Why delay taking the MCAT?
Are you considering taking the MCAT but not feeling confident and prepared? Perhaps, you would want to consider postponing your test date. Here’s why: We all know medical school admission is highly dependent on your MCAT score to selective programs. Various programs have different policies on how they view your second score. It is beneficial to take the MCAT only once to help build a stronger application and save time, energy, and money.
To avoid retaking the MCAT, students should postpone their exam dates in the following three scenarios:
1. Not completing the necessary coursework.
It is important to have taken courses in all the subjects that the 2017 MCAT tests including biology, chemistry, biochemistry, physics, psychology and sociology. Taking these courses while preparing for the MCAT will hold you back and slow you down. Preparing for the MCAT should be a time to review and study not learn a new subject for the first time. After completing the necessary coursework you would need a good 3 months to dedicate towards your MCAT preparation.
2. Not enough time.
Time must be dedicated to studying. Therefore, courses that require greater commitment should be taken prior to studying for the MCAT. Taking a heavy work load, medical concerns, and extracurricular activities can all affect the amount of time you spend studying. If you see the MCAT is secondary and not your priority then consider delaying your MCAT test date to allow adequate preparation for your 2017 MCAT.
3. Low practice test scores.
If your practice MCAT scores are consistently at least 5 points below your intended goal then you should contemplate postponing the MCAT. You should take the time to practice and further prepare for the exam. Also, review the AAMC Medical School Admission Requirements which details the statistics. If you are scoring below the 10th percentile many medical schools will not consider your application and it is therefore in your best interest to delay your MCAT exam.
It is best to be honest with yourself in your decision making.