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MCAT CARS course review

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Mettii

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Dear fellow premeds,

Please learn from my mistake and don't sign up for ANY expensive MCAT courses. The ONLY reason a student should consider signing up for courses like Jack Westin CARS, The Princeton Review, or Kaplan is IF you are loaded and thousands of dollars is just "pocket change" for you.

I sorely regret signing up for Jack Westin's $1450 MCAT Strategy Course. If the course was $300 or less, I wouldn't be as upset because there is some value to his strategies, but they are not worth the obscene amount of $1450!! I wish I could go back in time and tell myself to not sign up for the course. I wasted $1450, and about 150 hours (over 2 months of studying) on Jack's lessons and home work. And what did I get in return for all that money and hundreds of hours of work? Nada! Zilch! Zero!

My CARS score did not improve at all. My diagnostic CARS score was 123 and I got 123 on the actual MCAT. If I could go back in time, I would save my money by not enrolling in the Jack Westin course, but still do 1-2 free CARS passage per day.

Please learn from my mistake and don't go signing up for expensive MCAT courses just because you feel desperate.
 
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KnightDoc

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Dear fellow premeds,

Please learn from my mistake and don't sign up for ANY expensive MCAT courses. The ONLY reason a student should consider signing up for courses like Jack Westin CARS, The Princeton Review, or Kaplan is IF you are loaded and thousands of dollars is just "pocket change" for you.

I sorely regret signing up for Jack Westin's $1450 MCAT Strategy Course. If the course was $300 or less, I wouldn't be as upset because there is some value to his strategies, but they are not worth the obscene amount of $1450!! I wish I could go back in time and tell myself to not sign up for the course. I wasted $1450, and about 150 hours (over 2 months of studying) on Jack's lessons and home work. And what did I get in return for all that money and hundreds of hours of work? Nada! Zilch! Zero!

My CARS score did not improve at all. My diagnostic CARS score was 123 and I got 123 on the actual MCAT. If I could go back in time, I would save my money by not enrolling in the Jack Westin course, but still do 1-2 free CARS passage per day.

Please learn from my mistake and don't go signing up for expensive MCAT courses just because you feel desperate.
I'm so sorry you had to learn this the hard way, and thank you for sharing your experience with future test takers. It's unfortunate that you didn't check out SDN before spending the money.

A generation ago, before information was so widely available on the internet, courses were almost required if you wanted to do well. Nowadays, with so many free resources, and so much information regarding what to buy being traded on places like SDN, it is pretty common knowledge that courses are most useful for people who lack the discipline to stick to an independent study plan. They are not now, and never were, a panacea for people who want a higher score. Live and learn.
 
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Princeton Medical Student

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CARS is pretty much just a tax on immigrants and non first language English speakers. And this is coming from a 130 CARS scoring all of the above. Sorry about your experience.
 
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Princeton Medical Student

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I'm so sorry you had to learn this the hard way, and thank you for sharing your experience with future test takers. It's unfortunate that you didn't check out SDN before spending the money.

A generation ago, before information was so widely available on the internet, courses were almost required if you wanted to do well. Nowadays, with so many free resources, and so much information regarding what to buy being traded on places like SDN, it is pretty common knowledge that courses are most useful for people who lack the discipline to stick to an independent study plan. They are not now, and never were, a panacea for people who want a higher score. Live and learn.
Issue is that CARS is honestly impossible to study for and actively discriminates against non English speakers. You can get lucky or get screwed and end up like OP. I personally know people who studied CARS for hundreds of hours to end up with 124s and n=1 myself who could not be bothered with finishing the second qpack getting a 130. I am sure I would be in the former category if I came to America and learned English 5 years after I did.
 
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AnonymousUser2

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    Dear fellow premeds,

    Please learn from my mistake and don't sign up for ANY expensive MCAT courses. The ONLY reason a student should consider signing up for courses like Jack Westin CARS, The Princeton Review, or Kaplan is IF you are loaded and thousands of dollars is just "pocket change" for you.

    I sorely regret signing up for Jack Westin's $1450 MCAT Strategy Course. If the course was $300 or less, I wouldn't be as upset because there is some value to his strategies, but they are not worth the obscene amount of $1450!! I wish I could go back in time and tell myself to not sign up for the course. I wasted $1450, and about 150 hours (over 2 months of studying) on Jack's lessons and home work. And what did I get in return for all that money and hundreds of hours of work? Nada! Zilch! Zero!

    My CARS score did not improve at all. My diagnostic CARS score was 123 and I got 123 on the actual MCAT. If I could go back in time, I would save my money by not enrolling in the Jack Westin course, but still do 1-2 free CARS passage per day.

    Please learn from my mistake and don't go signing up for expensive MCAT courses just because you feel desperate.
    Seriously sorry to hear about this, but thanks for taking one for the team. I was really thinking about signing up for this course, but I think you convinced me otherwise.
     
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    everymomentt

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    My blueprint membership is expiring in two weeks I am a slow learner International student. I just finished to go over the lectures and did few exams. Assessment was 482, last BP exam 493. Do you think I should trying Jack Westin Course. Dr. Phil is a good tutor I listened some of his old office hours at Blueprint. I am not sure if I would benefit from JW at this point or tutoring or should I buy question bank and practice exam and keep practicing. I need some help with reading and reasoning.
     

    MyOdyssey

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    My blueprint membership is expiring in two weeks I am a slow learner International student. I just finished to go over the lectures and did few exams. Assessment was 482, last BP exam 493. Do you think I should trying Jack Westin Course. Dr. Phil is a good tutor I listened some of his old office hours at Blueprint. I am not sure if I would benefit from JW at this point or tutoring or should I buy question bank and practice exam and keep practicing. I need some help with reading and reasoning.
    Over what period of time did you take your BP course?
     

    MyOdyssey

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    My blueprint membership is expiring in two weeks I am a slow learner International student. I just finished to go over the lectures and did few exams. Assessment was 482, last BP exam 493. Do you think I should trying Jack Westin Course. Dr. Phil is a good tutor I listened some of his old office hours at Blueprint. I am not sure if I would benefit from JW at this point or tutoring or should I buy question bank and practice exam and keep practicing. I need some help with reading and reasoning.

    Look into and consider signing up for the Testing Solutions Elite/Deluxe CARS Bootcamp:
     

    BerkReviewTeach

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    Has anyone ever done this math?

    Ten people get together and pitch in $1000 each and then hire the best tutors they can find to give lectures on the topics found in the AAMC guide. You could probably get one hundred hours of the best teaching you can find, and pay far less than you'd pay for a course and in a smaller and more personal course.

    What would the hardest parts be in making something like this happen? Finding the tutors? Establishing the curriculum?
     

    MyOdyssey

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    Has anyone ever done this math?

    Ten people get together and pitch in $1000 each and then hire the best tutors they can find to give lectures on the topics found in the AAMC guide. You could probably get one hundred hours of the best teaching you can find, and pay far less than you'd pay for a course and in a smaller and more personal course.

    What would the hardest parts be in making something like this happen? Finding the tutors? Establishing the curriculum?

    Lectures don't do much.
     

    BerkReviewTeach

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    Lectures don't do much.
    Depends on the lecturer I'd say.

    They do more than videos if for no other reason that you can ask questions.

    The point is that $1000 is less than the crazy prices courses charge to share lectures with way more than ten people. So if someone feels they want lectures, this would be a way to get much more value for their money.
     
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