Aug 26, 2017
I recently took the MCAT after studying for 2 months extremely hard while taking 2 summer courses (physics 1 and 2). I got a 490 and was left feeling like a shameful pit of sorrow and in tears for days. My first practice test I got a 480 (horrible) and then my second I got a 486 (slightly less horrible). I scored almost evenly in every subject. I signed up for a last chance to take the MCAT on September 2nd and I'm hoping I can pull out with an average score. I've been studying my eyes out and have 3 practice tests planned for just this week. I'm at a lost considering I'm an incredible student, I've done a years worth of research and I'm beginning my own independent studies. I'm also bilingual and volunteer teaching English to Spanish speakers. I got an incredible internship that flew me across the country to work with the number one surgeon in prostate cancer. I dissected a cadaver, could perform genetic testing with my eyes closed at research if I tried, and was accepted into an exclusive class at my university that allowed me to work 30 hours in the ER. I have a 3.88 GPA and have been paid for my research for almost a year. Please tell me where I'm going wrong. I thought I studied extremely well. I need some advice or even stories about miracle people who got into an MD school on their ECs and GPA with a below average MCAT. Please help me.


5+ Year Member
Nov 3, 2014
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
Sorry to hear how the MCAT turned out. Kicks to the gut are never good.

1. When did you take the last MCAT?
2. 3 practice tests THIS week are too much; 1 test between now and Sat... that's it; take FL 1 or FL 2 tomorrow, review on Monday, content review on Tues, MAYBE FL 2 or FL 1 on Weds, review on Th, light review on Fr and sit.

Unless that 490 was a few months ago, I would not take the exam on 9/2 unless your fL scores are solid. A 490 indicates lack of content knowledge (to me).


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5+ Year Member
SDN Ambassador
Jun 17, 2014
Replacement Chat
Hey @mec123 . I am sorry to hear your first MCAT exam didn't go well. But rest assured you can do better on the next exam and get into medical school.

In order for us to help you, we need some more details. Please answer the following questions:

1. When did you take the first MCAT exam?

2. What study materials did you use for the first MCAT exam?

3. What study materials are you using now?

4. What practice tests have you taken so far? What are the scores?

5. Did you enroll in a prep course or did you self-study? If you self-studied, please provide a brief summary of your study plan.

I do not recommend taking 3 practice tests in a week. You will burn out and do poorly, which will only worsen your woes. We are here to help, but you need to step back and lay out your plan to us so that we can give you personalized guidance and help you achieve your goals.
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