The 2015 MCAT – Thoughts and Statistics
November 13, 2012
Last week Alex wrote about the The Big Buzz behind the 2015 MCAT changes. Check out his post for more information on the new format and content which is also being highlighted in the Preview Guide for the 2015 MCAT Exam.
With all of this new information Kaplan surveyed medical school admissions officers to see what they thought about the revamped MCAT set to launch in 2015. The new MCAT has the support of the medical education community. Nearly 9 out of 10 (87%) medical school admissions officers support the changes to the MCAT, while only 1% don’t support the changes; 12% aren’t sure. Similarly, 74% of admissions officers say the 2015 MCAT will better prepare aspiring doctors for medical school; just 5% say it won’t; and 21% aren’t sure of what its effects will mean.
While the medical school admissions officers think the 2015 MCAT will produce stronger medical students, many also believe the road to medical school may become more intense for pre-meds. 40% say that pre-meds’ course loads will increase because of the additional content they will have to learn as undergrads; 46% say their course loads will stay at their current levels; and 15% aren’t sure. No admissions officers say pre-meds’ course loads will become easier. Many pre-med programs have already revised their curricula or are in the process of doing so to ensure that students – particularly freshmen and sophomores – are prepared to tackle the exam’s new content come 2015.
- MCAT’s Importance Increases: 51% of medical school admissions officers say an applicant’s MCAT score is the most important admissions factor – up from 43% in 2011’s survey; an applicant’s undergraduate GPA placed second at 23%, followed by relevant experience at 14%; the interview at 6%, letters of recommendation at 4%; and personal statement at 3%.
- The Interview Process: 76% of medical schools say they use the traditional interview process – where applicants meet face-to-face with just a few officials for lengthier periods of time – down from 82% in Kaplan’s 2011 survey. 17% say they use the newer Multiple Mini Interview (MMI) process, where applicants are interviewed and assessed by many officials for shorter periods of time – only 6% said they used this process in Kaplan’s 2011 survey.
In 2012, more than 45,000 aspiring doctors applied to medical school, a 3.1% increase over 2011. As always we will continue to preparing students for success.
* For the 2012 survey, 75 medical school admissions officers from the 141 Association of American Medical Colleges across the United States were polled by telephone between August and September 2012.
I am a former Kaplan MCAT student that excelled on my exam through the Kaplan methods and began teaching for Kaplan at the University of Illinois – Urbana – Champaign center. Upon graduation I moved back to the Chicagoland area and became a full time teacher in our Chicago centers. I really strive to bring enthusiasm and energy to the classroom believing a positive attitude sets the tone for success! When I am not teaching the MCAT, you can find me training for triathlons or picking which bow tie to wear next!