Medical college admission tests (MCAT)



The Medical College Admissions Test is required by all but two American medical schools (Johns Hopkins and University of Rochester do not). Subject areas covered on the MCAT include: Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences, Verbal Reasoning and a Writing Sample. The Writing Sample consists of two, half-hour essays on various topics. The essay section is assigned a letter score ranging from J (lowest) to T (highest). Performance on the other sections is rated on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 15 (highest).

The MCAT must be completed at least one year in advance of anticipated admission to medical school. Most students planning to enroll immediately after graduation take the MCAT in April, May, June or July of their junior year (preferred) or in August prior to the start of their senior year.

Taking the test in the spring of the junior year allows the student a second chance in August if the initial scores are not competitive (if you do not perform well on the test, you should consider retaking it). Taking the test in spring and early summer also allows for an earlier decision by the medical schools. Because medical school admission committees utilize a rolling admission process, an August test does not allow your application to be considered as early as possible. However, the primary consideration is a strong performance. Schedule the test when you are the best prepared for it. In either case, begin submitting your application materials as soon as possible after June 1.

To register and learn more about the MCAT go to: http://www.aamc.org/students/mcat/start.htm.

Students who have had difficulty on standardized tests or would like a more structured approach to preparation may wish to take a commercial prep course such as Stanley Kaplan Educational Center or Princeton Review. The Kaplan course is conducted on the Connecticut College campus at various times throughout the school year. Contact Kaplan at 1-800-kaptest or kaptest.com for further information. Tuition discounts are available at Kaplan for students who can demonstrate financial need.