What is the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) and How To Pass it?
Dr. Suhyun An, DC, MSN, NP-C, is a world-renowned Chiropractic practitioner, author, and speaker with a passion for education. Dr. An created the Dr. Suhyun An Scholarship with the goal of supporting the next generation of doctors, nurses, and medical professionals.
One of the most anxiety-inducing steps of every young doctor's career is taking the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). The MCAT is a standardized, computer-based, multiple-choice examination that is mandatory for all prospective medical school students in the United States. The purpose of this exam is to evaluate students' problem-solving and critical thinking abilities among other concepts and sciences. Below you'll find 5 tips for how you can prepare for and pass the MCAT.
Be Prepared & Practice
Knowing what the MCAT is and understanding it is not only vital to you passing the test, but it also helps you relax. There is a lot of material on the exam, but the good news is you can pass it. Thousands of students before you have done it, so you can too! What does the test look like? “It’s a year’s worth of organic chemistry, a year’s worth of general chemistry, a year’s worth of physics, a year’s worth of general biology, a semester's worth of upper-division biochemistry, and topics from introductory psychology and sociology -- there’s simply a lot of content that’s coming into play," said Kaplan representative Petros Minasi.
You can begin your preparation process by continuing to read college preparation blogs like these and by purchasing a preparation course that comes with practice questions. An added tip is to time yourself while taking any practice assessments. Timing is equally as important as answering questions correctly.
Plan For Success
Creating a plan to work through the MCAT pre-test coursework and material will enable you to most effectively work through the subject with proper preparation. This is important because without a plan many students find themselves trying to rush through the material without retaining the vital knowledge and skills. Give yourself time to work through each module and to revisit those where you do not perform as strongly.
Aside from academic preparation, financial preparation is also important. As of the date of this blog the cost to take the MCAT ranges from $320 to $370 depending on when you register for your test date. This is where scholarship opportunities like the Dr. Suhyun An Scholarship provide additional benefit to medical school students as your school will issue a refund to you for any financial aid over the cost of your tuition expenses in a semester. We urge students to set aside at least a portion of any refund in a savings account specifically for one's medical school aspirations. The cost of taking the MCAT is an expense that could be paid out of that savings account.
Set Goals For Yourself
Many students retake the MCAT multiple times to see if they can improve their scores. As you progress through your preparation course, set goals for yourself for each subject. Going into the MCAT, set a goal for yourself before you take the test so you can compare your actual score to the goal you had set. You can use all of these numbers to track your progress and growth as well as to help you identify areas where you are strongest and areas where you need additional work.
Taking the MCAT is difficult, but pursuing a career in any medical profession won't be easy. But don't worry with proper planning, preparation, discipline, and commitment you can achieve all of your goals. Good luck!