about the MCAT because of these three reasons: I'm confident in myself in general, I'm a great test-taker, and I really applied myself to studying for this test, which I never bothered to do much in undergrad. I told people the day before my exam what I thought I'd score on each section - I was a point too high in verbal and a point too low in bio but my overall was exactly what I said. Did being that confident help? Probably a bit, it prevented me from freaking out during the exam. Would I say you have to be confident to do well? No but if you freak out during an exam, you can kiss the high 30s away. You may as well try and tell yourself that you're going to do well, and really believe it - it can't hurt.
 

RogueUnicorn

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if you're not feeling confident in your knowledge you need to have studied more.
 

Doodl3s

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Is confidence crucial to getting a high score (30+)?
YES...

(this is not a post to increase my post count lol, in my mind, the answer is a very simple and firm yes, bleargh's answer is just one of the many reasons why)
 

RokKidA

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Thanks for all of the great advice/opinions. I agree, there is a lot of factors to consider. The general consensus is that grasping the overall topics and confidence gained through familiarity with the questions/answer choices help to ensure less doubt and second guessing, which is necessary to get a high score.
 

Vanguard23

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Confident enough to fight your way efficiently through the questions and information. But NOT so confident that you're cocky and take your sweet time and let your guard down. The MCAT is filled with traps and trick questions and answers. I don't think it's a test that is to be trifled with lightly so be wary.
What needs to be going through your head before and during the test(and maybe even after) is:
"I studied for this test thoroughly. I know the material very well because of that. I've practiced and practiced for it as close as I can. I have readied for it for months and so I'm prepared. Now I need to get to business and knock this bitch out."
Your mind is a blade. It needs to be well sharpened for this exam.
Study.Study.Study. Practice.Practice.Practice.
 
Jan 7, 2010
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Your mind is a blade. It needs to be well sharpened for this exam.
Study.Study.Study. Practice.Practice.Practice.
Well put, my friend.
 

azrk

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Confident but careful I think sums it up.

If you arent confident/comfortable enough it hinders your reasoning ability. If you are too confident you make careless errors.

I have trouble with confidence because Im slow and cant finish the PS and Verbal sections in time :(
 

RTP424

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Totally agree. Confidence in yourself negates SOME of the test nervousness and hype, but being Careful is the key factor. Because, no matter how confident you are, misreading a piece of information in a passage or question will inevitably get you the wrong answer. Confidence, while extremely important, also has to be put aside to make sure you don't make careless mistakes and run through information quickly with out double checking it or reading it over carefully.
 

boaz

shanah alef
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Confidence is crucial to getting the maximum score you can possibly get, whether it's 30+, 35+, or 40+.
 
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Confidance is crucial. You dont want to read a tricky passage and just break down while the clock is ticking.

Think "I know everything I need to know, I got this..."