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MCAT-# of times we can take it

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by JGC80, May 15, 2007.

  1. JGC80

    JGC80 2+ Year Member

    May 7, 2007

    Does anybody know the maximum number of times we should take the mcat before it starts counting against us? Do med schools just take the highest score? Thanks!
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  3. jochi1543

    jochi1543 President, Gunner Central 2+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2007
    Alberta, Canada
    I think even one retake can do you harm if you show little to no improvement. But I think if you've showed steady and noticeable improvement over 2 or 3 retakes (say, 3-4 points each time), it's not going to be looked upon badly per se....but of course if it took you 3 times to get a 33 and another applicant nailed it the first time, it's not exactly working towards your advantage.
  4. Darjeeling

    Darjeeling 5+ Year Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    Some school take the highest score, some take the most recent score (which of course you would hope is highest, but not always), and some even claim to take your highest score from each section and add them together. Some schools look at everything. This info is often listed in your handy med school guide or can be found on individual schools' websites.
    Of course, every school can see all of the scores on your AMCAS application, even if they say they only take one set into account. So, although there is no actual limit as far as I know to how may times you can take the MCAT, the conventional advice is to take the MCAT when you are as prepared as possible- who wants to take it more than once or twice anyways !?!- and avoid worrying about which school will look at which scores.
  5. StringerBell

    StringerBell It's the final countdown! 5+ Year Member

    Jan 24, 2007
    I am not kididng you - I have taken it 5 times.

    The first three times, I took it while in school, getting evenly-distributed 27's and 28's. With my low GPA, that was not good enough to get into med school. I re-took it once again (studying while working full-time), and got a 26, and gave up on being a doctor.

    Last year, I decided to give med school one more good shot...took a review course, and got a 34. My situation is somewhat different, because it's been 3 years since I last took it. So my score can be looked at either as a statistical anamoly or actual preparation and improvement. But I was at the point where I figured it couldn't hurt me to take it again, so I did.

    After taking it 3 times, however, you have to give a good reason for taking it again - which means demonstrating that you plan to use these scores to apply for school. That simply involves sending them a copy of a rejection letter (we all have plenty of those lying around, right?) or completing your AMCAS application before you register for the MCAT, which is what I did.

    I'm still hoping to get in off my M.D. waitlist (Wayne State), but I've got a D.O. acceptance, and am on a couple of other D.O. waitlists. I don't think anyone is looking at my re-takes unfavorably; for me, it's really just a question of my low GPA. However things work out for you, good luck, and I hope you don't have to take it as many times as I did!
  6. alwaysaangel

    alwaysaangel 5+ Year Member

    Sep 4, 2006
    Orange, CA
    After 3 you have to start explaining WHY you want to retake to AAMC and they have the right to deny your request (I doubt they often do though - if you want to give them $200 who are they to stop you).
  7. enigma85

    enigma85 7+ Year Member

    May 3, 2006
    New York, NY
    I don't believe this is AAMC policy anymore. I think you can take it as many time as you like without an explanation. But you are limited to 3 times in a calendar year. And you can only be registered for one administration at a time.
  8. alwaysaangel

    alwaysaangel 5+ Year Member

    Sep 4, 2006
    Orange, CA
    Oh really? My bad. I know that was the policy with paper-pencil exam. I never heard they changed it with the change to CBT although we were told is was likely.
  9. lsumedgirl

    lsumedgirl Livin' the dream! 2+ Year Member

    May 13, 2006
    Yeah. They changed it to this policy this year w/ the new CBT system. There's no limit to how many times you can take it.

    I actually took it 4 times, but had steady improvement, and it worked for me. And thank GOD I'll never have to take it again!!!
  10. Rumplestilskin

    Rumplestilskin To B Rare is An Advantage 7+ Year Member

    May 20, 2005
    Yep, I took it 3. 1st=dad died, didn't really study, and miss bubbled scantron. 2nd=fire alarms going off mutiple times during the test. 3rd=was the charm. Won't have to take it ever again:thumbup:
  11. bigDee

    bigDee Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 11, 2006
    lol at blaming your bad test score on a fire alarm
  12. JennyB

    JennyB 5+ Year Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    Actually, fire alarms going off multiple times, during the test, is very distracting. That happened to me, and we just had to sit through the blaring until the end of the section (writing). The alarms stayed on for twenty minutes, and when we sat down to start bio, the air had already been shut off, so it was hot and stuffy (SoCal in August), and the alarms went off right when we started the section! Luckily, the proctor had us stop again until the alarms were fully off. It delayed our test by an entire hour. :rolleyes: Everyone was so anxious to get out of there that they wizzed through bio.

    Luckily, I did practice exams in my apartment with the windows open cuz no ac, so it was always loud (I live next to a busy alley with lots of angry drivers and construction).
  13. bunface

    bunface Junior Member 5+ Year Member

    May 17, 2006
    i took the mcat 3 times..first time got a 27, lots of distractions during the test (especially verbal and bio) when a piano/violin recital took place in a room down the hall and so got a 7 on verbal that probably screened me out of every school i applied to...second time got a 24, improved verbal but went down on both sciences.....and third time i just got a 30 (9 verbal, 10 ps, 11 bio)
    do i stand no chance? my gpa is 3.75ish.
    im applying very very broadly.

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