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is Kaplan course worth taking?

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by tin0tin0tina, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. tin0tin0tina

    2+ Year Member

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    I am currently a sophomore in college and will have all my pre-reqs done from my state university that is known for science by the summer of 09. except for physics II which I will probably take either during the summer or fall semester of junior year. I thought that I would utilize the summer and study and take the kaplan course for the MCAT. I thought with the free time I can focus and concentrate on studying for the MCAT. My question are
    1) how effective is the classroom tutorial? Did you learn from it, or was it a complete waste of time and you studied pretty much on your own.
    2) what study techniques/methods did you guys use to do good and get the 30+ score.
    3) how did you finance the class? took out their sally mae loan?
    4) How long did you study for the MCAT, and what is the best time to take it?
    Thank you
     
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  3. WashMe

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    I didn't do Kaplan, but I have some friends who did. From what I can tell, it's a question of self-motivation. If you lack it, do Kaplan. Otherwise, do ExamKrackers (which I did). EK is less than $200 and Kaplan will cost you a kidney.

    I think the absolute best thing one can do to get a high MCAT score is take practice tests. I took 4 (32, 37, 37, 37) before my real test. I studied for 3 weeks ~8 hrs per day and took those practice tests.

    I took my MCAT in January (1/2008) because I wanted to leave time to retake it, BUT... April is probably the best. This gives you time for a retake (updating schools after the primary) and your score is valid for an extra year. I can use my score next year if need be, but not in the 2011 year. Someone who took a 4/2008 MCAT could used their score in 2010 or 2011 cycles.
     
  4. tin0tin0tina

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    I do have the motivation, but i lack organization skills, so i guess i might go on with the course. And when you took the three exams and practiced did you study from before , or it naturally came to you. because i looked at sample questions , and it was broad and all over the place. I had no idea to where and when to start. Anyways thanks for the advice
     
  5. WashMe

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    I had just finished taking the relevant coursework, so I was already on track for success. The 32 was before I looked at any review material. The 3 37's were spread out throughout my 3 weeks (no improvement with more studying). I think I already maxed out the material. On my practice tests (an presumably my real test) I just made dumb mistakes where I lost points.
     
  6. J ROD

    J ROD Watch my TAN walk!!
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    I would say no unless you need the structure or motivation.

    But, if you want to be a physician, then I hope you already have both!


    Kaplan is best for giving you practice materials. I would try to find a friend and try to use their stuff or a group you all go in together and cut price down on the internet access class.
     
  7. Tekbright510

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    The most valuable component of the Kaplan course for me was their online materials. They have a vast collection of tutorials, quizzes, tests and full length MCATs on their online syllabus. This helped me because I could keeping doing practice problems and tests, and IMO that's the best way to practice.

    As aforementioned, the Kaplan online syllabus provides full length MCATs; I believe they have 12 Kaplan full lengths and all the AAMC full lengths. I did not come close to finishing every one of their quizzes and tests but I had a constant supply of practice material throughout my study period.

    The actual class did not help me much. I have friends, however, who say it helped them a lot. I think it depends on the instructor you have. My instructor was not a great communicator and I felt like I was wasting my time going to the class. You could sign up just for the online materials but I think that option is just a little cheaper than the whole prep course (classroom + online materials) itself.

    I consider myself a very motivated student. I used the EK study package and the Kaplan online stuff to study. Perhaps, I could have done well without the Kaplan online materials but if I had to do it over again I would not change what I did. I saw the 1500 bucks it cost as an investment in my future.
     

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