Cerberus

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How do stimulants such as caffeine in red bull etc affect test taking ability? I have posted before that I am a slow mutha when it comes to the MCAT and it scares the bejeesus out of me. I really dont know how the hell I am going to be able to get a good score if I cant finish in time:( (example on the PS section of 7 i had missed a total of 4 question until the last 15 when I started to run out of time and missed almost all of them :mad: :mad: :mad: ). I think i mat experiment with red bulls etc tommorrow to see if it speeds me up at all.
 
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Blade28

Cerberus said:
How do stimulants such as caffeine in red bull etc affect test taking ability? I have posted before that I am a slow mutha when it comes to the MCAT and it scares the bejeesus out of me. I really dont know how the hell I am going to be able to get a good score if I cant finish in time:( (example on the PS section of 7 i had missed a total of 4 question until the last 15 when I started to run out of time and missed almost all of them :mad: :mad: :mad: ). I think i mat experiment with red bulls etc tommorrow to see if it speeds me up at all.
If you're going to be relying on a huge dose of caffeine for the first time during a test...I'd be scared. Only a week to go, do you want to try something completely new like that?
 

Cerberus

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Blade28 said:
If you're going to be relying on a huge dose of caffeine for the first time during a test...I'd be scared. Only a week to go, do you want to try something completely new like that?
well, i will try red bull tommorrow. I really just dont know what else to do. My speed on these tests is the difference between a 35 and a 29 :scared:
 
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Cerberus said:
How do stimulants such as caffeine in red bull etc affect test taking ability? I have posted before that I am a slow mutha when it comes to the MCAT and it scares the bejeesus out of me. I really dont know how the hell I am going to be able to get a good score if I cant finish in time:( (example on the PS section of 7 i had missed a total of 4 question until the last 15 when I started to run out of time and missed almost all of them :mad: :mad: :mad: ). I think i mat experiment with red bulls etc tommorrow to see if it speeds me up at all.

Generally, caffeine is only really good for rote memorization speed-type exams. (like multiplication tables). As long as you are awake and alert, I don't think you will need caffeine. Plus, having to piss like a race horse half way through a section could really suck.
 

irie

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Red Bull makes my heart feel weird for about 2 days after I drink it.

It really gets me amped up but I'd be afraid of crashing during verbal if I took it before the test though. I think you'll have enough anxiety and focus to get through it w/out a stimulant. I can't imagine that a cup of coffee would ruin someone's score but why risk it.
 

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irie said:
Red Bull makes my heart feel weird for about 2 days after I drink it.

It really gets me amped up but I'd be afraid of crashing during verbal if I took it before the test though. I think you'll have enough anxiety and focus to get through it w/out a stimulant. I can't imagine that a cup of coffee would ruin someone's score but why risk it.


Just bring 4 cans of red bull so you have one can for each break...Oh MAKE SURE you bring a couple extra cans too...just incase you feel it wearing off... :laugh: They allowed up to have drinks/water bottle during the exam last year (no food though - for obvious resons). Risk? What risk?...RED BULL - guaranteed to raise you 2 extra points :thumbup:
 

evines

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Keep this in mind also . . .I had trouble focusing on practice MCATs, but when the real thing came around, my brain was all business. I was finished with each section at least 5 minutes faster compared to the practice tests.
 

Cerberus

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evines said:
Keep this in mind also . . .I had trouble focusing on practice MCATs, but when the real thing came around, my brain was all business. I was finished with each section at least 5 minutes faster compared to the practice tests.
5 minutes would be excellant. Was this true of the aamc exams or exams from a test company?
 

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Cerberus said:
5 minutes would be excellant. Was this true of the aamc exams or exams from a test company?
I took Kaplan and AAMC practice tests, and usually finished with seconds to spare, at most. Sometimes I would luck out and have a few minutes to look over the section, but that was about it.
On the real thing, however, I had almost 10 minutes to look over PS and BS, and had about 5 minutes to look over VR.
Of course you might not have the same experience, but I know the added pressure made me focus more.
 

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Cerberus said:
How do stimulants such as caffeine in red bull etc affect test taking ability? I have posted before that I am a slow mutha when it comes to the MCAT and it scares the bejeesus out of me. I really dont know how the hell I am going to be able to get a good score if I cant finish in time:( (example on the PS section of 7 i had missed a total of 4 question until the last 15 when I started to run out of time and missed almost all of them :mad: :mad: :mad: ). I think i mat experiment with red bulls etc tommorrow to see if it speeds me up at all.
With the adrenaline of the real thing you may be faster than ever... further stimulant use might make your thoughts race and make it harder for you to focus. Keep your normal routine and practice watching the clock over the next week, as in check your time remaining every ten questions. Rather than changing your routine before a big test, always a bad idea in my experience.

Good luck!
 

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redbull probably wont have any noticeable effect on your test

the first time i took the mcats i took adderall (rx) and it was a really bad idea

just like this situation, it was the week before the test and i needed a timing boost so i figured i would give it a try on a practice tests...

I found myself unable to understand the questions, and unable to analyze deeply, and i kind of became obsessed with a few questions and wasted a ton of time.. it was a nightmare....I lost all of my composure and time management

BUT i didnt feel nervous at all due to the high, which i definitely felt when i retook it.. and did better...
 
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Eraserhead

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Generally, caffeine is only really good for rote memorization speed-type exams. (like multiplication tables). As long as you are awake and alert, I don't think you will need caffeine. Plus, having to piss like a race horse half way through a section could really suck.
I concur. Stimulants are good for flipping through flashcards and memorizing stuff. For the MCAT, have something in the morning to wake you up but not too much caffeine if its not what you normally do.
 

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dude, bad idea.....

you'll spend so much time shaking and steadying your pen, the time spent will offset the time you saved by being faster
 

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Red bull doesn't really work that well for me. It makes it harder for me to fall asleep but doesn't really make me more alert.
 

irie

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pmpndaflip said:
Just bring 4 cans of red bull so you have one can for each break...Oh MAKE SURE you bring a couple extra cans too...just incase you feel it wearing off... :laugh: They allowed up to have drinks/water bottle during the exam last year (no food though - for obvious resons). Risk? What risk?...RED BULL - guaranteed to raise you 2 extra points :thumbup:
Then you'll need to bring another container so that you'll be able to pee while taking the test! haha...gross.

Side note: Some stores sell a generic brand of red bull called "mad crock". It tastes the same and costs .99/can.
 
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Blade28

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I concur. Stimulants are good for flipping through flashcards and memorizing stuff. For the MCAT, have something in the morning to wake you up but not too much caffeine if its not what you normally do.
Yup, exactly.
 

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ventulus18 said:
ive gone 6 redbull/vodka deep before.....thats the real deal, you can't even think about standing still
Oh I must say that my dart game vastly improves after many redbull and vodka drinks. Good stuff there.
 

Cerberus

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Thanks, I guess I may just go with what i've been doing. God, I dont want to retake this bitch over a few minutes :mad:
 

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2 words:
crystal methamphetamine
--Always makes those cats on COPS seem pretty awake.
--At least if you bomb the exam, you won't care.
--But maybe they don't allow it at the test site?
 
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Blade28

liverotcod said:
2 words:
crystal methamphetamine
--Always makes those cats on COPS seem pretty awake.
--At least if you bomb the exam, you won't care.
--But maybe they don't allow it at the test site?
:laugh:

Good thing they don't do urine drug screens before the exam!
 
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Cerberus said:
Thanks, I guess I may just go with what i've been doing. God, I dont want to retake this bitch over a few minutes :mad:
Just relax and forget about it. By now it's to late to improve on timing and stuff anyway. Just relax this week before the test and get a good night sleep on Friday night.
 

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Sorry this is sort of random but how do you have 7000+ posts if you haven't even taken the MCATs?
 

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7000 posts is about 10 posts a day for 2 years straight. I think thats not entirely surprising from Cerb :)
 

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liverotcod said:
2 words:
crystal methamphetamine
--Always makes those cats on COPS seem pretty awake.
--At least if you bomb the exam, you won't care.
--But maybe they don't allow it at the test site?


honestly cerb, dont risk it. the majority of the test requires you to analyze the passages, which wont require a lot of rote recall anyway, and certainly wont be helped if youre trying to rush through. honestly youre better off getting 90% of the questions you finish right and 100% of the questions you dont to wrong (which would only be like 8% of the exam, realistically anyway) than 70% of all questions right.
 

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To give a serious answer (for once), my advice would be not to change anything at this point. Your scores (from the "post your practice scores" thread) are pretty good, even with the time issues. I had trouble finishing with the Kaplan tests, but not the AAMC tests.

I think that time management strategy is one of the few things a good test prep program can actually teach. Plus, the more practice, the better. Try to squeeze in more practice tests this week and you should be fine.

Don't change your normal caffeine intake on the 17th.
 

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Cerberus said:
How do stimulants such as caffeine in red bull etc affect test taking ability? I have posted before that I am a slow mutha when it comes to the MCAT and it scares the bejeesus out of me. I really dont know how the hell I am going to be able to get a good score if I cant finish in time:( (example on the PS section of 7 i had missed a total of 4 question until the last 15 when I started to run out of time and missed almost all of them :mad: :mad: :mad: ). I think i mat experiment with red bulls etc tommorrow to see if it speeds me up at all.
Ripped Fuel is not banned til tues. HUGE infusions of Ma Huang have been shown to dramatically increase test taking abilities.

120 mg ephedrine at once, you will be a raging machine,dude! :thumbup:

HOLMES
 

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JohnHolmes said:
Ripped Fuel is not banned til tues. HUGE infusions of Ma Huang have been shown to dramatically increase test taking abilities.

120 mg ephedrine at once, you will be a raging machine,dude! :thumbup:

HOLMES
120? My heart would stop beating, claw it's way out of my chest, seperating my ribs like cheap blinds, then slap me in the face and walk away.
 
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Blade28

You haven't seen that other thread? The number of posts you have on SDN dramatically increases your chance of med school acceptance. :)
 

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evines said:
Keep this in mind also . . .I had trouble focusing on practice MCATs, but when the real thing came around, my brain was all business. I was finished with each section at least 5 minutes faster compared to the practice tests.
yeah...its like you just somehow feel more focused cause its the real test and its a very important part of your application. i always get excited/butterflies in the stomach-type feeling before major tests like this...kinda pumps me up.

for the record i drank 2 red bulls today to help me drive down from berkeley to la (11pm to 5am). but i have noticed red bull ALWAYS make my stomach feel odd.
 

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Cerberus said:
woah! I drank a redbull before taking 7's BS section and finished 10 minutes early... :eek: :eek:
Just scored it at a 12, so i dont guess it significantly affected my concentration. w00t
 

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I think No-Doz helped me, on the verbal section especially. Make sure you drain you bladder before each section though!! ;)
 

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evines said:
I took Kaplan and AAMC practice tests, and usually finished with seconds to spare, at most. Sometimes I would luck out and have a few minutes to look over the section, but that was about it.
On the real thing, however, I had almost 10 minutes to look over PS and BS, and had about 5 minutes to look over VR.
Of course you might not have the same experience, but I know the added pressure made me focus more.
Heh, I thought that the AAMC tests too longer in the VR section than Kaplan's. But the PS and the BS were much less time consuming than Kaplan's. Kaplan put in way too much computation-heavy problems in their exams.
 

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Stimulants are nice because they make it easier for you to do repetitive, easy tasks...but make it more difficult to do hard ones that require concentration. So you have to decide: is the MCAT stupid, annoying, and too #@[email protected]#ing long - or evil, tricky, and too @#%#$ing long? :D
 

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Everyone just has to know what works for them. I always ingest a great deal of coffee, so I did on the MCAT and I did fine. In addition to caffeine, I also recommend DMAE and a B vitamin, and of course, lots of water--but make sure that no matter what you do, you use the restroom every time you get a chance!!! (Seriously!)

If you aren't accustomed to caffeine-buzzing your way through a test, don't start now, but it may no be a bad idea to drink some coffee if you feel yourself nodding off halfway through (it's a long day!)

Good luck. You'll do fine. :)
 

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Nutmeg said:
Everyone just has to know what works for them. I always ingest a great deal of coffee, so I did on the MCAT and I did fine. In addition to caffeine, I also recommend DMAE and a B vitamin, and of course, lots of water--but make sure that no matter what you do, you use the restroom every time you get a chance!!! (Seriously!)

If you aren't accustomed to caffeine-buzzing your way through a test, don't start now, but it may no be a bad idea to drink some coffee if you feel yourself nodding off halfway through (it's a long day!)

Good luck. You'll do fine. :)
Thanks nutmeg, I generally drink lots of caffeine (with no noticable effect) so I imagine the red bull just bumps me up slightly higher than I am used to being.

As for DMAE and Vit B, do they have immediate effects or do you need to take them in advance (like a week or longer)?
 

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Cerberus said:
Thanks nutmeg, I generally drink lots of caffeine (with no noticable effect) so I imagine the red bull just bumps me up slightly higher than I am used to being.

As for DMAE and Vit B, do they have immediate effects or do you need to take them in advance (like a week or longer)?
I generally take DMAE in advance (building block for acetylcholine, which I use due to the suggested effect of helping scatterbrains like me focus better), but the B vitamin is highly water soluble, so that's something to take the morning before. A word of caution is that B vitamins have a diuretic quality, as does caffeine. I'd say DMAE the day or night before the test, and a b vitamin in the morning, early enough to piss the bulk of it out of your system before you start taking the actual test.
 
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