MCAT preparation is hectic for students who are giving the test for the first time. You have to keep control of your thoughts and emotions and follow a proper study plan. But, the thing does not end here. The constant trauma of failing the test stays on the mind. So, students frequently seek help for the guidance of MCAT on Reddit.
Reddit has helped many students in the preparation of their MCAT. So, we have read many stories of different people who discussed their study routine and passed the test. If you are giving the MCAT for the first time, this guide will help you a lot.
It contains different study strategies and online courses for students. We have also reviewed the best books for MCAT preparation that will be beneficial for your study.
Table of Contents
- 1 Essential Points for MCAT Study on Reddit
- 2 Recommended books for Studying for MCAT from Reddit users
- 2.1 MCAT Complete 7-Book Subject Review 2020-2021: Online + Book + 3 Practice Tests (Kaplan Test Prep):
- 2.2 MCAT 528 Advanced Prep 2021–2022:
- 2.3 The Premed Playbook: Guide to the Medical School Personal Statement: Write Your Best Story. Secure Your Interview:
- 2.4 ExamKrackers MCAT Complete Study Package/ 6 Book Package 9th Edition:
- 2.5 MCAT Verbal Practice: 108 Passages for the new CARS Section:
- 3 Final words
Essential Points for MCAT Study on Reddit
Many students have shared their experiences on their exam and their study routine. We have picked the most important points and explained them to you. Although everyone has their own schedule and style of studying, our guide is ideal for all types of students.
Start studying before time:
MCAT is not for students who believe they can study at the last minute and achieve a good score. When you have so much syllabus to cover and so many other students in your competition, you need to plan ahead of things that other people might not consider.
Such a mindset will help you cover your syllabus before time, and you won’t need to panic at the last moment that you have so much to study. You will also have extra time to revise your syllabus and cover some problematic portions in the subjects.
Many students recommend taking the MCAT over the summer as you don’t have other classes to attend. It will allow you to compress your study timeline.
Break the course into pieces:
You cannot start studying one day and complete the course the next. So, a powerful strategy to adopt at this time is to break your MCAT study phases into two pieces.
The first phase should comprise learning all the content, and the second one should test your abilities. You can also split the first phase into smaller pieces, depending on your study style. For example, you can first complete every subject individually or learn one chapter daily of all the subjects.
When you have covered the whole syllabus, it is time to revise the course and solve questions to test your abilities.
Don’t study too many books:
Studying too many books for a single subject will make you confused. Every book will have different concepts, and you won’t be able to grasp one in this case.
So, the best choice is to use one reliable book throughout the studying schedule. The books reviewed below are also helpful if you want to use one source only.
If you have more time, you can also read some different books and make your own notes. Such a strategy will help you clearly understand all concepts.
Consider online sources:
Online sources and study notes are the easiest and free techniques to study for MCAT. One thing many students don’t know is that AAMC has paid Khan Academy to create thousands of hours of videos for children who want to study them for free.
These videos are available 24/7, and you can use them to clear your concepts.
So, instead of relying on preparation companies, a better strategy is to use these free tools and make your success easier.
Consider practice tests:
Solving practice tests are beneficial as they give you knowledge about the MCAT format and make your problem-solving abilities better. The more practice you do, the better you will perform in the test.
You can buy the AAMC practice tests or other third party full-length papers, depending on your convenience. We personally recommend solving AAMC practice tests first and then moving on to others if you have time.
It is also a better idea to complete the whole syllabus before time, so you have enough left for solving the practice tests. The most famous practice test makers are Kaplan and Altius. Their practice tests are also harder than the AAMC practice tests.
Recommended books for Studying for MCAT from Reddit users
Many people on Reddit also recommended books for MCAT study. We picked the best from them and reviewed them here.
The complete 7-book subject review for MCAT by Kaplan is an essential guide for anyone giving the exam for the first time. If you have no books or ideas about studying, this whole set will help you.
- The book contains pictures, diagrams, and graphs to visualize the information.
- The book also contains instructions to access their online content, which is a huge bonus.
- The best thing about these books is that they are super-easy to follow.
- We like the way they have put practice questions at the end of each chapter, which helps to solidify the concepts.
- It makes the MCAT study more manageable and easy.
- This is the best book for students giving the test for the first time.
- Some people think that the introductions to some chapters are very long and unnecessary.
- A few users could not access the online tool.
The MCAT 528 advanced prep book is also from Kaplan. Many users on Reddit recommended this book for the MCAT study. This latest edition is the best if you are giving the test in 2021. Expert authors have compiled this, book and it contains many questions.
- The book clearly explains all the concepts that are difficult for many people to master.
- If you are preparing in advance for the MCAT, it is better to start from this book.
- It also helps outline the study plan for the future along with your strengths and weaknesses.
- It is an efficient book with immense knowledge in a short amount of pages.
- The practice passages are very helpful.
- It also offers online access where you can perform the tests.
- It also has many helpful test-taking tips.
- Many people think that it does not replace a full study set.
- The online test system is not much efficient.
The Premed Playbook: Guide to the Medical School Personal Statement: Write Your Best Story. Secure Your Interview:
The Premed Playbook is an excellent guide for medical students who want to secure their interview. It has some great tips for medical school Admission Committees. The author of this book is Ryan Gray.
- This book is full of strategies and helps you put your best foot forward in a unique way.
- The author has been very clear about every point throughout the whole book.
- Besides, this book is helpful for all programs that require a personal statement.
- The author also provides various samples and advice while writing a personal statement.
- This book perfectly conveys all the information you need for writing a personal statement.
- The several external links in the book offer extra information and resources to make the study easier.
- It helps in building a solid personal statement that will deficiently make your position secure.
- It is the best book for juniors and those who struggle with creative writing.
- The majority of the samples are for people with a military background.
- Many examples are faulty in some way.
The complete package of 6 books by ExamCrackers is the best choice for beginners. Many Reddit users recommend this book for the MCAT study. The package includes various books and to-the-point information that can help you succeed in your exams.
- The books contain a lot of material and valuable information.
- The book is well-written and comprehensive.
- The CARS strategy of ExamCrackers is the best of all.
- The author has adopted an entertaining method to explain complicated concepts.
- The questions after each chapter are much similar to the actual exam questions.
- The books have many grammatical, typo, and spelling mistakes.
- You might also need Khan Academy while studying from these books.
The MCAT verbal practice book for the CARS section is the best choice for those who have more time to study for the test. Even if you have less time, the basics of the book will give you useful knowledge.
- The book has some complex and dense passages as well, which provide a better grasp.
- Many of the questions in this book are similar to those in the actual MCAT.
- The author has apparent instructions for beginners.
- The in-depth concepts improve your knowledge of CARS passages.
- The book is easy to understand.
- It does not have enough practice passages.
Many people think that hard work is the way to success. However, hard work and smart work go hand in hand. If you adopt better strategies and a complete guide for your MCAT, you can succeed on the first try.
Our study guide and the reviewed books will also help you from the hassle of finding study materials.