Princeton vs. Kaplan

SuzyQ

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    Ok, I know this has probably already been a topic of discussion but I would like to know what you guys think of these courses? Any of you who took the courses could you please let me know if you think you benifited from them? I signed up for the princeton review course and start this saturday but i can get a refund if i decide not to go. I'm debating whether I should stick with princeton(which starts june 15) or go to kaplan(starts june 23). Princeton as 44 sessions while kaplan only has 22. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! THANKS!
     

    njdesi

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      I took Kaplan for the April 2002 MCAT, and I did significantly go up ( from the 15 I got on the first diag). But I felt that their preparation for the Physical Sciences was not good. I ended up with 9BS, 8VR, and Q-WS, but a pitiful 6PS!
      And I made sure I utilized ALL there material, and lived at the place!!! So I am now resorting to EXAMKRAKERS books for the August 2002 MCAT. Hope this helps.
       

      Blitzkrieg

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        Kaplan h as the best materials.

        I had all the princeton materials, as well as some berk review tests (pitiful) and columbia reveiw tests (worst).

        Take kaplan. It works. They know the MCAT, they know the LSAT (three friends got high 90's percentiles, and one @ Hahvahd Law, one @ Columbia, other Baylor).

        Kaplan has lots of $$, and therefore has better research and development.

        Do tons of practice probs.

        blitz
         
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          How does Kaplan work? I notice in their schedule that the last 4 sessions are all full-day exams... How can that be helpful? Doesn't it just tire you out? Also, are those exam AAMC? If so, what if I studied those alone in the past...

          Another question, I took Kaplan once for SAT but was quite disappointed... They grouped us by who did bad on diag's and I didn't take the diag too seriously so I had a very slow guy taking it so much slower than the other classes I almost fell asleep in those classes... I dont know what to do? Is Kaplan actually better in the MCAT prep?

          I took the april mcat cold with 2 days studying (had other exams, etc... ran out of time) and got 24 (7V,8P,9B,L) so I'm kind of desperate for a good course.

          Also, anyone know anything about Kaplan's Verbal Edge? For half the price of the full course they focus entirely on the verbal and perhaps I can do the sciences alone and just use the skills from solving verbal to carryover to the rest?

          Thanks in advance for any replies or comments.
           

          DrMom

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            •••quote:•••Originally posted by limit:
            •How does Kaplan work? I notice in their schedule that the last 4 sessions are all full-day exams... How can that be helpful? Doesn't it just tire you out? Also, are those exam AAMC?

            Also, anyone know anything about Kaplan's Verbal Edge? For half the price of the full course they focus entirely on the verbal and perhaps I can do the sciences alone and just use the skills from solving verbal to carryover to the rest?

            Thanks in advance for any replies or comments.•••••Limit,

            The 5 full length tests that Kaplan has in its curriculum are not AAMC tests. They are helpful in giving you practice with MCAT-like passages and questions and with timing on the sections. These practice tests are really helpful. Also, you can look at explanations for each of the answers so that you don't make the same kinds of mistakes over and over. And, yes, the full lengths do tire you out, but by the time you get to the real MCAT it doesn't seem so bad since you've already done it for the past 4 weeks!

            Sorry I can't answer your verbal edge questions...my Kaplan center is small and hasn't had enough students to fill a verbal edge class. As you suggest, the skills in verbal do carry over to the other sections, but you still need to have a firm grasp of the sciences.

            I hope this helps you out.
             

            carpool95

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              I took the Kaplan course in Charlotte, NC and had very little improvement from my diagnostic to my MCAT score this April. However, as one person mentioned above, I think it had a lot to do with the quality of the teachers. Our Physical Sciences teacher was horrible! I personally felt that the Kaplan schedule was not as efficient as TPR. However, Kaplan offers tuition assistance and TPR doesn't, so I chose Kaplan. Now, I think it may have cost me; I'm contemplating retaking the MCAT this August. Good luck to you!
               

              PrincessCKNY

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                Chemistry boy,

                Sure do. I took his course, and he used to be an advisor for my club. I even gave his cute little girl some tickets to Discovery Zone! Todd is an absolute crack up.

                For everyone (some random thoughts),

                I work personally w/ all 3 MCAT companies through my club at UCI (of which I am an officer), where we have MCAT Panels twice a year. I think I have heard all 3 companies' sales pitch about 8 times now.

                Personally, I took Berkeley Review...not because I know the owner (although that may have been a bit of an influence), but because they are very "family" oriented. With my experience, they are strong overall in the sciences, and verbal depends on the tutor you get.

                Use your instincts for your verbal tutor...you can generally get a feel for if they know what they are talking about. Most importantly PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE, READ READ READ!

                In regards to comparisons between companies, I would say that Princeton and Berkeley are about the same and combine content with strategy. Kaplan seems to focus more on strategy than content, which is why their books are so thin.

                Choosing a company is purely based on who YOU are. If you know your sciences inside and out, then take Kaplan and focus on strategy and verbal. But, if you need a refresher, I would suggest taking one of the other two.

                Hope this helps!
                 

                Ricky

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                  I took the Princeton Review last January, and was extremely disappointed with the course. I found the instructor to be unprepared for taking on such a responsibility. The groups were too large for the student instructors and the classes were not well organized. Taking the course did not help me achieve any great increase in my scores. I believe Kaplan is the better alternative. I am looking to sell the princeton review books.
                   

                  Bmblee888

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                    I took both Kaplan and Princeton Review (at different times). I definitely prefer Kaplan. Even though PR has more classes, I thought Kaplan's material was much better. Kaplan material was a lot better organized whereas I felt that PR kind of just threw all their material at you. Plus, I would suggest that you take FULL advantage of the Kaplan training library. I used almost all their material and raised my score 10 points.
                     
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