Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) - Introduction

MCAT 2017

About MCAT

The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is a prerequisite for admission to nearly all medical schools in North America. Designed by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the exam is administered throughout most of the year, including January, March, April, May, June and July. The MCAT is a standardized, multiple choice examination designed to assess problem solving, critical thinking and writing skills in addition to the examinee's knowledge of science concepts and principles prerequisite to the study of medicine. Scores are reported for Verbal Reasoning, Physical Sciences and Biological Sciences. The MCAT assesses mastery of basic concepts in biology, chemistry and physics, facility with scientific problem solving and critical thinking. The skills and concepts tested by the MCAT are those identified by physicians and medical educators as necessary for the practice of medicine.

According to the new version launched by the AAMC, the MCAT exam consists of the following four sections:

  • Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems
  • Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems
  • Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior
  • Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills

Eligibility

  • Candidates can only apply for the health professions institutes listed below:
  1. Allopathic
  2. Osteopathic
  3. Podiatric
  4. Veterinary Medicine
  • International candidates are required to present a statement that verifies their intention to apply at a health professions institute
  • If a candidate is not applying to a health professions institute, he/she will have to obtain special permission to register for the exam
  • A candidate with an MBBS degree may apply for registration without special permission
  • Candidates have to submit their academic transcripts to the school they are applying to as the AAMC does not accept international transcripts
  • For admission into medical colleges in the USA, international candidates are required to have completed at least four years of undergraduate education.

Exam schedule and scores

Test dates

Score release

 January 20

February 23

January 25

February 27

March 24

May 1

April 6

May 8

April 20

May 22

April 21

May 22

May 5

June 5

May 18

June 19

May 19

June 19

May 24

June 26

June 1

July 3

June 2

July 3

June 16

July 17

June 29

July 31

June 30

July 31

July 7

August 7

July 20

August 21

July 21

August 21

July 24

August 23

August 3

September 5

August 4

September 5

August 9

September 11

August 10

September 11

August 18

September 18

August 31

October 2

September 1

October 2

September 8

October 9

September 18

October 23

September 19

October 23

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Test centres

There are no test centres in India for the MCAT exam. Students have to travel to Thailand, Malaysia or Singapore to appear for the exam.

Exam fees

The fees for an MCAT exam are USD 310, plus an estimated $100 for international students. It comes down to INR 25, 750.

Test preparation

AAMC provides a great span of study material for aspiring candidates. The full syllabus can be found here. Public forums are available online for any questions related to the exam that candidates might have. For official knowledge about the MCAT, the best resource is AAMC Content Outlines. the official guide to the MCAT exam is also available on Amazon.

Exam pattern

The MCAT exam pattern according to their official website is as follows:

Sections

No of Questions

Duration

Break-up of questions

Examinee Agreement

-

8 minutes

 -

Tutorial (optional)

10 minutes

 -

Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems

 

59

95

·         10 passage-based sets of questions

·         4–6 questions per set

·         15 independent questions

Break (optional)

-

10 minutes

 -

Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills

 

53

90

·         9 passages

·         5–7 questions per passage

Mid-Exam Break (optional)

 -

30

 -

Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems

 

59

95

·         10 passage-based sets of questions

·         4–6 questions per set

·         15 independent questions

Break (optional)

 -

10 minutes

 -

Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behavior

 

59

95

·         10 passage-based sets of questions

·         4–6 questions per set

·         15 independent questions

Void Question

 -

5 minutes

 -

Satisfaction Survey (optional)

 -

5 minutes

 -

Total Content Time

 -

6 hours 15 minutes

 -

Total “Seated” Time*

 -

7 hours 33 minutes(Approx)

 -

 

Source

"Medical College Admission Test (MCAT)," AAMC, https://www.aamc.org/students/applying/mcat/



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