An MCAT prep timeline can take different shapes and sizes. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to creating a timeline for MCAT prep, but there are some general principles that can be applied for any type of studying plan. Here’s an example of a timeline that takes into account these principles. For the sake of completeness, the start point of this timeline will be in high school
Example MCAT Prep Timeline
High School: Study hard in ALL of your classes. While the MCAT previously had been a mostly science exam, the new exam has expanded to include psychology and social sciences. Studying well in history, social studies, and other similar subjects will be beneficial for your MCAT.
College: Take as many science classes and as many difficult science classes as you can. You don’t necessarily need to major in a science, and taking a broad variety of classes will again help with the expanded sections of the new MCAT.
More than six months before the MCAT: Start your studying early and creating a plan will be helpful. Start with your weaker subjects and cycle between subjects to keep things fresh. Magoosh’s MCAT prep can help you review all the MCAT topics you need a refresher in.
Three to six months before the MCAT: Take a diagnostic test to see where you stand. This will let you know how much more you might need to study. If you’re at your goal already, that’s great! You can schedule your exam now or try moving it up! If you’re not at your goal, that’s ok! You still have three to six months of studying ahead of you. Depending on how far from your goal you are, you can consider booking your exam early to avoid some of the increased charges.
Weeks before the MCAT: At this point, you should be at or close to your goal based on your diagnostic. If you haven’t booked your exam yet, be sure to do so and not avoid increased fees or worse –missing the deadline!
Day before the MCAT: Have a nice dinner, enjoy a movie, have a relaxing evening, and get a good night’s sleep.
MCAT day: You’ve worked hard for this! You’re going to do great!