Gandyy

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So Im on the 4 month study plan and started about 2 weeks ago.. I usually miss a ton of questions, and dont know whats going on.

I think I know how to review, and I feel like I know the content, but then when I do the questions is awful. What do I do? Often times the explanations arent enough to explain whats going on especially TBR bio.

I have no idea where to go from here...


How do I learn from the passages when I'm told that I should time myself for 6-7 minutes from Sn2's guide? Whats more, even when I dont time myself, even super tough passages I will just sit there trying to figure it out but I cant.
 
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olefinsfordays

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TBR is the best way to go if you need to learn / content review. Bio is way too indepth but their passages are great. Take comfort in knowing their passages are much harder than the AAMC ones (IMO). I think 8:30 is like the actual time you can have without going back, but 6-7 is there so that you can mark questions and then head back at the end (as you now have extra time) to go over and check your marked answers. Also confidence and positivity are huge. TBR is a beast of work. It may be better to split lessons into two days or take a 30 minute break. Realize that TBR is preparing you for every possible outcome, and you will be so glad when you find that obscure passage on the real MCAT where everyone else is like "what...." and you will be like "oh yeah! I remember that."
 
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In my opinion, TBR assumes that you know the basics of each chapter so it glances over the basics pretty quickly. The main focus of each chapter is for you to know the small nuances of each concept, so that you understand it on a fundamental level and gives you tricky questions to see if you REALLY understand it inside and out. So, if you're having difficulty, I would recommend trying to fill in any gaps in knowledge you have. Even a small gap could cost you a more difficult bigger concept.
 
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justadream

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IMO, timing is overrated for TBR. I didn't time. Just focus on getting the questions right (which is hard enough).

On the AAMC FLs, where everything is more straightforward, you'll probably find yourself with lots of time. I don't even rush on PS/BS and I usually finish with 15 mins extra time. On TBR, I probably spent above 6-7 minutes/passage in many passages.
 
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I definitely agree with the above poster about timing in TBR, I never timed myself when using TBR and only focused on getting the questions and understanding the concept. When doing AAMC FLs, I would always have extra time leftover, same goes to the two MCATs I have written, and I scored alright in the science sections. If it really bothers you, perhaps try TPR for biology which helped me a lot too, especially the TPR hyperlearning science workbook. I would definitely stick with TBR for the physical sciences, it can be frustrating but you will slowly get used to it after many practice questions.
 

Gandyy

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In my opinion, TBR assumes that you know the basics of each chapter so it glances over the basics pretty quickly. The main focus of each chapter is for you to know the small nuances of each concept, so that you understand it on a fundamental level and gives you tricky questions to see if you REALLY understand it inside and out. So, if you're having difficulty, I would recommend trying to fill in any gaps in knowledge you have. Even a small gap could cost you a more difficult bigger concept.

I was hoping though, that I would be able to fill any gaps by just reading TBR chapters. So are you saying I should use different books for content? As of right now I do understand the chapters... its just those questions.

IMO, timing is overrated for TBR. I didn't time. Just focus on getting the questions right (which is hard enough).


On the AAMC FLs, where everything is more straightforward, you'll probably find yourself with lots of time. I don't even rush on PS/BS and I usually finish with 15 mins extra time. On TBR, I probably spent above 6-7 minutes/passage in many passages.



Hmm i'll try that

I definitely agree with the above poster about timing in TBR, I never timed myself when using TBR and only focused on getting the questions and understanding the concept. When doing AAMC FLs, I would always have extra time leftover, same goes to the two MCATs I have written, and I scored alright in the science sections. If it really bothers you, perhaps try TPR for biology which helped me a lot too, especially the TPR hyperlearning science workbook. I would definitely stick with TBR for the physical sciences, it can be frustrating but you will slowly get used to it after many practice questions.


Yea I use EK for bio.. hmm some passages just take me so long though
 

Gandyy

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TBR is the best way to go if you need to learn / content review. Bio is way too indepth but their passages are great. Take comfort in knowing their passages are much harder than the AAMC ones (IMO). I think 8:30 is like the actual time you can have without going back, but 6-7 is there so that you can mark questions and then head back at the end (as you now have extra time) to go over and check your marked answers. Also confidence and positivity are huge. TBR is a beast of work. It may be better to split lessons into two days or take a 30 minute break. Realize that TBR is preparing you for every possible outcome, and you will be so glad when you find that obscure passage on the real MCAT where everyone else is like "what...." and you will be like "oh yeah! I remember that."

Is it possible timing myself right now is counterproductive?
 

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There are multiple threads about TBR in here.. TBR is meant to be superhard and make you improve. But they are not the end of all means! That's why you supplement EK in because they are concise and more focused. And, at the end, only the full-length AAMC tests can tell you really where you are at.
 

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I agree wholeheartedly with @olefinsfordays
I also agree with @valkener that using multiple resources is beneficial, but I'd recommend TPR science workbook over EK 1001 mostly because I find some of EK's explanations unsatisfying and the questions are all just discretes.

Good luck!
 
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olefinsfordays

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Is it possible timing myself right now is counterproductive?

Yes and no. If the timing aspect is stressing you out, at first don't time yourself and just go for content review. Then bring in an 8:30 time limit, then 8:00, then 7:30 etc and work your way down to where you feel comfortable. Sometimes you'll finish a passage in 6 and sometimes you'll finish in 8. The best thing to do is relax, calm yourself, and tell yourself that you are capable of doing it. Positive self-talk goes a long way.
 
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Yea I use EK for bio.. hmm some passages just take me so long though

Hm, is it reading the passages that are bothering you and taking you longer or is it the questions & content? How about you keep practicing untimed and timed passages in one day such as trying 2 untimed passages and 1 timed passage.
This will help you see what you are doing wrong during the timed passage and compare it to when you were working untimed. When I first started, I had a timed problem to when doing these passages but I kept doing them slowly until I got them and finally moved on to timed passage within a month of my test.
 

Gauss44

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So Im on the 4 month study plan and started about 2 weeks ago.. I usually miss a ton of questions, and dont know whats going on.

I think I know how to review, and I feel like I know the content, but then when I do the questions is awful. What do I do? Often times the explanations arent enough to explain whats going on especially TBR bio.

I have no idea where to go from here...


How do I learn from the passages when I'm told that I should time myself for 6-7 minutes from Sn2's guide? Whats more, even when I dont time myself, even super tough passages I will just sit there trying to figure it out but I cant.

Oh, come on. The answers without explanations are so obvious that if you just bothered to reread it, everything would make sense.

(I'm joking.)

In all seriousness, TBR passages are designed to teach rather than to estimate your score. If you get every single question wrong, don't sweat it. Almost everyone does sometimes. It's pretty common for a student to start out missing 4-6 out of 7 questions on those, but also learn A LOT! Just don't let that (missing lots of questions) get you down. Your job is to LEARN.

When TBR explanations fall short, try googling it, try youtube, post questions on SDN*, Physics Forum (which actually has Chemistry forums, Biology Forums, etc. despite it's name), and keep a list of problematic questions to save for a tutor if you can afford one (or a study group if you can find one). Here's some resources: http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/free-stuff/1247592/ There are some great youtubes at the bottom of the OP on that page.

Good luck!

*Put "TBR" in the title if you post questions on SDN. There's a very helpful Berkeley Review Tech floating around here who might help out.
 
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Gandyy

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Yes and no. If the timing aspect is stressing you out, at first don't time yourself and just go for content review. Then bring in an 8:30 time limit, then 8:00, then 7:30 etc and work your way down to where you feel comfortable. Sometimes you'll finish a passage in 6 and sometimes you'll finish in 8. The best thing to do is relax, calm yourself, and tell yourself that you are capable of doing it. Positive self-talk goes a long way.

Like I said... for example I'm doing Metabolic components or chapter 7 right now... and these passages are insane. I just missed 4 out of 6 on 2 different passages because I have no idea whats going on even if I take all the time in the world, and I've read the corresponding EK chapters.

Hm, is it reading the passages that are bothering you and taking you longer or is it the questions & content? How about you keep practicing untimed and timed passages in one day such as trying 2 untimed passages and 1 timed passage.
This will help you see what you are doing wrong during the timed passage and compare it to when you were working untimed. When I first started, I had a timed problem to when doing these passages but I kept doing them slowly until I got them and finally moved on to timed passage within a month of my test.


It depends... i dont do fantastic on any of the passages in the books, but TBR bio just kills me. its awful. like i said i'll just sit there trying to figure stuff out and still not get it right. Its so demoralizing

Oh, come on. The answers without explanations are so obvious that if you just bothered to reread it, everything would make sense.

(I'm joking.)

In all seriousness, TBR passages are designed to teach rather than to estimate your score. If you get every single question wrong, don't sweat it. Almost everyone does sometimes. It's pretty common for a student to start out missing 4-6 out of 7 questions on those, but also learn A LOT! Just don't let that (missing lots of questions) get you down. Your job is to LEARN.

When TBR explanations fall short, try googling it, try youtube, post questions on SDN*, Physics Forum (which actually has Chemistry forums, Biology Forums, etc. despite it's name), and keep a list of problematic questions to save for a tutor if you can afford one (or a study group if you can find one). Here's some resources: http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/free-stuff/1247592/ There are some great youtubes at the bottom of the OP on that page.

Good luck!

*Put "TBR" in the title if you post questions on SDN. There's a very helpful Berkeley Review Tech floating around here who might help out.


Alright well i;lll try it.
 

olefinsfordays

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Like I said... for example I'm doing Metabolic components or chapter 7 right now... and these passages are insane. I just missed 4 out of 6 on 2 different passages because I have no idea whats going on even if I take all the time in the world, and I've read the corresponding EK chapters.

For Bio review I used Examkrackers Bio, passages I did TBR (as according to the SN2 MCAT guide.) Taking Biochem 2 was really helpful with metabolic pathways and their components. There were no biology related AAMC passages / TBR pass that I felt I couldn't solve using learned information EK biology, TBR Orgo, and the passage information itself.
 
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I did TBR and 1/3 passages for content review. I'm going through all the TPRH SWB discretes now to drill the topics down. My plan is to finish the whole TPRH SWB book before my November test. I may or may not finish rest of the TBR passages. Honestly, just pick a resource you're comfortable with and PRACTICE the hell out of it. TBR isn't for everyone. If it becomes too daunting, i'm pretty sure you'll be fine switching to TPR.
If you're going to continue with TBR, forget timing the passages. Use the passages as a learning resource. Time yourself when you do the 2/3 passages or the actual AAMC practice tests.
 

billy2908

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TBR imo has great redo value. If you finish all material for TBR it's okay to go back and redo the missed ones you got. But scores on TBR vs AAMC are very different so don't get discourage.
 

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You don't need to time. Just focus on getting the questions right. If you can get your hands on the TPRHL Science Workbook, that's a GREAT way to get timed practice on passages.
 

YourMD

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I did TBR and 1/3 passages for content review. I'm going through all the TPRH SWB discretes now to drill the topics down. My plan is to finish the whole TPRH SWB book before my November test. I may or may not finish rest of the TBR passages. Honestly, just pick a resource you're comfortable with and PRACTICE the hell out of it. TBR isn't for everyone. If it becomes too daunting, i'm pretty sure you'll be fine switching to TPR.
If you're going to continue with TBR, forget timing the passages. Use the passages as a learning resource. Time yourself when you do the 2/3 passages or the actual AAMC practice tests.

what exactly do you mean by 1/3 passages and 2/3 passages thank you!
 

soccerfeet

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I took the MCAT once and am retaking it and using TBR this time. I think it is way harder than AAMC stuff and I am hoping that the questions on TBR are the hardest they could be so that I will be prepared. I am not timing and am missing a lot, but not really worried about it. The stuff I miss I just go back to the section and skim through the info. It forces you to review a lot of stuff when you miss lots of questions.
 

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I missed a lot of questions on most BR sections and scored very well for my first practice test. Don't worry - they're meant to be hard. They're definitely harder than the actual test.
 

Gandyy

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So I should just drop the time on TBR then?

Part of my problem might be I literally try to get every single question right...

I dont know how to strike a balance between moving on and staying on the question.

What do you guys do about this?
 
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