Do you know the average MCAT score or what’s a good score, and ways to get a top score?
In 2014, I could tell you the average MCAT score for everyone who applies to medical school was a 28. But now that the MCAT has changed, this number is meaningless for you.
There are so many changes that are taking place with the Medical College Admission Test, especially with score reports the only solid advice I can give you is what the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) expects test-takers to score on the exam.
The grading scale has changed where now your score for each section will range from 118 to 132. The AAMC MCAT midpoint being 125.
Using these numbers you’ll certainly have to have an average MCAT score greater than 125 on each section of the exam to be competitive for medical school admission.
If we go a step further and take the midpoint from each of the four sections on the MCAT, then you will need a combined average MCAT score of 500 to put you at the midpoint. But you want to keep in mind that your overall MCAT score can range anywhere from 472 to 528.
Again, don’t shoot for the midpoint when you sit for the Medical College Admission Test strive to get as close to 528 as possible. If you can do this you’ll be amazed at how many doors will open to you while applying to medical school.
The new MCAT is going to pose problems for admissions officers too because they used make decisions that were very similar to what a program director of a prominent Masters program in Boston, MA told the incoming students:
If you apply to medical school with a MCAT score over 30 and a 3.5 GPA or better there is no reason why you shouldn’t get into at least one medical school.
Basically, it was very easy to predict if you had an average MCAT score because anything better than 30 showed you could handle the rigors of a medical school curriculum.
This statement doesn’t ring true anymore today and I will tell you why.
Do Good MCAT Scores or Average MCAT Scores Make the Cut Anymore?
Good MCAT scores today are being thrown out the window.
The AAMC wants admissions directors to take a more holistic approach to applicants which in laymen’s terms means consider all aspects of an application and don’t focus solely average MCAT scores.
Remember how I told you with the old MCAT you needed a 30 or better to be considered for medical school admission. This meant you were performing in the top third of the MCAT because the MCAT had a scale ranging from 3 to 45.
I’m somewhat leery of the numbers and metrics of the new MCAT but the AAMC says their new approach to the MCAT numbers allows for applicants to have a better chance of gaining admission to medical school.
They have shown statistically that if an applicant has a MCAT hovering around the midpoint in each section which is 125 they will be able to complete medical school and also go on to pass their “Boards.”
This is all good in theory and makes sense if you want to give as many people a chance for getting into medical school but it certainly is not the reality of what will actually happen. Medical schools receive far too many applications for seats available.
Think about this if you receive 12,000 applications for a class size of 150 you have way too many applicants than you can possibly admit even if their average MCAT scores fall at the midpoint of 125 as is suggested.
What I believe is going to happen is the midpoint of 125 on each section of the MCAT is going to be more of the minimum cutoff.
Medical schools will go ahead and review applicants who have a combined midpoint score of 500 because this shows they can complete a medical school curriculum in a satisfactory amount of time and also pass their Boards on the first try too. But to select applicants to invite for interviews and ultimately become apart of the incoming medical school class your percentile score on the MCAT will take precedence.
Since this is a percentile that will be reported medical schools have an automatic indicator of how you fared on MCAT in comparison to your peers who also took the test.
So achieving a good MCAT score as seen by meeting the midpoint score is only the starting point. To standout and really make an impression on the admissions committee you’ll have to place in a very high percentile as well.
Unfortunately, this means there is going to be even more competition for getting into medical school.
Instead, of just aiming for the average MCAT score that you think is good you now have to be concerned about the scores of everyone else taking the exam too.
The MCAT was already scary enough and this is now a new layer of fear that you may be experiencing. If you want to give yourself a competitive advantage and put yourself on the path to doing very well on the MCAT then you must use my MCAT course.
It’s going to teach you skills and strategies that will save you time while studying and also how to approach problems you’ve never seen before but still be able to get a correct answer.
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I have now updated the course to include test-taking and studying strategies I utilize in medical school and for USMLE prep too. Honestly, you’re getting the best of the best with this course and you’re going to be amazed at what you can achieve when you follow my system for MCAT success.
Honestly, I can’t tell you if you apply to medical school with one particular MCAT score that you will get admitted. Everyone is unique and there are several factors that must be considered for each applicant. Such as:
- Which medical schools you are applying to
- Your GPA
- Undergraduate institution attended
These are just a few aspects to consider when predicting good MCAT scores. There is no hard and fast rule when it comes to your average MCAT score.
Doing better than the average MCAT score comes down to:
- Knowing the exam
- Being confident
If you are concerned about being competitive then you’ll definitely want to checkout by ebook, “How to Beat the MCAT“. It’s packed with the best tips and advice to get you where you need to be. Go ahead take a peak here.
Low MCAT Scores
What can you do about a low MCAT score?
First of all, life does not end with a low MCAT score and there is no concrete answer on what is considered a bad score. Your goal is to do as well as possible on this exam and get a score of 500 or better.
If you have a score below the midpoint then I would suggest you seek assistance to figure out what you can do to improve your test taking and MCAT prep skills. I can’t give you a specific number for what will be a cutoff at each medical school but if you’re falling on the lower end of percentile then this is a red flag and could potentially wipe out your chances of getting into medical school.
All is not lost though. If you need help but can’t afford tutoring services or a commercial MCAT prep program then I have the perfect solution. With my MCAT Course you can get everything you need to boost your score immediately.
Improving Your MCAT Critical Analysis & Reasoning aka Verbal Reasoning Score
Most students have problems with the Critical Analysis and Reasoning portion of the MCAT but rest assured you can improve your performance on this section..
One tip that many MCAT test prep companies will tell you is that all you have to do is read more broadly and wisely. Well, this is wrong.
The Medical College Admission Test is not testing how well you know specific topics they want to know if you can see the arguments presented in reading passages and extract critical interpretations from what you have just read. Clearly, this is not something that can be learned simply be reading across a number of subject areas.
Since you must do reading one simple tip is to expand the topics which you read, or for some to actually start reading in the first place. What I mean by this is to find books on subjects which are unfamiliar to you and read about these topics.
For many students, the Verbal Section can be either hit or miss and you feel as though you were lucky to get topics you know about or hold your head in despair if the topics are abstract and unfamiliar to you.
If you are having trouble getting the score you want on the MCAT then I strongly encourage you to check out my book, How to Beat the MCAT which covers everything you’ll need to know in-order to excel on this make or break exam. Finally, making medical school a reality for you. Plus, you’ll be happy to know there is a full chapter devoted specifically to Critical Analysis and Reasoning ensuring you have proven strategies that work!
How to Improve Physical and Biological Sciences Scores
It is much easier to improve your average MCAT score in these two sections.
It comes down to knowing the general facts and concepts from physics and biology something you should have learned in your premedical classes.
The best way to get good MCAT scores in these sections is to take as many practice tests as possible. Each time you take a practice test you will be forced to recall aspects from the basic sciences ultimately improving your retention for the MCAT.
Help for Overcoming a Low MCAT
You must do two things to ensure you have great MCAT scores:
- Know what content will be tested
- Know how to take the test
If you follow these two steps you are well on your way to getting better than the average MCAT score.
Use Practice Tests to Your Advantage
The MCAT is about reasoning and is different from the tests you take in your premedical courses. Premed classes teach you basic science concepts whereas the MCAT tests whether you can reason using those basic concepts.
Half of the MCAT battle is being comfortable with your reasoning ability. The only way to do this is to take a lot of practice exams.
If you ask any medical student how they prepared for the MCAT you’ll hear a common theme: do as many practice problems as possible.
Repetition is the key to hitting a home run on the Medical College Admissions test. There are no shortcuts or replacements to boost your MCAT score. Although there are excellent tips and advice to ensure that your practice pays off dividends come test day.
One critical aspect you need to follow is to review what you got correct and wrong on your practice tests and know why.
Far too often students take a practice test and simply mark what they got wrong but never understand why. If you are taking the time to take practice tests be sure to put in the time to learn from each exam.
Here’s a little known tip that can make a huge difference!
My MCAT advisor always stated you should spend twice the amount of time that you took to take the test for scoring your MCAT. You want to dedicate a lot of your time to gaining a full understanding of why certain questions were correct and why some were wrong. When you do this you will be surprised at how much sticks with you for the next exam and your average MCAT score will shoot up too!
Get Help Early
As always, with specific questions of this nature I strongly advise speaking with individuals who are more familiar with your situation. A premedical advisor can accurately review your academic record and give you insight as to how other students at your undergraduate institution fared on the MCAT.
This provides valuable insight as to which types of medical schools you should apply to. Asking the admissions staff at the medical schools you are interested in can be a good option too.
Most medical schools will tell you the average MCAT score of accepted students and they will always tell you to aim for a competitive score. I have not come across a medical school admissions officer who has flat out told an applicant to not apply based on their MCAT score.
Instead they will advise you to carefully consider where you are applying and to select a broad range of institutions to enhance your chances of success.
The best thing you can do is to be well prepared for the MCAT so you only have to take it once and only once. If you take full-length practice exams and review your scores I am confident you will walk away doing better than the average MCAT score.
I don’t have to tell you just how important doing well on the MCAT is for getting into medical school. But if you liked what I shared with you today then get my MCAT Course. The strategies I share with you in the MCAT Course are what got Harvard Medical School knocking on my door after my test results came back. The same can happen to you, so go ahead and take a peak at what’s included by clicking here.