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Strategy for the final weeks...advice

Discussion in 'MCAT Discussions' started by xylem29, Jul 26, 2006.

  1. xylem29

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    Okay, so as you all know there are about 3 weeks left - I have already gone thru all the material once - and if any of you used TPR books, you'll know that going through it all once doesn't equate to learning it well since there was so much info. Now, I managed to somehow go over the material in gen chem again (thus, twice thru) and going over the workbook questions. There's no way I can get all my material done again twice w/out neglecting verbal - which i've ignored throughout July. I'm noticing that the workbooks jogs the concepts again anyway, so my question is - should I just spend time going over the workbook questions as my "2nd review" for physics and bio? Because if I read the physics chapter again while doing all the workbook questions, I won't get anytime for biology or orgo. I haven't looked at Biology since July 14 when i finished it. so i def need to refresh.

    I'm thinking I should just barrel through the workbook and learn my stuff that way, and barrel through verbal passages too. And then have the aamc's to learn from as well and that's about it. Sound good? I need some advice on efficiency here folks!
     
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  3. WilliamsF1

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    I'm on track to do an AAMC exam every 3 days from now on. I'll study a little in between. Not much, though, since I have the Ek stuff memorized. I've been through the EK books 3 times. PS is definitely where I'm most confident. The EK Bio book hasn't really helped me in BS, I really need to bring this up. VR, sigh :(
     
  4. RAD11

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    Wow you have the EK memorized?!! When did you start studying?

    What I've been doing is after I take a FL, I review it then go to the review books for the topics that I still feel weak on. I acutally wanted to do another read through the books but I feel that it may not be the best use of what little time is left.
     
  5. WilliamsF1

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    I read all the books once for just what it was about mid to late June I think. I put off studying til July 3rd. Finished memorizing/learning everything last Friday. My biggest problem on the MCAT right now are the passages with answers that are based on info they give you, little background knowledge needed. PS doesn't really have that much stuff like this so I do a little better imo.
     
  6. xylem29

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    Yes, that's correct - we will def need to keep our heads on right and keep calm on the big day in order to read and comprehend properly. I hate how we have to time ourselves!
     
  7. AWhitehair

    AWhitehair EM PA-C. MD wannabe

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    Me too!
     
  8. AWhitehair

    AWhitehair EM PA-C. MD wannabe

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    This is what I was planning on doing as well. I have not finished all of EK material yet though. :(
     
  9. WilliamsF1

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    You haven't finished EK and you're taking AAMC exams? That's pretty good :thumbup: That most likely means your scores will go up once you learn the material. Since I've already learned the material, I don't think I can move up much more by reviewing the stuff again. All I need to work on now is timing and seeing any patterns the AAMC does in wording answer choices for VR. I just checked over 3R PS answers and I made some really dumb mistakes like not reading the entire question. I missed ~5-6 questions that way. I would've had a 73/77!
     
  10. sentrosi

    sentrosi INTARWEB USER

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    All I can say is the last few days before the test, try not to study much. Relax and get lots of sleep. Having a clear head during the test is going to be much more important than cramming in a few extra facts.
     
  11. geno2568

    geno2568 Senior Member

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    here are some tipes for yu guys..

    1) starting 2 weeks before the big day, start waking up at 7 every morning

    2) don't leave any solo studying for the last week...

    3)....but do practice tests...

    4)....and do group reviews. You know, sit around with a friend or 2, test each other with index cards, laugh about how much you hate the mcat..nothing too stressful

    5) with verbal studying, you are not gonna increase your ability to answer the questions, but u will get better at pacing yourself

    6) with bio, theres a lot more gen/dev stuff now then there was a few years ago...and the review books dont address this yet

    7) in the final week, you'r gonna feel like ****. You'll have trouble sleeping, you definetly wont be able to concentrate on other classes, and any studying that you will attempt to do will result in just sitting there with the book in front of you (which goes back to tip #2). but don't worry about it. You'll do fine.


    Good luck!!!! :luck: :luck:
     
  12. Darlaa

    Darlaa Paper Bag Princess

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    That's basically my plan. I've taken notes on *most* readings, plus my class notes. These are significantly shorter than the actual text. So I'll read those, then do the appropriate workbook questions (which I also have a ton to do). I figure I'll alternate b/w note reading/workbook and doing aamc exams.


    Geno-thanks for your tips too! There's something very reassuring about knowing that others have felt nauseas b/f having to write this thing!
     
  13. Iceageheatwave

    Iceageheatwave RiniMonster

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    Ive read through the PR books a few times over did problems and now im comparing my bio skills with examkrackers. As stupid as it sounds, looking over notecards in the sciences helps me memorize the information better...ive neglected verbal for about a month so it will be an EK 101 verbal test every four days until test day.
     
  14. stiffany

    stiffany Hurry up and wait...

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    Yea, thanks for the advice Geno. I haven't felt nervous all summer and now that we're getting closer to the exam (and I'm realizing I really have to take the real version of the exam where others will see my score!) I'm starting to freak out a bit...Helps to know others go through the same thing!
     
  15. cerulean

    cerulean Member

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    Ergh, I'm starting to go into full-out panic mode at this point. :scared:

    I was working ~60+ hrs per week + PR class (boo to 8am-11pm days) for the past 2 months and haven't covered much of the material for even the first time (other than what's been covered in PR lecture & what I remember from my college courses). Bad decisions on my part. Now I'm quite scared that it's too little, too late.

    This week was the first week I had to really study (vs. skimming) and I'm trying to figure out what I should do. In terms of studying, I'm debating whether I should attempt to cover all the material in-depth and risk not covering it all vs. skimming it all at least once and hoping some of it will sink in so I might subconsciously make correct guesses. I've taken 3 PR exams (4911, 4921, 4931) and am planning to take AAMC 3R, 5R, 6R, 7R, 8R (2 per week) and saving 9R for the week of the MCAT. At the same time, I'm debating if it's worth it to take any more exams before I actually cover all the material.

    In terms of the practice MCATs, my pacing is odd. I can't figure out what's more frustrating: running out of time knowing that I could get more questions right with more time (Physical Science) or finishing early knowing that I've missed questions that no amount of extra time will help me on since I don't know the info / don't know how to get the right answer (Bio and to some extent, Verbal). What's even more odd is that my writing score has decreased dramatically from my 1st diag (got a Q on PR 4911, my first experience with the writing section and I was running on < 6 hrs of sleep and thought my essays sucked; the next 2 exams, I thought I was doing better and got a M & N).

    All in all, I have a massive amount of studying to do. And I probably shouldn't be on SDN...except my mind is fried for the day ( 7hrs for PR 4931 + PR bio lecture + going through the 4931 solutions) so studying wouldn't be too useful anyway.

    My apologies for the long post (needed some way to express frustrations). I envy where most of you seem to be at (refining technique vs. picking up tons of new info) but you've all put in the time (which I definitely haven't, yet). If anyone has any suggestions for the best way I should use my remaining time, please please share!
     
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  17. xylem29

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    You could try to just do a AAMC and see what it is exactly that you need to know - perhaps the TPR classes were enough. Once you figure out that you're actually not too far off, you should try and cover everything that you haven't yet covered, forget abuot the stuff you already know well - go to the stuff you didn't learn at all. You can still do it.

    Look thru the TPR books and whenever the guy says "You need to know this" or "memorize this" or "the MCAT loves to ask this" - learn all that stuff for sure. Take it slow, don't panic - hopefully you will not still have to give 60+ work weeks till the 19th b/c that's asking for too much! For BS, I've read that it's going towards more reading comp from passages, so if you have to choose, give more study time to PS.
     
  18. ih8mcat

    ih8mcat Dynomite!

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    what were your diag scores for 4911 and 4921?
     
  19. cerulean

    cerulean Member

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    4911: BS 9 / PS 8 / V 10

    4921: BS 7 / PS 9 / V 11

    4931: BS 9 / PS 10 / V 11 (got the scores today, feeling reassured that I should at least still take it on the 19th)

    With Bio, it's utterly hit or miss based on what passages I get and if I covered the material or not. I missed every question in one organic passage on 4921 & can't even comprehend the solutions for those questions since I haven't covered that stuff (yepp, didn't take Organic II or Physiology yet and I'm feeling the repercussions now). I'm planning to keep on cramming (reading through Examkrakers, PR is too dense). I'm hoping for the best regarding what topics are covered on the 19th. A couple passages solely about organic chem or physiology could deal a huge blow to my bio score, especially if there's no info worth gleaning from the passage to help w/ the questions.
     
  20. ih8mcat

    ih8mcat Dynomite!

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    You'll do fine on the MCAT if your scoring that high on the TPR diags which are rigged, and if you take 4911 cold w/o study then that's pretty good. TPR usually boasts that people who do their classes usually gain a 10 pt increase from their first TPR diag. Don't panic! you're doing great, I'm sure you'll surpass 30 easily once you start doing AAMC diags.
     

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