OMG!!! Your MCAT is 2 weeks away and you are utterly confused as you legit haven’t started the S in studying. What more? You can’t even postpone it! It sure calls for a lot of anxiety and panic. I’m pretty sure that you can list out how the blame is yours and all that but chill, now isn’t the time to apportion blame. It is definitely not the time to be greasy fingered cause you have just 14 days to make your fantasized success become a reality. So, while 14 days is quite a short time, a whole lot can still be achieved in that period.
All you would ever need is just in one word…..PRACTICE! I’m going to break it down, list out, and explain the ways to help you improve your score.
- ACTION 1: THINK POSITIVE
- ACTION 2: MOTIVATE YOURSELF
- ACTION 3: FOCUS ON HIGH YEILD AREAS
- ACTION 4: TAKE NOTE OF THEIR TRICK WORDS
- ACTION 5: DEVELOP THE HABIT OF LANDING ON THE RIGHT ANSWER FIRST
- ACTION 6: TAKING PRACTICE EXAMS
- ACTION 7: DRAW A TIMETABLE
Action 1: Think Positive
Our mind is very powerful so, thinking that you have no chance of passing well in your MCAT will actually get you nowhere. You have to think positive, see yourself celebrating your success as this will ginger your preparation more than anything. You can choose the exam in a broken down format that makes it look way easier to you. Wondering what I mean? Here is an example – Why don’t you, instead of seeing the MCAT as a mighty test that determines your future as a medical student, rather, see it as an opportunity to show off that knowledge of science and technology embedded in you. View the questions as brain teasers and stand up to the challenge! I would also add this: Do not see it as an obstacle but rather as a stepping stone. Drop the pressure and boost your score!
Action 2: Motivate Yourself
Even as you think positively, you should learn to motivate yourself. If you have your loved ones sticking up for you, then that’s amazing! If peradventure, you are on this alone, think of what motivates you. Is it the white coat, or the shameful looks of those who thought you couldn’t do it? Remind yourself why you started and do not put yourself to shame. Being premed is difficult yes, but not impossible to surpass. Achieving your own goals and turning your dreams into reality is the best present you can give yourself.
Action 3: Focus on High Yeild Areas
Granted, for you to pass a test especially one like the MCAT impressively, a certain amount of knowledge is needed, but then, you have only 14 days and you definitely can’t cover all you need to in that period of time. The key is to focus on high yield areas. i.e. areas where questions are frequently brought from. E.g. topics such as hormones, organic reactions, equilibrium, and carbonyl substitution reaction. You should go through their previous tests to search up on high yield areas and study them deeply within these 14 days and watch it increase your score tremendously.
Action 4: Take Note of Their Trick Words
Just like all other tests either written or oral, MCAT too has its tricks. Firstly, note that they are sure to give out questions on topics they know most students learned or where taught. If students were taught on wavelength, they’d bring out questions on frequency; acidity, they’d bring out on pH. They are also known to give in-between lines questions as it is a way to throw careless readers off track (Hey…that you are starting your preparation now doesn’t make you a careless reader). They also bring out questions on compounds with multiple ions and do input the word ‘NOT’ to complicate the questions to the students.
Action 5: Develop The Habit of Landing On The Right Answer First: When you read a question, instead of going through the given options to eliminate those which seem to not be the answer and then further deliberate on the right answer, it is advisable to instead think of the answer right away before checking if it is among the options given. If it is not, then you can begin the process of cancelling out and do not be scared to take a guess in cases where the answer is not known.
Action 6: Taking Practice Exams: When I said earlier that all you need is in one word…PRACTICE, I meant this. Take a full-length practice exam. Score the exam and go over each question carefully starting from your weakest points. Try and understand what prompted your selecting that answer and review concepts that are not clear to you. You should use the AAMC question bank to brush up yourself in each section. Spend just 30% answering practice questions under timed conditions and the remaining 70% reviewing each answer putting more focus on the ones which you failed and those you left unanswered because you didn’t know it. Track your progress with the questions failed and unanswered and make sure you try your possible best to get them right.
Action 7: Draw A Timetable: Devote a particular number of hours to your study for your MCAT. Preferably, at least 10 hours and you’re your timetable such that you eat and get enough rest both for your body and your brain yet achieve all you set out to achieve. Make sure that you keep to this timetable as consistency is key. If your body permits, you can add more hours. However, be sure to use a strategy that works for you as what works for others may not necessarily work in your favor. Find out what reading pattern suits you and work with it.
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I really hope that this article does good for you. Success to all those writing soon. Remember that your MCAT success is not determined by a score, it is determined by your getting a score that makes you competitive for your first choice med-school. Don’t give up! Think positive!