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Should You Ever Retake the MCAT?

Being competitive on the MCAT is important. To be accepted into a medical school, it is essential that you show admissions committees that you are able to understand and apply complex concepts while under pressure.

People say that medical schools frown upon students who retake the MCAT. However, this is not always true. Whether or not it is appropriate to retake the MCAT depends on your situation. You should absolutely aim to take the MCAT once by preparing for the exam well in advance and making sure that test day goes smoothly, but unexpected events sometimes prevent MCAT success.

For example, when one of our tutors took her MCAT, there was still an essay section. While she was writing the last sentence, the keyboard started acting funny. All of a sudden, her entire essay was deleted with two minutes left on the clock! She panicked and was distracted by what happened for the remainder of the exam. She was certain that it had impacted her performance, so she decided to take the test a second time. Despite her fears that the interviewers would demand an explanation of why she retook the MCAT, no one ever did.

It is acceptable for you to retake the MCAT under two conditions:

  1. If something happens during your test that impacts your performance 
  2. If you think you are able to attain a considerably higher score, meaning several points, by retaking it.

In other words, you need to be confident that you can improve your score because it does reflect badly on your application if you do worse than you did the first time! In the case that you do end up taking the MCAT over, be sure to include an explanation in the “additional comments” section of your application to explain the difference in scores and your reason for taking it a second time.

Call our MCAT tutoring team at (800) 501-Prep today for information!