STANDARDIZED TESTS

MEDICAL COLLEGE ADMISSION TEST (MCAT) 

The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is required by most medical schools. It is presently approximately seven-and-a-half hours long (seat time) and very demanding, both in terms of the level of preparation required to be successful and the very strictly controlled, speeded testing conditions. It is offered multiple times during the year, between January and September, at Prometric testing sites throughout the country.  For resources that spell out the organization, content, scoring, purpose of the test, testing conditions, and a downloadable PDF version of the MCAT Essentials, please go click here.

A detailed and comprehensive resource, the Official Guide to the MCAT® Exam (MCAT2015), Fourth Edition, is available in the Career Center library for your use.  This volume may also be purchased for about $30 from the AAMC:

Be sure that you are prepared for this exam. It is expensive ($300 to register, and you will be charged an additional fee for any changes you make later, such as place or date). Currently, there are no practice tests, but rather a single “sample” test that may be taken multiple times. At best, you will prepare extensively, either by using either a rigorous self-preparation program (on your own or with a couple of fellow students, utilizing print or free on-line resources provided through the AAMC. College/university on-line courses on specific subjects can provide a very thorough review of  a course you may have taken a couple of  years ago.  You may consider one of the commercial preparation programs offered by ExamKrackers, Berkeley Review, Kaplan, Princeton Review, or others. (Commercial preparation programs can cost approximately $1,800 or more, with on-line versions somewhat less expensive.) Taking a commercial prep course is not necessary; many Wesleyan students and graduates have been very successful in preparing on their own. 

We strongly recommend taking a spring MCAT before the beginning of the admissions cycle, so that you will have your scores in hand (30 days after test day) before July 1 and before you apply. Once you have received your results from a spring MCAT, it will be easier for you to decide whether to go ahead with your application or wait until the next application cycle and a better set of scores. Since most medical schools have rolling admissions, the majority of interview slots are filled by early applicants. Applications submitted in July or August and scores from a late summer or fall MCAT administration can put your application significantly behind the competition and makes you a “high-risk” applicant.

The “new” MCAT is approximately two hours longer than the previous test and costs more. It no longer includes a Writing Sample.  It will require some knowledge of statistics and biochemistry. The current Verbal Reasoning section has been replaced by a section entitled “Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills.” In addition, a new section on the “Social, Psychological and Biological foundations of Behavior” has been added.   We recommend taking a couple of courses in the social sciences during your time at Wesleyan (any courses of interest to you in sociology, anthropology, and psychology) in order to learn more about those disciplinary perspectives, but there is no particular course offered at Wesleyan that will necessarily prepare you for the specific content of this new section. The most up-to-date, information about the 2015 MCAT may be found on the following AAMC webpages