How to Prepare for the MCAT

How to Prepare for the MCAT

Regardless of what you read, there is no magical formula to prepare for the MCAT – Medical College Admission Test. The test itself is designed to mimic the rigor of medical school examinations while providing the medical school admissions committees with an indication of your level of ability in the fundamental medical sciences.

The Basics

1. Allocated an inordinate amount of time each day for weeks leading up to the exam. Many suggest to study for over 3 – 4 months at approximately 6 – 8 hours per day. If it has been a while since you took your prerequisite sciences, you may need more time than average to prepare.

2. Read the information provided by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The AAMC provides a document called the MCAT Essentials with tons of information pertaining to the exam, including exam content, exam scoring, eligibility for testing, taking the exam, registration etc. You can download a PDF version of the AAMC’s latest MCAT essentials .


3. Practice taking the exam. This cannot be stressed enough, as there are many questions on the MCAT that must be completed in a small amount of time. Practicing taking the exam under conditions similar to those you will be on test day. Time yourself. Take practice tests in a quiet area with nothing around you. Keep in mind that you are not allowed to eat, drink, smoke, or use the restroom while taking any of the exam sections.

Get a High Score

Although the AAMC reports that the basic sciences are adequate courses to prepare for the exam, consider taking other courses that may enhance your knowledge of the subject matter. Good courses to supplement your basic science curriculum include Anatomy and Physiology, Microbiology, Biochemistry, Genetics, and other English courses that require a lot of reading. This is especially important for those students who do not major in the sciences.

Take practice tests using a computer. The MCAT is ordinarily given on a computer using an interface with which many may not be familiar.


Hire a Test Prep Company

Check out Kaplan’s NEW MCAT course- MCAT Advantage Plus!For the student who wants that extra edge that comes from personal attention from the nation’s leading MCAT experts. It’s just one more reason why twice as many doctors prepared with Kaplan for the MCAT than with any other course.* The On Site option provides comprehensive instruction in a live, in-person classroom setting.

  • 3 one-on-one sessions with a Med School Mentor to review your progress and address any weak areas
  • Small group test review sessions led by MCAT experts
  • 12 classroom sessions with intensive review and instruction
  • 11 additional online lessons with a live instructor
  • 11,000+ practice questions, plus Kaplan’s MCAT Qbank to create custom quizzes to target your practice
  • 19 full-length exams
  • 130+ additional hours of on-demand video instruction
  • Full access to AAMC exams, including the Self Assessment Package
  • Mobile app with flash cards for studying on the go
  • Thousands of convenient class schedules and locations

Best of all, Kaplan offers  The Kaplan Higher Score Guarantee. Higher score guaranteed or your money back!

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