Kaplan vs. Princeton Review

Hi all,
while I have read a lot about why to take and not to take review courses, I plan on taking one.
What I'd like to know is shold I take the Kaplan or the Princeton Review course? What are the differences? Advantages/Disadvantages?

Personally, I found TPR to be very helpful. However, I cannot comment on Kaplan, as I only took TPR's course. I suspect that it is six one-way and half-a-dozen the other…

I took Kaplan because I liked their schedule better. I really only did a course to keep myself honest - knew that if I were left to my own devices, I'd procrastinate too much and not study enough. And the practice exams are definitely a very good thing - you'll get those regardless of which one you take. (and of course you can also purchase books w/ practice exams, and also the 'real' ones from AAMC)
Having compared notes with friends in the area who were doing Princeton at the same time I was doing Kaplan, it didn't seem like there was much difference. For me, the issue was that Princeton was 4 nights a week whereas kaplan was all day Saturday, and I figured the likelihood of skipping the night classes was higher so I went with Kaplan.
Now, an advantage of PR is that you get all the materials you'll want to use for review to keep at home. Unless Kaplan has changed, their voluminous files of practice questions must be used at the Kaplan center, and that's not very convenient. So that's something to think about, too.
Finally, you'll get a lot out of any course you take because you'll put a lot into it. The very few immature people in my Kaplan class didn't ever seem to 'get' why they were struggling but it was obvious to me that they weren't working outside of the class, and had this high school notion of coming to class to get information poured into their brains. Doesn't work that way!

thanks for the replies. Schedule would be definately something to consider. I also noticed someone mentioned, in another topic, that if you were not happy with your MCAT score, TPR allowed you to take the course again- for free.
So that's another incentive for TPR. Hmmm…I was hoping there would be some difference other than logistics though.
What about materials- how do they compare? from what I have read the ExamKrackers materials seem to be a favorite. But what about Kaplan books vs. Princeton Review books?
thanks again,

I was planning to take TPR, but I'm currently taking Kaplan because the TPR schedule wouldn't work for me. I'm happy with the Kaplan course so far. Lots of good practice materials and I think the review books are good, as they focus on what you need to know. Some of the practice tests are online, so you can access them at home. If you miss a class, you can view it on video.
You mentioned the TPR retake guarantee. Kaplan does the same thing.
I'd always heard that TPR was better, but now that I'm doing Kaplan, I think they're probably about the same. Speaking of Kaplan, and I imagine the same is true for TPR, they lay out the study plan for you and give you the material and practice tests. If you do the work, you should be well prepared for the MCAT.
I know lots of people study on their own and do well, but if possible, I recommend taking a review course. There are a number of things I've learned about the test structure just in the 3 weeks I've been taking Kaplan that I would never have gleaned, otherwise.
Good luck,

How much do these review courses run?

I paid for Kaplan but a friend gave me the material from TPR and I must say that I like TPR's approach better. The main reason is that I hadn't seen the material in about 10 years and TPR goes into serious detail that Kaplan doesn't. Also I found that you are limited on stuff you can do at home with Kaplan whereas TPR makes it more convenient to work on your own. So, if you are disciplined and can work without an instructor, go TPR; if you need structured lectures and work times, go Kaplan.
BTW, I paid $1300 for Kaplan.

TPR in my area is $1200 - but you get $100 off if you sign up early so I paid $1100. I agree about the depth of TPR books vs. Kaplan. I bought a Kaplan book and while I liked their easy to read outline format, my TPR materials go into the detail necessary for me to ace passages, not just get by on good guessing (but I need the detail since I am light on the science area). Just depends on how comfortable you are with the science stuff because then you have to learn how to apply that knowledge to the way the test wants you to. :p

I know zero about TPR, but I did take Kaplan’s course, largely because of scheduling. I took the MCAT last April, and performed pretty poorly. This after studying on my own with several different books (including TPR’s off the shelf study guide) for about 4 months. When I got my scores, I only had about 8 weeks before the August test, so I called Kaplan and got into their “MCAT for losers who waited till the last minute” course. We met for 7 weekends in a row (8 hours Sat and 8 hours Sunday). For me, it worked out pretty well, since I work 50+ hours during the week.
The big advantages for me were the review of the sciences and the strategies for the verbal section. I had been out of school for several years, so a lot of the basic science stuff had leaked out. I pretty much had to teach myself Org all over again, and the review classes really helped. The last week of the course was spent taking practice exams. There were 4 full length exams scheduled within one week. After the first 2.5, I was VERY tired of taking them, so I went home and slept until the day of the actual test. However, I felt I had received way more practice under more realistic conditions than I had with any of the home versions.
I ended up improving my total score by 7 points, which placed me in the magical 30+ zone. I still didn’t do as well on the physical sciences as I wanted, but my bio went up a couple of points, and I maxed the verbal. If you take the Kaplan course, PAY ATTENTION to the verbal strategies. They WORK.
I hope this is helpful :;):

Overall I’m with TPR. Agree with those who say the practice material is more practical, plus you save cash when they throw in the AAMC cbts. kaplan makes some of the worst practice tests I’ve seen. they may help you learn but they don’t reflect the real test. I wouldn’t waste your time with them.

i wrote comparative review of both a little while back you might find helpful.

http://premedfaq.com/kaplan-or-princeton-r eview-fo…