When it comes to exams, studying effectively is never an easy task. It requires not only commitment but also a combination of concentration, discipline, months of studying, and other disciplines, such as self-control. Getting accepted to a medical school is an uphill task, so it will require your ultimate dedication to achieve this dream.
At least 6 months are advised to prepare sufficiently for the MCAT. It has never been easy to find time to do specifically that since there are classes to be attended, assignments, volunteering activities, combined with all of your various existing home and personal responsibilities. But all is not in vain, you only need to manage your time efficiently and use every resource at your disposal. By doing this the dream is achievable.
Self-discipline will be even more paramount if you are studying the MCAT while you are studying abroad. Planning to study abroad during the time period when you will be studying the MCAT? You’re brave. Here is some “low hanging fruit,” or recommendations that can help you best prepare for MCAT and organize yourself.
1. Prepare a schedule.
In order to make a good and actionable schedule, first, identify the areas that need more concentration. Then proceed to make the schedule that will best suit your available time. The next stage is to be committed to the schedule. Time in-between classes and during work breaks, this is the time that positively makes this achievable, not forgetting to make the most out of the weekends. Let the schedule be your guide, for every minute you add to this schedule will bring you a step closer to achieving the score of your lifetime. Don’t forget to monitor your progress too this will enable you to make up for lost time or challenge yourself to do more.
Carving out study time during commute – if you have to take the train or subway in a foreign country, this will be a very effective time to study!
It’s important to self-test to gauge the amount of work needed to be done. This will help you to challenge yourself more and be able to strengthen any areas that need more work. Simulate the exact exam environment, for this will help in setting your mind to the same exam environment that you will face on your actual test day. This must include the exact time allotted and a quiet environment. Put your cell phone away! Your performance under a simulated testing environment will parallel the performance to be expected on test day.
3. Use all help at your disposal
During this period moral support is very important. This can be gained by joining other students who are studying for MCAT too or from working with a 1-on-1 MCAT tutor. Since you’re abroad, you can probably find a mutually convenient time to work with a tutor in the states online via video chat. Sharpening your skills and knowledge are crucial at this point. Consider online group studies too with other students who are studying for the MCAT. Be active teach and ask questions.
4. Balance your time.
It’s obvious that it’s not only the MCAT that you are dealing with. Your plate may be full and adding MCAT to it presents a challenge. Studying for other courses, volunteering to hospitals and trying to work a part-time job will surely strain your time to the maximum. This challenge can be managed well only by allocating time according to the task at hand. Treat all tasks as part and parcel of your daily activities. But don’t drain yourself mentally, stay focused and healthy too. Don’t forget to work out, playing games and other activities.
5. Study during travel
Find time to allocate for this extra activity to study for MCAT is challenging since your plate is already full with classes and volunteering activities. It will be wise to find extra time to study and studying while traveling will be an added advantage to your schedule. This time can be used to research materials from the internet or online tutorials. All this will bring you a step closer to achieving your set goal. Make use of flashcards with chemistry and physics apps, or anything else that suits your learning preferences.
However, no matter how much time you put to study for MCAT, remember every person is unique, and there is no single way of preparing for this. Keep yourself open and ready to learn anytime and from anyone. Be relaxed at all time and practice patience.