Improve my MCAT score

What breaks first, the pencil or me?

I just got my score back for the MCAT, and it’s much lower than I expected. I was shocked to have done so poorly. I’ve decided to retake it to improve my chances. Any tips for preparing for the second time around so that I don’t get blindsided again and can actually improve my MCAT score?  Jesse D.


Hi Jesse,

It is great that you want to improve your MCAT score.

Before I try to offer you new tips for the second time around, it would be important to know what you did the first time around.  For example, did you take more than 10 practice tests spaced out over time?  What did you do for content review and what techniques/methods have you studied?

As you probably know, practice, practice, practice (and analysis) is key. What I will say is that structuring your time (setting days/times every week that you will devote solely to MCAT prep and specific subject prep in need of improvement) is essential (and also a reason why so many students like The Princeton Review’s 0000 Hyperlearning program). So re-evaluate your previous study habits and test prep approach first so you can make a plan to adjust it for the improvement you are looking for. Then, focus in on the areas where you may be able to gain the most points of improvement and re-study that content/methods.  Many students make plans to study for the MCAT but end up falling short when executing on the prep plans because they either lack the discipline, materials/resources, coaching/guidance, and/or methodology that they need to succeed.  Our students take up to 19 full length practice exams during their content, strategy and method review, so they are not blindsided.

You may also need to see if you need one or more of those areas to reach your goal,  so if you have found that studying on your own just didn’t cut it the first time around, you may want to look into a formal prep course/assistance like The Princeton Review’s Hyperlearning program as it can provide the discipline, motivation, strategy and content review necessary to score higher – take a look at some of the program details here.

You may also want to check out our online MCAT Diagnostic Exam which is designed to assess your strengths and weaknesses in a particular MCAT subject.  We offer a free package with one Diagnostic Exam in each subject. Each individual Diagnostic Exam contains enough questions to test your science content knowledge or your ability to work with different Verbal question types.  The Verbal Diagnostic Exam also includes a Reading Comprehension test. MCAT Diagnostic Exams are content comprehensive.  This might help you understand your strengths and weaknesses so that you can focus your prep on the areas where you need the most improvement. Our goal is the same as yours: “Improve my MCAT score!” Click here for details.

Note that as a member of PreMedFAQ, you will also receive a $100 or $150 discount on the program. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to me directly.

Robyn Zangla
Test Prep Specialist
The Princeton Review
RZangla at

The Princeton Review

Retake the MCAT - Improving your score the second time around | Pre MED FAQ