Berkeley Review vs. Princeton vs. Kaplan

Can anyone give their recommendations among these three courses. I had originally been studying for the MCAT on my own, but my I’ve been under pressure to do a prep course because it is more structured and would keep me on a more realistic timeline to get to taking the actual test.

(Note: see my other General posting on my reconsideration of med school)

Hi! I haven’t yet taken a prep course (as I’m not quite finished with my prerequisites) but I have looked into all three options, as well as a couple of others, and have heard nothing but good things about TBR. I really had my heart set on taking the live course with them, and haven’t completely ruled it out yet, but I live on the northern edge of SoCal, and it would be hard for me to get down there to Westwood. FWIW, in researching prep course options I found TBR to have the best reviews. I wish I had firsthand info to pass along to you. Hopefully someone else that has direct experience can chime in.

The local class of Berkeley Review starts this morning. I’ll check it out. I have heard mixed things about them: very fast paced, not much classroom time. Later today, I am meeting with a friend who took their course to get his opinion.

From some of the senior instructors and other upper level folks I know at one of the major test prep companies they tell me in private that Berkeley material wise perhaps the best. I do not have first hand information but I speculate that because Berkeley keeps extremely tight control on their materials, written by a small group so it tends to be consistent in theme, style, etc (ie not written by a committee), only teach a small number of classes only in a few California locations so instructors are high quality and consistent, and seems to solely focus on that without pressure to grow and expand solely to just make more money, it may be excellent.

But at that level, it make be very fast paced, very hard work, and intense.

I chose Berkeley Review (in Berkeley) simply based on their class schedule but found it to be excellent. Their instructors were smart and well prepared, with the exception of the guy who lead the Chemistry section. He was new and not very good at teaching. The Biology, Physics and Verbal instructors were on top of the subjects and excellent teachers.

Despite being a Berkeley grad myself, (and having gone to school with one of the founders of the Berkeley Review, and knowing another BR instructor) I decided to not take their course. I found it too fast paced for an old fart like me. So I am taking the Hyperlearning Princeton Review at a slower pace, longer time, which starts next week. (BTW, the founders of BR also were part of Hyperlearning supposedly.) However, I was able to secure some Berkeley Review books at a discount. So my plan is to study the corresponding material in both the PR and BR books simultaneously.