Preparing for the New MCAT

The MCAT changed substantially as of Spring (April) 2015.  According to the AAMC, "the changes preserve what works about the current exam, eliminate what isn’t working, and further enrich the MCAT exam by giving attention to the concepts tomorrow’s doctors will need.

  • Natural sciences sections of MCAT2015 reflect recent changes in medical education.
  • Addition of the social and behavioral sciences section, Psychological, Social and Biological Foundations of Behavior, recognizes the importance of socio-cultural and behavioral determinants of health and health outcomes.
  • And the new Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills section reflects the fact that medical schools seek well-rounded applicants from a variety of backgrounds."
Is the new MCAT required?
Students who take the old MCAT exam should know that their MCAT scores are generally valid for three years from the date of the exam to matriculation in a medical school. However, this varies from school to school; the AAMC maintains a list with school-specific information.
Preparing for the new MCAT
The AAMC has developed online resources (in partnership with Khan Academy) to help students prepare for the new section in social and behavioral sciences, and the new MCAT as a whole. AAMC’s iCollaborative offers a plethora of online tutorials that will help you understand the foundational concepts, the "big ideas" in the sciences that provide the foundation for learning in medical school, that will be tested on MCAT 2015.  
You should also visit a pre-med advisor to discuss how to best prepare for the test. The UAR pre-health advisors in Sweet Hall are receiving regular updates from the AAMC on the new test, as well as discussing changes with admissions counselors at medical schools.
You will find more information about MCAT 2015, including a link to purchase the official sample test, at the AAMC's MCAT2015 site.
Fee Assistance
Note that the AAMC offers a Fee Assistance Program (FAP) as part of our ongoing commitment to ensuring that the cost of applying to medical school is not a barrier for future physicians. All MCAT preparation products, and (if in the same calendar year) the AMCAS application, will be available free of charge for individuals who qualify for fee assistance.