2+ Year Member
Oct 1, 2014
Pre-Medical, Medical Student (Accepted)
Hi everyone,

I am a senior majoring in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NYU. I'm doing bs/ms program (bachslor and master degrees in 5 years). However, I have dreamed to become a doctor, and that is the main reason I left my country and came here to study for college. Here are some numbers about me:

GPA: 3.93
MCAT: Verbal 7, PS 14, BS 12
Have been doing research in a protein engineering lab on Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease for two years (several projects, hoping to get published next year). Will do my thesis on this too
Have tutored math, currently a teaching assistant for undergrad Transport (a ChemE course) now
Club president
Volunteer experience Have about 100 hrs, far from enough so far. I will get more :(

I really want to be a doctor here. But I have done research, and it seems like medical schools here don't accept foreign students ;(
I want to retake my MCAT and score higher on the verbal. And I need advice from you, please please help me. I have lost hope in this path twice and I don't want to give up after going so far.
My questions:
1. What do I need to do as a foreign student to be admitted into medical schools? Although I think DO schools might be a better option with a more focused topic and more clinical experiences during school, I do want to be admitted into allopathic schools. What are my chances?
2. Is there any ways to improve verbal in my case? I have mostly done Kaplan reading passages and did well on them. Had most articles completely right, and ~2 wrong in 1 in 7 articles. I thought I was fine then I did AAMC and got around 9 in the practice exams. Then I bombed the real test :( Don't know what to do.

Please please help me. Almost every professors I went to told me I should forget about being a doctor because of my nationality....;( ;( ;(


5+ Year Member
Jul 24, 2013
Medical Student (Accepted)

You have an amazing science composite so its clear VR is the deficit section.
Too many people neglect preparation for VR entirely or give up on it because its the hardest section to improve on. How consistent were your VR scores on AAMC practice tests? If you were a consistent 9-scorer on AAMC tests, then I think you can maybe attribute to the VR drop due to test-day nerves.

The main problem with VR is that all it takes is one hard passage to throw your momentum off. Literally. And on top of that if you're nervous to begin with, it can unfortunately act synergistically to lower your performance.

A lot of people extol EK 101 VR book for its practice passages. Also, have you looked into TPR Hyperlearning Workbook? That's another jewel for VR practice.
I myself am a little bummed about Kaplan VR because sometimes they are too nitpicky in their answer choices and tend to focus on details. AAMC predominantly asks questions that are not in the immediate scope of the passage and assesses your understanding in context of an application to a new scenario or ask you to draw inferences that maybe unrelated to the explicit premises in the passage. To master these, you should redo all the AAMC exams and really dissect the questions and what they're asking you. The Official MCAT Guide is also a great resource which contains 6 practice passages not seen anywhere else.

You can also use the 2015 CARS section from the 2015 Official MCAT Guide as well as the practice test that was released today. There's also the VR Self-Assessment by AAMC that you can use for more practice (should be in Kaplan online resources).

All the best as you prepare for the retake. VR takes time to improve upon but there IS a rational way to answer questions on the test. What you have to do is develop a strategy for each category of question asked and apply it CONSISTENTLY to all your practice passages.