Standardized Tests

Students must take a standardized test as part of their application to health professions school. Each test differs somewhat in the subject matter. They all test reading comprehension, critical thinking skills, problem-solving ability, and subject area knowledge.

While our advice focuses on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), the entrance exam for medical, podiatric, and some veterinary schools and postbac programs, the advice on study strategies holds true for other health professions.

    HPA Resources

    A two-page google doc handout detailing the composition of the exam, preparation, scoring, and timing.

    Panel Recordings & Notes

    HPA Lending Library

    Stop by the HPA office to comparison shop between resources or borrow books to use in your test prep.

    AAMC MCAT Basics

    The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) administers the MCAT.

    How long are scores valid?

    Access a free report with the oldest and latest scores considered for this application year by each school.

    Using MCAT in Student Selection

    Information used by medical schools to determine how to use MCAT in admissions.

    Fee Assistance Program

    Apply for fee assistance prior to registering for MCAT to maximize the benefits.

    AAMC MCAT Prep Materials

    The AAMC provides many free or low-cost study materials. The AAMC's official question packs and sample tests are highly recommended:

    Test Prep Companies & Resources

    HPA does not officially promote, sponsor or recommend any test preparation company - we gather information for our students and make it available to them.

    Advice on choosing resources

    About half of our applicants take prep courses, while the other half self-study using AAMC and other resources. Choose resources that fit your learning style, budget, and preferences.

    Student recommendations

    Test Prep Offers and Ads

    We share discounts, presentations, and other resources from test prep companies that reach out to us here. 

    Standardized Tests for Other Health Professions

    Dental Admission Test

    required by dental schools

    Optometry Admission Test

    required by optometry schools

    Pharmacy College Admission Test

    required by many pharmacy schools

    Graduate Record Exam

    required by veterinary, public health, others