OAT resources and scheduling? Gonna start studying soon pls help :)

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Sep 2, 2020
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  1. Pre-Optometry
Hello everyone!

First I want to appreciate and thank everyone who writes here and help clear things out and make it easier on each other to study.

I'm gonna start studying for the OAT on Feb 1st and I have 11 weeks to study, full time at home. I have 0 knowledge about OAT, content, sources or anything so i've been reading from these forums for a while and I feel a little overwhelmed with everything I read and need some advice.

So far I've learned that those resources are good for each section:

BIO: DAT bootcamp, Dr. Romano from OAT destroyer, Feralis notes, and khan academy

PHYS: OAT destroyer and Princeton's practice exams

OCHEM: Chad's videos and Mike's videos and Ochem tutor on youtube

GEN CHEM: Chad's videos

Reading comprehension and math I'm still missing resources and wondering what is the best to prepare for them.

I also read that Kaplan, ADA, Princeton, Chad exams, and OAT destroyer are all good for practice exams, but I feel like I should choose only a couple of them because that's too overwhelming to go through. There is also a full practice exam on the OAT website which costs $100!

I am also trying to write down a schedule and I feel completely lost on how much time I should put for each section?? I don't have a particular section that I am strong or weak in, so I think I need to give all of them enough attention and time to practice.

I also read the study guide for 2021 on the OAT website which has a detailed breakdown of concepts required to study in each section. Is this how you decide how long each section will need to be in your schedule? How many concepts can someone on average cover in a day?

Also how much time does someone need to spend on learning and memorizing concepts before starting practice exams?
I am also looking for the least expensive sources to study from, but wouldn't mind spending money on something worth for better scores.


Thank you for everyone who reads my long post, sorry for the many questions, I just feel a little lost and confused on how to start studying, and with the pandemic I really don't have much resources to ask people questions. Appreciate you all!
 
Nov 27, 2020
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  1. Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
I'm not sure what your background is but I'll start off by saying, despite the intimidating volume of content, the actual questions will be simpler/less in-depth than anything you would've seen in its respective University/College course. So keep that in mind while studying. And as specific notes, there won't be long multistep calculations for physics (since you can't use a calculator), and they won't ask you to draw out entire synthesis mechanisms for OChem.

For resources, I used Kaplan blue book + Feralis notes for biology (though I mainly used Kaplan). The resources you listed will cover everything you need + extra. Then I literally used Chad's videos exclusively for Ochem/Gchem/Physics/QR. Physics/QR was from coursesaver, Ochem/Gchem from chadsvideos.com, the bundle also comes with physics. Those resources covered just about everything and were sufficient for scoring a 400AA/400TS. Chad's videos do a great job of explaining things simply and he's easy to listen to. His quizzes are also pretty representative of the difficulty of OAT questions, sometimes a touch harder. As a bonus, Chad's videos also comes with practice exams, so overall you'll get a lot of practice from his resources alone. I've seen a lot of people saying they like OAT destroyer, and definitely having more practice problems will be helpful for cementing concepts, but I personally have no experience with it so I can't comment.

For reading comprehension, most important thing is to figure out your strategy for tackling passages. The readings and questions are pretty straightforward. Some people like search and destroy (reading a question stem and then skimming through the passage for the answer). I personally preferred reading the whole passage quickly just to get a big picture idea of what the passage is saying, and then go through the questions and refer back to the passage to find the answers. Not too sure about resources for this since I didn't prep too much for it and just used the practice passages in the Kaplan book. If you're struggling with this section, I'd recommend focusing on getting questions right, and worry about timing after you're able to accurately answer the questions.

It's hard coming up with a proper schedule for each subject since really the amount of time you need to devote to each subject will vary a lot from person to person. I have a strong bio background and found gen chem content to be pretty light, so I spent way less time on those subjects than I did on OChem and physics. I didn't really allot a certain amount of time to each subject, I just played it by ear and studied until I felt confident. As for the amount of concepts someone can cover in a day, again it really depends on the person as well as the subject. My study period was 3.5 weeks to cover everything, with anywhere from 2-4 days to get through the entirety of each of the science subjects. That left me about 1.5 weeks to go back and review stuff. I've seen a few people have success in a similar time frame, most people have longer study periods.

How/when you take practice exams is also really subjective. I didn't write any practice tests, but if I did then my personal opinion is that I'd start writing them when I feel like I'm actually prepared to write the real thing, and then use it as a sort of diagnostic tool to assess where I'm at. From there I would go back and review the parts that I struggled with on the test. And yea, you really don't need to go through every practice test available to score well, so if you only want to purchase a couple you should be fine on that front.

Best of luck studying!
 
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Sep 2, 2020
5
1
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  1. Pre-Optometry
I'm not sure what your background is but I'll start off by saying, despite the intimidating volume of content, the actual questions will be simpler/less in-depth than anything you would've seen in its respective University/College course. So keep that in mind while studying. And as specific notes, there won't be long multistep calculations for physics (since you can't use a calculator), and they won't ask you to draw out entire synthesis mechanisms for OChem.

For resources, I used Kaplan blue book + Feralis notes for biology (though I mainly used Kaplan). The resources you listed will cover everything you need + extra. Then I literally used Chad's videos exclusively for Ochem/Gchem/Physics/QR. Physics/QR was from coursesaver, Ochem/Gchem from chadsvideos.com, the bundle also comes with physics. Those resources covered just about everything and were sufficient for scoring a 400AA/400TS. Chad's videos do a great job of explaining things simply and he's easy to listen to. His quizzes are also pretty representative of the difficulty of OAT questions, sometimes a touch harder. As a bonus, Chad's videos also comes with practice exams, so overall you'll get a lot of practice from his resources alone. I've seen a lot of people saying they like OAT destroyer, and definitely having more practice problems will be helpful for cementing concepts, but I personally have no experience with it so I can't comment.

For reading comprehension, most important thing is to figure out your strategy for tackling passages. The readings and questions are pretty straightforward. Some people like search and destroy (reading a question stem and then skimming through the passage for the answer). I personally preferred reading the whole passage quickly just to get a big picture idea of what the passage is saying, and then go through the questions and refer back to the passage to find the answers. Not too sure about resources for this since I didn't prep too much for it and just used the practice passages in the Kaplan book. If you're struggling with this section, I'd recommend focusing on getting questions right, and worry about timing after you're able to accurately answer the questions.

It's hard coming up with a proper schedule for each subject since really the amount of time you need to devote to each subject will vary a lot from person to person. I have a strong bio background and found gen chem content to be pretty light, so I spent way less time on those subjects than I did on OChem and physics. I didn't really allot a certain amount of time to each subject, I just played it by ear and studied until I felt confident. As for the amount of concepts someone can cover in a day, again it really depends on the person as well as the subject. My study period was 3.5 weeks to cover everything, with anywhere from 2-4 days to get through the entirety of each of the science subjects. That left me about 1.5 weeks to go back and review stuff. I've seen a few people have success in a similar time frame, most people have longer study periods.

How/when you take practice exams is also really subjective. I didn't write any practice tests, but if I did then my personal opinion is that I'd start writing them when I feel like I'm actually prepared to write the real thing, and then use it as a sort of diagnostic tool to assess where I'm at. From there I would go back and review the parts that I struggled with on the test. And yea, you really don't need to go through every practice test available to score well, so if you only want to purchase a couple you should be fine on that front.

Best of luck stI

I'm not sure what your background is but I'll start off by saying, despite the intimidating volume of content, the actual questions will be simpler/less in-depth than anything you would've seen in its respective University/College course. So keep that in mind while studying. And as specific notes, there won't be long multistep calculations for physics (since you can't use a calculator), and they won't ask you to draw out entire synthesis mechanisms for OChem.

For resources, I used Kaplan blue book + Feralis notes for biology (though I mainly used Kaplan). The resources you listed will cover everything you need + extra. Then I literally used Chad's videos exclusively for Ochem/Gchem/Physics/QR. Physics/QR was from coursesaver, Ochem/Gchem from chadsvideos.com, the bundle also comes with physics. Those resources covered just about everything and were sufficient for scoring a 400AA/400TS. Chad's videos do a great job of explaining things simply and he's easy to listen to. His quizzes are also pretty representative of the difficulty of OAT questions, sometimes a touch harder. As a bonus, Chad's videos also comes with practice exams, so overall you'll get a lot of practice from his resources alone. I've seen a lot of people saying they like OAT destroyer, and definitely having more practice problems will be helpful for cementing concepts, but I personally have no experience with it so I can't comment.

For reading comprehension, most important thing is to figure out your strategy for tackling passages. The readings and questions are pretty straightforward. Some people like search and destroy (reading a question stem and then skimming through the passage for the answer). I personally preferred reading the whole passage quickly just to get a big picture idea of what the passage is saying, and then go through the questions and refer back to the passage to find the answers. Not too sure about resources for this since I didn't prep too much for it and just used the practice passages in the Kaplan book. If you're struggling with this section, I'd recommend focusing on getting questions right, and worry about timing after you're able to accurately answer the questions.

It's hard coming up with a proper schedule for each subject since really the amount of time you need to devote to each subject will vary a lot from person to person. I have a strong bio background and found gen chem content to be pretty light, so I spent way less time on those subjects than I did on OChem and physics. I didn't really allot a certain amount of time to each subject, I just played it by ear and studied until I felt confident. As for the amount of concepts someone can cover in a day, again it really depends on the person as well as the subject. My study period was 3.5 weeks to cover everything, with anywhere from 2-4 days to get through the entirety of each of the science subjects. That left me about 1.5 weeks to go back and review stuff. I've seen a few people have success in a similar time frame, most people have longer study periods.

How/when you take practice exams is also really subjective. I didn't write any practice tests, but if I did then my personal opinion is that I'd start writing them when I feel like I'm actually prepared to write the real thing, and then use it as a sort of diagnostic tool to assess where I'm at. From there I would go back and review the parts that I struggled with on the test. And yea, you really don't need to go through every practice test available to score well, so if you only want to purchase a couple you should be fine on that front.

Best of luck studying!
I appreciate you spending the time and writing this detailed answer! Thank you so much I love your feedback and it gave me some relief. I was feeling very overwhelmed and intimidated to start studying but now I feel more prepared to start and it doesn't seem as hard as I thought it would be. Thank you again and good luck on anything you're working on as well! :)
 
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