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Ok, so what's the deal with today's MCAT VR?

G1SG2

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    Since everyone is saying that today's MCAT VR passages are much longer, is it wise to still give myself 8 minutes per passage when I'm practicing for this section? I find it hard to read a long passage and answer 7-8 questions in just 7 minutes (I read pretty fast, and I'm not too bad at this section), so I usually just give myself 8 minutes. I just wanted to know if you guys think I should start practicing on a 7 minute timer instead of 8 min, given the increasing length of the passages. I just keep thinking that I might get screwed on test day, with the passages being much longer than I'm used to, and that I will run out of time or something :scared: I've been practicing with TPR verbal (full lengths, and the workbook as well), and have so far taken two EK 101 verbal tests (I'm saving the AAMCs for last)-I give myself 8 min per passage when doing VR on those tests, and do just fine/don't run out of time.

    To those who have recently taken the MCAT-were the passages really longer than what you were previously working with?

    Any advice would be appreciated!
     
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    BBender716

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      I agree, to an extent. As with any section on the actual MCAT, due to nerves and actually taking the real thing, everything will take longer. Make sure you finish with at least 10mins left on both the science sections. On verbal, be prepared to take extra time inadvertently. I think practicing so that you finish with 3-4mins left will leave you 1-2mins left on the actual thing to tie up any loose ends. I managed to finish in practice with 3-4mins left and had 1-2mins on the actual and this worked for me when many said they felt the passages were "longer".
       

      OpalOnyx

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        I agree, to an extent. As with any section on the actual MCAT, due to nerves and actually taking the real thing, everything will take longer. Make sure you finish with at least 10mins left on both the science sections. On verbal, be prepared to take extra time inadvertently. I think practicing so that you finish with 3-4mins left will leave you 1-2mins left on the actual thing to tie up any loose ends. I managed to finish in practice with 3-4mins left and had 1-2mins on the actual and this worked for me when many said they felt the passages were "longer".

        :thumbup:
         
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        sdmd

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        Apr 24, 2009
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          Since everyone is saying that today's MCAT VR passages are much longer, is it wise to still give myself 8 minutes per passage when I'm practicing for this section? I find it hard to read a long passage and answer 7-8 questions in just 7 minutes (I read pretty fast, and I'm not too bad at this section), so I usually just give myself 8 minutes. I just wanted to know if you guys think I should start practicing on a 7 minute timer instead of 8 min, given the increasing length of the passages. I just keep thinking that I might get screwed on test day, with the passages being much longer than I'm used to, and that I will run out of time or something :scared: I've been practicing with TPR verbal (full lengths, and the workbook as well), and have so far taken two EK 101 verbal tests (I'm saving the AAMCs for last)-I give myself 8 min per passage when doing VR on those tests, and do just fine/don't run out of time.

          To those who have recently taken the MCAT-were the passages really longer than what you were previously working with?

          Any advice would be appreciated!

          In the VR section, you aren't likely to encounter a passage with 8 associated questions, even having one with 7 associated questions is rare. In general, each VR passage has 5-6 questions per passage (although 7 is possible). ;)

          If you adhere closely to 8 min/passage, you should be able to finish a full VR section in time (and in theory with time to spare) since you have 60 min to read 7 passages and answer 40 questions. However, on the real test, some passages will likely require only 6 min and some may require 9 min, so forcing the 8 min/passage rule may not be the best strategy. :thumbdown:

          Instead of practicing by using 8 min/passage, try doing 7 passsages (with 40 questions) in 60 minutes (i.e. do a full VR section in one sitting when you practice). This will allow you to get better acquainted with the VR section as a whole and should also help you with your stamina. :)

          my impression is that they're not longer, but due to the formating of the text and columns, it looks longer.

          I 100% agree with this. As I mentioned earlier in a different thread: when taking your AAMC MCAT Practice Tests online, zoom in (by pressing Ctrl and scrolling backwards with your mouse roller) and the formatting will mimic more closely the actual MCAT exam format.:thumbup:

          I agree, to an extent. As with any section on the actual MCAT, due to nerves and actually taking the real thing, everything will take longer. Make sure you finish with at least 10mins left on both the science sections. On verbal, be prepared to take extra time inadvertently. I think practicing so that you finish with 3-4mins left will leave you 1-2mins left on the actual thing to tie up any loose ends. I managed to finish in practice with 3-4mins left and had 1-2mins on the actual and this worked for me when many said they felt the passages were "longer".

          Yeah on the science sections finishing with 10 min remaining is the minimum residual time you should have leftover (I'd go for 15-20 min if possible!). :thumbup:

          I don't know many ppl who can finish the VR section with more than 5 min to spare, but it is imperative that you finish the entire section within the alloted time if you are to score well. :)

          As said above, aim to finish with at least a few minutes to spare when you practice because chances are you will have less time remaining on test day.
           
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