Do I even have a chance....?

Hi everyone,

I finally graduated from Biomedical Science graduate program. I did this to improve my science GPA. And it did…from 2.88 to 3.91. It’s been a great experience and I’m working as TA for

Neuroscience and Histology classes. I was very thrilled about it until I took June MCAT this summer. I’ve got 19…This is the exact same score I’ve got after finishing undergrad.

I’ve taken MCAT 3 times already…

This will be my second time applying…

At this point, I just don’t know what to do.

I’m lost, tired and frustrated…

What should I do? I’ve completed my applications for DO and MD schools, but afraid of submitting it…Anyone who were in the similar situations? Thanks everyone for reading this. Please give me any advice…

First question: have you taken any sort of MCAT prep course? or spent a sizeable amount of time studying for just the MCAT?

The reason why I ask is that the MCAT is something that you really have to prepare for separate from what you learn in class. It is a hurdle in its own right. Some folks think it is just like the ACT or GRE where it is a test of “basic skills”, but it most assuradly is not. You really have to have a plan on how to approach the MCAT.

That being said if you can get that MCAT up 5-7 more points, I have seen plenty of folks on SDN get in with 25 to 26 MCAT and good GPA’s like yours.

As far as applying twice and taking the MCAT 3 times, 15 years ago I applied to Med School and I had taken the MCAT twice before applying. I have 4 interviews as of now with hopefully some more onb the way. Taking the MCAT multiple times and applying multiple times is not the death knell, you just have to show improvement.

Kaylee -

This is a really tough one. Since it is already August, it would be reasonable to postpone application until next spring.

You don’t mention what you did between the first and 2nd MCAT and the 2nd and 3rd MCAT that is MCAT related.

With someone who obviously was able to do well in the science classes getting a 19, it seems likely that there are some other factors at work here. I do have some questions.

  1. Were you able to finish the sections? Not being able to complete the test could definately pull your score down.

  2. Did you do a specific MCAT prep, or a mixture or MCAT prep strategies?

    For your situation, it might be a good investment to go thru testing by an educational and learning specialist. This could identify any reading, processing, or learning deficits that you might not even be aware of. Said specialists might also be able to point you towards ways to remediate any issue if one is found.

    If test anxiety is a factor (and how could it not be!), I know when I taught nursing school I commonly referred students for treatment for this…there are some simple (2 times in office) techniques that many LCSW or psychologists could use to keep that from impacting any future score.

    Taking the MCAT a 4th time is probably NOT high on your “to do” list -but in my opinion your chances of acceptance are much better if you work 9 months on targettedprep, and are able to put in your application (post educational testing) : “this issue was identified that had been impacting my score, this remedy was applied, and my most recent score is reflective of my actual level of ability, and my ability to problem solve to overcome an academic difficulty.”

    IMHO, that would ameliorate having taken the MCAT 4 times.

    My heart goes out to you having to wrestle with these weighty issues.


Thank you Bailey and Kate for your inputs…Really appreciate it.

I don’t want to make my personal problem as an “excuse”, but I just couldn’t afford any of MCAT prep courses. I’ve been playing “mommy” for my younger siblings since senior year of high school because my parents were in overseas for the business. We just had to struggle surviving, so I couldn’t really afford any of it. Well that will be my explanation why I couldn’t do prep courses. I really wish I had that chance…

I graduated undergrad in 2007, took MCAT: 19

Then started working and retook in 2008: 17

(exact same score but drop in verbal)

My GPA was low and MCAT was low.

So I made decision to do postbacc/graduate program in another state. I still had to make several trips to where my siblings were (22 and 18 years old). It was pretty tough to manage classes because of that, but I did it better. I was even pretty confident I could do better on MCAT since I did really well with upper science courses.

But I did horrible again. Another 19.

I go to the application sites often during the day but cannot submit the completed application… I’m just so afraid of another failure.

I even thought about going to Carribean schools, but I don’t think they will accept this low MCAT. Also even if I get accepted there, it will be too far from my siblings…I’m just constantly blaming everything on my family (which I shouldn’t). Overall my June MCAT is hurting me so much…

I feel like I’m whining over here. But thank you guys again for your input…!! Hopefully God will lead me to the right way

I would look into some programs that offer scholarships for taking MCAT prep courses.

Also Exam Krackers books are only about $200 and are a pretty good resource. Heck there are probably some folks on here that would sell you their old ones cheap. (including me) Access to practice exams on AAMC is also only a few hundred dollars.

Did you spend any time “preping” for the last MCAT? and by preping I mean actually focused on the MCAT itself?

I ask because it really sounds like your MCAT woes are due to not really having a strategem for the MCAT, rather than actual knowledge.

  • kaylee Said:
Hi everyone,

What should I do? I've completed my applications for DO and MD schools, but afraid of submitting it...Anyone who were in the similar situations? Thanks everyone for reading this. Please give me any advice..

Rule 1: Take a Breath.

If you were this late with your current MCAT scores, not only would you have diminished chances for this cycle but you would but up red flags on you application for future application cycles.

If you want to have a reasonable chance at success at getting accepted into medical school, I strongly urge NOT, REPEAT NOT to submit your application this cycle, but rather focus on a long slow self study to MCAT for early next spring.

If you cannot afford the prep classes, then you need to 1) setup a self-disciplined study schedule for yourself and 2) understand what your personal hurdles and challenges you have to be successful on the MCAT.

You can can get loads of free help and suggestions on both from the experience of the many, many members here on OldPreMeds.

Now take a deep breath, wipe away your tears and frustration, and take that first step to a great MCAT and successful application for next year.

And if you need some MCAT books from a test prep class, ask here (I am sure I have some in my many boxes)

Dear Kaylee,

Where are you located?

Thanks everyone for your inputs. I haven’t been to this site lately, but I was lucky enough to get great MCAT sources recently. I might have to start everything agin…but hoping for the best…

Again, I appreciate your suggestions and advices…

Good luck Kaylee. I only asked where you were because my school will be holding a free “How to study for the MCAT” workshop sometime this month or early October. I’m in NYC. You could check the schools in your area to see if there is something similar.