Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.
Studying for the Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT) in preparation to apply to medical school was a daunting task. Many students sign up for the exam and are unable to commit enough time and dedication to the suggested amount of preparation to take the exam. I am applying for this scholarship because after taking the exam, I felt confident in my performance and met my own expectations overall. Utilizing the free educational website: Khanacademy.com, I would utilize the topic specific question banks as a diagnostic for how much time I should spend covering topics that I may see on exam day. If I was unable to score 80% or higher, I would look at the provided content on the subject and watch videos at increased speeds (as this was mostly review) to sharpen the topic in my mind. I would then proceed to retake quizzes and make sure that I was able to score 100% on the topic before I would move on to the next subject. While this was time consuming, I was not forcing myself to review every single topic that I had learned in my undergraduate studies. I used this tactic to reveal my weakness in certain topics and strengthen the subject by studying and retaking quizzes.
All the while, as the MCAT is a seven hour exam, I was working on my stamina and focussing abilities by taking practice exams. I addressed this aspect by taking a full length exam on the first day and not worrying at all about the score that I received but simply monitoring my pace and emotions during the process. While my score would improve through studying the content, my stamina and focus would improve by committing to multiple rounds of 90 minute study sessions followed by 15 minute breaks which was exactly what was going to be required of me on exam day. I would progressively add more time and questions into each session until I was completely up to speed and able to focus for four 90 minute sections separated by 15 minute breaks.
Looking back, there is little that I would consider changing.
William from Arizona
University of Arizona College of Medicine