Do you want to get the highest MCAT score that is within your capabilities?
Do you want to know the smartest, fastest, and simplest formula to make that happen?
First, understand that anyone who achieved a competitive MCAT score, did it by applying strategy to their MCAT prep (whether they realize it or not).
The biggest reason most premeds end up writing the MCAT more than once is because they didn't understand that they need to study for the MCAT differently and a lot more strategically than how they've been studying for exams all their life.
They usually realize this after they bomb the first MCAT (some don't realize even after writing multiple times).
Second, realize that most of the MCAT strategies and 'studying tips' that are out there are useless. They're made by people who don't have any evidence to back up their claims.
The evidence we focus on is the only one that matters; the MCAT score. If I'm going to spend my valuable time and energy applying someone's MCAT study strategy, I need to be sure it works. I need to know what their MCAT score is and how many other high scorers have applied the same strategy.
The key to achieving a competitive MCAT score is using the same strategies top scorers have used to master the MCAT and get into med-school. Without a high MCAT score, med-schools don't even bother looking at any other aspect of your application. The MCAT score is how they filter out who's application they're going to spend time looking at.
If you understand that one simple insight, you're already ahead of most MCAT writers and med-school applicants. Now, your level of success on the MCAT depends solely on what you do with this knowledge and if you actually apply it.
At MCAT Mastery, we are the intermediaries between MCAT writers and top MCAT scorers. We do the research, we run interviews, and we bring top-scorer strategies directly to you for you to apply and skyrocket your MCAT score so you can get admitted into your choice of med-school.
In this article, we've compiled 5 simple 'quick application' top-scorer MCAT strategies you can start using during your MCAT prep right away.
Take the time to read through each one because most of the tips here can lead to an almost immediate increase in your next practice test score.
So let's begin...
One of the things that makes the MCAT super stressful is the limited amount of time they give you to get through sections.
While you're writing, especially on exam day, it can actually feel like a ticking time bomb. So tell me, how clearly can someone really think when there is that kind of pressure to deal with?
Most likely not very clearly at all.
So here's a potential solution...
What if you developed the ability to speed read?
Speed reading has been around since the 1950s. It’s not about skimming – when you skim you don’t remember much.
If you’re interested in speed reading, you can read up on it in detail later. For now however, here’s what you need to know for the MCAT:
When reading any passage, restrain yourself from reading from one sentence to the other. Instead, start reading from one idea to the other idea.
An idea can be expressed in one sentence, or it can be expressed in several sentences. As you keep track of ideas, your reading speed will increase, AND so will your comprehension.
Remember to never read word by word.
One more thing, make a habit of using your finger or a pen/pencil to trace your reading and guide your eyes to specific words.
This alone will significantly increase your reading speed, while also decreasing distraction AND increasing your focus.
One of the biggest keys to success on the MCAT and especially the CARS section is having a solid understanding of what the author of the passage is communicating.
Top scorers have a few tricks up their sleeves to ensure they get a good grasp of the main point of the passage.
For example, a great top scorer technique is after each paragraph, writing what the paragraph is about. Write like you’re explaining it to your close family or friends. Keep it simple and informal.
Keep it to a few words max, explaining what the author is trying to convey in the paragraph. This will help in figuring out the main idea.
Also, before reading any passage, observe any tables, figures, and charts that are also provided. Sounds simple but you’ll not only be able to understand more this way, but also go through the passage faster.
You'll also notice that at the end of every passage, in tiny letters, is the author name, the year, and the title. Read all of that. Why? It will give you a big hint of what the passage and guide you’re reading will be about!
Lastly, carefully reading the title for science passages is also a great little hack because most scientists will tell you their conclusion in the title itself!
From our top scorer research, we can safely say that mastering your timing is one of the most important skills you need to work on if you want a competitive MCAT score.
Every top scorer applied smart strategies to make sure they never ran out of time on the exam. We've covered some of the most brilliant MCAT timing strategies in our guide, but here are some quick top scorer timing strategies you can test right away...
Our first top scorer recommendation for you is yourself when reading passages and answering questions. Not only will this help you understand how much time it takes you to get through passages and questions, but you’ll also get great practice with having a timer running in the background.
Do this enough times and unlike everyone else, you won’t be nervous at the thought of the timer running during the actual MCAT. You’ll be used to it.
Another technique is for exam day itself. In fact, practice doing this during your practice exams that you do under real testing conditions.
During the few minutes you get for the tutorial, jot down important equations on your notes page. Unleash them from your mind while they’re still fresh – we’re talking diagrams, equations, sin/cos values, etc.
Everything you know will be valuable! When you need to make use of them when they’re needed, you’ll be thankful for the time and mental energy you saved just by taking this little step./
A huge mistake most average MCAT test-takers will make on exam day is NOT picking the answer choice that actually answers the question.
This will usually happen when they're stuck between two answer choices.
You too, will (most likely) find yourself stuck between two answer choices at some points.
The key is recognizing that even though both answers are correct statements, only one actually answers the question.
Remember, if the statement is correct but does not relate to the question, it is wrong.
Keep this in mind because we've seen that it stumps a lot of students, confusing them in the midst of such a high-pressure exam.
Also, another trick to keep in mind for long questions is to read the last sentence of the question first!
Why? A lot of times a question is just overly-wordy and confusing, and as you’re wasting so much time reading it, you get to the end and realize that it was asking something very simple.
Save yourself all that trouble and read the last sentence first for really long questions (AND quickly look over all the answer choices as well!).
What do you do after you take a practice exam? Do you just check the answers, read up on the wrong answers and then move on? That's what every other premed is doing.
That's not how you squeeze out all the value you can get from practice exams.
Here's a mini strategic approach to maximizing the value you get from MCAT practice exams:
We hope you're finding this article valuable so far! You won't find a lot of these techniques anywhere else because no one has done the research to actually seek out what other high MCAT scorers do to beat the MCAT.
We know how frustrating MCAT prep can be. There's actually a lot of material to cover in such a limited time...
Plus on top of studying full time for the MCAT, most of us have simultaneous pressures from jobs, extracurriculars, research and clinical experience, AND our relationships (that we probably should probably stay away from during MCAT prep... but doesn't end up happening!)
Having a 'balanced schedule' at this stage of life can be incredibly hard - and if your scores aren't steadily improving on MCAT practice tests, that can get scary.
The good news is that no matter what your situation is, we know for a fact that you have the ability to achieve a competitive MCAT score that you need for med-schools to reach out to you...
Scoring over a 510 on the MCAT is very doable. Especially if you could gather a bunch of 90+ percentile MCAT scorers and find out exactly what kind of strategies they all applied to get such huge score increases.
Luckily, that's our main focus at MCAT Mastery. We've compiled all the best, most recommended, most valuable top scorer strategies in a downloadable PDF guide called the MCAT Mastery Strategy Guide.
We highly recommend you download it and check it out. It'll be your roadmap to steadily increase your MCAT score. Like the top scorers before you, you'll walk into the exam room feeling confident and ready to dominate the MCAT.
The link to get specific details about the guide, to see the table of contents, or to simply download it, is at the end of this article.
Think about it like this; you just read 5 mini strategies that individually may not make a massive difference in your score...
But if you're applying 50+ small and major PROVEN top scorer hacks in your studying process, that don't take much more time than you're already putting in (in-fact they save you time)...
How likely are you to actually rock the MCAT this year?
Most people are forced to write the MCAT more than once because they don't apply the correct MCAT study and testing strategies the first time around.
We want this to be the last time you ever write the MCAT.
We want 2018 to be the year you dominate the MCAT.
The MCAT Mastery Team
Your MCAT Success Mentors
P.S. We've said it many times before (throughout this blog) that the majority of those students who are sitting with you on exam day, won't have prepared with a special attention to strategy...
Yet alone top scorer, proven strategy that could have given them incredible confidence throughout MCAT prep and on the big day.
In fact, most will be extremely nervous on MCAT day and their anxiety will further cloud their ability to remember everything they studied.
You won't be in that position.
You can get a higher score on the MCAT having put in far less effort, stress, and time, when you leverage all the effective, proven-to-work top-scorer strategies we have in the MCAT Mastery Strategy Guide.
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