If you will be scheduling your Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) to enter medical school or another health profession (i.e. dentistry or podiatry) after April of 2015, you will take the MCAT2015 exam. For about five years, the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) has worked to develop the updated version to prepare future physicians for changes in medical school curricula that will be occurring within the next decade. To guide your preparation for the new exam, here are some suggestions from alumni as well as links to resources that you may find useful.
From the alumni perspective, for many of those that scored at or above the national average, they report that the best way to prepare for the test is to set aside about 20 hours per week with about 12 of those hours used to review materials on the content list as described in the MCAT and then another 8 to take a mock test and then to review for learning to find the appropriate way to resolve incorrect answers and to look for patterns of questions. In discussions with alumni as well as pre-health advising professions, test takers need to study for at least 400 (but most likely more hours - over approximately seven to eight months) to succeed on the test and to score around the national average. Most alums have reported using preparation materials from a variety of resources to maximize the information that they review.
Many of the admissions committee members reviewing the test materials shared that answering mock questions weekly helps in preparation. The AAMC staff has noted in meetings with pre-health advisors that they want students to have the opportunity to study independently using either free or low-cost materials. Links to their resources are provided below.
Some students feel that it is useful to connect with a test preparation company in order to commit to preparing for the MCAT. If you are one of the students who feels that having an instructor is helpful, a few companies noted below advertise their services to pre-health students. Perhaps you are a student that likes to study with other people. If so, you may also find it useful to secure the instructional services.
To explore available materials, review the links below. Please note that the links are provided for your convenience and their presence does not imply an endorsement by Dickinson College, its trustees, employees or representatives. Dickinson College makes no warranties or representations, express or implied, and assumes no legal responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of the information or services provided.
- Pre-Health Program – utilize your Faculty Pre-Health Advisor as well as the Center for Advising, Internships & Lifelong Career Development Pre-Health Advisor
- Learning and Study Skills - Academic Advising page
AAMC related resources (free or low cost):
- MCAT (AAMC) – The MCAT2015 Exam for Students
- MCAT2015 Official Sample Test (AAMC)
- What’s on the MCAT2015 Exam? (AAMC)
- The Official Guide to the MCAT Exam (MCAT2015) (on-line practice questions for an additional fee)
(If you purchased this earlier, you can order on-line practice questions)
- How Do I Prepare for the MCAT Exam? (AAMC)
- What’s it Like to Take the MCAT Exam? (AAMC)
- Khan Academy MCAT2015 (Free – developed in collaboration with AAMC, medical students and faculty)