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ThePotatoDoctor

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I went through the Altius program a couple years ago and I personally thought it paid off. Like every program/method of studying you'll have some people who rave about it and some who rag on it after. The workload that they give you is pretty heavy honestly. I started in the late fall to take a may test, so that helped a lot in spreading out my workload and still be able to do school/work. Things are pretty structured and proven if you actually stick to the entire program. Things that I thought were actually pretty valuable were the full length practice exams (they have 10.5) and their mini exams, which they have a ton of. It did take A LOT of time in the few months before.

Not sure on how they did their study on scoring but I thought they have something about it on their website.

Whatever you end up going with, a good MCAT score can definitely make up for potential weaknesses or get your foot into the door for interviews and a lot of schools.
 

duckdoc20

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Can only speak for the practice tests but they are the best in the business. I used Kap, NS, Examcraker, and PR tests as well and found them all to be of lesser quality than Altius. I would highly recommend getting UWorld as well as their question bank with its explanations are even better than Altius in terms of helping you prepare for the exam. I scored ~98th percentile on my exam in 2019
 

Isa1996

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I did Altius last year. Although I earned a good enough score to get into two good schools, I feel like Altius definitely has its pros and cons. It’s really good for being structured and to have a tutor. I think you can get the most simple package and be fine.
That being said though, you need to have a lot of free time because it required 30-40 hours of studying over 5 months, and even at that I didn’t finish all of the weekly tasks. There are some activities that are useless. Also, if you have a weak area, it’s really hard to find extra time to drill those concepts. But like the poster above mentioned, they have the best practice tests ever! My real exam was very similar to an Altius one. Plus their program has nice question sets in the book.
 

Isa1996

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And their 90th percentile gaurantee only takes into account the students who did Everything! Which makes sense, because you can’t just magically sign up for the course and expect to do well. If you do Altius, choose a simple package and be as engaged as possible during the online group sessions. Try to answer questions and work your tail off.
 

Nugester

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I only did the practice exams from NS and Altius. They were good the first few exams, wouldn't do more.
 

Isa1996

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QUOTE="Isa1996, post: 21765273, member: 941427"]
And their 90th percentile gaurantee only takes into account the students who did Everything! Which makes sense, because you can’t just magically sign up for the course and expect to do well. If you do Altius, choose a simple package and be as engaged as possible during the online group sessions. Try to answer questions and work your tail off.

Could you elaborate on why you think the basic package is sufficient?

Clearly, outcome depends on you more than anything.

Maybe the time commitment required to qualify for their guarantee is directly proportional to course-tier?

When you say everything, do you mean that you void the guarantee if you miss one group session? I assume that the private tutoring can be rescheduled...Thanks again.
[/QUOTE]

I think the basic package is great because The mastery sessions were not that helpful and if anything they were another activity that took away from your time that you could be completing the other activities. I know that I missed 2 mastery sessions, but attended all of my other sessions and they still gave me my gaurantee.

I really liked their style and emphasis on active learning. I learned how to use Anki and how to make good notecards which is going to be invaluable when I start med school in August!
 

acstylin

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I used it and scored 90th. There was nothing special about the material. As a matter of fact, I stopped using it halfway. They spend a LOT of time explaining why they’re the best all through the content. It got real old and I found more interesting material through Khan and a premade Anki deck. The tests were good. The group study was helpful. The tutor helped a little too but the tests were the best part.
 

Isa1996

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I think the basic package is great because The mastery sessions were not that helpful and if anything they were another activity that took away from your time that you could be completing the other activities. I know that I missed 2 mastery sessions, but attended all of my other sessions and they still gave me my gaurantee.

I really liked their style and emphasis on active learning. I learned how to use Anki and how to make good notecards which is going to be invaluable when I start med school in August!
[/QUOTE]

You mentioned that the mastering sessions weren't that helpful. How helpful were the small group tutoring sessions? Also, did you need to re-take the MCAT? Sorry. I ask because you mentioned they honored the guarantee. I couldn't PM you and will delete later or just ignore this part of my question!
[/QUOTE]
the small tutoring groups were awesome! Take them super serious and work hard. You get out what you put in. Some may find mastery sessions helpful, but I felt like my time could have better been spent studying other things. I did not retake the mcat because I got a decent score that allowed me to get into 2 MD schools. But they did offer to honor the guarantee. i think over 70% of people who do altius believe that they will get a 90% score magically. Be ready to work your butt off!
 

Isa1996

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I used it and scored 90th. There was nothing special about the material. As a matter of fact, I stopped using it halfway. They spend a LOT of time explaining why they’re the best all through the content. It got real old and I found more interesting material through Khan and a premade Anki deck. The tests were good. The group study was helpful. The tutor helped a little too but the tests were the best part.

agree with this. I did like the book since it was concise, but they promote themselves hard. The tests are the best.
 

Foggybrain

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I think the basic package is great because The mastery sessions were not that helpful and if anything they were another activity that took away from your time that you could be completing the other activities. I know that I missed 2 mastery sessions, but attended all of my other sessions and they still gave me my gaurantee.

I really liked their style and emphasis on active learning. I learned how to use Anki and how to make good notecards which is going to be invaluable when I start med school in August!


Any particular MCAT Altius full length that you would recommend? Thanks.
 

Isa1996

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Thank you. Are the sessions structured? Or are they more like study halls?
Structured! You start of by taking a mini quiz of a science subject and another of CARS. And they are all passage based like the real MCAT. Then you spend the rest of the time going through each answer in depth and reviewing it. Then your instructor gives you the correlating pages in the altius book For the concepts covered. Really helpful, but a lot of people won’t participate and it’s not helpful unless you try to participate and be engaged.
 

JimKimSlim

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I never took their courses, but I did take their full length exams. I found FL 1-5 pretty solid. In fact, I got a similar score on FL4 as my real test. Personally, I found their CARS sections very different from the real test, but everything else was reasonable.
 

lumya

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I've taken all 10 FL tests and I echo the sentiments above about the first five being better. I felt that the CARS questions weren't as representative of the actual test (one example that pops up is they have a lot of "which of the following statement is least supported by the author's passage" compared to AAMC FL, practice questions, or my real test). I also thought the psych section had a disproportionate amount of niche knowledge questions compared to application questions.
 

goodtime

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I've taken all 10 FL tests and I echo the sentiments above about the first five being better. I felt that the CARS questions weren't as representative of the actual test (one example that pops up is they have a lot of "which of the following statement is least supported by the author's passage" compared to AAMC FL, practice questions, or my real test). I also thought the psych section had a disproportionate amount of niche knowledge questions compared to application questions.
If you were to study again, which PS questions would you do instead?
 
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