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PCAT "cut-off" score?

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:
     

    beccala33

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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!
       
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      beccala33

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        DownonthePharm said:
        My cut off was an 87% because I knew I needed an excellent PCAT score to offset my marginal GPA.
        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!
         

        starsweet

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          beccala33 said:
          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!

          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.
           

          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.
             

            starsweet

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              beccala33 said:
              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.

              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!
               

              beccala33

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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!
                 
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                starsweet

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                  beccala33 said:
                  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!

                  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! :(
                   

                  rxlynn

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                    starsweet said:
                    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! :(


                    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).
                     

                    beccala33

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                      rxlynn said:
                      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).
                      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.
                       

                      Slangindempillz

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                        rxlynn said:
                        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).

                        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.
                         

                        ndearwater

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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.
                           

                          usi

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                            ndearwater said:
                            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.
                            What if your GPA is good, say above 3.6 and your PCAT is around 86?
                             

                            rxlynn

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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.
                               

                              starsweet

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                                beccala33 said:
                                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.

                                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!
                                 
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