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MCAT Blues

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by sweets, Jan 4, 2002.

  1. sweets

    sweets New Member

    Dec 31, 2001
    NY, NY
    Hi Everyone,

    Although I am trying to do everything-I sometimes feel it's not enough. I have been doing Kaplan and the Hyperlearning materials (which are great), but I still feel it's not enough. For the most part, I find myself really getting tired of this-I sometimes feel like I should just forget the Kaplan workbook and simply do zillions of questions in the hopes that this crap will actually stick and pay off in April.

    Anyhow, I was wondering if anyone is feeling the way I'm feeling and also how's it going out there? :(
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  3. altaskier

    altaskier Altaholics Anonymous 92' 7+ Year Member

    Nov 12, 2001
    All I can tell you about the MCAT is that it isn't really like any of the practice tests that you take. If I were you I'd concentrate on your weakest section. Just do as many full exams and questions as you can.

    Good Luck!
  4. In my opinion... I dont think anyone ever feels TRULY ready for the MCAT. There is always that fear that they will concentrate on something you knowly pretty weakly..... but I think overall.... put if you put your time in and are confident... you will do fine. I think doing the Hyperlearning Practice Workbook is the best thing to do in the last weeks. I just remembered that the MCAT is in April!!! You have so much time. Most people did not start studying until February.
  5. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    Nov 20, 2001
    Hi Sweets,
    I know exactly what you're feeling. I've been thinking like you for the last's just such a traumatic thing. I feel like everything rests on this damn test....(my GPA is not the best) and I have no idea how I will survive till D-Day. If studying doesn't kill me, the MCAT sure will....I am rambling already.

    I think it's ok to think like us once in a while, we are only human. Just don't let it all interfere with your overall studying performance. If you wanna talk more about this, PM me. It's good to know that others are sharing the same sentiments as me.

  6. Mage

    Mage Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 17, 2001
    It's not so much the volume of material you study, but the development of your ability to both draw insights and think very all means, do as many practice tests as you can, preferably the AAMC tests.
  7. DarkenR

    DarkenR Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 16, 2001
    Damn, do you guys realize that its only January? Isn't the MCAT in April?

    It takes some time (at least for me it did) to begin to feel confident about the MCAT. If you're studying this much/well this early (and continue so in the upcoming months), you'll be surprised how prepared you feel a month or so before the test. No one is ready to actually take the MCAT this early...thats why you have over 3 months in Kaplan!

    Ever heard that preparing for/taking the MCAT is also a means to see how you deal with stressful situations? If you fall to feeling "traumatized" or "the MCAT is my life" notion, then those test makers have won. What I'm trying to say is leave yourself time to get away from the MCAT, studying, school, etc. Go to the beach for a few hours, go clubbing, or whatever you personally do to "get away". It beats the stress! I was so ready to get back into studying after forgetting about the MCAT for a day or two. Plus, I would look forward to whatever "reward" I had set for myself at the end of the week - it made those months of studying go by a little less painfully.

    I wish you guys the best of luck!
  8. Amy B

    Amy B I miss my son so much Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    Although the MCAT isn't until April, keep in mind April will BE HERE BEFORE YOU KNOW IT. I remember last year thinking, wow, I have 3 months till the test, then it was wow I have 2 months no sweat. 1 month, 3 weeks, 2, 1 oh NO it is tomorrow.

    Try to set aside 1 hour a day at the same time of day and start reading passages. It is boring and uninspiring, but worth it and necessary to you getting a good score.

    One of the best things I did was to purchase the real practice MCATs from the web site. They were very helpful and since they were from actual tests I found them better than the test Kaplan gave to me. Kaplan was very helpful though with teaching me how to handle the passages, verbal especially.

    For those who don't want to pay for Kaplan, go to any book store and buy the BIG comprehensive MCAT Kaplan review book. I think it costs about 70$. It has all the material that Kaplan gives out in their workbooks, except the small quizzes after each chapter. But there are some practice test in it.

    You can also go to Kaplan's web site and register for free to take their practice online quizzes. They are great, they score it online within 1 minute and then give you the anwsers with explaintions about the answers and why some are wrong and one is right. It is free and it gives you a variety to add to your study plan.

    Good luck. Those of us who have taken it feel your pain and wish you all the luck in the world.
    ;) :D
  9. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

    Jun 3, 2001
    I feel the pain! We should start an April MCATers club...or at least a huge thread of our MCAT worries. I'm done with school but am currently working 65 hrs/week and although I'm planning on quitting my second job to give me MCAT study time, it doesn't bode well for my money woes. Right now I'm sneaking in study time where I can but feel that there's an overwhelming amount of info. I don't care that it's three months will soon be here and it's better to start studying early, right?
  10. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    Nov 20, 2001
    Your wish is our command. Go check out the new thread. ;) ;)
    PS: I know I'm Tweetie and you're Sylvester, but doncha get any ideas! :D :D
  11. isomerjohn

    isomerjohn Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    New York
    How much time are most of you guys intending on studying weekly ? How many months also ?
  12. Jameson

    Jameson Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 26, 2001
    IsomerJohn - 3 hr's a night + 10 on the weekends, as for the above posters, I have no clue?
  13. jase133

    jase133 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 23, 2001
    North of the 49 deg
    Here are just some of my thoughts.

    I didn't start studying for the MCATs until 1 month prior to the actual exam.

    I found that it's not really knowing the material that's important, but knowing how to guess in an educated manner.

    For the biology section, it was actually very weak for me. I just learned how to guess the correct answer more often than not.

    FYI, I got 11 on Biol section
  14. brickmanli

    brickmanli Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2002
    I did really well on verbal because for the three months before the MCAT, I READ. Some magazines:
    New Yorker
    Atlantic Monthly
    Foreign Affairs
  15. simpleton

    simpleton Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    don't get too stressed out about the MCAT because it's not all about content and how much facts you know, its more about technique and strategy. As much b.s. as that sounds I've come to know that its true. Try to focus on eliminating answers and after you take a practice ananlyze what type of questions you missed.
  16. Chorboke

    Chorboke Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 5, 2002
    Guys, the key thing with the MCAT is not to go insane. It is a pain in the rear to take an eight hour test, but if you do the practice tests (preferably the AAMC tests) and go to the classes then you should do fine. Just a little reminder: don't study the night before the test, regardless of how anxious you feel! Everyone is neverous that night. Another necessity is to have something extremely fun planned for after the test. I drove down to San Diego and partied with my friends after the MCATs. It was jsut what I needed to unwind, and it as something to look forward to while studying.
  17. UCLA2000

    UCLA2000 7+ Year Member

    Dec 19, 2001
    the hospital

    1. DON'T READ. The mcat is not about reading and it's useless.

    2. DO A ZILLION practice tests and problems. That's ALL that will help you.

    3. Make sure to do the AMCAS tests. They will give you a feel for what the MCAT is like. Take one Tomorrow (Do all exams under timed conditions)

    After you finish the test go over it question by question. See what you missed and why. Review ALL concepts associated with what you missed and learn them. DO NOT SCORE THE TEST. The scores are useless. I scored a 30 on amcas 1. a month later a 29 on amcas 2. a week later a 32 on amcas 3 then a 28 on amcas 4 and a 25 on amcas 5.

    I scored higher on the actual MCAT than on any of the practice tests. The only score that matters is the actual MCAT.

    4. Start off doing one exam per week...later on you will do 2-3 per week. The most important part is the thorough review afterwards.

    5. Re-taking full length exams is good practice. It will help you to judge your progress and see what concepts you've forgotten.

    6. Make sure to devote more time to your weakest subject but DON"T neglect your strong ones.

    7. Make sure to have your OWN timer, and use it on EVERY exam.

    8. DO NOT PANIC. Panicking IS NOT an effective test taking strategy. Nowhere in any of the MCAT books does it tell you to do don't.

    If you ever find yourself panicking just tell yourself that. It saved my a$$ on the MCAT.

    Good luck.
  18. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    Nov 20, 2001
    such nice motivating advice!

    Thanks UCLA. You're awesome.
  19. DoHzA

    DoHzA I AM A CHAMPION! 7+ Year Member

    Jan 23, 2002
    Cali baby!
    I have a lil' somethin' somethin' to say so hear me out.
    1st of all I have just started my Kaplan class 2 weeks ago and I thought i was bein a good lil' boy by watchin all the videos and doin all the readin before and after the classes. It wasn't until finding this site very recently did I realize that I'm not bustin my balls anywhere near how much I should be. You guys really got me motivated w/ your ideas, suggestions, and similar woes. I am taking the test on April 20th and that night after the test IT'S ON!!!
    Thanx again for all your inspiring words and informative posts.
    You guys are great...I wish I had found this a while ago.
  20. SMW

    SMW Grand Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2001
    anchorage, ak
  21. UCLA2000

    UCLA2000 7+ Year Member

    Dec 19, 2001
    the hospital
    SMW I see by your commment that I was unclear as to what I meant when I said Don't read.

    I am NOT referring to the Verbal section, and I apologize for being so vague. Reading news papers, and reading passages for verbal is a necessity.

    What I meant was: I got nothing out of READING the physics, chemistry, and bio sections in the book.

    Do the problems, and memorize diagrams. Reading all of the book took too long, and didn't help at all.
  22. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

    Jun 3, 2001
    I'm an April MCATer and I'm hoping that I have the right strategy (we'll see in June). I'm thinking that it's all about the passages and I'm trying to get all of the basic info ASAP and move on to daily practice sections/tests and then review what I miss. I'm actually not taking a prep course and so far I"m happy about that...who wants those classes that drag on for months when I already know the some of the basics? It's my goal to get through all of the physics/chem/bio/ochem stuff within the next two weeks and move on. Does this sound like it'll work?!
  23. PTjay

    PTjay Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Apr 27, 2001
    west hartford, CT, USA
    i certainly hope coffeecat's plan will work cause that's what i'm planning on. my grad classes take up all my time and i don't want to wait until i finish cause i'll be so far out of undergrad i'm not sure i'll remember it all. i have the BIG BOOK and am almost finished reading it and will start practice tests soon. anyone experience success with this type of plan?
  24. Tweetie_bird

    Tweetie_bird 7+ Year Member

    Nov 20, 2001
    Took me a whole lot more than two weeks to get all that damn reading done! and I am still not finished :mad: :mad: I wanna do all the readings before I pound on the passages, since I don't wanna get any wrong for "not knowing the info." That way I can see how I TRULY would do, assuming all the info retained in my head. <img src="graemlins/clappy.gif" border="0" alt="[Clappy]" /> <img src="graemlins/clappy.gif" border="0" alt="[Clappy]" />

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