Hi. My name is Andrew George, a 99th percentile MCAT tutor for MCAT Self Prep, the creators of the Free MCAT Prep Course. I am excited to tell you how I was able to score in the 99th percentile on the MCAT without spending thousands on a test prep company.
As I was trying to decide how I was going to get ready for the MCAT, I felt extremely conflicted. Many of my good friends had already signed up for a local MCAT prep program and seemed to be well on their way toward a great MCAT score. As for myself, however, I didn’t want to spend the thousands upon thousands of dollars that this program required. I also didn’t want to study 20 hours a week during the semester according to the rigid study schedule dictated by this prep company. After all, I wanted to maintain my grades, finish accruing needed shadowing hours, and still have a life. Yet, at the same time, I felt sold on the idea that I needed to spend thousands of dollars in order to get the top score I dreamed of.
After thinking about it some more, I finally decided that I just didn’t have the bandwidth to take the course, and set about studying for the exam on my own. It was challenging and stressful at times, but eventually I was able to achieve my dream score – the 99th percentile.
After getting my score back, I decided to become an MCAT tutor. I received a job offer from one of the major test prep companies, but ended up turning down the opportunity. Why? Because I saw the outrageous prices they were going to be charging my students. That’s why I decided to tutor for MCAT Self Prep. The goal of MCAT Self Prep is to help students prepare in the best possible way for the best possible price.
In order to help our students prepare in the best possible way, we analyzed the experiences of over 50 students that scored between the 95th and 100th percentile and looked for patterns in their preparation. Out of the many things that top scorers do, there are 5 main keys that, if done with diligence, will almost certainly result in a top MCAT score:
- Set a goal
- Make a plan
- Sprint to the finish
These five keys to MCAT success are the reason I and so many other students were able to achieve top scores on the new MCAT. You don’t need to spend thousands upon thousands of dollars on a test prep company to get the score you want. If you will just implement these principles the very best that you can, you will get the score you want. In this post, I want to briefly outline each one of these keys and help you see that a top score is within your reach.
First of all, you need to set a goal. If you don’t have a solid MCAT goal, you will have no direction in your MCAT studying. Here are a few things you will want to consider as you make your MCAT goal:
- What does an MCAT score mean?
- What is a good MCAT score?
- What MCAT score do I need to get into the caliber of school I am hoping to go to?
The first phase of our Free eCourse answers these questions and more. Our eCourse is based on the experiences of over 50 students that scored between the 95th and 100th percentile on the new MCAT. We looked for patterns in their preparation and distilled it all down into this single resource. It will help you set the MCAT goal that is right for you.
After you set your goal, you will need to make a detailed plan that, if followed, will result in attaining your goal. This is the most important step in your preparation. Making a good MCAT plan consists of four simple steps:
- Figuring out how much time you need to devote to studying.
- Understanding what tools are available to help you succeed.
- Deciding which tools you are going to use.
- Making a study timeline.
When it comes to step one, a good rule of thumb is to study between 200 and 1000 hours. The amount that you personally need to study is dependent on several factors like your goal MCAT score, your GPA, and how much time you realistically have available to study. The reason you should decide on a time amount is that it will help you know how much to study each week. One of the best things about our Free eCourse is that it only requires you to study one hour a day during 3 out of the 4 study phases. This will allow you to spend the rest of your time taking care of other important matters of business such as accruing shadowing hours and filling out your medical school application.
Next, you will need to know what materials are the best ones available to help you succeed. I won’t go into huge detail on this now, but just know that there is no reason to spend thousands of dollars on materials from the major test prep companies. One of the first lessons of our Free eCourse will show you how to get all the materials you need for less than a few hundred dollars. And the best part is that our Free eCourse has many of these free and low-cost resources directly built in to each lesson, helping you study the right material at the right time.
After you decide which materials to use, you will want to decide on a study timeline. Another great aspect of our Free eCourse is that it acts as your study timeline, outlining exactly what you should do each day of study. For those of you requiring a greater degree of customization, we have a create-your-own study plan app in which you can design your own general and specific study timelines. For the general timeline, you will simply divide your total study period into a few different phases (i.e. phase 1 during winter semester, phase 2 during winter break, phase 3 during the spring semester, and phase 4 during the summer break) and decide how many hours you will study during each phase. Then each week, you will make your specific study timeline for the upcoming week, outlining exactly what you will do each day of the week. Our create-your-own study plan app is extremely versatile and enables you to take total control over your MCAT studies.
The third key to getting the score you want is to practice. The MCAT doesn’t test you on your ability to memorize thousands of random concepts. Rather, it expects you to be able to use those concepts to solve problems in a logical manner. Once again, there is no reason to spend tons of money on practice problems. Our Free eCourse will introduce you to thousands of low-cost and even free practice materials. And we only recommend the best, those used by top MCAT scorers. Our eCourse also has a built-in score tracker, allowing you to track your scaled MCAT score everyday of study.
As a member of the MCAT Self Prep eCourse, you will also have the ability to schedule online one-on-one tutoring sessions with our 99th percentile MCAT tutors. One of the best aspects of our tutoring program is that our tutors craft their tutoring sessions around your needs. If you are struggling to solve a practice problem, our top tutors can walk you through it step-by-step and teach you how to conquer a similar problem in the future. This way, you will be milking every practice problem for all its worth. And effective practice is what sets top scorers above the rest.
The fourth key is to review effectively. In a typical college class, most students are able to get by with a very simple strategy for review, usually entailing taking notes and reviewing them once or twice before taking the exam. Because the MCAT covers such a vast amount of material, you are going to need a much more advanced and organized review strategy. Phase 0 of our Free eCourse will introduce you to our signature system of review, enabling you to have every single MCAT concept fresh in your mind on test day.
The final key to your MCAT success is sprinting to the finish. This simply means making the most of the final month of your MCAT preparation. The final month can be extremely stressful unless you plan it carefully. The final phase of our Free eCourse, MCAT Bootcamp, will help you know exactly what to do to to milk every last minute of studying for all it is worth.
So, there you have it. Everything you need for MCAT success summed up in 5 simple principles. They are easy enough to understand, yet hard to implement effectively. Our Free eCourse is the key to implementing these principles and staying on track toward reaching your MCAT goal. So, don’t wait. Get started on your MCAT prep today. And if you have any questions along the way, feel free to reach out by contacting me through the contact information located in my tutoring profile. Good luck studying!