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2021 MCAT Test Dates – Plus 5 Tips for MCAT Registration

MCAT test dates - image by Magoosh

Unlike other pre-health admissions exams like the OAT and DAT, the MCAT is not offered throughout the entire year.

The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) selects about 20 MCAT test dates each year and they are all between the months of January through September. You will want to plan your MCAT studies according to an available MCAT test date.

In addition, the way that MCAT score release works is unique among the other pre-health exams. With the MCAT, you have to wait about a month before you get your score report.

Table of Contents

2021 MCAT Test Dates & Score Release Dates

Below, we have provided for you the MCAT test and MCAT score release dates for 2021 (and 2020, in case you missed them)!

Although (like most things) the MCAT was disrupted by COVID-19 in 2020, you can expect MCAT test dates in future years to follow a similar schedule to the 2021 calendar.

Similarly, while AAMC administered a shortened version of the MCAT in 2020, the full-length MCAT will return in 2021.

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However the 2021 schedule does include an extra January test date, and AAMC will be offering an afternoon testing session to provide more flexibility as well!

Friday, January 15, 2021Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Saturday, January 16, 2021Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Thursday, January 21, 2021Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Monday, January 25, 2021Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Saturday, March 13, 2021Tuesday, April 13, 2021
Friday, March 26, 2021Tuesday, April 27, 2021
Saturday, April 10, 2021Tuesday, May 11, 2021
Friday, April 23, 2021Tuesday, May 25, 2021
Friday, April 30, 2021Tuesday, June 1, 2021
Saturday, May 1, 2021Tuesday, June 1, 2021
Friday, May 14, 2021Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Saturday, May 15, 2021Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Thursday, May 20, 2021Tuesday, July 22, 2021
Friday, May 28, 2021Tuesday, June 29, 2021
Friday, June 4, 2021Wednesday, July 7, 2021
Friday, June 18, 2021Tuesday, July 20, 2021
Saturday, June 19, 2021Tuesday, July 20, 2021
Saturday, June 26, 2021Tuesday, July 27, 2021
Wednesday, June 30, 2021Tuesday, August 3, 2021
Saturday, July 17, 2021Tuesday, August 17, 2021
Thursday, July 22, 2021Tuesday, August 24, 2021
Friday, July 30, 2021Tuesday, August 31, 2021
Saturday, August 7, 2021Wednesday, September 8, 2021
Friday, August 13, 2021Tuesday, September 14, 2021
Saturday, August 21, 2021Tuesday, September 21, 2021
Thursday, August 26, 2021Tuesday, September 28, 2021
Friday, August 27, 2021Tuesday, September 28, 2021
Thursday, September 2, 2021Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Friday, September 3, 2021Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Friday, September 10, 2021Tuesday, October 12, 2021
Saturday, September 11, 2021Tuesday, October 12, 2021

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2020 MCAT Test Dates & Score Release Dates

All of the 2020 MCAT test dates from May 29 onwards were administered as a shortened version of the test, with a testing time of 5 hours and 45 minutes as opposed to the 7 and a half hours of the full-length test.

This allowed for an early morning (6:30am), afternoon (12:15pm), and evening option (6:00pm).

Friday, January 17, 2020Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Saturday, January 18, 2020Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Thursday, January 23, 2020Tuesday, February 25, 2020
Saturday, March 14, 2020 Tuesday, April 14, 2020
Friday, March 27, 2020: CANCELLED Friday, May 1, 2020
Saturday, April 4, 2020: CANCELLED Tuesday, May 5, 2020
Friday, April 24, 2020: CANCELLED Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Saturday, April 25, 2020: CANCELLED Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Saturday, May 9, 2020: CANCELLED Tuesday, June 9, 2020
Friday, May 15, 2020: CANCELLED Tuesday, June 16, 2020
Saturday, May 16, 2020: CANCELLED Tuesday, June 16, 2020
Thursday, May 21, 2020: CANCELLED Tuesday, June 23, 2020
Friday, May 29, 2020Tuesday, June 30, 2020
Friday, June 5, 2020Tuesday, July 7, 2020
Friday, June 19, 2020Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Saturday, June 20, 2020Tuesday, July 21, 2020
Saturday, June 27, 2020: ADDEDTuesday, July 14, 2020
Sunday, June 28, 2020: ADDEDTuesday, July 14, 2020
Tuesday, July 7, 2020Thursday, August 6, 2020
Saturday, July 18, 2020Tuesday, August 18, 2020
Saturday, July 21, 2020: CANCELLEDTuesday, August 21, 2020
Thursday, July 23, 2020Tuesday, August 25, 2020
Friday, July 31, 2020Tuesday, September 1, 2020
Saturday, August 1, 2020Tuesday, September 1, 2020
Friday, August 7, 2020Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Saturday, August 8, 2020Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Friday, August 14, 2020Tuesday, September 15, 2020
Saturday, August 29, 2020 Tuesday, September 29, 2020
Thursday, September 3, 2020Tuesday, October 6, 2020
Friday, September 4, 2020Tuesday, October 6, 2020
Friday, September 11, 2020Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Saturday, September 12, 2020Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Sunday, September 27, 2020: ADDEDTuesday, October 27, 2020
Monday, September 28, 2020: ADDEDTuesday, October 27, 2020

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MCAT COVID-19 Safety Protocols

While many other standardized tests have moved online this year, the AAMC has chosen to continue administering an in-person (although shortened) version of the MCAT. But don’t worry! Below are the health and safety protocols you can expect to be implemented at your testing center:

  • Examinees must meet the health requirements and follow health and safety guidelines while testing.
  • The number of people in each MCAT test session will be limited and social distancing will be enforced in waiting rooms, at check-in, and in the testing room.
  • Face masks will be required for all staff and MCAT examinees.
  • Having hand sanitizer available during testing. Examinees will be asked to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer when they enter the testing room.
  • Increased cleaning and disinfecting regimens will be in place between all testing appointments.

If you have any further questions about COVID-19 safety procedures, just reach out to your local test center!

MCAT Registration Tips

    1. Register early

    Believe it or not, MCAT registration dates fill up very quickly. Most students want to take the exam at their preferred testing location on a date that works best for them. However, the closer it is to test date, the more likely it is that all of the spots at your local testing center will be filled. I once had to drive 60 miles from home just to take the MCAT!

    Registration for the MCAT is split into two phases. In October, students may begin to register for January through May test dates. June through September test dates open for registration in February. You can follow the AAMC’s twitter page to learn the exact time when registration opens. In the past, it has opened early in the morning based on the Eastern Time Zone. To ensure that you can get the MCAT test date and testing center location you want, make sure to register as soon as possible.

    2. Keep long-term goals in mind

    When you’re picking your MCAT registration date, keep in mind that it takes about 30 days to get your scores back. So if you need to have your scores back by a certain time for your application, for instance, be sure to take score release dates into consideration.

    3. Know the deadlines

    Each MCAT registration date has associated deadlines to reschedule or cancel your registration. Know when these deadlines are and lock them into your calendar.

    4. Be prepared

    There are a few things you should do in advance to make registering for the MCAT a little bit easier. Sign up for an AAMC account, if you haven’t done so already, have your government-issued ID available (something like a driver’s license), and have your form of payment handy.

    5. Pick a date that works best for YOU

    Each student has a slightly different timeline for preparing for and taking the MCAT. If you know you need more time to prepare than your friends, then register for a later date. The goal is to take the MCAT as few times as possible, so pick an MCAT registration date that you feel will best help you achieve that goal! Also, if you’re looking for some extra help consider Magoosh’s MCAT prep.

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Which MCAT test date should I choose?

Because of the MCAT score release delay, you can see that students must take the MCAT by May if they want their application to be among the earliest reviewed by medical schools. Students that take later exams will be delayed. For example in 2020, the earliest day that a June 1st test taker could have their application reviewed is July 2nd.

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To submit a complete application for medical school, you will need your MCAT score, academic transcripts, personal statement, description of activities and awards, letters of recommendation, and any additional essays required by the school.

Applications are submitted in two phases: the primary and secondary applications.

  • Primary applications are completed through the American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS).

    To submit your AMCAS application, you need your personal statement, academic transcripts, and description of activities and awards. Once your primary application is submitted, it will have to be verified by the AMCAS.

  • Secondary applications will be sent out when medical schools have received your primary application. AMCAS begins transmission of verified primary applications to medical schools on the last Friday of June.

    For 2020, the AMCAS transmission date will be June 30th. This means that students that have verified primary applications by June 30th will begin receiving secondary applications on this day. If these students submit their secondary application on the same day, medical schools will begin reviewing their complete applications.

Registering for the MCAT can be a stressful process, but with some preparation, along with anxiety-relieving mindfulness techniques, you will be more than ready to tackle this step. Good luck!

*Contributions to this article by Magoosh blogger April.

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