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Tips on studying for DAT while in school and working

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yaya97

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For those who have taken the DAT during the school year, how did you study for it while taking classes and possibly working? I'm planning on taking the DAT's sometime around next February or March, and I'm going to be taking a full course load. I don't know how exactly to schedule studying for the test because I can't dedicate 6-8 hours a day to just purely studying for it because of classes and work. For those who have done this, how exactly did you break up your studying and what tips do you have for me? Thank you!
 

Typical Average Student

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I wouldn't approach the DAT lightly, especially if there's no rush to take it in Feb/Mar. I would wait until after your semester is complete then allocate a reasonable block of time to study for it (about a month). If the point of you taking it in Feb/Mar is so you can have the opportunity to retake it again in June/July, than why not just put all the effort in the first time around?

If you absolutely must, I would just spend whatever time you're not studying for school/work to the DAT.
 

Toothout

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Been there, done that. DO NOT recommend it. Got 17AA (and i am considered an outstanding student by all my professors, so it's not like I got that because I'm stupid or something)
 
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redhotchiligochu

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For those who have taken the DAT during the school year, how did you study for it while taking classes and possibly working? I'm planning on taking the DAT's sometime around next February or March, and I'm going to be taking a full course load. I don't know how exactly to schedule studying for the test because I can't dedicate 6-8 hours a day to just purely studying for it because of classes and work. For those who have done this, how exactly did you break up your studying and what tips do you have for me? Thank you!
Bruh, it's possible if you put your mind to it, although like the posters said above me I wouldn't recommend it.

I worked 70 hours a week (I'm in my late 20s and had a different career) and I found time to study for the DAT. Stick to a strict schedule and keep working at it!
 

ForUs_J&S

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I studied for the exam while working in a high-demand industry in which I usually left the house at 7:30am and got home around 9:00pm most nights. (I had graduated already).

Truth is, it sucked so much. I tried to take advantage of any time I could get. For example, you should set aside time to study (even if it's just 2 hours a day) and on top of that, squeeze in a chapter of bio or something during the day. If you commute, talk walks, run on the treadmill, etc. try to get through a short chapter in Cliffnotes or something. You'll gradually knock off chapters in Bio this way.

I don't know what your schedule is like but if you miss a day here and there, don't kill yourself. You'll need it to not go insane. Just be consistent as possible and like I said I really think if you put in 2 hours a day during weekdays and 5 or so during weekends, it can work, especially if the test is in Feb/March. Just start now by reviewing content and since the length of studying is longer for you (than it was for me), just keep reviewing consistently and practice. Good luck!
 
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ncide

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My work schedule was also difficult. I'd get up for work at 5:40 am, leave by 6:30, and return by 7pm. I'd study for 2-3 hours, then save the bulk for the weekend. Some people had it harder than I from reading this thread, and even with my schedule, it was difficult. If you put your mind to it and are dedicated, you'll be able to do it. It won't be easy but getting a degree in dental surgery isn't either.
 

Switchhitter

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I was going to school full time and working 30hours a week. I did something similar to ncide. I got up early to do PAT for 2 hours and then did 4-5 hours of the other material at the end of the day. Also 3 practice tests a week. I did this for about 4 weeks and then took the DAT. I got a 22 AA, 24 RC, and 24 PAT (not the best scores in the world, but with my GPA and undergrad reputation, it was more than enough). I also finished my classes (organic chem, physics, and other science classes) that semester with a 3.9 GPA. Fortunately, my best work comes when I am stressed out and on a time crunch. BUT it was one of the worst 4 weeks of my life. Choose your resources wisely, I used Bootcamp, Destroyer, and Achiever. It's possible, you can do this!
 
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schmoob

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Just wondering, why are you planning on taking your DAT during midterms?
Just like the others noted, it's not impossible, but it sucks. You're going to have a miserable winter break and you won't sleep much. But if you can manage your time and find time to study, go for it.
I too had to juggle. I only found quiet time at 4AM. Then my weekends were dedicated to studying.
 

Peter27

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I did a similar thing but didn't have to work.

Schedule bio, chem, and ochem classes to get a review of the DAT sections.
Focus on classes till you have a large block of time to dedicate to the DAT. I did an hour a day till winter break. GPA is forever DAT can be retaken.

PAT: Begin practicing early and 20-30 minutes a day. This section can't be crammed overnight. Plus I think you're more likely to remember how to do this section than others.
RC: Same as PAT
GC: There are more trends and patterns so you can study it early and do short reviews leading up to test day.
Ochem: Less patterns than GC but you could still predict a majority of reactions. Make flashcards for specific reactions.
BIO: I did a light review using Cliffs AP notes and blue book. Then used Feralis notes to get more in depth. Khan academy was also helpful.
 
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