In today’s episode, we talk about what you need to know for the MCAT: How much material is actually covered? If you’re scared about the MCAT, thinking about how much of a beast it is, then it’s time to face your fears.
Today, we try to give you a sense of what the MCAT is really like in terms of its depth. Honestly, it’s not as bad as you think it is. But that doesn’t mean you can rest on your laurels. The MCAT is, indeed, a unique beast. You need to approach your MCAT prep the right way.
Listen to this podcast episode with the player above, or keep reading for the highlights and takeaway points.
What to Know for the MCAT
The outline of the MCAT’s contents itself is 126 pages long. It’s intimidatingly broad. But the MCAT is also extremely shallow. It’s a classic example of being a mile wide but an inch deep.
Yes, you have to know physiology, physics, and organic chemistry. But you don’t have to know the level of detail that you probably had to know in your college classes.The MCAT is a classic example of being a mile wide but an inch deep.Click To Tweet
How Much Depth Do I Need to Know for the MCAT?
MCAT prep books are much slimmer than your stack of college books. It looks like a lot when collected together, but it’s not that bad.The MCAT doesn't expect you to know all of the nitty gritty on every topic that it wants you to know.Click To Tweet
You don’t have to dig deep like your midterms or finals for your classes in undergrad. The MCAT doesn’t expect you to know all of the nitty gritty on every topic that they want you to know. So they just want you to know a little bit about all of it. Know the basics about everything.
[Related episode: What Prereqs Do I Have to Have to Take the MCAT?]
How to Learn Everything Tested on the MCAT
The breadth of material covered on the MCAT creates a challenge in juggling all of it at once. So you need to come up with learning techniques to help you amalgamate all different kinds of information.
In your college classes, even though it may be very information-heavy, that information is usually all related and tied together for a particular exam. The MCAT is different because it requires you to answer questions about sociology that have nothing to do with the physics you also need to be studying.
[Related episode: How to Start Preparing for the MCAT.]
Addressing Your Weaknesses During Your MCAT Prep
It’s human psychology to want to focus on the material you’re already best at. But with MCAT prep, you need to target your weaker areas to really improve.
Challenge yourself and ask yourself, what are you the most terrified of? What subject do you dread seeing in your MCAT practice tests? What topics really scare you? Those are the things you need to start with. Focus on addressing your weaknesses in your MCAT content review.Focus on addressing your weaknesses in your MCAT content review.Click To Tweet
Links and Other Resources
- Check out my book about the MCAT, co-written with Next Step Test Prep: The Premed Playbook: Guide to the MCAT.
- Related episode: Are There Hidden MCAT Prereqs I Should Take?
- Related episode: Should I Take Sociology to Prepare for the MCAT?
- 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 Next Step Test Prep!
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