Whats the relative difficulty of Next Step fl exams? Do people find them harder than real thing?

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I don't want to sound like a jerk, because I'm legitimately confused right now.

I'm writing on August 20th and just took my first full length exam. While I was taking it I thought things were going terribly, I literally had to pause during the physics section to calm down because I thought I was going to screw up so bad and not be remotely prepared by the 20th.

Simply put, I had no idea what I was doing.

At the end I finished and looked at my score and was very surprised to see I got a 512, with a 130 on physics being my best score. I honest to god can't explain it and I can only believe it was a huge fluke.

Do people typically do this well on NS1? Is it easier than the real MCAT? How is this possible?
 
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bigindian4891

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May 20, 2010
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NS FLs have relatively inflated scores. Use the tests as a guideline for what you know and what you do not know. In each of the NS tests I took, I felt the exact same way... I thought I did atrocious on each CP section, yet on some of them it was my highest score. You should be proud of the 512, you are doing just fine, though. Keep taking tests, and use the AAMC FLs as the true predictors.

Also, these wtf CP sections on NS will prepare you for the real WTF CP sections that the actuals seem to be leaning towards.
 
May 2, 2016
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From my own experience...NS FL#1-4 are more representative and easier, NS FL#6 is much harder and NS FL#8-10 are tough as well...
 

Kpw101

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NS exams are inflated? I might just be suffering from some bias here because I take NS exams but I found through several score compilations that NS test takers usually score a few points above their average on the actual exam.
 

vernhart

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Oct 22, 2013
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Tutored for NS, my students scored 2 points higher on the real test on average than they did NS FLs. They have their problems, but score-wise they are by far the most representative of how you'll do on the real thing (excluding AAMC) imo
 

bigindian4891

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Yes, there was a post here a couple days ago that looked into it, and it was slightly inflated. I do agree that they are the most accurate full lengths we have (other than AAMC) and helped a lot. I dont doubt the higher scores either, I scored 10 points higher on my actual over my NS average.
 

medbunny56

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Yes, there was a post here a couple days ago that looked into it, and it was slightly inflated. I do agree that they are the most accurate full lengths we have (other than AAMC) and helped a lot. I dont doubt the higher scores either, I scored 10 points higher on my actual over my NS average.
when did you test? did you take the NS exams with the original scale or the updated scale from this year
 

alpha-GTP

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Jun 16, 2016
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I would say that NS scores were deflated. The physical sciences and CARS sections had me questioning whether to apply to Caribbean schools. It was pretty demoralizing. I ended up doing much better on the real thing.
I would look at the spreadsheet that was passed around a while back comparing different practice exams and the real thing. That will give you some idea of relative difficulty.