# So the BS section correlates most with USMLE I Sucess?

Discussion in 'MCAT: Medical College Admissions Test' started by GoLAClippers, Mar 8, 2007.

1. ### GoLAClippers Membership Revoked Removed

Joined:
Feb 26, 2007
Messages:
213
0
The science sections (PS and BS) test analytical and logical cognitive abilities and can be handled by those who are adept in these disciplines. The Verbal Reasoning (VR)section was implemented to test understanding of various subtleties involved in human communication and understanding. Unsurprisingly, it is the MCAT Biological Sciences score which most directly correlates to success on the USMLE Step 1 exam, with a correlation coefficient of .553 vs .491 for Physical Sciences and .397 for Verbal Reasoning. [2] Predictably, MCAT composite scores also correlate with USMLE Step 1 success.[3]

The MCAT is scored using a scaled score out of 15, standardized to a mean of 8. The table provides a rough estimate of the scaled score from a raw score. The AAMC has never released a formula to allow students to calculate a scaled score from raw data, because the conversion is slightly different for each set of questions. However, this table is based on recent AAMC practice tests and can be used to approximate a score achieved on a practice test.
When the results of the MCAT are mailed to students, the scaled score is provided as well as a percentile score.

2. ### HelpingHand Where's my white coat? 5+ Year Member

Joined:
Aug 1, 2006
Messages:
42
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
Wow, I've always heard that the Verbal Reasoning Section was deemed most important.

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
3. ### IckeyShuffle MS1 t-minus 1.5 months.. 2+ Year Member

Joined:
Jul 20, 2006
Messages:
613
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
you are going to medical school to study science. i dont understand how people can say verbal is the most important. i remember i had a passage on my verbal reasoning about trading with china in the 1700's. yeah that is gonna be realllllly helpful for medical school.

4. ### Shrike Lanius examinatianus 10+ Year Member

Joined:
Apr 23, 2004
Messages:
646
4
What those people are saying is that the verbal score has the biggest effect on your application to medical school, which has little or nothing to do with whether the subject matter is related to what you will study there -- the issue is what med schools look for.

If you're saying that med schools don't consider the verbal score most important, I'd be interested in what your source is, as most evidence suggests that they do. If you're saying that they shouldn't, that's a different issue. I happen to disagree, as there's more to being a doctor than knowing the science -- one has to communicate as well. Still, I doubt many people hereon give a darn what any of us think about how applications should be treated; what they care about is what will get them in.

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
5. ### lifeistough

Joined:
Sep 11, 2005
Messages:
108
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
The MCAT is very well designed, in my opinion. From late July until today, I have an idea, which may be debatable, but an idea which I think holds true.

A patient presents him/herself to the doctor. The doctor needs to have 2 important tools. The first is base knowledge. This is where the idea of testing Biological Sciences and Physical Sciences are. Able to understand these key concepts will show on applicant's test scores (his aptitude for base knowledge, i.e. clinical setting)

The patient will present his/her case to the doctor. This is where the verbal section comes in. Being able to hear the tone of the patient (I mean, the author, trying to making a point) and their arguments and facts and feelings will better able to use the base knowledge they have. Basically, the verbal determines, for me at least, how well the doctor, entrusted to his patients, can affectively and timely, listen to his patients.

So when you study for the MCAT, think global. A concept such as smooth muscle, study it like it depends on the life of a little girl or boy whom you will have to treat 3 in the morning when the parents bring them in. Reading the smooth muscles, the applicants, sympathetic nervous system is activated, the blood vessels in the eyes become dilated, his heart begins to beat faster, he must know smooth muscles well, the life of his dear friend (patient) depends on it.

Best regards. Stay focused.

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
6. ### AnEyeLikeMars Member 7+ Year Member

Joined:
Dec 2, 2005
Messages:
478
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
I think that verbal is considered important because it doesn't require background knowledge like PS and BS do. It's a purer measure of critical reading and thinking skills than the science sections are.

7. ### Nowaythisnameis 2+ Year Member

Joined:
Mar 2, 2007
Messages:
32
0
you do realize you are going to have to read a lot in med school... right? understanding the content that you read may help a little too

8. ### League54 7+ Year Member

Joined:
Jul 30, 2006
Messages:
350
0
Status:
Medical Student
Just do well on the whole **** thing

9. OP

### GoLAClippers Membership Revoked Removed

Joined:
Feb 26, 2007
Messages:
213
0
Yeap, the study also finds that Composite MCAT score relates to success in the USMLE step I.

because the conversion is slightly different for each set of questions

This sounds very fishy!

10. ### Dmizrahi Member 7+ Year Member

Joined:
Apr 29, 2006
Messages:
204
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
I'm not very familiar with the USMLE test, so i don't have too much authority on it. I do know this though...the USMLE step I is not only a portion of a whole test..but its another test. My point is adcoms want to look at the big picture when you are applying to med school and find ways to evaluate how you may perform as a doctor when presented with spontaneous issues. If anyone noticed the MCAT verbal section is the hardest section to prepare for because you can't memorize science methodology, equations and facts to solve problems. You really have to be sharp and think critically to answer the verbal section correctly. Also i wouldn't be suprised if the USMLE step I consists of a lot of science and medical protocols, procedures, methodolgy and jargon. Thats why it might correlate the best with MCAT bio scores...because those students are accustomed and used to memorizing science methodolgy and facts.

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
11. ### QofQuimica Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting.... Staff MemberAdministrator Physician PhD FacultyLifetime DonorVerified ExpertVerified Account 10+ Year Member

Joined:
Oct 12, 2004
Messages:
18,897
4,127
Status:
Fellow [Any Field], Attending Physician
I haven't taken Step 1 yet (next year ), but I would say that sheer memorization isn't going to be sufficient based upon the practice tests I've seen. You do need a good basic knowledge of the medical sciences, but reasoning skills are still very important. A lot of the questions seem to be clinical vignettes where you are asked to do a two step process. For example, they'll describe a patient with X or Y symptoms and signs, and you figure out what is wrong with the patient. But the question will ask you what drug you should give them, not what the diagnosis is.

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
12. ### docolive DOColive 5+ Year Member

Joined:
Jun 23, 2005
Messages:
832
1
Status:
Medical Student
I still find that this form of reasoning is a lot more straightforward relative to a dense, boring, 3 paragraph research finding on mouse x and how mouse x has this mutation but is still biologically able to do y. However, it was found that mouse z has the same mutation and is female, when most mice with the above mutation are male. furthemore, blah blah blah and more blah.

Now, I find that some, I repeat some biol. passages are downright designed to make you lose time and make it difficult to just sift through the information.
Study hard in medical school=good score on USMLE...not that anyone would survive medical school without studying hard. Note the European students (where english is not their native language) who score very well--I highly doubt they were obsessing over the correlation of MCAT to USMLE scores--when many of them did not even take it to get into medical school (not talking about the MSAT in the UK or Australia).

13. ### Dmizrahi Member 7+ Year Member

Joined:
Apr 29, 2006
Messages:
204
0
Status:
Pre-Medical
Ok i see...that makes sense...but i still think that verbal and BS/PS come from two different realms and are testing two different qualities

Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...

We’ve been on the Internet for over 20 years doing just one thing: providing career information for free or at cost. We do this because we believe that the health education process is too expensive and too competitive.

We believe that all students deserve the same access to high quality information. We believe that providing high quality career advice and information ensures that everyone, regardless of income or privilege, has a chance to achieve their dream of being a doctor.