He Scored a 515 and Still Would Have Done More Full-Lengths

First Name


What did you major in? (or what are you majoring in?)

Bachelor of Health Sciences in Biomedical Sciences

How Much Time Did You Give Yourself to Study, and Do You Think it Was Enough (why/why not)?

My test was at the end of August and I started studying sporadically in May and gradually increased my studying. I think is just enough time, towards the test I was feeling exhausted and bored of studying. And because the MCAT is so massive I knew I wouldn’t have been able to learn everything.

When Did You Take the MCAT and What Was Your Decision on When You Took It?

I took the MCAT after the end of 2nd year. I took it then because in my program you need to do an honours thesis in 4th year. I hadn’t found a lab that I wanted to do it in, so I decided to devote my 3rd year for research. Therefore, I decided to take the MCAT in 2nd year.

Were You Done With Prereqs? If Not, How Did You Decide to Which Ones You Were Okay Self-Studying?

I was only done with the hard sciences and sociology. I felt that having only psychology to study very hard for would be okay.

What Did Your Study Schedule Look Like?

I didn’t really have one, as I was working part-time. But in terms of subjects, I followed the Khan Academy flow. I started with physics, then chemistry, biology, biochemistry, and psychosocial. I did CARS all throughout. I would do readings and watch videos then do practice questions. Toward July and August, I would do AAMC question banks and I did practice tests last.
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What Else Were You Doing Besides Prepping for the MCAT?

Working part-time at a pharmacy and volunteering at my city’s MS clinic.

How did you prepare for the MCAT?

I used Khan Academy, the AAMC question banks and practice tests and Kaplan books: physics, organic chemistry, and psychosocial.

How Many Practice Tests Did You Take?


How Did You Review Your Practice Tests?

I looked over each question and reviewed why I thought it was right or wrong. For the questions I got wrong I would write down that particular concept for review.

What were your top MCAT resources and Why?

Khan Academy because it has everything that will be tested. Also it was free.

How Many Times Did You Take it To Get a Score You Were Happy With?


How Did Your Actual Score Compare to your Practice Tests? What was the Most Accurate (AAMC/Kaplan/Next Step/etc)?

AAMC was comparable, Kaplan gave me a lower score.

Roughly How Much Did You Spend on your MCAT Prep?


What did you Score?


How Did You Keep Yourself Motivated?

I kept in mind that if I did well this time, I would save a lot of money by not having to retake the test.

Best Tips (Studying, Test Day, etc)

I would suggest wearing pocketless pants on test day, as it saves time. If your local library has MCAT books than save yourself money by getting your family to put the book on hold right after you so you can keep it for as long as you need (to an extent).

What Would You Do Differently?

I would have taken at least 2 more practice tests.

Dr. Gray’s Notes

Check out Vincent’s last answer. Even though he got a 515, he would have still taken two more practice tests. They are that important! When I talk to students, time and time again they tell me that Next Step has the best full-length practice tests. Check them out here. Need MCAT Prep? Save on tutoring, classes, and full-length practice tests by using promo code “MSHQ” for 10% off Next Step full-length practice tests or “MSHQTOC” for $50 off MCAT tutoring or the Next Step MCAT Course at Blueprint MCAT (formerly Next Step Test Prep)!]

Want to share your story?

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