Should You Retake the MCAT?

Maybe you freaked way out on test day or your scores turned out wildly unbalanced.

For whatever reason you might be considering retaking the MCAT, deciding to retake really depends on you!


Here are things to consider when facing the decision to relive test day…


The Rules.

First off, you need to know the official word on retesting from the AAMC…

  • In a single testing year, the MCAT exam can be taking up to three times
  • In a two consecutive-year period, the MCAT exam can be taken up to four times
  • In a lifetime, the MCAT exam can be taken up to seven times

Also worth noting: you can only be registered for one seat at a time and that no-shows and voids count as attempts!


Potential Med School Policies.

Don’t forget to check in on the medical programs you’re applying to and research specific MCAT retake rules! Different schools may look at multiple scores in a ways that can influence your decision to retest.

It’s imperative to note whether the schools you’re eyeing consider

only the highest overall score, average all scores or they might only consider the most recent score.


Prep Check.

Now that you’ve taken the test once and want to improve here are two important questions to ask yourself and answer honestly:

How did you prepare the first time?
What will you do differently in preparing this time?

Pinpointing the issues and deciding how to move forward in studying for the next time is key. Is it just that you didn’t prepare enough or was it the way you studied? We would suggest that the essential factor in improving you score is PRACTICE. With MCAT Cracker practice tests you will get better at testing taking in general while also studying the content tested.


Postponing Instead.

If you having serious concerns before the big day and are already thinking about retesting, consider postponing your test instead. Depending on how far out test day is you might even be able to get a slight refund. Check out the different MCAT rescheduling fees according the different zones below:

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Basically the only acceptable answer to

‘Should I retake the MCAT?’ is

it depends.


If you go with retesting, remember with MCAT Cracker you build on your test taking skills, time management, accuracy, confidence, and improve you MCAT scores!


MCAT 2015 Section Breakdown: Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations

This is Part 3 of a series breaking down each section for the new MCAT 2015. Be sure to check out the whole series to get the full rundown of all things new with the upcoming MCAT 2015! These really aren’t just revamped versions of the old 3 sections: Biological Science, Physical Sciences, and Verbal Reasoning, these integrated giant sections are really brand new monster sections: 1) Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems, 2) Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems, 3) Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations and 4) Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills.In case you haven’t figured it out: The magic word for the MCAT 2015 is integration. You’re not being tested on straightforward subjects more like all your knowledge will be tried intertwined together. The Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations section is not to be underestimated as a just a psych section. To quote the AAMC, “This section tests your understanding of the ways psychological, social, and biological factors influence perceptions and reactions to the world; behavior and behavior change; what people think about themselves and others; the cultural and social differences that influence well-being; and the relationships between social stratification, access to resources, and well-being.” Well… that sounds like… a lot! Let’s take a closer look.

The addition of this section comes with the move towards a more holistic testing field looking for well-rounded incoming med students. Because really doctors and medical professionals in real world settings don’t just deal with the sciences and diseases; they have to consider the human factor. So this new section dedicated to access your understand of the impact of behavior on health and it, again from AAMC, “communicates the need for future physicians to be prepared to deal with the human and social issues of medicine.” You can read the AAMC’s full overview of the section here. This section is definitely where a background in Public Health will come into play!

As you know the MCAT 2015 is testing for 10 Foundation Concepts: the Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems section tests 3, the Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological System section covers 2, and the Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations section wins with the most coming in with 5 Foundational Concepts being tested here. This means this section and the material covered is BROAD but just like the other sections we’ve broken down here on the blog, you get the same number of questions and the same amount time for this section. The Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations section will consist of around 60 passage-based and freestanding questions and you with have 95 minutes to answer them. Check out MCAT Cracker’s video introduction guide to this section and those Foundational Concepts covered below:

With the previously discussed sections all about the NATURAL sciences and this one really focusing on the SOCIAL sciences, no doubt this section can be a tricky! This part of the big exam will be asking you to pull information from courses like psychology, sociology, and biology, not to mention it’s the integration and how all these subjects combine in the medical field. If you’re not completely comfortable with the social and behavioral aspects of public health, well MCAT Cracker can really give you a leg up on acing for this section! MCAT Cracker has this whole new section figured out and will help you get a handle on it! It is possible and you can conquer this new best of the MCAT 2015! Happy Studying!