Practice vs Real Scores

For those of you who have taken the MCAT:
Did your scores from your practice exams typically indicate how well you did?
Say you replicated the testing conditions as much as possible…

My scores on AAMC #IV (which was the most recent one out when I prepped four years ago) were close to identical to my scores on the real thing. I did better on AAMC #III than on the real thing (III seemed really really easy; since the MCAT just keeps gettin’ harder, I suspect practicing on III is probably virtually pointless now). My Kaplan test scores were just a shade under my real scores.
I took #IV a week or two before the actual test. Of course I was doing Kaplan tests throughout the late winter into spring, and gained about two points each time. I started with a high verbal that stayed there, and improved on my sciences. My last Kaplan, about two weeks from the real thing, was 2 points less than my actual score.
You will hear a LOT of variation in this. I have no idea why, but some people report doing better on practice exams, some worse. One of my Kaplan instructors told me that doing a “shade better” on the real thing was a fairly common experience. Dunno if she based that on any kind of data but it was enough to give me a boost of confidence going into the real thing, and I do believe a lot of the MCAT is a head game. It’s an absolute bitch of a test, so going in there thinking, “Yeah, I can do this!” has to help IMHO.

I don't remember exactly what my practice test scores were like, but I definitely was pleased with my final performance on the real thing. I prepared for the MCAT using the practice-makes-perfect methodology. I did every practice test I could get my hands on, not caring so much what my final scores were but what areas was I making the most mistakes in so that I could go back and review those areas (using text books, MCAT prep books, internet sites, etc.). I took every test under real-time conditions which meant that many of my Saturdays and Sundays were shot for several months. All in all I probably did 15 or so full-length exams and dozens and dozens of separate passage type questions that I got from any MCAT book that was available from my library, borrowed from friends, or purchased used on e-bay…I did not buy a single full-price book or take any course.
Keep on plugging away. There still a good amount of time to keep practicing. Best of luck…

my experience with MCAT was similar to what I find taking difficult college science exams -
I get the professor’s old exam from last year, sit in a quiet place, take it under “test” conditions - find that I fnish the old exam really early - 30-40 mins and do really well - no trick questions.
then I get the real exam, read the first few questions and think “why o why did he write a much harder exam for OUR class?” - and it takes me 50 mins to finish it, barely. and in reality, our questions are not really more difficult than the previous semester’s - it is just my test day anxiety creeping in to make them look more complicated than they are.
so - I went into MCAT prep knowing that I go much slower on the real test and that I’d get hung up thinking normal questions were super hard -
so I practiced my tests to finish up to 5 mins early.
on my real test - I finished about 5 mins slower than on my practices. For physical science - this means with barely 30 sec to spare - with verbal - only 5 min early instead of 10 min early, etc.
I also “knew” from how I am a test taker that the questions are not really 150% harder on the real exam - that is just test-day thinking - so when I got a hard looking question on the real MCAT I could talk myself out of this thinking - and look for the simple concept it was really testing.
so I think subjectively the real MCAT felt more difficult (cuz the real thing always ‘feels’ more difficult to me_
but scorewise, I did about the same as my best practices, with a little slip in physical science (my worst area) - down to my average rather than my best.