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Studying for MCAT while in Post-Bacc Program

Discussion in 'MCAT: Medical College Admissions Test' started by LilyMD, Mar 29, 2004.

  1. LilyMD

    LilyMD Senior Member
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    I will be starting a full-time intensive post-bacc this May. It is not a record enhancement/enrichment program; I will be taking the science prereq. for the first time. One thing, I have been thinking about is how logistically to handle the MCAT preparation while taking the intensive courseload. I will be aiming at taking the MCAT in April 2005. The program aims to cover the material you need to know and MCAT-ready in that sense by the April date. I know that the program offers the optional MCAT review but I believe it is taught by a former post-bacc who did exceptionally well on the MCAT themselves. I've heard from some that the whole post-bacc year in essence is preparation for the MCAT - and you don't have really spend too much time reviewing since you learned it so recently and/or presently. However, I've also heard from someone that taking the full-courseload did detract from their MCAT study-time and that he didn't have enough time to absorb it all. So I'm not sure how to handle it...it's sort of hard to review material you don't know...so I'm a bit tied up in terms of scheduling.

    How did you deal with preparing for the MCAT while doing the full-time/intensive post-bacc? Is there anything you did during the course terms in addition to the course work to prep. for the MCAT? For example, I was thinking that simultaneously and after completing each course, I might supplement the class material with an MCAT prep. material for that particular course - such as EK Biology, let's say. Does this sound feasible, helpful, or wasteful and likely to cause confusion? It's really hard to study something you haven't covered yet, but I also don't want to be stuck cramming at the end (which is my natural tendency, but usually doesn't get stellar results). As a non-traditional student, I really don't have the luxury of any weakness in my applications - either through the MCAT or have my coursework suffer. What did you do? Did you or your post-bacc colleagues come up with a technique/strategy that you feel paid off well? Thanks again for your advice. It is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. scalper

    scalper Resident Physician

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    Hi Lilly,

    Ditto. I am in the same boat. Just started doing my prereqs this semester. Have a BS and MS already in non-sciences. 39 years old. Also, curious about how others in our situation have faired.
    I will be sitting for the April 2005 MCAT as well and started studying the Exam Crackers MCAT Complete.
     
  3. LilyMD

    LilyMD Senior Member
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    So, Scalper, you're starting to study now...even though you haven't completed/covered the material? Does anyone who's been thru this process have any comments?
     
  4. medique

    medique Junior Member

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    I don't think it's possible to take the prereqs and take the MCAT in one year and do well. I'm saying this not from experience but from some time trying to plan it all out. Seems to me it'll take a couple years at least. Besides, I'm sure you want to show a kind of committment over a length of time...
     
  5. LilyMD

    LilyMD Senior Member
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    I have to disagree that it's not possible. Have you heard of programs like Bryn Mawr, Goucher, John Hopkins? These are programs where student take the prereq. and the MCAT shortly thereafter and ultimately boast a success rate of 95-100% in terms of medical school acceptances. Difficult? For sure. But impossible? I don't think so considering the countless people who have done it.

    I think showing commitment over time is important. But I'm a non-traditional premed who has figured it out later in life...when I was in undergrad and high school, I was preparing to be a lawyer. Tacking on an extra year to my prereq. is not going to say much compared to the kids who knew they wanted to be doctors when they were 14. Do you think it's that impressive to say I've watned to be a doctor for 2.5 years now as opposed to saying 1.5 years? In either event, it's actually a pretty short time compared to the traditional premed. The medical school/training process is long enough - I don't particularly want to stretch out the premed period in hopes that the adcom will be impressed. I really want to get into medical school, sooner rather than later. If I'm having problems with classes and/or bombing the MCAT practice exams, then I'll stretch it out accordingly, but I wouldn't plan it that way bc I really don't think that would impress the adcoms. I think the ability to take on a full-load of sciences will impress them more and show committment. I think taking the MCAT with nothing else going on or taking 1-2 classes at the same time would have the opposite effect.
     

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