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PCAT "cut-off" score?

Discussion in 'PCAT Discussions' started by calrx, Nov 14, 2005.

  1. calrx

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    Before I took the PCAT for the 1st time in October I told myself that if I got below an 80% I would retake it in January. Well, after submitting all of my applications and doing some thinking, I don't know if I should raise my "cut-off" score. I feel like sooo many people score well above the 80th percentile. BUT, then what if I score in the 70s/80s, retake it in January, and I don't improve too much-- doesn't that look worse than not taking it a second time? Is anyone else out there analyzing this stupid test as well? What are your personal "cut-off" scores (if you are weird like me and have one?) :confused: :scared:
     
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  3. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    I have been agonizing about this test since the day I took it (and really, for months before.) My cut-off score is 80% as well. Some days I feel like I did so so well, and then I convince myself that I did horribly. I am having nightmares about it, that's how bad it is. I will be very relieved when we get our scores and this torture is OVER!
     
  4. blueclassring

    blueclassring Senior Member
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    i believe to remain competitive you should get better than an 80%, but anything over a 90% is what you need to be aiming for.
     
  5. DownonthePharm

    DownonthePharm Chillin' n Fillin'
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    My cut off was an 87% because I knew I needed an excellent PCAT score to offset my marginal GPA.
     
  6. usi

    usi
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    what is excellent?
    > 80%
    or
    >90%?????????
    I don't know how to think about it...
     
  7. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    Me too, I have such a low GPA compared with most. I am just over a 3.0 so I really need to get over 90. We'll see. It's funny how one 4 hour test determines the whole rest of my life!
     
  8. starsweet

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    Are you planning to take it again in January? I haven't signed up yet but I might, I can't decide. Seems like we have similar stats so I thought I'd ask.
     
  9. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    I want to, but I hate to spend the money if I don't have to. I think I am going to wait until 5 weeks have gone by, and if I still haven't gotten my scores then I will. OR if I get below like 85 then I will. How 'bout you?
     
  10. blueclassring

    blueclassring Senior Member
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    if you have a low gpa like i do(3.2 pharmcas), a high pcat score will usu. get you into the door(that is if you have everything else)
     
  11. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    I don't even have that, my GPA is 3.02. My science GPA is high, like 3.7 or something, but I was a computer science major and hated it, so didn't do as well as I should have. So you can imagine how important it is for me to do well on my PCAT.
     
  12. starsweet

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    I have 3.16 overall but a 2.86 science because of engineering, which I hated too! My non science and math GPAs are high.

    So PCAT is very important for me too. Based on what ndearwater said about not getting her last year's score back until 6 weeks later, this would be too late to sign up for the January test, unless you sign up late, so I'm really not sure what to do.
     
  13. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    That is so sucky that they count your engineering gpa in there. If my scores take 6 weeks I am going to throw myself out the window. Where are you applying? I feel like I have asked you this before, but I can't remember what you said.
     
  14. starsweet

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    I'm applying to UGA, South, Mercer, UNC, Creighton, and maybe UIC and UT-Austin. Two of those schools want A&P II though, so I'll decide next semester if I want to take that or not. :D UGA told me they look at pre-pharm GPA only, not overall, so that should be good for me!
     
  15. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    It's so funny, I applied to UGA for just that reason! That's my safety school :)
    I applied to a lot of the same schools as you. Have you heard anything from any of them? Also, did you notice that one of the prepharm classes for UGA is history and one is political science? I have to take another history that means. Grrr!
     
  16. usi

    usi
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    So.. If I hear you all correctly...
    If your GPA is high you can get away with a lower PCAT score?
    Does anybody have any hard evidence?
    Or are we just making educated guesses?
     
  17. starsweet

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    Haha, I didn't even realize that UGA looked at the pre-pharm GPA until I talked to them yesterday! But you know what I heard? This girl who's in my O. Chem class, her sister goes to UGA and has been trying to get into the program since last year. She said their avg. PCAT is in the 90s. I didn't believe that so I looked on the website and it DOES say that the avg. is like 93!! :scared:

    No, I haven't heard from any schools, except that they want my PCAT score and/or my O. Chem grades first! :(
     
  18. rxlynn

    rxlynn Senior Member
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    Hi, I work with a pharmacist who is a UGA Pharm grad. He says that UGA is incredibly competitive now - You need very good pre-pharm grades and the above is accurate info. on the average PCAT score. This should not be considered a safety school (I think an earlier poster had mentioned that).
     
  19. beccala33

    beccala33 Senior Member
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    I did say that it was my safety school, but that's because I have gotten an A in every single prepharm class except bio II (I got a C because my teacher and I didn't see eye to eye :mad: ), and in Organic chem 2 (I got an A-) and I feel ok about the pcat. My overall gpa isn't so great, so my best bet is a school that only looks at prepharm and pcat.
     
  20. Slangindempillz

    Slangindempillz Shinin' like diamonds
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    Yeah, so I doubt their average PCAT score is 93. I don't think he/she was really meaning "safety school." I took it that he/she meant that it was the school that was last on their list.
     
  21. ndearwater

    ndearwater SDN Donor
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    Last year I didn't give myself a cut-off score but I just tried to think positive thoughts and hoped for something in the 90's. I ended up getting an 86 and struggled a little with whether or not to retake it. I did not get accepted last year so this year I went ahead with registering for and taking the PCAT... luckily I was already accepted and so that second PCAT won't matter for me. I thought maybe my PCAT was holding me back but I guess it was fine...
    I don't think it's based on hard facts, and varies among schools, but I agree that a higher PCAT is needed when you have a low GPA.
    Of course, if schools see major discrepencies between pre-req GPA and PCAT score, they might start to wonder. A lot of students have low GPA's due to changed majors or prior degrees etc.
    ANYWAY... it all depends and it seems when it comes to pharm admissions there are a lot of factors involved and the importance placed on GPA vs. PCAT vs. life/work experience varies among the different programs.
     
  22. usi

    usi
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    What if your GPA is good, say above 3.6 and your PCAT is around 86?
     
  23. rxlynn

    rxlynn Senior Member
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    I did say that it was my safety school, but that's because I have gotten an A in every single prepharm class except bio II (I got a C because my teacher and I didn't see eye to eye :mad: ), and in Organic chem 2 (I got an A-) and I feel ok about the pcat. My overall gpa isn't so great, so my best bet is a school that only looks at prepharm and pcat.[/QUOTE]


    Oh - that totally makes sense. Also, for more information on UGA, their admissions FAQ is at http://www.rx.uga.edu/main/home/httpd/html/admiss/Admissions_FAQ.pdf

    It has a lot of good info, including the average and the range of GPAs and PCAT composite for last year's entering class.
     
  24. starsweet

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    Also, take a look at the post about UGA that's going on in pre-pharmacy right now, if you haven't already. It has a formula that they use to determine who gets an interview. They are stricter than I thought! I'm getting a little paranoid. I'm afraid I won't get in anywhere now!
     
  25. ndearwater

    ndearwater SDN Donor
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    That's more than good enough for most schools. I don't know about UF... it's probably just fine :)
     
  26. usi

    usi
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    Thank you
    I am dying to see my PCAT!!!!!!! Maybe this saturday :scared:
     

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