chaeymaey

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I feel like I'm having trouble finding that right place and right time to really study. I mostly work passages because I feel like a learn alot by seeing what I don't know. Where do y'all think the best place to study for the MCAT is? Home, library, Starbucks...? Also, what time of day do y'all think is the best? Before doing regular school homework or after? Early in the day or later on? The test is so close; it's definitely freak out time.
 

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Phil Anthropist

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I'm not taking the MCAT until August, but the obvious answer that you don't want to hear is:

Whatever works best for you! :D

Some people are going to study most effectively at home, others at the library, others at a coffee shop. I get nothing done at home--I get too distracted with random stuff like SDN. I study best at the library, but I go to coffee shops sometimes and study surprisingly well as long as there's a good amount of people (convos are just like background noise), but not if there's a few people (I hear isolated conversations and it's distracting). However, Starbucks would cost a lot if you go there frequently. Cursed overpriced but-pretty-good coffee!!! Furthermore, if you are a PRETTYdoc as your signature link suggests (I'll give you the benefit of the doubt ;)), what happens if you're in the middle of struggling through an intense verbal passage trying to figure out which-statement-if-true-would-most-weaken-the-author's-argument when out of nowhere some hot stud walks up to you and starts hitting on you?! WHAT THEN?! BAM! FOR BETTER OR WORSE, YOUR MCAT STUDYING IS RUINED!!! Some people are morning people, others are night people. I'm not a morning person--I tend to study best in the afternoon and in the evening unless I've had a good caffeine boost early in the morning. The point is: Know thyself. Find what works best for you and stick with it. And don't stress too much. Kick MCAT ass in April! :smuggrin: :horns:
 

virilep

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I found this one place in a building that i studied at all the time. it helps to have the same place. it's kinda like a comfort level. if u can pull it off, spend some time studying in the actual room the MCAT will be given at. i did that and it helped ease the mcat stress (a little)... but hell, anything helps.
 

dr1day

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I study at Barnes and Nobles or Panera Bread. I can't study at home because I go to sleep. The library is too quiet. B&N and Panera have just the right amount of background noise.
 

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My suggestion is to study wherever you can concentrate and focus best.

However, you should take the practice exams in less than ideal situations. Don't sit at home where you are very comfortable and it is probably completely silent. Go to different libraries around your area for practice exams or working passages. For the most part the library will be quiet, but you will be in unfamiliar surroundings (as you will be on test day) and you will have some minor distractions from the other library patrons.

The one thing I liked about the Kaplan prep course was the simulated practice exams. You were crammed in a room with a bunch of other people in a relatively uncomfortable room.
 

sunnyjohn

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Starbucks? study? The coffee would at least keep me awake....

I could used an iced mocha frap about now... :D

Oh, and congrats on the birthday on the 28th....

UNT or UTA ?

Agape
 

natureboy

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I have to have it completely quiet, so I usually study in the library. Like everyone else said, I think it would vary from person to person. I like getting up early in the morning and studying just because I function optimally in the mornings...and I take full lengths on saturday mornings just to get the good feeling of the real thing.
 

tigress

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The thing that really gets to me is that my local library is anything but quiet. When I asked the librarians if there was a quieter place to study, they actually said to me, "oh this is a loud library." Well, it wouldn't be so loud if they would just shut up and stop talking at the top of their voices about completely irrelevant things. Like the reference librarian in the middle of the library was talking to this guy in a really loud voice about the mayor. And all the yelling into phones and to each other at the front desk carries through to the back where the desks are (it's a small library).

Okay, sorry about that. I just need to vent. The situation really bugs me. It's not even the patrons, it's the librarians that are the problem!
 

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virilep said:
I found this one place in a building that i studied at all the time. it helps to have the same place. it's kinda like a comfort level. if u can pull it off, spend some time studying in the actual room the MCAT will be given at. i did that and it helped ease the mcat stress (a little)... but hell, anything helps.

I agree with this. I took practice MCATs in the actual room that my MCAT was supposed to be in, and I did it early on a saturday so I basically simulated the exact experience. I brought a timer and took the same breaks and everything. It gets you ready for how long the actual day is. Also, don't go back and look at your scores or answers until you finish the entire test, that way you'll be able to focus on the next section, just like the real one. I would take all my practice tests in very quiet places because during the actual test it is dead silent, usually.
 

natureboy

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tigress said:
The thing that really gets to me is that my local library is anything but quiet. When I asked the librarians if there was a quieter place to study, they actually said to me, "oh this is a loud library." Well, it wouldn't be so loud if they would just shut up and stop talking at the top of their voices about completely irrelevant things. Like the reference librarian in the middle of the library was talking to this guy in a really loud voice about the mayor. And all the yelling into phones and to each other at the front desk carries through to the back where the desks are (it's a small library).

Okay, sorry about that. I just need to vent. The situation really bugs me. It's not even the patrons, it's the librarians that are the problem!

Have you tried using earplugs? My library isn't always quiet and when I am taking a full length, I make sure I have a set nearby just in case it starts to get loud. Although it doesn't completely filter out the noise, it does help...for me at least.
 

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I would actually recommend not studying in a completely quiet atmostphere. There's going to be a crap load of anxious MCAT takers on test day that are flipping through the test at the test center site, taking drinks, proctors walking around, erroneous cell phones going off in some cases. Needless to say, if you're used to studying in only super quiet settings, you might be in for a rude awakening MCAT day when the site is anything but quiet.

natureboy said:
Have you tried using earplugs? My library isn't always quiet and when I am taking a full length, I make sure I have a set nearby just in case it starts to get loud. Although it doesn't completely filter out the noise, it does help...for me at least.
 

tigress

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natureboy said:
Have you tried using earplugs? My library isn't always quiet and when I am taking a full length, I make sure I have a set nearby just in case it starts to get loud. Although it doesn't completely filter out the noise, it does help...for me at least.
Yeah, I'm going to get earplugs. But I wouldn't use them for a full-length, since you won't be able to use them on the actual test. Except I guess it should be more quiet at the actual test anyway. I guess I was just upset at the library, even though I can just wear earplugs, I feel like I shouldn't have to in the library, you know? Ah what the heck, I'm probably just fed up with the whole entire MCAT thing in general
 

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i have been studying mostly at b&n, sometimes in the campus library at night. i cant stand completely quiet either, so i need some background noise.
 

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I can not get ANY work done at home, I dont fully understand why. I need to be in a library. its been that way all through out college and now for mcat studying.
 
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chaeymaey

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sunnyjohn said:
congrats on the birthday on the 28th....

UNT or UTA ?

Agape

Thanks! Yay, I'm 21! I don't go to either of those schools; I go to SMU. For the MCAT, I put University of Dallas and UNT as my top 2 choices, but who knows where I'll end up. Are you from Dallas?

I really like this studying at B&N idea. :idea: I'm assuming y'all mean the coffee shop in the B&N cuz I think it would be kind of weird to be writing in books at a bookstore and then walking out with them. Yeah, studying at home can be distracting with the TV and SDN. Do y'all put your priority on studying for the MCAT more or studying for your classes? That's probably the toughest decision for me to make. I need a great GPA this term to make up for past indiscretions...

Phil Anthropist said:
Furthermore, if you are a PRETTYdoc as your signature link suggests (I'll give you the benefit of the doubt ;)), what happens if you're in the middle of struggling through an intense verbal passage trying to figure out which-statement-if-true-would-most-weaken-the-author's-argument when out of nowhere some hot stud walks up to you and starts hitting on you?! WHAT THEN?! BAM! FOR BETTER OR WORSE, YOUR MCAT STUDYING IS RUINED!!!
:laugh: :laugh: That's so funny. Something like that actually happened the other day in the library when I was doing a Bio passage. This guy walked up to me when I was in the middle of answering the questions and was like, "Hey, aren't you friends with Monica? I've noticed you around campus." I swear I was about to put my (pointer) finger in the air and say, "Hold it. I'm working on Bio," but then I looked up at him and thought "Well hello, hello!" and did the hair twirl thing. It was all downhill from there. :laugh:
 

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chaeymaey said:
Thanks! Yay, I'm 21! I don't go to either of those schools; I go to SMU. For the MCAT, I put University of Dallas and UNT as my top 2 choices, but who knows where I'll end up. Are you from Dallas?

I really like this studying at B&N idea. :idea: I'm assuming y'all mean the coffee shop in the B&N cuz I think it would be kind of weird to be writing in books at a bookstore and then walking out with them. Yeah, studying at home can be distracting with the TV and SDN. Do y'all put your priority on studying for the MCAT more or studying for your classes? That's probably the toughest decision for me to make. I need a great GPA this term to make up for past indiscretions...



:laugh: :laugh: That's so funny. Something like that actually happened the other day in the library when I was doing a Bio passage. This guy walked up to me when I was in the middle of answering the questions and was like, "Hey, aren't you friends with Monica? I've noticed you around campus." I swear I was about to put my (pointer) finger in the air and say, "Hold it. I'm working on Bio," but then I looked up at him and thought "Well hello, hello!" and did the hair twirl thing. It was all downhill from there. :laugh:
are u indian? dont know why, just got a vibe u were. oh, and on topic, i study at B&N, find it peaceful despite the blenders. i actually like strangers talking to me, their first question is, so you're studying for the mcat...cuz they always spot the review books.
 

Phil Anthropist

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You know I'm not quite sure what she is. But I AM sure that if that's her picture in her avatar, I'm packing my bags and leaving for Texas! :love: My life is incomplete until I see her "hair twirl thing" in action! ;) :D







No, not seriously :p
 

sunnyjohn

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chaeymaey said:
Thanks! Yay, I'm 21! I don't go to either of those schools; I go to SMU. For the MCAT, I put University of Dallas and UNT as my top 2 choices, but who knows where I'll end up. Are you from Dallas?

I just left Dallas last fall. I'm a traveling scrub tech, so I move around. I still have a place in Irving, but IN is my home base now.

P.S. Be nice to Phil _A... This fella gives GREAT advice. (He may single-handedly get this low GPA, non-trad into HAVAD!!!) :p

(Yes, my nose is brown!!! lol)
 
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chaeymaey

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SilvrGrey330 said:


are u indian? dont know why, just got a vibe u were.
No, I'm Persian. You're probably just getting the "exotic" vibe, haha.
 

SilvrGrey330

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:laugh:

persian, indian, exotican, all the same thing. i had a persian friend once, his name was Anthony.
 

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well, to get back to the original topic (or has SDN become the student dating network ;) ) i study in the train, at work, in the common area of my building, and at the kaplan center. i actually don't think i've even set foot in the library this semester (they turned the floor i usualyl study on into an art gallery/meeting room, and i can't find another floor where i'm comfortable). but whatever works for you. i also do a lot of studying at the rink when im waiting for my lesson or waiting for the session to start or when they are zamboniing the ice.
 

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If I was able to study in a secluded, comfortable, well lit cave away from my computer, tv, and well, reality, I would be studying there. But, alas, I'm stuck in my daily grind. Its been tough trying to study exclusively and in a conducive environment to learning. Library helps, Barnes and Noble is fun. Starbucks is great too. I need some background noise so the library isn't always the best for me. Good luck to everyone. Please, check out my signature, I'm trying to get free things. Its for real. I have a friend who received his 20GB iPod for free from the freeipods site just after X-mas. Anyways, sorry for the cheesy plug. Peace! :cool:
 

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i'm a fan of coffeeshop studying but it definitely doesn't work for everyone. if you're taking practice tests, get as close to the true test-taking situation as possible. i.e. quiet room or library with few distractions (though perhaps some distractions are worth getting used to). i did a lot of reviewing at coffeeshops in my neighborhood, and then as it got closer and closer to the date of the test, i used the main reading room at the new york public library -- GORGEOUS! definitely the right atmosphere for studying (minus the tourists).
 

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i've tried a few places. started at starbucks for a couple weeks, then borders for a week, then books a million for a couple weeks, panera a few times (but you seriously smell like food by the time you leave), then this local quaint coffee shop...i noticed each place took time to get used to it. and then i got used to them and did better... now i transfer from place to place depending how far i want to go (i don't think i recommend changing from place to place), but i have to bc i get bored easily.

home is a definite no...it has too many distractions (namely, my mattress, and the ever so lovely pantry). libraries are good, but i'm want to be able to tune out noises...

i study early morning to get my mind used to thinking that way during that time of day...

blah³, with all my talking.. i guess it's just what works best for you (how cliche..but oh so true)