TPR vs Kaplan

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Feb 16, 2007
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Kaplan The Princeton Review
Classroom hours 54 102.5-105
Classes 18 41-42
Biology 3 9-10
Verbal 3 9
Physics 3 9
General Chemistry 3 8
Organic Chemistry 3 6
Strategy 3
Number of teachers 1-2 4-5
Hours of training 20 (all 5 subjects) 20 (for 1 subject)

Cost $1749 $1699
Cost per hour $32.38 $16.18

Points to think about
1). 1. .Can someone really be an expert in all 5 subjects?
2). 2. .There will be differences between cities and offices for both companies
3). 3. .How can strategy be taught without content?
4). .4. Why does O-chem carry the same weight as verbal for Kaplan?
5). .5. Does TPR give too many classes?
6). 6. .What happens if I am unhappy with my score? (this can vary by office so check it out)

Which program is better?

It depends, take a practice test from AAMC (I suggest test 7 or test 8) and see how you score. If you do not score above say 20, you most likely will need a prep class. There other options out there, but I only wanted to address the two major players.

If you are a quick learner and remember most of things on the practice test but could not iron them out, Kaplan is a better choice. If you need a more thorough review, Princeton Review is a better choice.

As you look at offices across the nation, Princeton Review tends to have better teachers than Kaplan. The main reason for this is the amount of training and screening processes. This is not to say there aren’t bad teachers at Princeton or great teachers at Kaplan.

Another thing people do not consider is Research and Development. Kaplan tends to spend most of their money on advertising while Princeton does not. (Think of how many Kaplan billboards you have seen). Instead Princeton spends money on research and development.
Princeton does send in numerous teachers every testing to gather information about the MCAT, while Kaplan does not. This has ticked AAMC off because TPR actually finds out what questions are on the MCAT and uses them to update material. This has lead AAMC to sue TPR.

What people do not realize is that the AAMC lies. Primary example, the AAMC says that alkenes are not covered on the MCAT but they have been appearing on just about every test. This information is extremely helpful to know when materials are developed.

In summary, do your homework! Find out how each office does in your respective city by talking to former students. Analyze your strengths and weaknesses and use the information I have provided here to figure out which program best suits your needs.

Do not believe posters who state things such as “ the aamc planned on making the MCAT a computer based test about 10 years ago in a closed door meeting with their executive board. you know who was sitting in on that meeting? a kaplan representative” How dumb are you? AAMC HATES all MCAT test prep companies. There is no way in hell anyone could have gotten in for that meeting. If they did, don’t you think the test prep companies would have had practice tests that exactly mimicked the real test?