Beginning in Spring 2015 the MCAT will include the following four test 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
For an explanation on each section and more information about the new MCAT visit the AAMC MCAT 2015 website and consult What's on the Exam?
In the evaluation of intermediate scores, the deciding factor is the relationship between MCAT scores and grades. If your grades are outstanding (3.7 or above), you will probably be able to get by with a slightly lower total score, as long as you do not have one weak subtest score. If your grades are in the 3.4 range, you probably need a total score of 33 or better to get the serious attention of medical schools. The students this year who were not accepted to medical school usually had a combination of average grades and average MCATs, above-average grades and below-average MCATs, or vice versa. Unfortunately, a strong academic performance can still be hurt by low MCAT scores.
The DAT is a computerized exam that tests students on the natural sciences (Biology, General Chemistry, and Organic Chemistry), perceptual ability, reading comprehension, and quantitative reasoning. Each section is scored on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 30 (highest) with a score of 17 indicating average performance. The exam usually takes about 4 hours and 15 minutes to complete. You will receive your scores immediately upon completing the exam; however, it usually takes about two to three weeks for the dental schools you’ve selected to receive the scores. If you are unhappy with your performance, you must wait 90 days before you can retake the exam.
Veterinary colleges typically require only the general GRE. This test is broken down into three sections; verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning and analytical writing. The verbal reasoning focuses on the ability to analyze and evaluate written material and synthesize information as well as recognizing relationships between words and concepts. The quantitative reasoning section tests the ability to understand basic concepts of algebra, geometry, and data analysis. It also requires quantitative problem solving and reasoning. The analytical writing section requires the test-taker to clearly articulate complex ideas, examine claims and evidence, support ideas with examples and sustained a focused, coherent discussion.