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Testing Solutions' 30 Day Guide to MCAT CARS Success

Discussion in 'Testing Solutions, LLC' started by TestingSolutions, Apr 20, 2015.

  1. TestingSolutions

    TestingSolutions Eating CARS for Breakfast Since 2013 Exhibitor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

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    Jan 7, 2015
    SDN Exhibitor
    @mKmmx - I recommend you just add up the time for the five passages. So if you have two 5 question passages (9min * 2 passages = 18 mins) + two 6 question passages (10.5 min * 2 passages = 21 mins) + one 7 question passage (12 mins) for a total of 41 minutes. You should base the time you give yourself off the number of questions in each passage not just the number of passages. Five 5 question passages require significantly less time than five 7 question passages. Just add up the time and use that. Does that make sense?
     
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  3. TestingSolutions

    TestingSolutions Eating CARS for Breakfast Since 2013 Exhibitor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

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    Jan 7, 2015
    SDN Exhibitor
    Hey @Heyheyhey_itsa - Unfortunately, CARS practice can be a long slog before you start seeing significant improvements. You have plenty of time before your January. Consistent, well-timed practice adds up. I think if you've been doing only two weeks worth of practice, you're still in the warm-up phase. If you're still getting only half of the questions correct after another four weeks, then I think I'd start to worry that something is off. My recommendations would be 1) do a little bit of practice 6 days a week. That's a lot better than practicing once a week but doing a lot. And 2) Ramping up the number of passages you do each day slowly and gradually over time.

    And that's great about finishing the passages in time. Every victory counts! Slow gains add up over time. You'll get there. Just keep it up!
     
    Heyheyhey_itsa likes this.
  4. MamamLR

    MamamLR 7+ Year Member

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    Jun 3, 2010
    Thanks so much for your time and effort!!

    I’m right now at day 15, and for each passage completed I’ve been doing the keyword review. If I am getting the timing right, can I start reviewing the way you laid out during the last week (day 26-29), or should I wait till the day26 and continue doing keywords review for now?

    Thanks!
     
  5. TestingSolutions

    TestingSolutions Eating CARS for Breakfast Since 2013 Exhibitor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

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    Jan 7, 2015
    SDN Exhibitor

    @MamamLR - Thank you for your kind words! I think you're good to move on to the full review if 1) your timing is good (which you say it is) and 2) you feel like you've gotten enough out of the keywords review and you're starting to notice them while you are actually reading the passages when doing them live. If "ands," "buts" and "becauses" aren't jumping out at you like they're covered in neon paint, then I'd continue with the keyword review. If you are noticing them, then I think you're good to move on to the more advanced review techniques that you referenced. (It's okay to skip ahead to those dates and then circle back later). Best of luck on your MCAT!
     
  6. Roudy15

    Roudy15

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    Oct 16, 2017
    I really need help! i cant finish my passage under 4 mins. And i used to get 5/6 or 6/6 on passages but not i'm getting 1/5 1/6 for some reason. It is discouraging me and putting me back on my schedule :( I am on second week of the guide and had to skip 3 days cause of college exams
    ** update falling more behind and thinking of taking all 9 passages at once to be at half the pace
     
  7. Roudy15

    Roudy15

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    Oct 16, 2017
    Hey! I am no quite sure what you mean by do two passages "individually" do you mean do them separately and not one right after other. like put a stopwatch for 21 mins for 5 and 7 question?
     
  8. TestingSolutions

    TestingSolutions Eating CARS for Breakfast Since 2013 Exhibitor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

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    Jan 7, 2015
    SDN Exhibitor
    @Roudy15 - I'm not 100% sure I understand what you're saying. We recommend that you try to finish reading the passage text in under 4 minutes. This is usually possible (although not always). Doing so leaves you with roughly a minute per question which is more than enough time. Have you noticed any patterns as to why you're missing more questions than usual? Do you feel clueless when you're answering them or are you really surprised by the results? Do you feel like you're rushing more than normal?

    As to your second question, there are two ways to time passage blocks. One is to set a timer by adding up all the time for all of the passages you're taking. This allows you to practice pacing. Say you've got to 5 question passages (9 minutes each) and then a 7 question passage (12 minutes). To do them as a group, you'd give yourself 30 total minutes. You'd set the timer for 30 minutes and then do all three passages. To do them "Individually" would mean to set the timer for 9 minutes and do the first passage. When the timer goes off, you set the timer again for 9 minutes and do the second passage. When the timer goes off, you move on to the third passage, setting the timer for 12 minutes. This "individual" approach is useful for building your CARS stamina while also giving you the structure to practice your pacing. We recommend the "individual" timing approach for test takers who have yet to really build a CARS pacing intuition and really struggle to finish tests on time. Timing each passage makes sure you don't fall super far behind while taking multiple passages and it also forces you to have correct pacing. The "group" approach to passage timing is useful because it allows you to better simulate taking multiple passages at once and also allows you to practice the skill of dedicating more time to harder passages while spending less time on the easier ones. This is a more advanced technique so we recommend you wait until your pacing is down before trying it.

    Best of luck!
     
  9. Roudy15

    Roudy15

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    Oct 16, 2017
    Thank you for writing back so quickly! I guess the first time i started getting such low score was when i failed to sit in a quite place, midway through the passage people started talking and i still went through it and got that awful result, after that it just kept going on. I do feel clueless when i get to the passage and feel like i need to rush when i hear the passage timer going up. But I am also writing at least a line per paragraph which might be making me slower in reading the passage. Usually takes me around 5 or 7 mins on hard ones. I went back and read "how to pace yourself" and saw that you wrote "Do not go back and look at the passage until your timing is down, as most of the questions are not detail oriented" So i plan on doing that tonight.
     
  10. Sheiko

    Sheiko

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    Dec 15, 2016
    East Coast
    @TestingSolutions

    Suppose you have a question asking what the subject of the next paragraph after the end of the paragraph is about. What kind of question type would you say this falls under? Any suggestions on how to answer such questions?
     

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