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OAT requirements

thinking998

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Sep 1, 2008
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  1. Pre-Optometry
    I know it says that you "should" have taken physics and organic chemistry before taking the OAT, however I will not be able to take these two courses until the Spring Semester, and I want to get started on the OATs as soon as possible. So I have two questions, 1) is it completely unheard of to take the OAT without having taken physics and organic chemistry (I would learn them on my own for the exam) and 2) will I be allowed to sign up for the OAT without these courses (in other words, does the testing centre require I take them??)

    Thanks.
     

    kglmp83

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    1. Pre-Optometry
      I've had organic and looking at sample questions, I think that you will need to take organic first. The organic stuff isn't taught in general chemistry.
       

      Dena1342

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      Jul 21, 2008
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      1. Pre-Optometry
        They don't ask you for a transcript when registering for the OAT, so I guess if you wanted to spend the money to take it without the classes you could.

        The organic part is based in the fundamentals of Organic chem and I'm not sure how well someone would do not having taken a year studying organic to understand it. The physics is probably more doable without having taken the classes. The concepts are pretty basic and you really just need understand kinematics and a few other topics from the second semester of physics.

        Overall, I wouldn't suggest it, but if you decide to do it anyway, I would buy the text used for both classes at your school and study those intensely.

        Good luck!
         
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        Slapshot13

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        Jun 23, 2008
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        1. Pre-Optometry
          Having Orgo done before the test could save you up to weeks in studying time. I truly believe Orgo is the most essential course to have leading up to the OAT..many questions in gem chem also are learned in orgo..

          Obviously the OAT can be done without previous knowledge..but it would be like trying to learn a new language in a matter of weeks..
           

          StushOD

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          1. Optometry Student
            I know it says that you "should" have taken physics and organic chemistry before taking the OAT, however I will not be able to take these two courses until the Spring Semester, and I want to get started on the OATs as soon as possible. So I have two questions, 1) is it completely unheard of to take the OAT without having taken physics and organic chemistry (I would learn them on my own for the exam) and 2) will I be allowed to sign up for the OAT without these courses (in other words, does the testing centre require I take them??)

            Thanks.

            Whats the rush? If you haven’t taken either one yet, you probably would have to wait until next year to apply anyway. I feel that it is foolish to take the test without taking those classes. Those classes make up 1/3 of the test, and people who do well in the classes aren’t guaranteed to do well on the test.

            Not only that but many schools don’t like students that take the test more than twice. Some schools flat out say on their website that if you do you are hurting your chances of acceptance.

            Take Physics 1+2, and at least Orgo 1. I only had Orgo 1 and scored a 350 in that section, but I wouldn’t have approached that with only self study. Try the study thing then take the opted practice test, then decide.
             

            jc812

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            Apr 11, 2006
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            1. Optometry Student
              I believe that you will score MUCH higher if you take it after taking the courses. Especially with Organic. The stuff will be a piece of cake AFTER you take organic, but before? It'll be tough.
               

              thinking998

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              Sep 1, 2008
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              1. Pre-Optometry
                Thanks everybody for the feedback! I guess I'll wait! To those who asked - "why the rush?" The reason that I wanted to "rush" and take the OAT now, is because I only considered applying for O.D. school after I already finished my undergrad degree, and I need Physics and organic chemistry which i did not take as an undergrad. I cannot get into these courses until January, so I have some time off until then - so I thought i would be a good time to study for the OATs. But I see that its not such a great idea without these classes, so I guess I'll just chill out this semester. Thanks again!
                 

                sportsdude00

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                Jun 20, 2008
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                1. Optometry Student
                  Thanks everybody for the feedback! I guess I'll wait! To those who asked - "why the rush?" The reason that I wanted to "rush" and take the OAT now, is because I only considered applying for O.D. school after I already finished my undergrad degree, and I need Physics and organic chemistry which i did not take as an undergrad. I cannot get into these courses until January, so I have some time off until then - so I thought i would be a good time to study for the OATs. But I see that its not such a great idea without these classes, so I guess I'll just chill out this semester. Thanks again!

                  if you REALLY want to learn organic on your own, theres a book that I used to pretty much self teach myself...its called "organic chemistry 1 as a second language." its straightforward reading and gives you plenty of examples to help you understand the basics of the subject. after that, you can just memorize reactions because thats all of organic 2.
                  physics is a little harder to study for, but there are just a few basic principles and formulas that will cover most of what you need to know. most outlines like shaums or something should be sufficient if you read it thoroughly and understand the material.
                   

                  blysssful

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                  Aug 9, 2007
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                  1. Optometry Student
                    Thanks everybody for the feedback! I guess I'll wait! To those who asked - "why the rush?" The reason that I wanted to "rush" and take the OAT now, is because I only considered applying for O.D. school after I already finished my undergrad degree, and I need Physics and organic chemistry which i did not take as an undergrad. I cannot get into these courses until January, so I have some time off until then - so I thought i would be a good time to study for the OATs. But I see that its not such a great idea without these classes, so I guess I'll just chill out this semester. Thanks again!

                    If you feel like you'd be wasting time in that semester, you could always take some of the classes that aren't required for most of the schools, but suggested (like anatomy, physiology, etc).

                    But I'd definitely have to agree with everyone else... it's inadvisable to take the exam without courses in physics and organic. The material on the OAT in those subjects is significantly easier than what you'd get in an actual course, but it's the basic concepts you'd be lacking.

                    Another alternative would be to get a tutor for those two subjects, learn the essential material in an accelerated manor and take the test after (but before your classes start in January). It wouldn't be easy, but it might work for you.

                    Also, you should know that while the bulk of the test material comes from the first semester of both of those courses, material from the second semester is still fair game.
                     
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