What classes should I take to best prepare for the MCAT? + MCAT date?

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PremedHopeful123

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Hi all,

I am a current sophomore looking to apply to medical school in the summer of 2025. By the end of this year, I'll have completed Gen Chem 1+2, Ochem 1+2, Bio 1+2, Psych, Human Phys, and Physics 1. Right now, I'm figuring out which classes to take next semester. I plan on taking biochem, genetics, and physics 2 as of right now. I also have the option to add cellular biology. Would it be worth it to add cellular biology to this course load? My worry is that I will be overwhelmed with MCAT prep and biochem, genetics, physics 2 already (along with other non-MCAT prereq classes and research credit).

Additionally, any recommendation for MCAT test dates for next year?

Thanks

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I found neuroscience to be very helpful personally
 
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Physics II, Philosophy or literature might give you exposure to more reading which could help with CARS, Sociology would be very beneficial.
 
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In your Bio 1+2 did you cover a lot of the topics in cell bio? Cross reference the MCAT syllabus and see if you've already seen those.

My personal recommendation is 4 stem classes is A LOT and not ideal
 
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Physics II, Philosophy or literature might give you exposure to more reading which could help with CARS, Sociology would be very beneficial.
I actually have taken a philosophy and literature courses already. I omitted those because I didn't know they'd be of any help on the MCAT. Thanks!
 
In your Bio 1+2 did you cover a lot of the topics in cell bio? Cross reference the MCAT syllabus and see if you've already seen those.

My personal recommendation is 4 stem classes is A LOT and not ideal
I would describe my bio 1 course as very similar to AP biology; very introductory and covering everything on the syllabus, save for the topics on human organs, without a lot of depth. My bio 2 was more focused, and covered a lot of topics in genetic biology. I don't think I've retained a ton of info from the bio 1 course, so I think taking cell bio would at the very least be beneficial review.

I think I have the same reservations as you with taking 4 stem classes. In addition to these 4 classes, I'll be taking one non-stem class (very light workload). However, I am currently taking Physics 1, physiology, genchem, and Statistics. I have been able to excel in all of them so far - albeit with a lot of work.

I guess my question would be is it worth it to take a grueling junior fall schedule in order to fit in cell bio for the MCAT.
 
I would describe my bio 1 course as very similar to AP biology; very introductory and covering everything on the syllabus, save for the topics on human organs, without a lot of depth. My bio 2 was more focused, and covered a lot of topics in genetic biology. I don't think I've retained a ton of info from the bio 1 course, so I think taking cell bio would at the very least be beneficial review.

I think I have the same reservations as you with taking 4 stem classes. In addition to these 4 classes, I'll be taking one non-stem class (very light workload). However, I am currently taking Physics 1, physiology, genchem, and Statistics. I have been able to excel in all of them so far - albeit with a lot of work.

I guess my question would be is it worth it to take a grueling junior fall schedule in order to fit in cell bio for the MCAT.
The most important thing is maintaining your GPA (not to mention your own mental health and wellbeing!). I think you might find it very difficult to study for the MCAT, do all 5 of these classes AND do other pre-med stuff. It's up to you at the end of the day, but I'd push the MCAT back to give me time to take cell bio at a more reasonable pace
 
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That makes sense, thanks for the reply. I think I'll end up taking one of cell bio/genetics in the spring, and take the MCAT around February/March.
 
Hi! Cellular biology can be valuable for the MCAT, but prioritize your workload. Consider:

Can you handle a heavy science load? If MCAT prep and other commitments feel overwhelming, skip cellular biology for now.
Review MCAT content areas: If cellular biology aligns with your weaknesses (e.g., biology foundations), it might be worth the challenge.
MCAT test dates: Registration typically opens in late 2024 for 2025 exams. Aim for a date that allows ample prep time after your coursework (ideally spring/summer 2025).

Check the AAMC website for official registration dates and MCAT content areas covered in cellular biology.
 
Hi! Cellular biology can be valuable for the MCAT, but prioritize your workload. Consider:

Can you handle a heavy science load? If MCAT prep and other commitments feel overwhelming, skip cellular biology for now.
Review MCAT content areas: If cellular biology aligns with your weaknesses (e.g., biology foundations), it might be worth the challenge.
MCAT test dates: Registration typically opens in late 2024 for 2025 exams. Aim for a date that allows ample prep time after your coursework (ideally spring/summer 2025).

Check the AAMC website for official registration dates and MCAT content areas covered in cellular biology.
Thanks for your response. I realize that this workload would be challenging, so I made sure to register for extra classes next semester. This way, if I feel overwhelmed I can drop a class and still be in more than enough credit hours. I plan on doing some sort of diagnostic this summer to assess my weaknesses, but I don't feel super strongly about my biology foundation. After all, it's been more than a year since I've taken any biology class.
 
IMO, Do not take courses because they prepare you for the mcat with the exception of the standard pre-reqs. You can teach yourself most if not all of the content at the depth level it is tested. Prioritize your GPA.
 
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