If you’ve always dreamed of becoming a doctor and having your undergraduate degree in hand, you are one step closer to living your dream. Hopefully, you have talked to your academic advisor and have already started looking at medical schools that you’d like to attend. In addition to considering schools, you are getting yourself geared up for the MCAT exam. You know that how well you do on the MCAT will determine the medical school that you eventually get into.
Please continue reading for five things you should know about the MCAT process and tips to make it a success for you.
As you know, MCAT is the Medical College Admissions Test. This standardized test assesses critical thinking, written analysis, knowledge of scientific concepts and principles, and problem-solving skills of prospective medical school students. The MCAT results determine which medical schools students are eligible to get into. Students want high scores to get into the best medical schools available.
In addition to wanting to get a high score on the exam, there are some things that students should know about the MCAT process. Some of those are:
How Important is the MCAT to Getting Into a Good Medical School?
When you apply to medical school, they will look at many aspects of you and your academic career. In addition to your score, they will also look at your exposure to health care, your personal experiences, and other interests you have. The admissions board will also look at how you have contributed to society and may contribute in the future.
As future doctors, students need to know that the MCAT is the first of several essential exams that they will take. There will also be the USMLE test, which has three major components.
Therefore, while the MCAT is an important part of your college admissions, it is not the only determining factor of whether you get in or not.
Is There Help Available to Prepare for the MCAT?
Many students find hiring tutors to help get them ready to take the MCAT. Hiring a professional tutor is beneficial, and there are also online MCAT tutors. The online programs where students can get one-on-one help or participate in group lessons. Some benefits of getting a tutor to help you prep for the exam are:
Custom learning schedule
Easier access to various subject experts
Have your hard questions answered
Innovating, interesting, and engaging
Forums for further discussions
Customized learning schedules are available
How is the MCAT Scored?
There are four sections of the MCAT exam. Therefore, you will receive a total of five scores – one for each section and then a total score.
The four-section results will range for each student from 118 to 132. The total score combines all the scores and will vary from 472 to 528.
Scores usually are received 30-35 days after the exam and can be released online.
When is the MCAT Test Administered?
The MCAT is administered several times a year, sometimes up to 30. There are calendars online that show the date of the exam and the deadline dates for applying, and when scores will be released.
When Should You Take The MCAT?
Being prepared for the MCAT is more important than rushing to take it on a schedule. You should carefully read and understand online tools like “What’s on the MCAT Exam? This will ensure that you’ve studied every topic that is covered in the exam. You also want to look at the application dates for the top schools you are interested in. That way, you coordinate your test and results before the applications are due. You also want to consider what happens if your scores are low and you must retake the exam. Although it is not unusual for students to retake the exam, there are limits of three times in one calendar year.
As you have read, the MCAT exam is complex and a big part of getting into the medical school of your choice. There are options for making the exam process smoother and some of those tips are above. It is important to know that although the MCAT is one of the first major tests that medical students and prospective doctors will take, it is only the first. There are many more tests to becoming a full-time doctor.