Jul 1, 2009
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I've heard many times that the Reading Comprehension score is very important to some schools. This doesn't really make too much sense to me but I'm interested in finding out which schools put stress on the RC. I can kind of understand how a low RC score can 'break' someone's above average DAT score, but can a good RC really 'make' an applicant's score?

My DAT is decent but I happened to do very well on the RC section (26). As I'm applying to schools, it'd be good to if any of the schools I'm considering stress the RC.

I understand most of us don't know the intricate adcom operations of these schools, but maybe some of us have called schools and talked to them about RC scores. Have any said "we really like to see a high RC score and put more weight on it" ?
 

Kneecoal

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first off, that's an awesome score.

second, the reason they stress the RC is because they want to know that you can read and understand what you're reading. because you're going to be doing a TON of it in d-school.

but i wouldn't say that a really high RC score is something that would trump something like your TS score. but obviously i'm not an adcom, it's just the opinion i've formed after reading these threads for half a year.
 

Jongho Yoon

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I have heard that TS and PAT are most important sections. RC comes next.
 
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I don't know if this holds any truth or not but I've been told by a few students who attend UOP that their adcom looks for a high RC score because it's a 3 year program and they blaze through material. Therefore, I think they look for students who are strong readers. Take it for what it's worth. I'm sure you'll have a great chance. I hope I do well also.
 

Vicviper

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When the Rep from UCSF came to a meeting of our pre-dental club he said that they counted RC heavily, and that many other schools also do the same, thus I tell the same thing to other people. As others have said, I guess they just want to know that you can read and comprehend material quickly, and not just after having studied it for months.
 

Emmie

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I've heard many times that the Reading Comprehension score is very important to some schools. This doesn't really make too much sense to me but I'm interested in finding out which schools put stress on the RC. I can kind of understand how a low RC score can 'break' someone's above average DAT score, but can a good RC really 'make' an applicant's score?

My DAT is decent but I happened to do very well on the RC section (26). As I'm applying to schools, it'd be good to if any of the schools I'm considering stress the RC.

I understand most of us don't know the intricate adcom operations of these schools, but maybe some of us have called schools and talked to them about RC scores. Have any said "we really like to see a high RC score and put more weight on it" ?
Case is definitely one of them, super RC-philic, make sure you apply there!
 
Jun 14, 2009
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I think it should be pretty obvious where RC falls in the scheme of things..just look at the order of the DAT itself: Natural Sciences (TS)> PAT > RC > QR. Least important is last on the exam to factor out negative variables such as fatigue, "emergencies", headaches etc. While any really low score can hurt you, look to the DAT order for comparative significance (ie, a TS of 15 will surely kill you more than a RC or QR of 15)
 

ucla2134

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I think it should be pretty obvious where RC falls in the scheme of things..just look at the order of the DAT itself: Natural Sciences (TS)> PAT > RC > QR. Least important is last on the exam to factor out negative variables such as fatigue, "emergencies", headaches etc. While any really low score can hurt you, look to the DAT order for comparative significance (ie, a TS of 15 will surely kill you more than a RC or QR of 15)
Very interesting, but i have to disagree. After going through the application process last year and talk to most admission counselor at every school, RC holds more weight than TS.
To the OP: You will get in as long other score are not too low!
 

yuppers

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We talked about the ranking based on the importance of DAT sections here: http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=604894
and thanks to Contach we got some solid info.....

"The DATs are weighted very heavily in dental admissions decisions. Five of its component scores—academic average, science, perceptual ability, reading comprehension, and biology—were each rated more important by U.S. schools than any other factor. On a scale of 1 (least important) to 9 (most important), the academic average was rated (median score) 9, science 8, perceptual ability 7, and the rest of the component scores 6 or below as respective individual criteria of importance in the admissions decision. Quantitative reasoning score was ranked least important among the DAT’s component scores with a median of 2.2"

http://www.jdentaled.org/cgi/content/full/69/10/1095

[FONT=helvetica, arial]Evaluation of Applicants to Predoctoral Dental Education Programs: Review of the Literature .

[FONT=arial, helvetica]Richard R. Ranney, D.D.S., M.S.; Margaret B. Wilson, D.D.S., M.B.A.; Robert B. Bennett, Ph.D. .
[SIZE=-1]J Dent Educ. 69(10): 1095-1106 2005[/SIZE]
 
Jun 14, 2009
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Very interesting, but i have to disagree. After going through the application process last year and talk to most admission counselor at every school, RC holds more weight than TS.
To the OP: You will get in as long other score are not too low!
Not doubting what you're saying but if it is true, we sure are wasting a lot of time on the sciences and not enough in RC prep. Also think about how the scores are typically reported (TS/AA/PAT) by applicants and on reported school "rankings". TS is essentially reported more than once (TS and part of AA), PAT once, and RC and QR less than once (averaged out by the three sciences in AA). I can appreciate the importance of a good RC score as a reflection of comprehension and the ability to process new info, something that will be very important when the tons of info one will need to digest in DS must be done on your first or second sitting. If so, ADEA should format the DAT like the MCAT, where verbal carries as much weight as Biological Sciences or Physical Sciences and is a full 1/3 of the entire test score.
 

Vicviper

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I think the point about RC being able to make a break a score is just that, being able to make or break it in cases of extremely high or extremely low. I have no doubt that a 22 Bio 19 RC would be somewhat preferred over a 19 Bio 22 RC, but say if someone has an 18TS, but a 27 RC, that would compliment their scores in such a way to combine an about average science score plus an amazing RC into a really great DAT overall. Compare this to someone who got a 22TS but a 15 RC, the very low RC would totally scar the entire package. I hope that made sense!
 
OP
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I think the point about RC being able to make a break a score is just that, being able to make or break it in cases of extremely high or extremely low. I have no doubt that a 22 Bio 19 RC would be somewhat preferred over a 19 Bio 22 RC, but say if someone has an 18TS, but a 27 RC, that would compliment their scores in such a way to combine an about average science score plus an amazing RC into a really great DAT overall. Compare this to someone who got a 22TS but a 15 RC, the very low RC would totally scar the entire package. I hope that made sense!
Heh... I have a 18TS and 26RC so that's kind of what I was hoping for. I'm counting on my PAT(23) and personal statement getting me at least some interviews this cycle.
 

Vicviper

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Heh... I have a 18TS and 26RC so that's kind of what I was hoping for. I'm counting on my PAT(23) and personal statement getting me at least some interviews this cycle.
Yeah, even though I had a 20TS and great EC's, I'm fairly sure that my 30 RC was one of the only things that got me in the door for my interviews since I applied so late (November 17th) and had a below average GPA ~3.35c, 3.01s. Once you get the interviews it's a much more level playing field, some schools, like Pitt, claim that once you get an interview they don't look at your numbers.
 
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At that rate, why not just admit a bunch of liberal arts majors?

Check the ADA correlation studies.....AA and TS have much greater correlation with first and second year gpa/biomedical sciences than RC.

Yes, SOME schools are RC friendly, but it is by no means a consensus and it is ridiculous to say that one non-science section has more weight than AA or TS.

But hey, just keep the RC urban legend alive.....
 

Vicviper

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At that rate, why not just admit a bunch of liberal arts majors?

Check the ADA correlation studies.....AA and TS have much greater correlation with first and second year gpa/biomedical sciences than RC.

Yes, SOME schools are RC friendly, but it is by no means a consensus and it is ridiculous to say that one non-science section has more weight than AA or TS.

But hey, just keep the RC urban legend alive.....
Check out my post 3 above yours, I think I a fairly reasonable argument, and the same thing could be said for any extremely high or low scores.
 
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Check out my post 3 above yours, I think I a fairly reasonable argument, and the same thing could be said for any extremely high or low scores.
I don't disagree with what you're saying, but I'm a little sick of the people who keep saying that RC is the most important section....as if RC alone will get you into dental school.

Many of the claims regarding the importance of RC are unsubstantiated by the available studies. While I'm sure that school have their independent correlation studies, the RC importance is blown out of proportion on these forums.

Yeah, an RC below 18 is probably a red flag, but if the person has a 23+ I don't think he/she is going to struggle in the biomedical sciences.

Furthermore, the DAT RC is a joke compared to the MCAT; reading comprehension isn't being tested when you can just use search and destroy. Ironically, when reading science texts, I find myself reading very carefully and slowly, not using some search and destroy method like a mad man with time against me....

I mean, I only had a 20 RC, but a 25 TS....I don't think the RC being tested on the test has anything to do with how a practical person would go about absorbing scientific information; it's just like some sort of pointless game. My method of absorbing scientific information is slow and methodical and it never got in the way of my studies; my gpa and my science scores back this up...

Well, I'm going off on a tangent, but I just wish people would stop spreading so much RC urban legends.
 

Vicviper

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I don't disagree with what you're saying, but I'm a little sick of the people who keep saying that RC is the most important section....as if RC alone will get you into dental school.

Many of the claims regarding the importance of RC are unsubstantiated by the available studies. While I'm sure that school have their independent correlation studies, the RC importance is blown out of proportion on these forums.

Yeah, an RC below 18 is probably a red flag, but if the person has a 23+ I don't think he/she is going to struggle in the biomedical sciences.

Furthermore, the DAT RC is a joke compared to the MCAT; reading comprehension isn't being tested when you can just use search and destroy. Ironically, when reading science texts, I find myself reading very carefully and slowly, not using some search and destroy method like a mad man with time against me....

I mean, I only had a 20 RC, but a 25 TS....I don't think the RC being tested on the test has anything to do with how a practical person would go about absorbing scientific information; it's just like some sort of pointless game. My method of absorbing scientific information is slow and methodical and it never got in the way of my studies; my gpa and my science scores back this up...

Well, I'm going off on a tangent, but I just wish people would stop spreading so much RC urban legends.
You're very right. I think the entire thing started possibly because people were getting awesome science scores but horrible RC's and not getting accepted, but like I said before, a horrible anything (other than QR for many cases) can spell disaster. I think the schools that say they weigh heavily on RC may do so simply on the principle of "reading comprehension," because as you said, it's really not how you'd study, I know my method wasn't.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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Furthermore, the DAT RC is a joke compared to the MCAT; reading comprehension isn't being tested when you can just use search and destroy.
I was going to reply and make the same point. If DAT RC was anything remotely close to MCAT verbal, than it would make sense for it to count heavily towards admissions versus other sections.

One thing we can all agree on is that calling the reading section of the DAT reading "comprehension" is a bit misleading. They should call it, just flat out reading!
Pulling facts from a large body of text is not exactly comprehension.

For example:
"Billy was ten years old when he licked the inside of a trash can"
1.According to the passage, how old was Billy when he first licked the trash can?
A.Four
B.Ten
C.Nine
D.Eight

Now if I copy and paste one of MCAT verbal reasoning's passage and questions, most of us will pass out with confusion………............................…….I kid, I kid
 

Emmie

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Furthermore, the DAT RC is a joke compared to the MCAT; reading comprehension isn't being tested when you can just use search and destroy. Ironically, when reading science texts, I find myself reading very carefully and slowly, not using some search and destroy method like a mad man with time against me....

I mean, I only had a 20 RC, but a 25 TS....I don't think the RC being tested on the test has anything to do with how a practical person would go about absorbing scientific information; it's just like some sort of pointless game. My method of absorbing scientific information is slow and methodical and it never got in the way of my studies; my gpa and my science scores back this up...
:thumbup:

Do you think practicing MCAT RC will help your DAT RC?
 

Emmie

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I was going to reply and make the same point. If DAT RC was anything remotely close to MCAT verbal, than it would make sense for it to count heavily towards admissions versus other sections.

One thing we can all agree on is that calling the reading section of the DAT reading "comprehension" is a bit misleading. They should call it, just flat out reading!
Pulling facts from a large body of text is not exactly comprehension.

For example:
"Billy was ten years old when he licked the inside of a trash can"
1.According to the passage, how old was Billy when he first licked the trash can?
A.Four
B.Ten
C.Nine
D.Eight

Now if I copy and paste one of MCAT verbal reasoning's passage and questions, most of us will pass out with confusion………............................…….I kid, I kid
that's why DAT RC has some tone, inference questions to make it harder, or to make it more like MCAT RC
 

Selso2109

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I was going to reply and make the same point. If DAT RC was anything remotely close to MCAT verbal, than it would make sense for it to count heavily towards admissions versus other sections.

One thing we can all agree on is that calling the reading section of the DAT reading “comprehension” is a bit misleading. They should call it, just flat out reading!
Pulling facts from a large body of text is not exactly comprehension.

For example:
“Billy was ten years old when he licked the inside of a trash can”
1.According to the passage, how old was Billy when he first licked the trash can?
A.Four
B.Ten
C.Nine
D.Eight

Now if I copy and paste one of MCAT verbal reasoning’s passage and questions, most of us will pass out with confusion………............................…….I kid, I kid

I don't know what DAT RC section you had, but I had the piano section that required applying what you had read to specific problems, not easy cut and paste answers, I still got a great score but it wasn't as simple as what your saying.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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I had the piano passage as well. But that was one out of three passages. Plus not everyone gets the piano passage.

Anyways, MCAT is a thinking test whereas DAT is a memorization test and their reading sections reflects the format of the respective tests.
For RC to be weigh as much MCAT VR, it has to count towards the final score as much as well. MCAT VR is worth 1/3 whereas DAT RC is worth 1/5.
This is my viewpoint; sadly RC is in fact looked favorably by the adcoms versus TS.
 

doc3232

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I don't know how you can compare the TS score to the RC score. What happens to the individual science scores? Do we assume they don't exist?

3 different science scores are definitely more important than 1 RC score.

I think it is just that a 30 RC with 20 GChem > 20 RC with 30 GChem for example.
PAT is also more important than RC. Great RC score btw OP.
 

UCfan

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Very interesting, but i have to disagree. After going through the application process last year and talk to most admission counselor at every school, RC holds more weight than TS.
To the OP: You will get in as long other score are not too low!
I disagree with this comment. TS is average of 3 sections. AA is average of 5 sections. The order is AA>> all other. I think that TS needs to be greater than RC (3 sections vs. 1). I think that RC is the most important individual section. PAT is totally different. If you are ESL, the value of RC becomes even more important!
 

beeho

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:thumbup:

Do you think practicing MCAT RC will help your DAT RC?
NO. the mcat rc is more difficult than the dat rc, imo. the reason is that the mcat rc really asks questions on deduction and reasoning such as 'the author would most likely agree that'...

the DAT rc mostly asks about facts in the passages, which imo is easier. there are some of those deduction but few.

i practiced w/ the mcat exam crackers and it hardly helped me on the real dat rc. lol
 
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I've heard many times that the Reading Comprehension score is very important to some schools. This doesn't really make too much sense to me but I'm interested in finding out which schools put stress on the RC. I can kind of understand how a low RC score can 'break' someone's above average DAT score, but can a good RC really 'make' an applicant's score?

My DAT is decent but I happened to do very well on the RC section (26). As I'm applying to schools, it'd be good to if any of the schools I'm considering stress the RC.

I understand most of us don't know the intricate adcom operations of these schools, but maybe some of us have called schools and talked to them about RC scores. Have any said "we really like to see a high RC score and put more weight on it" ?
RC score is indeed one of the most important scores, specially in case of applicants who aren't native English speakers. This makes perfect sense, because obviously dental school involves a lot of reading and comprehension, and individuals who aren't efficient readers will eventually start to struggle and fall behind in classes. So, schools want to make sure the students that are getting admission are capable of reading and comprehending the enormous amount of information they'll be exposed to in dental school.
Whether or not RC will break or make it for someone is a different story. If one's score is below 17 in this section (or any other section of the exam for that matter) there's a good chance that his/her poor performance in that particular section could severely hinder his/her chances of admission. Many schools have cutoff points, and students who fall below those cutoff points will be automatically eliminated from the screening process. So, a low RC score could definitely hurt the applicants.
But would it be the determining factor?
I don't think it is!
If RC was the only thing they were concerned with the DAT would only test the applicants on this particular subject. Obviously sciences such as biology, chemistry, and even mathematics can't be completely ignored.
Many students think a high DAT score will overshadow a low GPA or vice versa. This may be true to some extent, but the truth of matter is that schools are looking for students with decent GPAs, DAT scores, diverse life experiences, etc. No single factor alone will determine the fate of any student during the admission process. You can't slack off during your 4 years of undergrad and graduate with a 2.5 GPA, and all the sudden decide you want to become a dentist and pull off a 21+ on your DAT. If schools chose to ignore your poor undergrad performance and only focus on your excellent DAT score, then it wouldn't be fair to all the other applicants who busted their ass to maintain a high GPA throughout the undergrad years.
So, I guess it's a combination of many different factors that determines your fate rather than individual scores.