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Pretty Depressed...2nd Practice attempt

Discussion in 'MCAT: Medical College Admissions Test' started by bluesTank, Mar 11, 2007.

  1. bluesTank

    bluesTank Zombie
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    I just took my second diagnostic test, after almost a month of studying since my first diagnostic (with princeton review) and here are my scores:

    V 5 / B 9 / P 8 (22)

    then

    V 5 / B 11 / P 7 (23)

    I'm pretty depressed right now cause thats 1 point after a month of studying, and I got like 2 months before my actual MCAT, am I going to make like a 25? :scared:

    Guess i'm just wondering what everyone else's experiences are...

    thanks
    :(
     
  2. w00tz

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    Your verbal is significantly lower than your other sections, so I think your problem is mainly critical reading. Another way to tell is looking at the percent you are getting right for discrete vs. passage-based questions. The bad news is that it will take a lot of practice to get good at, but the good news is that once you've get a hang for it, you will see an improvement in all the sections.
     
  3. midn

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    I'm going to post here also since I'm in the same boat.

    My first diagnostic I got a a 11-7-7 (BS-PS-VR) and on my second I just got 11-10-5. I am bombing the crap out of verbal. I am still very frustrated with TPR's strategies of "skimming" for the main idea and doing the written outline. It seems to improve my accuracy somewhat, but it's a very volatile strategy because I may hit the wrong main ideas and completely derail myself. Also, "skimming" the package forces me to go back and re-read the passage many, many times when I finally get to the questions. I was running out of time with the outline/skim strategy, so I asked my VR teacher what to do and he told me to skim even faster. This lead me to miss over half the questions on the practice passages in class. On this last test, I decided not to do the outline or skimming and carefully read each passage with selective highlighting. As you can see, that didn't go very well. I am going to go back to my 101 passages book and EK's strategies, but I don't think it'll help me on TPR's tests so I'll see consistently bad scores on their tests. Any suggestions?

    Also, I appear to have hit a plateau with my BS/PS sections. I know most the concepts solidly (save a few later ones that we have to get to yet), but my goal is to get a 13 on BS and around a 12 on PS. Also, I think TPR's BS/PS sections are a bit on the easy side with a few difficult questions which I seem to consistently miss. Where can I get more difficult questions? I heard the mini-MCATs from EK were pretty tough.
     
  4. apricotattack

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    This is the semi-Kaplan method I use in VR which is working pretty well for me:

    Read the passage while jotting down key points in each paragraph on paper to keep me focused and highlighting important keywords (like names, concepts they're introducing, things I noticed in peeking at the questions). Don't spend time carefully reading, just try to understand what's going on and highlight what you think you might need to return to. Make sure to be writing something on your paper as you go, even if you don't use it in the questions, because just having to do that makes you think a lot more about what you're reading. I hope this helps... but if it doesn't, there are a million methods out there, and you've just got to try another until you find yours!
     
  5. midn

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    Alright, so I went back to my EK 101 Passage book and took test #3. My last two test scores were 8, and 7 in the book, but this time I got a 13. I wrote absolutely nothing down, and did not highlight anything.

    I hate writing things down because it forces me to translate my tenuous understanding of the material into a few words which causes me to overlook many things. I find it unnecessary to write an outline because all that time I waste in writing can be used to process the information I just read. Writing just does not work for me.

    Obviously, this is a bit of a fluke, but it does bring to question my 5 in TPR's test. Granted, I had just taken the PS section before which could have made me slightly more tired, but that still does not account for an 8 point difference. What I did notice between EK and TPR is that EK's passages are shorter while TPR's is much more lengthy (hence, it self-reinforces the skimming strategy since there is less time per word). TPR's questions are a lot more straightforward and retrieval based, while EK's are more main idea and inference based (which enforces EK's own strategies).

    So this is a bit of a conundrum. Who's assessment do I trust? I plan on taking one of my first real AAMC tests this weekend, but may not get to it since I have so many tests and assignments due next week. Anyone here that did both TPR and EK that can comment?
     
  6. merlinwall

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    take an e-mcat (AAMC) and find out.
     
  7. smuwillobrien

    smuwillobrien Senior Member
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    I started a Princeton Review and Kaplan diagnostic test, and ended up just quitting midway through them. Try the AAMC practice tests - they're much better in my opinion, plus they were really close to my actual score.
     
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  8. IckeyShuffle

    IckeyShuffle MS1 t-minus 1.5 months..
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    agreed, do a regular aamc test and see where you stand. no ones verbal is quite like the real deal.
     
  9. AtreyuRocks

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    :thumbup: yup. no one else shows you like the AAMC. also there is a recent thread about '12+ verbal strategies'... i know you are looking to improve but these strategies can help you just the same. TWO months is plenty of time, good luck :luck::luck:!
     
  10. phospho

    phospho SDN Lifetime Donor
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    hmm, quick question...would you rather have your weakness in discrete or passage based questions? i.e. which one do you think would be the easiest weakness to remedy?

    I suck in passages, and im nailing every dam discrete I come across...!:mad:

    oh, i mean the bio section...
     
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  11. w00tz

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    I think most people find the discretes easy or at least easier. If you are an undergrad with your pre-req classes fresh in your mind, it would take maybe two weeks of review to get almost all of the discretes right. Too bad it's only about 25ish% of the test. What separates the good scores vs. the bad scores are the passage based questions. It's good that you have your discretes down, because it means you understand the material/concepts. You need that knowledge to answer all PS and BS questions. You just need to work on the way you read the passages.
     
  12. swifteagle43

    swifteagle43 Lover- not a fighter
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    THE NAME OF THE GAME IS

    CAPITAL P
    CAPITAL r
    CAPITAL a
    CAPITAL c
    CAPITAL t
    CAPITAL i
    CAPITAL c
    CAPITAL e
     
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  13. Funky

    Funky This space is for sale
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    i went from 23 to 31 eventually and probably could have done better so don't panic quite yet. Practice is the name of the game as mentioned.
     
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  14. buggati

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    what if i am still at a low practice score ranging b/t 20-23 do i really have a chance at improving significantly in 3 weeks? i am done with 1/3 of the study material? please any sugesstions help...

    my practice scores:
    BS-8
    PS-7-8
    VR-5,6,7,8
     
  15. MSTPbound

    MSTPbound student
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    I don't know what you were told at TPR, but if what I was told about the Kaplan course in any way reflects the TPR experience, then I would say this:

    #1: The word "PRACTICE" is the most important one for you in this entire thread. It cannot be exaggerated - I would add that you practice intelligently... keep making distinctions; why do you get the wrong things wrong? why do you get the right things right?... keep doing this for the next 1/3 of the study material, and focus on PROCESS... not performance... not yet anyway. Perhaps 2/3 or 3/4 of the way through the material, you can start to worry. For now just keep working hard... and work "smart".

    #2: My Kaplan teacher told us that it is not uncommon to go DOWN on the first FL (or 2) after a diagnostic test... and often it is you're struggling to apply a bunch of new strategies and approaches that you haven't yet mastered, so you run out of time. Is this a possible source of your performance issues?

    Anyway, for what it's worth... while I don't know if I can hope for my own outcome (in 18 days!) to reflect my Kaplan teacher's outcome, let his story inspire you; he started with a 19 diagnostic... fell to 17 on the next FL... and pulled 39 on the real thing.

    Then when he had to take it again years later to teach for Kaplan, he scored a 38.

    Good Luck,

    -MSTPbound
     
  16. buggati

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    i am in the kaplan prep course, i feel like i am not improving...i dont know y, but i hope i can do the same thing as your instructor
     
  17. MSTPbound

    MSTPbound student
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    Sorry... didn't read through the thread carefully enough (can you tell I'm having trouble with VR also :laugh: )

    Stay with it... Do all the HW assignments, identify weak areas, and take advantage of the PLETHORA of tools the online syllabus makes available to us, including the 8 aamc practice exams which you can customize by section and topic if you want to focus on something in particular.

    Peace,

    MSTPbound
     

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