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> I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHERE
I MAY PURCHASE MCAT PRACTICE TESTS AND/OR BOOKS. I
> ALSO WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE ANY SPECIAL DISCOUNT
PRICES FOR THE MCAT
> CLASSES YOU TEACH IN FLORIDA.
------ reply 8/2/00
You can purchase top quality MCAT practice tests at http://www.aamc.org,
Other material is available (in bookstores) from Kaplan, Princeton
etc. Kaplan's material deviates from the style of the MCAT but
free of mistakes. Princeton's questions more faithfully represent
of the MCAT but contain sporadic mistakes. Material I have seen
other sources is of poor, and/or inconsistent quality. The best
prep book, in my opinion, is Kaplan's Comprehensive MCAT Review-->
Sorry, I do not have any special discount prices for the MCAT
PS 11/8/03 I believe EXAMKRACKERS are
NOW the best MCAT prep books.[II]
> Mr. Hochstim-
> Hello, I am writing to you from Jeffersonville, Indiana
and I really found
> your website helpful. I am going to be a freshman at DePauw
> Greencastle, IN. I have always wanted to go into medicine
as a career, so I
> thought it would be to my benefit to start preparing myself
now. Basically, I
> need advice on what classes to take, and when to take them.
I never have been
> a good standardized test-taker, so that's why I want to
start early. Any
> advice you could give me would be wonderful. I would also
love to come to
> your summer seminar, but it's a little too far away from
home, just for a
> course. Do you know of any other programs of your type that
would be around
> Thank you!
------ reply 8/6/00
I'm glad you found my site helpful. As far as deciding which
classes to take
your best bet is to consult a good premedical adviser at DePauw.
If you are
unable to, here's what I would recommend:
1. Since you have to take 1 year of Bio and Physics and 2
years of Chem as a
bare minima, and then a year of Calculus and English just to
acceptance to most med. schools, you should do some checking
to find out
which teachers to take and which to avoid. All instructors are
2. Taking general chem along with Bio or before, makes lots
of sense because
Bio without Chem makes a lot less sense.
3. Avoid taking Physics with Orgo -- its just too brutal.
4. To do well on the Biological sciences on the MCAT it helps
a whole bunch
to have taken a Cell Biology course, a Molecular Bio course,
Sorry, I know of no MCAT programs like mine in Indiana.
Best of luck,[III]
> Do you know where I could get a list of topics that have
> previous MCAT's? I went and got some info from Kaplen and
they had the
> topics from Aprils test and now I am looking for previous
> ideas where I may be able to find them?
Beyond the three recent test analysis posted by Kaplan I do
not know where
you can get additional useful information about other MCATs.
Due to the
high variability of coverage on the MCAT from form to form and
administration to the next, I do not see any great advantage
any more information of this kind, since it is unlikely to correlate
what you will confront when taking the test.
All the areas listed in the (somewhat outdated) Student Manual
may appear on
the MCAT in a form that requires you to be knowledgeable of material
included in the passage or in the independent question. What
would be useful
to know, is the relative frequency* with which a subject tends
over a span of many years. I've been interviewing students after
since 1991 and there is a clear pattern of relative importance
that can be
broken down into three tiers**. When studying for the MCAT it
is best to
cycle through/review ALL topics many (10-20) times, but initially
more of your resources to understanding first tier topics. If
you have the
time, you can then focus more on 2nd tier topics and so on. (PLEASE
am not recommending working on 1st tier topics first!)
For example in Physics, Newton's Laws and the kinematic equations
first tier, rotational motion and optics would be second tier
expansion and the concept of resistivity (not resistance) would
tier. While all of these topics have appeared on the MCAT. The
subjects have had a greater number of questions devoted to them
years. Here's more...
1st tier = Oxidation/Reduction; Acid/Base/pKa's
2nd tier = Reactions of ROH & RCOOH; Grignard synthesis
3rd tier = Reactions of PCl3, PCl5, and SOCl2; Addition to alkynes
Good Luck on the MCAT!
*Based on the percentage of questions devoted to a topic over
rather then whether that topic appeared on the MCAT during any
**Sorry I am not able to post detailed information on Premed411.com
in time for [IV]
the upcoming MCAT.
Time: Tue, 15-Aug-2000 00:23:49
GMT IP: 220.127.116.11
:First of all, I wanted to thank you,
Rich, for your excellent
resource; this website has been great help to me as I climb the
mountain of medical school application process. I would like
outside opinion however, about my own personal case, an
evaluation of my chances of getting accepted and maybe some
advice about the best course of action.
I am not a science major, I am graduating this december with
degree in International Cultural Studies and Mathematics. My
cum. GPA is 3.99, science and humanities both 3.9. I took all
the prerequisit science, plus anatomy, but really didn't take
any more than what is minimal, although I have a great deal of
The only problem that I see in my application is my MCAT score.
I took it in April 2000, and, unfortunately, the day of the test
I came down with a roaring kidney infection. I wrote the exam
anyway (fearing deadlines would make taking the august mcat
impossible) and directly after the test, I went to the emergency
room to recieve medical attention. To make a long story short,
I didn't get as good scores as I believe I could have under
different circumstances (I got 7 in physical, 8 in verbal, 9
bio). But the very last thing I want to do is take that test
over again. With the timeframe I am looking at and also sheer
desire not to put myself through the MCAT again, I really don't
want to retake.
So, am I wasting my time and money filling out all these
applications? I got my AMCAS application in to 14 schools, and
am now working on secondaries. Please let me know an honest
evaluation of my medical school prospects.
You have a great GPA, but the MCAT scores do hurt. Even with
reason for not doing that well, medical school admission committees
expect you to retake the test. I know you really don't want to,
retaking the test may be a bigger issue than the scores you make
second try. Still you do have a shot if you do not retake, it
may be around
5% to 20% depending on other factors which you did not mention
> Time: Thu, 17-Aug-2000 03:07:07
GMT IP: 18.104.22.168
> Hi Rich,
> Your webpage is awesome. It provides a great source of
> information. I hate to bombard you with my trivial
> question.....but it has been bothering me alot lately, and
> hope you will be a source of information that I will be
> use as a source of guidance, as I am lost in space at this
> Currently I am a entering senior at a well reputated
> university. I am doing a double major in Neural Science
> Psychology. Throughout my college life I have always
> deliberated about whether I was premed or not. I had difficult
> times, throughout the years, which were reflective of domestic
> and financial burdens. Although my grades are not near
> topnotch....we are speaking of Science GPA of 3.0, and overall
> GPA of 3.3....I can not dismiss my strong passion of serving
> an MD. I have considered dropping out of the premed curriculum
> serveral times, only to find myself going back to it....it
> become a undesirable quench, something that I yearn
> for,regardless of how difficult the task at hand is, or
> I have done in relevant course. I find myself constantly
> back to the requisites to fulfill my dreams of becoming
> Regardless of my grades, which are not so Hot, we are taking
> C+ in Bio I and Orgo I, I know I want to continue on this
> I haven't taken the MCATS yet, but plan on taking it in
> such that I will be able to apply next year. What do you
> of my situation? Please be candid in your response.
> I thank you in advance, for your time and diligence.
Since you are now firmly committed to
the premed track, you can always get
into a good medically related graduate program if your MCAT scores
the trick. You probably need a pair of twelves and an eleven
to have a
reasonable chance of being accepted now, but if you rack up a
record your undergrad performance will become largely irrelevant.
to demonstrate to admission committee members that you have made
lasting commitment to working toward a career in medicine and
that you can
make the grades to prove it. Your not so hot undergraduate record
compensated, to a degree, by additional volunteer/work experience,
high MCAT score will not be as useful an indicator of your commitment
your overall undergraduate record, i.e., you could get lucky,
will need to take at least a year of graduate work to be competitive.
Thanks for your comments re website,
and best of luck!
If you kick ass on the MCAT you DO have
a chance with state schools, but the
mean GPA and Sci-GPA of those excepted to medical school is 3.6.
is the mean there is some room on the lower end. I have know
that got accepted with a GPA and Sci-GPA similar to yours, but
they all made
a 33 or better on the MCAT. I think with a 32 you have a chance,
really need a score above 33 to be competitive.
> I am so gald tha I found your website, it is really a great
site. I really
> need your help in answering these questions for me please.
> I volunteered at two different hospitals two yaers ago,
now I am planning
> to volunteer again at VA hospital in LaJolla in California.
My qestion is
> volunteering at emergency room will be considerd as a plus
> applications for medical school, or volunteering in a different
> be better?
> Second, is a lot of volunteering in hospitals good on my
> Third, what other activities do you suggest for me to do?
> Thank you and I appreciate your response. please if you
have time e-mail
> me at Kurds00@yahoo.com
Glad you found the site useful.
The more clinical experience you get, with "hands on"
dealings with patients
the better, so volunteering at an emergency room would be a bigger
you get direct clinical experience. On the other hand, if you
were to only
do "gofer" work this would be far less beneficial.
I'd recommend any
volunteer work that met the above criteria, but while more is
will quickly reach a point of diminishing returns and may want
your energies toward other things, like MCAT preparation.
> Time: Sat, 26-Aug-2000 03:13:32
GMT IP: 22.214.171.124
> Hello, I am a highly unlikely medical school candidate,
> gpa of about 2.8, (I know) , MCAT practice scores of about
> know, I was surprised, too. I'm currently in a m.s. program
> Epidemiology, (thesis), have about a 3.8 or 3.9 there -
> basically, finishing with All A's and one B, about 40 hours
> worth of credit. What the heck can I possibly do to get
> in? Is there anything at all, or have I blown it? I'm
> unable/unwilling to go overseas, due to family obligations,
> is there anything (postbacc? do better on the mcat?) I can
> make myself a less awful candidate? I have the volunteer
> research thing happening, though I probably won't be published.
> That's it. Help, help, help. :)
Hi, Jane, your undergrad scores are not that important. If
you do well
on the MCAT you are in great shape! See the Email archivefor
more on this.
> I'm 17 and starting my senior year in high school. I'm trying
> between attending Baylor University and the University of
Texas at Austin.
> I plan on attempting to get into med school some day. Baylor
> established premed program ... UT has no premed. Would I
> my chances of getting into med school by attending UT?
No, UT is a great school. As long as you educate yourself about
premedical process, which you should do anyway, there's really
I have a rather general question and
I don't know where to turn to find out
about it so lucky you - you're email address was right there
on the 411
I am finishing up my science requirements
for medical school. I already
have a four year degree in something completely different. I
about gathering letters of recommendation. Do you get them and
send them in
yourself or do you send them to a temporary 'holding" place
or how does this
work? I would like to get a couple letters of recommendation
now before my
writers forget about me (I won't be applying to medical school
year). But I don't know how kosher it is to send in letters that
residing with me for over a year - how does this work?
Your website is wonderful - I'm sorry
to unload this question on you but do
you either know the answer or know where I can go to find out?
you could, email me at home DianaWRH@aol.com. Thanks for any
light you can
shed on this!!
Thanks for your kind words about my site. Here's how those
letters of rec.
work. Some go directly to the premedical committee of your school
go directly to AMCAS. In the case of non-AMCAS schools there
are forms for
each particular school. So what you need to do is to get the
forms and provide your prof./employer with the appropriate forms
otherwise). In the case of letters which go to the premedical
frequently no forms are required. The bottom line is that you
never get to
see or touch the letters, unless the author wants to show you
what a nice
person they are. [:-)]
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