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MCAT Writing Sample Items

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by medical22, Mar 28, 2002.

  1. medical22

    medical22 Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Jul 15, 2001
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    The MCAT registration booklet gives some samples for the writing section. I remember last year, there were pages of samples given in the registration booklet, and the ones given on the actual exam were exactly the same as two of the samples from the list. This year, there are only 10 samples given. The booklet states that ?Topics selected for use in the April and August MCATs may be similar to those listed below.? Do you think they will be chosen from this short list? Should we bother going through each one?.they might just appear on April 20.

    I thought it would be a good idea to practice one together? Lets put our thoughts together and see what would make a well written essay and get us 6 pts.

    ?Scientists should seek to confirm theories or hypotheses rather than to refute them.?

    Explain what the above statement means.
    Describe a specific situation in which a scientist might seek to refute a theory or hypothesis rather than to confirm it. Discuss what you think determines when scientists should seek to confirm theories or hypotheses and when they should seek to refute them.

    Remember the three tasks we have to perform.

    I will post my thoughts a bit later. Right now, I have to get off the internet because I?m waiting for a very important call.
  2. lady in red

    lady in red Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Sep 12, 2001
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    Well, I feel like a have a right to give advice, because the WS was the only section i did well on, WITHOUT practice. The only practice I did was to make a general 'mental' map on how to refute an argument and then write a conclusive statement. Don't listen to those practice books. Looks at the AAMC samples and FOLLOW directions EXACTLY. It is likely that, because you are under time pressure, that your choice of language (wording) would be primitive. Don't worry! You don't need convoluted sentences. I was very brief, succinct and to the point.
    The best practice you can do for this section is to figure out a general 'formula'. When given a statement, start thinking about the 3rd task right away! Also, think of the 'opposite' examples (2 or 3) right away, too! That would set you on the way to constructing the argument.
    This section is very simple, and you should not worry about it. If you want to worry about something, worry about VERBAL, not the writing sample!
  3. Herr Doktor

    Herr Doktor Junior Member
    7+ Year Member

    Mar 25, 2002
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    What helps is finding examples to share. I did really well on this section, so I believe that my preparation paid off. By looking at the sample propmts, you can figure out that there are general categories into which they fall:education, politics, technology, etc. Stick to your standard formula - pro, con and synthesis. Come up with standard examples from current events as well as some common syntheses. I used the news and current events and went through the sample prompts and came up with two examples for each prompt, one for the con and one for the pro, all of which came from current world wide events. After a couple of sample prompts, you will find that many of you examples can be used over and over again. These will stick with you and you can resource them during the test. Then all it takes is a plug and chug with a little english skills. Good standard syntheses are: one vs. many, short-term vs. long-term.

    When the test comes, make a quick outline, write down the three points and your example for each and then write away. Remember that you don't have to believe what you write, it just has to make coherent sense.

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