Are you interested in going to medical school? If you want to become a doctor, you will first need to take the MCAT to get into medical school. Knowing how to utilize educational technology can prepare and help you to ace that test.
What is the MCAT?
The Medical College Administration Test is the computer-based standardized exam for prospective medical students developed and administered by AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges). After registering, medical students have up to 15 times per year to take the medical test at Prometric Testing Centers.
This medical exam is constantly changing to reflect the evolving needs of society. For instance, instead of the previous five hours, the new test now takes eight hours to complete. The essay or writing sample has been removed. This is due to medical education experts conveying that it was not a good predictor of medical school success. However, a new cultural and sociological section has been added to test medical students’ aptitude to deliver medical services across several new demographics of the United States.
Also, you can keep up to date with the latest online Medical College Administration Test changes through your computer, laptop, tablet, smartphone, or smartwatch. You can also utilize:
- Google alerts and notifications
- Medical exam practice websites
- Medical exam podcasts
- Medical exam apps
For example, you can visit startschoolnow.org online to utilize educational technology to begin your medical exam research.
What is Covered on the MCAT?
Since 2015 the Medical College Administration Test examines psychological, social, biological, physical, and verbal reasoning knowledge and understanding. As previously mentioned, the new section also tests your ability to understand sociological, biological, and psychological influences on behavior and social interests. Additionally, the new section also examines how people process stress and emotion. Specifically, the exam is organized into four sections:
- Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills: Similar to reading comprehension sections on other standardized tests. Passages come from a variety of humanities and social sciences disciplines.
- Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems: tests basic biology, organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, and biochemistry
- Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems: tests basic biochemistry, biology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, and physics
- Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior: tests introductory psychology, sociology, and biology
How Should You Study and Prepare for the MCAT?
You will want to register early with the AAMC during your junior or senior year of college. Thus, you will secure your test date and location and have plenty of time to obtain your test scores as you apply to medical schools.
The test is multiple choice and is not an adaptive test. Which means you can’t shorten the length of the test by answering the harder questions correctly. Each section is scored separately, and the scores are combined to give you a total score that ranges from 118-132, and a total score range of 472-528.
By now, you should know what is the MCAT, and you should have a plan for useful medical exam study. On average, the medical student spends 12 weeks studying for the medical exam with about 23 hours each week. You should assess your strengths and weakness as well as follow a weekly study schedule. Other methods to effectively study include:
- Find a study group online
- Take practice exams online
- Find medical exam apps for study
- Take a prep class on-line or in-person
- Use the calendar on your phone to set up a study schedule with reminders
Technology can help you study and prepare for your MCAT. By investing in some of the latest gadgets, you can study anywhere at any time. Some technology to look into includes:
- Smart Backpacks: you can recharge your devices, carry your books, and keep all of your tech running. Features to look for include an internal and external USB, lost and found tracker, anti-shock system, built-in batteries, and making sure it is water and dirt resistant.
- Rocketbook: invest in this if you love the old school notebook and pen process but hate not having access to your notes. You can write in the special notebook with Pilot FriXion pens. Then beam the notes up to the cloud with the Rocketbook App. The pens are erasable, and so is the notebook. So once the pages are full, you can microwave the notebook and start over.
- Roost Laptop Stand: will save your back, shoulders, and neck from being hunched over your screen. The laptop stand is adjustable, lightweight, and easy to transport. The stand is durable and holds most laptops, using rubber grips to keep your laptop secure. The stand will help solve the pain in your neck, shoulders, and back during all the hours you study for the MCAT.
Digital technology is playing an integral part in preparing students to take the standardized medical exam.