MCAT Scoring and How Medical Schools View Your Numbers 

Your MCAT scoring makes all the difference between getting into medical school and receiving the think envelope which contains your rejection letter. There's plenty you need to know when it comes to MCAT scores and what is reported on your medical school application. 

Guess what?

You have a total of 5 scores being reported to the medical schools. These scores include one for each section of the MCAT:

  1. Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems
  2. Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills
  3. Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems
  4. Psychological, Social and Biological Foundations of Behavior

These four sections of the MCAT will each receive a low score of 118 to a high score of 132, where the midpoint will be 125.

There will also be a total MCAT score for all four sections. This total score will have a low of 472 to a high of 528, with a midpoint of 500. 

Even More Score Reports

The MCAT is getting more sophisticated or rather more statistically significant because now in addition to your raw scores you will receive two more data points:

  1. Confidence Intervals
  2. Percentiles

Yup, now you'll really have to pay attention to what you were taught in statistics class to make sense of your true MCAT performance. 

Actually, these additional tests are here to help you and not harm you.

Let's take a closer look at the reason behind Confidence Intervals.

Confidence Intervals help to make the MCAT a more reliable and accurate exam. With Confidence Intervals it helps to eliminate discrepancies in scores due to factors such as:

  • fatigue
  • testing anxiety
  • sub-optimal testing room conditions
  • recently seeing similar test topics.

At the end of the day, Confidence Intervals allow for you and medical schools to know exactly where you stand with your command of the material. No more excuses about having a bad test day or distractions in the testing room when you use Confidence Intervals. 

There are certainly going to be gunners in medical school and what a way to increase competition than by using Percentiles.

With a Percentile score you can compare yourself to everyone else who took the same. You'll be able to compare your MCAT performance at both the sectional level and total MCAT.

Lastly, there will be a Score Profile. This will allow you to see your individual strengths and weaknesses on the MCAT. 

Here's an example of what your MCAT Score Report will look like when you actually get your official score report. 

AAMC MCAT Score ReportSample AAMC MCAT Score Report

Life is going to be very interesting for 2015 MCAT test takers in comparison to previous versions of the exam. In the past the goal was to shoot for a raw score that you knew would make you a competitive applicant to medical school.

Now with the new score reports, the percentiles will be a major focus of the exam. Meaning you are really in direct competition with your peers to beat them out when you take the MCAT. Apparently, this new scoring system for 2015 and beyond is to provide a better indicator of how well you will perform in medical school.

But it looks like there is going to be a lot of stress leading up to test day, especially considering the percentiles because even if you get a high raw score but your percentile score is low that will mean nothing because medical schools will know there are applicants who are "better" than you because their percentile (and by virtue of this raw score) is higher as well. 

Average MCAT Scores Don't Matter

Now that the 2015 MCAT is here the average MCAT score simply does not matter anymore.

There are Confidence Intervals and Percentiles being reported so saying you need to get XYZ score simply is meaningless.

Instead, medical schools will most likely have a raw score they want you to achieve on the MCAT but will pay particular attention to your Percentile when deciding who they will or will not admit to medical school. 

Guessing Is Allowed

Are you running out of time on your MCAT exam? Hopefully, this isn't you because the MCAT now provides more time for each question on the exam.

But if you find yourself short on time go ahead and guess.

The MCAT does not penalize you for a wrong answer choice. So it's to your advantage to ensure every question has an answer choice even if you're unsure of it being correct. 

Seriously, if you think you'll be guessing on the MCAT or will be short on time then you definitely are a great candidate for my MCAT course. I don't want to see you struggle and I'm sure you don't want a bad MCAT score so get started now.

MCAT Score Release

After taking the test I am sure you will want to know how well you did so AAMC and the MCAT Program Office will do everything within reason to make MCAT scores available approximately 30-35 days after the test date.

Scores become available online through the MCAT Testing History (THx) System where you can view your most recent score at no charge (I've had to check my score a year later without incurring any fees).

At no charge you may send THx score reports online to several application services, as well as podiatry, veterinary, and public health programs. Lastly, you have the option of printing an Official Score Report and sending it to whomever you wish.

Who Views Your MCAT Score

When you register for the MCAT you are authorizing the release of your MCAT score to the AAMC and their affiliated institutions for research purposes.

You do not have a say in this because the Yes box must be checked in-order for you to take the MCAT exam. If you're upset, remain calm. Your scores will remain confidential and will remain anonymous unless you grant permission otherwise.

Did you know there's a secondary release?

Pay attention to the secondary release because your MCAT scores are being sent to the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) allowing you to automatically receive your score results.

There are three optional score releases:

Health Professions Advisor: grants the AAMC permission to include your scores and demographic information to undergraduate health professions advisors, who find this information useful when advising students.

Med-MAR: gives the AAMC permission to include your scores and biographical information in the Medical Minority Applicant Registry, a service designed to give your information to admission offices of AAMC members who wish to increase opportunities for economically disadvantaged students and those from under-represented groups.

MCAT Recruiting Service: this release gives the AAMC permission to include your contact information and exam score in reports produced by the MCAT Recruiting Service. Accredited U.S. and Canadian schools of medicine, osteopathic medicine, podiatry, and veterinary medicine, along with scholarship programs of the U.S. government (including U.S. military), may request this information and send you material as part of their recruiting efforts.

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