Anyone hoping to become a medical doctor will have to score extremely well on the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT). This all-important test is administered numerous times every year, though individuals are advised to take the exam during the year in which they will apply to medical school. The MCAT test is one of the most difficult academic tests in existence, and doing well on it requires a high level of native intelligence, mastery of many different subject areas, and intensive preparation. There is a strong emphasis on scientific knowledge and principles on the test. In addition, the MCAT has now been thoroughly revised. As of 2015, the well-known MCAT format is history.
The old MCAT had four components: a Writing Sample, and three sections of multiple-choice questions on the Physical Sciences, Verbal Reasoning, and the Biological Sciences. The new MCAT also has four components, but there’s no longer a Writing Sample. It was dropped because many medical school administrators reported to test developers that the essays weren’t very helpful in predicting which test takers would do well in med school. In additions, a new section was added because there is concern among medical experts that many new doctors are lacking in the social and psychological skills that will enable them to effectively provide medical care in an America that is becoming increasingly multicultural every day.
The four sections of the MCAT2015 are: Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems, Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems, Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior, and Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills. Each of the first three sections contains 59 questions and has a time limit of 95 minutes. Critical Analysis and Reasoning Sills contains 53 questions with a 90 minute time limit. Taking the new MCAT is an all-day commitment; the entire test takes about seven and a half hours to complete. Scores on each section will range from 118 to 132, with 125 being the midpoint score. The four section scores will be added together to create a total score which will fall between 470 and 528, with a 500 midpoint. As high MCAT scores become increasingly important for winning admission to medical school, getting that high score has become even more difficult with the development of the new MCAT.
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