February 5, 2020
Let's take an aerial look at demographic shifts: Malthusian theory vs demographic transition theory, population growth and decline, gentrification, and more. Strap in!
January 29, 2020
Today, we're investigating some of the hot topics in section nine A of the AAMC MCAT Outline: religious organizations, medicalization and culture. Don't miss this one!
January 8, 2020
Conflict theory, functionalism, symbolic interactionism and more! many sociological terms are not intuitive, so listen closely for how to tell them apart.
January 1, 2020
Straight from the official MCAT outline! We're covering the difference between role conflict, role strain, and attachment styles. Know these COLD.
December 25, 2019
Get ready for a super high-yield topic! Listen and learn how to sort through all the positive / negative reinforcements through reward and punishment.
December 18, 2019
In content gategory seven B of the AAMC Outline, we'll be looking at types of societal norms. Can you tease apart the subtle diferences?
December 11, 2019
What do you need to know about personality disorders? We're going to talk about disorder clusters and how to tell apart confusing sound-alikes!
December 4, 2019
Get ready to familiarize yourself with the most influential theories of self and personality. You'll need to know these cold for the MCAT!
November 27, 2019
Know your theories of emotion and physiological response for the MCAT! Today we're comparing the James Lange, Cannon Bard, and Schachter Singer models.
November 6, 2019
Let's tackle some MCAT definitions: do you know the different heuristics? How about the different types of memory? Join us for some psych/soc.
October 23, 2019
The AAMC Outline shows you what you are expected to know for the MCAT. But is that all you need to know? Plus, some psychology/sociology material!
October 16, 2019
Have you ever wondered how to schedule your MCAT full-length exams and get the most out of practice tests? This episode is for you!
October 9, 2019
Good news, the MCAT isn't a math test! On test day, it's all about units, simple relationships, and reading the question carefully. Listen for more!
October 2, 2019
the 2020 MCAT season is coming! We'll talk about classes and courses that prepare you for the MCAT and when (or if) to take them.
September 25, 2019
When you review MCAT passages and evaluate your performance, it's important to know not only what you missed, but why you missed it!
September 18, 2019
Is the MCAT taking over your life? Are you worried about burnout? Do you remember your ultimate "why"? Let's talk about staying motivated during MCAT prep.
September 11, 2019
What's the difference between CARS and other MCAT sections? CARS is 100% skill, not prior knowledge! Today we talk note-taking, reading, and analysis for CARS.
September 4, 2019
LizzyM is just an equation. How do you fit your history, experiences, struggles, triumphs, and trends into that equation? Spoiler: You can't. Tune in for more.
August 28, 2019
Why is the MCAT so difficult, and why is there so much data analysis involved? Can you gameify the MCAT, or even learn to enjoy it? Phil joins me to discuss.
August 21, 2019
The MCAT Podcast welcomes Phil from Next Step Test Prep! He joins me to talk MCAT strategy and how to prepare without getting overwhelmed.
August 14, 2019
How do you study for the MCAT, and how do you know your prep is working for you? Introducing Next Step's Rachel Grubbs, who is here to tell us more.
August 7, 2019
Sociology has many broad, high-yield concepts like inequality, demographics and social stratification. Today, we dig into some sociology discretes.
July 31, 2019
Experiment design has the potential to appear in three of the four MCAT sections, which makes it super high yield. Follow along with the handout!
July 24, 2019
Today we're talking high-yield physics: the electromagnetic spectrum, refraction, and understanding wavelength and frequency as it relates to light. Let's go!
July 17, 2019
Lab technique is an MCAT topic that requires both organic chemistry and biochemistry knowledge to answer. We'll tackle some high-yield questions on this topic.
July 10, 2019
Follow along with today's episode as we continue with high yield concepts. We'll cover reduction potentials and compare electrolytic and galvanic cells.
July 3, 2019
Today we define the wide world of molecular genetics and dive straight into some MCAT discretes. Follow along with the handout!
June 26, 2019
The MCAT covers many concepts and study time is limited. Today we discuss high-yield materials. Are they the key to getting the biggest return on your MCAT prep?
June 12, 2019
Today we discuss the AAMC's MCAT prep resources, updates to the interface and functionality, and how to get the most out of your practice material.
June 5, 2019
Students often think the most important part is taking as many full-lengths as possible, but according to MCAT experts, that is a mistake you don't want to make!
May 29, 2019
The last questions on Next Step full-length 10 are discrete questions covering locus of control, gender, and aphasia! How did you do on the Psych/Soc section?
May 22, 2019
In our last passage of the Psych/Soc section, we look into the impact socioeconomic status has on college attendance. Follow along in the blog post!
May 15, 2019
In Passage 9 we analyze a study about the impact of musical expertise on both the functional and structural modifications of the brain. Follow along!
May 8, 2019
Today we tackle our next set of discrete questions! We cover norms, bias, groupthink, and population statistics! Challenge your knowledge and see how you do!
May 1, 2019
For a premed, the word stress is synonymous with the MCAT, but don't worry we cover all things stress in Passage 8. Follow along in our show notes!
April 24, 2019
In Passage 7 we analyze a study about behavior and how context impacts behavior. Follow along to see the results of Good Samaritan versus Occupation!
April 17, 2019
We tackle Passage 6 today that covers a study that investigates the effect terminology has on describing disease. Follow along in our blog post!
April 10, 2019
Today we have more discrete questions that cover personality traits, emotions, and more! How did you do on this set of questions? Follow along to find out!
April 3, 2019
Passage 5 is all about administrative groupthink and the impact it has on employee stress and turnover. Follow along to improve your psych/soc skills!
March 27, 2019
We are moving on to Passage 4 which covers a study that tested whether patient compliance can be prompted by social characteristics. Follow along in our show notes!
March 20, 2019
Last week we took a quick break from passages with discrete questions. This week we look at Passage 3 that covers the pathway in which we hear with the ear.
March 13, 2019
In our first set of discrete questions from Next Step Test Prep, we answer questions about bias, stress hormones, organizational effects, and groupthink!
March 6, 2019
We tackle Passage 2 that is all about external locus of control with migrants! Follow along with the handout on our blog post to hone your psych/soc skills!
February 27, 2019
Today we begin the psych/soc section from the Next Step full-length 10. Passage 1 covers double bind communication and the link between communication and schizophrenia.
February 20, 2019
Psychology and Sociology is the newest section of the MCAT. We talk about how to tackle this section and talk about how it may be different from other sections.
February 13, 2019
We're on the last part of bio/biochem and we're finishing up with a set of discrete questions. Follow along in the show notes at
February 6, 2019
Passage 10 of bio/biochem is about a research study looking at the activity of membrane proteins in three different cell types. Follow along in the blog post.
January 30, 2019
We're rounding out bio/biochem for Next Step Test Prep full-length 10 and we're in for a great passage to help us with our skills.
January 23, 2019
We're onto our last set of discrete questions for the bio/biochem section of Next Step Test Prep full-length 10. Follow along in our show notes!
January 16, 2019
Passage 8 is all about genetics, inheritance patterns, chromosomes, and much more. Follow along with the blog post for this episode.
January 9, 2019
Passage 7 is all about white blood cells, viruses, and bacteria and how they respond in the body of mice. Follow along on our MCAT Podcast blog post!
January 2, 2019
Passage 6 is filled with lipoproteins, and maybe a little Hepatitis C. Follow along with the handout on our blog post for this MCAT bio/biochem passage.
December 26, 2018
In our next set of discrete questions from Next Step Test Prep, we talk about insulin, beta-oxidation, and the IRB and research process. Follow along in the post.
December 19, 2018
We tackle passage 5 from Next Step full-length 10 which talks about peripheral nerves and stem cells. Follow along with the handouts at
December 12, 2018
Another week of MCAT full-length breakdown with Clara from Next Step Test Prep. We're covering passage 4 from NSTP full-length 10 bio/biochem section.
December 5, 2018
We're still in bio/biochem mode for the MCAT Podcast, this week covering the first discrete set of questions from the section. Follow along in the show notes.
November 28, 2018
Passage 3 from Next Step Test Prep full-length 10 covers an interesting discussion on unfolded protein response and endoplasmic reticulum homeostasis.
November 21, 2018
We tackle passage 2 from Next Step Test Prep's full-length 10 bio/biochem section. The topic of this passage is all about insulin. Follow along with us.
November 14, 2018
We're back with some more Next Step full-length breakdown, this week covering passage 1 of the biology and biochemistry section of the MCAT.
November 7, 2018
The AAMC is making some changes with their MCAT practice material. Some students don't like it. Also, we talk about MCAT registration and what to look for.
October 24, 2018
The last passage of the CARS section is one that many students don't get to on test day. Let's finish strong with our MCAT CARS passage prep!
October 17, 2018
Struggling with CARS? Check out passage 8 from Next Step Test Prep, full-length 10. Listen to the struggles, learn from the mistakes to improve your MCAT score.
October 10, 2018
Remember when I said we were on the last MCAT CARS passage last week? Surprise, we have 3 more to go! How about that for a fun prank! Enjoy and subscribe.
October 3, 2018
We're at the last passage of CARS on Next Step full-length 10. Hopefully, you've gotten some great tips and techniques to improve your CARS score!
September 26, 2018
Are you tired of CARS yet? This is one of the hardest sections on the MCAT, but hopefully, we're making it easier for you going through these passages!
September 19, 2018
Learning how to do well on the CARS section is hard. Practice makes perfect and that's why you should be following along with us on The MCAT Podcast!
September 12, 2018
We're back for some more Next Step Test Prep full-length 10 with CARS passage 3. Follow along with the handout on the blog post for this episode.
September 5, 2018
Clara is back for some more Next Step full-length 10 breakdown—this time with CARS passage 2. Follow along with the handout on the show notes page!
August 29, 2018
Clara joins Ryan as the new MCAT expert from Next Step Test Prep. We tackle the first passage of CARS. Follow along with the handout in the show notes.
August 22, 2018
Session 108 This week, we jump into a CARS 101 before we tackle the CARS section starting next week. We’ll talk about everything you need to know for the CARS section. Once again, we're joined by Bryan Schnedeker from Next Step Test Prep. Use the promo code MCATPOD and save 10% off their full-length exams (there's 10 of them to choose from!) CARS is going to be hard to cover on the podcast. So for this episode, we're going to do a little primer and dive into some CARS stuff in the next couple of episodes. Meanwhile, check out MedEd Media Network for all our other episodes as you’re move along this journey to medical school and beyond! [02:40] How Should You Attack Passages on the CARS Section? CARS is one of the things that students have the most trouble with, especially those who are retaking. They're trying to prep again and just didn't come together for them, for whatever reason. And they don't know what to do. Bryan explains that at their fundamental core, they're a tutoring company. They recognize that every student is unique. Everybody's brain works a little bit different. So what they usually advise students is there is not one right way to do CARS. There is only your right way to do CARS. The number one mistake Bryan sees students are making when it comes to tackling the section is trying to jump the gun. They expect that you just give them what needs to be done and they'll do it. But you have to find your best method. That's hard, boring work. You have to be willing to fail a whole bunch in order to find your success. So you have to find your own way. All this being said, there are a few techniques on CARS and you have to try these to see what works. The Four Types of Studying Approaches [04:34] CARS Strategy #1: Note Taking You are given a laminated note board and a wet erase marker so it's possible to take notes. 80%-90% of students hate taking notes while they read. But for about 15%-20% of students, learning how to effectively use the marker and take notes while reading is game-changing for them. So learn how to take notes at the end of each paragraph and every passage. Jot down main ideas, jot down cause and effect relationships. Give it time to practice jotting notes and see if this can help you. [06:20] CARS Strategy #2: On-Screen Highlighter Most students end up doing highlighting a section of the test. You hit Ctrl+H and that puts a yellow highlight. Students like this because they don't have to stop and write anything down separately. The key thing is that the highlighter is like a scalpel, not a paint roller. Don't be slathering yellow all over the screen. Pick up individual phrases and keywords. Practice and see how you can maximize it. Try to see if you're overlighting or underlighting or is your highlighting pointless. [07:27] CARS Strategy #3: The Main Idea Approach Some prep companies say this is the only way to do it. You don't highlight or write anything down. Just stop at the end of the passage and write down the overall main idea of the passage. This is good if you're a very strong reader and you're able to naturally read quickly. You have a very good short-term memory and working memory where you can keep a lot of key ideas in your head at once so you don't get lost in the passage. Then you'd just have to contextualize it for yourself with the main idea. You can either write it down or say it in your head. [08:05] CARS Strategy #4: Skimming Bryan thinks skimming is a terrible idea but Bryan has had students who've had enormous success with skimming. They generally get a quick, loose idea of the passage and then get right to the questions and go back and do a lot of looking up. Most students don't like it, but you can try it still. See if this helps. [08:36] Try Different Techniques Now, you may not see yourself in any of these categories, so you have to try all these different things to see what amalgam of strategies is going to work best for you. This can take a lot of time and a lot of practice. It takes the willingness to try out a technique that doesn't seem to work very well for you but just give it an honest go. Do dozens of passages with that technique to see if you can make it work for you. If you can't, then move onto the next technique. Bryan adds that as we go on with the passages, he will be giving you suggestions as to how to approach these. But then again, there is not one way to only approach a paragraph with that concept, but depending on which approach works for you. They would just serve as the general guidelines for the key underlined concepts that you should take note of in some format or another. [10:15] Switching Between Approaches Most students have a core default style in dealing with passages. If it's a dry, philosophical, boring passage, some students highlight a lot more and then the highlighting becomes less about what they're highlighting. But it's more about giving them something kinesthetic to do to keep themselves engaged. So even if they're not the highlighter type of student, they find themselves highlighting more when they get bored. Similarly, some highlighters would turn into notetaking when it starts getting more technical and philosophical. So they tend to slow down and start jotting some notes down. Or if it gets into politics or an opinion-heavy passage where there are lots of people contradicting and disagreeing with each other, they suddenly become note takers. [11:30] The Biggest Mistakes Notetakers will have the tendency to be a little too rigid. They'll feel like every paragraph they read, they'd have to stop and jot something down. But MCAT passages can have entire paragraphs that are "throat-clearing." In this case, don't write anything down because you're only writing pointless notes. Highlighters may then to have this paint roller syndrome where they have the tendency to highlight everything. While people who either take the skimming or main idea approach can tend to get a little arrogant. As mentioned, they tend to work well for very strong readers. So they may take for granted that level of skill without recognizing that the MCAT requires more care and more subtlety of thought. So Bryan ends up reminding them to slow down and make sure they're getting it. [13:23] How to Calm Your Inner Doubt Bryan constantly tells students to just focus on the words in front of you. One exercise is to read out a sentence out loud. Put the emphasis on one specific word. Then read again and put the emphasis on another word, and so on. This is a way for you to see what your inner voice should be hearing when you read these sentences. Then you're able to bypass the issue of other elements of what your brain might be thinking. So you're constantly directing that inner voice to analyze what the sentence says. Then you know what has to be in your brain. Lastly, practice, practice, practice. And this is what we're going to be doing in the next few week as well tackle CARS. Links: MedEd Media Network Next Step Test Prep (Use the promo code MCATPOD and save 10% off their full-length exams.)
August 15, 2018
Solubility, fatty acids, and uranium are all topics of the three discrete questions we cover on this next installment of Next Step full-length 10 breakdown!
August 8, 2018
Passage 9 covers isolating a specific drug, amino acids and Poiseuille's law. Follow along with the show notes and handout to increase your MCAT score!
August 1, 2018
ATP, blood vessels, fat stores and beta decay are the topics we cover in the next set of discrete questions from Next Step Test Prep Full-length 10.
July 25, 2018
The next passage in Next Step's full-length 10 includes information about enzymes and precipitates. If you struggle with solubility and more, this is for you.
July 18, 2018
Passage 6 on Next Step's full-length 10 includes nutrition labels, understanding fiber, combustion, and others. Don't forget to subscribe to the podcast!
July 11, 2018
We're back with discrete questions from full-length 10. We're looking at enzymes, ATP, antioxidants, and buoyancy. Check it out and don't forget to subscribe.
July 4, 2018
Passage 4 on Next Step full-length 10 covers human hearing and sound waves. Follow along and download the handout on our blog post. Will you get them right?
June 27, 2018
We tackle Passage 3 on Next Step's full-length 10 covering a passage about proteins in milk and what happens when you heat them up. Take a listen!
June 20, 2018
Questions 10-13 on Next Step's full-length 10 are the first set of discrete questions that we're going to cover during this full-length breakdown. Take a look!
June 13, 2018
We continue Next Step's full-length 10, questions 5-10 covering a passage about body density. Follow along, download the handouts, and don't forget to have fun!
June 6, 2018
This week we're starting a new series, breaking down questions from Next Step's full-length 10. We start with the first passage and question 1.
May 30, 2018
Psychology is one of the newer subjects on the MCAT. Bryan from Next Step Test Prep and Ryan cover the topic to help you learn how to answer the questions.
May 23, 2018
Bryan from Next Step Test Prep and Ryan cover biochemistry, a huge pain point for many premed students. Take a listen and learn some biochem with us.
May 16, 2018
In today's MCAT Podcast we cover biology, including pregnancy, connective tissue disease, and skeletal myocytes. Follow along in the blog post for the questions.
May 9, 2018
The new MSAR contained a big shock for students, an increase of almost 4 points to the average MCAT score for those starting medical school. What does it mean?
May 2, 2018
In our last week of the physics series, we're going to cover some fluid dynamic discrete questions that seem to trip up a lot of premed students. Listen now!
April 25, 2018
Why is the sky blue? That's just one of the questions that may come up on the MCAT when talking about physics and light waves. Check out the questions!
April 18, 2018
When you're struggling on the MCAT, there may be a few different reasons, with content review and test skills being just two. How do you know what to work on?
April 11, 2018
Water and fluid dynamics and physics go hand in hand on the MCAT. This week we're cover this topic to help you improve your physics MCAT section score.
April 4, 2018
Physics is one of the hardest subjects on the MCAT. Over the course of 4 episodes, we're going to dive into high-yield physics topics to help you score higher!
March 28, 2018
Our last week of the Psych/Soc content is here. This week we dive more into sociology and talk about social movements, socioeconomics and more.
March 21, 2018
This is our third week of Psych/Soc for the MCAT and we're covering more very nuanced models of stages and development. Following along and learn!
March 14, 2018
Week two of our Psych/Soc MCAT series on the podcast and we're covering more straight psych questions that you are going to need to know for the MCAT.
March 7, 2018
This is week one of our Psych/Soc series on the MCAT Podcast. We're covering some biology questions which is a subject covered in the Psych section of the MCAT.
February 28, 2018
Physics is one of the harder sections of the MCAT for many students. If you are one of those students, you're not alone. Check out our foundational series now.
February 21, 2018
Chemistry is one of the first classes you'll take as a premed and it shows on the MCAT. Today we'll cover some foundational topics related to chemistry.
February 14, 2018
Biochemistry is a foundational topic on the MCAT and we're going to cover some of the foundational pieces of information that you're expected to know on the test.
February 7, 2018
If you're GPA is low, you may have heard that the MCAT might save you if you get a good enough score. We tackle that question today on the MCAT Podcast.
January 31, 2018
We're starting a series of foundational subject material. Each week, we'll cover some foundational topics for each section. This is what you need to know.
January 24, 2018
With a new testing center, comes new changes to the MCAT user interface. Things won't be drastically different, but we thought you should know as you prepare.
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