Prepare for the MCAT with our pre-med course
The Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) is used mainly by medical schools in the USA and Canada but it is also used by some medical schools in Europe as the entrance exam for graduate entry courses in medicine (normally 4 years).
The MCAT exam tests your knowledge in General Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, General Biology, Biochemistry, Physics, Psychology, and Sociology. It also tests your critical analysis and reasoning skills.
This means that the MCAT requires more than just an understanding of prior content. The MCAT is a test of critical reasoning skills that rewards students on their ability to apply test content. Knowing how to interpret and solve complex problems is the key to a great MCAT score.
The MCAT is a multiple choice exam that takes approximately 7 ½ hours to complete. This time includes a half hour break and two 10-minute breaks, as well as optional time at the beginning for a short tutorial.
All questions are multiple choice. Some are passage-based (you will be given a passage to read and assess, and a relevant question), and some are ‘discreet’ (you will be asked a short, direct question and given a choice of four answers).
You take the MCAT in the calendar year before you intend to start study. So, if you’re applying for entry in 2021, you should take the MCAT in 2020. There are a range of testing dates throughout the year so you can select the date that best suits you.
The MCAT can be taken:
up to 3 times in a single testing year
up to 4 times in a two year period
up to 7 times in a lifetime
The MCAT test is in four sections:
Section one – Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems (59 questions / 95 minutes)
This section tests chemistry and physics in the scope of biological systems, requiring understanding of organic and inorganic chemistry and physics as well as biology and biochemistry. Specifically, this section focuses on the physical principles underlying biological processes and chemical interactions that form the basis of a broader understanding of living systems. Understanding of research methods and statistics are also important to successfully reason through this material.
Section two – Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems (59 questions / 95 minutes)
This section mainly tests biology and biochemistry but also requires an understanding of organic and inorganic chemistry. Students will have to answer questions about the functions of biomolecules, processes unique to living organisms, and the organisation of biological systems. Understanding of research methods and statistics are also important to successfully reason through this material.
Section three – Psychological, Social and Biological Functions of Behaviour (59 questions / 95 minutes)
This section tests psychology and sociology so that student can demonstrate their understanding of the behavioural and sociocultural determinants of health. Specific material tested include behaviour and behaviour change, perceptions of self and others, cultural and social differences that influence well-being and social stratification. Understanding of research methods and statistics are also important to successfully reason through this material.
Section four – Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills (53 questions / 90 minutes)
The CARS section is similar to verbal reasoning sections providing passages with questions testing reading comprehension. The 500-600 word passages can cover topics ranging from the social sciences to the humanities, sometimes presenting in a convoluted or biased manner requiring the reader to consider what is being written from multiple perspectives.The passages are designed to discuss topics that are unfamiliar to the reader, but success in this section requires strictly using information from the passage without using previously known knowledge.
In terms of MCAT scoring, the overall score is achieved as follows:
The test consists of four sections, each scored from 118 to 132 with a median score of 125. The total MCAT score is a sum of the scores from each of the four sections, ranging from 472 to 528 with a median score of 500. Scores are released on a pre-determined date between 30–35 days after the exam date.
How London Medical Academy can prepare you for the MCAT
Our experienced team have developed our pre-med course to specifically prepare you for your MCAT, by familiarising you with the required content of the test, coaching you on past papers, and preparing you for time pressure – all with the aim of boosting your MCAT score.
If you’re applying to a medical school which requires a MCAT our pre-med course is here to make sure you feel confident and prepared for this important step in your medical education. Our experienced lecturers prepare you for the knowledge-based sections of the exam, as well as giving you the experience needed to deliver high-quality answers in the written section. By delivering our pre-med course in smaller class groups, we’re able to give you the personal attention needed to ensure you’re fully prepared with the necessary skills.
The numerous test simulations will also assist our students in practising efficient time management skills, so they are easily able to allocate their time effectively during the actual exam.
Take a MCAT preparatory course
To give yourself the best chance of success in passing the MCAT, see our next available courses here.
To find out more about previous pre-med students, view our testimonials here.
If you’d like more information on the MCAT, our pre-med course, and how we can help you, contact us today.