Every student who wants to be a medical practitioner has a hurdle to cross before achieving their dreams. One of them is the Medical College Admission Test, also called the MCAT.
The MCAT is a computer-based standardized test to get admitted into medical schools in Canada and the United States. For over 90 years, about 35,000 students write and prepare for the MCAT every year, and only a tiny fraction get their desired admission.
MCAT takes place in different computer centers across the country. You can go to the official website of AAMC to check for the center closest to you. Before you get to that stage, however, there are some things you should know. We have highlighted some of them for you here.
Things to Know Before Taking the MCAT
Before taking the MCAT, know the best time to register, the subjects you will be writing, the duration of the exam, and any other thing you deem necessary.
Registration Dates and Time
The MCAT is administered 14 times a year, and registration always opens intermittently. As you plan to take the test, research which dates are available and how they work for you. Before you pick a date, remember that the results are released after about 30 days. Therefore, if the school you plan to apply for has their application closing soon, you may want to pick an exam date early enough.
However, you may not get the date you want. Thousands of students write the MCAT annually, which causes gridlock in the administration of the exam. Thus, exam dates are fixed on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The Duration of the Exam
The Medical College Admission Test takes place for seven and a half hours. This time consists of 90-95 minutes for each subject and breaks in-between. Therefore, as you prepare for the exam, you should practice with a timer to get used to the time pressure.
Subjects You Will Be Tested on During MCAT
You will be tested on four subjects during your MCAT, and they are:
- Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems;
- Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems;
- Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills; and
- Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior.
How to Prepare for MCAT
The MCAT is unarguably one of the toughest examinations you will have to write in your life. Therefore, you need to prepare adequately for the challenge ahead. To keep it short, we have listed three things that will help you as you prepare to write the test.
- Prepare adequately
- Download the six-step guide on the AAMC website
- Write it when you are fully ready
If you want to work in medical research, work in the medical technology industry or become a doctor in Canada, it is vital to know how the MCAT is administered before writing the exam. Your MCAT score will significantly influence any school when considering your application. Therefore, you must give it your all and prepare well in other aspects of your application.