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MCAT Advice - To Take or to Study More

Discussion in 'Nontraditional Students' started by HesyRa, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. HesyRa

    2+ Year Member

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    I have been studying for the MCAT since the middle of June. More or less full time. At this point in my studying I have been scoring around a 31-32 (both Kaplan and AAMC full lengths). I would really like to be able to get a 34-35 on the actual exam. My weakest area is verbal (like everyone's it seems). I score 9-10 on Verbal. I am scheduled to sit for the actual exam in 13 days (Sept. 17th). Is it realistic to think that I can bring my score up by 3-4 points in the next two weeks, or should I push back my testing date? I already delayed it once from my original Sept. 7th date.
     
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  3. feeling-dizzy

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    It is probably too late to cancel your exam date now, I would just take the exam and void at the end if feel did not do too well. Now your goal is very high. 35 MCAT? That is very high number and very hard to achieve regardless of how many genius in SDN claimed to get it. I would continue to do the practice AAMC FL until I can push the 36 MCAT ceiling (that would require a lot of practice I think), but if you are bright enough u will get it. But even though u get 36 on AAMC FL, do not feel down if the actual score only 33, since MCAT scoring is unpredictable, and ppl can score +or- 3pts from their practice exam score.
     
  4. mspeedwagon

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    In your shoes, I'd definitely take. Worst case scenario, you will likely end up with a 30+ score.

    I wouldn't go into a test with any intention of voiding. I'd say it's damn near impossible to gauge how you did. I know people that felt horrible that ended up with mid-30s and people that felt great that ended up needing to re-take.

    The test is a beast. And if you don't do well in one sitting, you still have time to re-take prior to the test change.
     
  5. Chip N Sawbones

    Chip N Sawbones Ship's Carpenter
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    Don't void the test unless you had a stroke halfway through. Everyone feels like they did badly when the test is over, and they're usually pleasantly surprised when their score comes back. You're already doing quite well, and despite what they say in pre-allo, it actually is possible to get accepted to good schools with less than a 35.
     
  6. HesyRa

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    I appreciate the advice. My state school average is a 33, so I would at least like to attain the average if not slightly above. I wonder if the stats for instate students are slightly less competitive compared to those out of state. My GPA is also less than the average, so I am counting on the MCAT to compensate somewhat for that, though my GPA has been on par with med school applicants for the past 4 years now.
     
  7. Goro

    Faculty 7+ Year Member

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    Do NOT take the exam unless you feel you are fully ready.

     
  8. HesyRa

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    Thank you for your advice. Would you mind elaborating a bit? As an ADCOM member do you see re-takes as a negative? I could probably sit here and study for another 45-60 days before I really felt that I had mastered every bit of the material, especially the verbal section.
     
  9. Goro

    Faculty 7+ Year Member

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    If we see an improvement, that's not a negative, but what I worry about is that the odds of an increase are much less than your staying the same, or going down.

    In addition, the MCAT is a career-defining, high stakes exam. Why would you approach something so important if you weren't ready? This speaks to poor choice making. People who act contrary to their self-interest give us pause.

     
  10. Noneuclidean

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    Verbal scores can def. come up a few points, but usually requires a 2-4 month period of skill-building. If you're untimed score is at target (i.e. say you score 12 VR untimed), start skill-building for reading speed. Are you in a hurry to apply this cycle?
     

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