If you are prepping for college admissions, you may be interested in learning about the MCAT and the type of school that requires it for admission. There are so many different entrance exams to sift through and so many different reasons you might need to take one if you are a prospective grad school student. To differentiate one acronym for another, you really need to sit down and discover which college entrance exam is for which type of student.
The MCAT, which stands for Medical College Admissions Test, is a standardized admissions test that prospective medical school students must take before they be able to apply to med school. Read on, and find out what you will be tested on, how the tests are scored, and what an acceptable score looks like.
What is the Purpose of the MCAT for Medical School Admissions?
Med school requires to complete rigorous and challenging coursework. While a student who scores highly on an admissions test does is not guaranteed to succeed, it has been found that a score on the MCAT does demonstrate a student’s ability to comprehend the standard med school curriculum and to show that they have a wide of range of competencies. The MCAT score is not the only thing that will be considered when making admissions decisions, but scores are very important when used in combination with other factors like GPA and prerequisites, according to the Association for American Medical Colleges.
What Are You Tested on When You take the MCAT?
If you would like to eventually enter med school, you will more than likely need to take this standardized test. The MCAT has multiple-choice questions and will evaluate your ability to problem-solve, to think critically, and to grasp social science, natural and behavioral science concepts.
There are currently four different test sections that are all multiple choice. These sections include: Biological Foundations of Living Systems, Psychological Foundations of Behavior, Chemical Foundations of Biological Systems, and Analysis & Reasoning. This is why you must first take a specific set of courses before you can apply to medical school. You may not have to major in a specific area, but taking these courses is a must. The common prerequisites that will prepare you for the MCAT and for med school as a whole include: Biology, Physics, English, and Chemistry.
How is the MCAT Scored and What Score Do You Need to Get Into Med School?
You receive five different scores on the MCAT. This includes one score for each individual section and then a total score. The scores for each section will range between 118 and 132 and the total score for all of the sections will be between 472 and 528. While the top score of 528 will help you choose your pick of med schools, you will be in the top 50th percentile of students if you earn between a 510 and 515. This is a good target to aim for when you schedule your exam date and start to prepare.
It is best to prepare over a span of time to take your MCAT so that you can earn a high score the first time around. If you are not happy with your score, it is possible to retake the exam for improvement. Now that you know about the MCAT and type of school that requires it for admission, it is time to adopt effective study habits so that you can earn an excellent score.
Related Resource: Common Application