SiakTiDoc

2+ Year Member
Jul 27, 2015
94
17
Status
Pre-Medical
I recently just took my second diagnostic test and scored fairly low...again...after 2 months of studying (498).
I did improve (originally scored a 487 on my first exam), but I'm trying to push for a higher score.

I'm currently using Kaplan books for review and I've been doing daily Cars passages (EK101) in the morning and at night. My friend also lent me her older edition TBR books, but I haven't really used them, Just been focused on using the Kaplan books.

Does anyone have any advice to improve?
Motivational Success stories are also appreciated at this point
Thanks!
 

alpha-GTP

Where's my 5' UTR?
Jun 16, 2016
389
520
Some membrane somewhere
Status
Pre-Medical
A 498 is definitely concerning. I would definitely cancel my exam and give yourself 4-6 more month of study. A 498 is usually a sign of lack of content knowledge/preperation, assuming a >=3.5 gpa. Hopefully you are not applying this cycle. After working on content review, I would dedicate the final 2 months to practice exams. I had a classmate who got a 495 on the AAMC scored and a 498 on the real thing, so expecting a >500 score would be pretty unrealistic based on your 2 current. If you are applying to DO schools, a 503 would be a good score to aim for.
 
OP
SiakTiDoc

SiakTiDoc

2+ Year Member
Jul 27, 2015
94
17
Status
Pre-Medical
A 498 is definitely concerning. I would definitely cancel my exam and give yourself 4-6 more month of study. A 498 is usually a sign of lack of content knowledge/preperation, assuming a >=3.5 gpa. Hopefully you are not applying this cycle. After working on content review, I would dedicate the final 2 months to practice exams. I had a classmate who got a 495 on the AAMC scored and a 498 on the real thing, so expecting a >500 score would be pretty unrealistic based on your 2 current. If you are applying to DO schools, a 503 would be a good score to aim for.
Thanks for the reply!
I have yet to actually take an AAMC exam, both were Kaplan, does that make a difference?
and I am considering canceling, but this is my second reschedule and I feel like I will just procrastinate more , since I focus on classes and volunteering during the school year.
I'm applying next cycle, but I wanted to get my MCAT out of the way so I can plan out which schools to apply for. I'm primarily applying to DO schools and probably just my in-state MD.
 

alpha-GTP

Where's my 5' UTR?
Jun 16, 2016
389
520
Some membrane somewhere
Status
Pre-Medical
Kaplan is actually one of the most deflated practice exams in terms of scoring. People often score anywhere from 5-10 points higher on the actual exam. I don't think Kaplan is the best for practice exams since it's not very representative of the AAMC style. Try NS or EK for your next few. If you are aiming for a score in the low 500s, then it is doable with a 498 on Kaplan. If you can score in the upper 60s or above on the AAMC unscored and above 500 on the scored, you should be good for DO. A gpa at or above 3.5 will be needed to offset the MCAT score. Good luck!
 
OP
SiakTiDoc

SiakTiDoc

2+ Year Member
Jul 27, 2015
94
17
Status
Pre-Medical
@alpha-GTP and @sleepyhead22
Thank you both for the advice! I'm planning on doing a quick content refresh tomorrow and then take NS exam right after!
Do you guys think the TBR passages and questions would be good for practice problems, or are they too not a good representation of the AAMC questions?
 

alpha-GTP

Where's my 5' UTR?
Jun 16, 2016
389
520
Some membrane somewhere
Status
Pre-Medical
I never used any TBR stuff, so I can't comment on that. Other than the AAMC tests, the AAMC section banks are what I would highly recommend (question packs are a complete waste of time and money. Nothing but old MCAT recycles). The section banks match the most difficult MCAT passages, so they should prepare you well. Since you have a limited amount of time before the exam, I would recommend the section banks first, then you can try TBR passages. Full length practice exams are the most important thing. I would recommend the following practice exams in this order: EK3, NS3, AAMC unscored, AAMC scored. Sprinkle in the section banks and other passage stuff if you like. On the day before the test, do nothing MCAT related or some very light reading/passage work. Get a good night sleep.