508 is the new 30
The AAMC released info about the scoring scale for the new exam.
Each section will be scored from 118 to 132, with 125 as the median score. (Note that this is still a “15 point scale” it’s just instead of going 1 to 15 it goes 118 to 132). You’ll get one score each for Bio Sci, Phys Sci, Psych, and CARS (verbal) and then your section scores will be added up to an overall score, which can range from 472 to 528, with 500 as the new median score.
Although this looks really funky, it’s basically as expected. The current MCAT is a 3 to 45 scale, made up of three sections of 1 to 15. By adding another section, we would expect the AAMC to have given us a 4 to 60 scale, with four sections of 1 to 15. That’s exactly what the AAMC did, but they just shifted the entire scale up by 117 points in each section, making it look really weird.
The AAMC has a lot of jibber-jabber on their website about “emphasizing the ‘top’ of the curve” (meaning a 500) and all that, but the reality is that med school admissions are going to continue to be exceptionally competitive, and getting the median score at the ‘top’ of the bell curve will still leave you in a really uncompetitive position.
The reality is that we’ll probably see a new normal that’s something like “508 is the new 30”. The idea being that average MCAT scores for matriculants to MD programs tend to be in the 30-33 range. People who get into med school score about 2-2.5 points above average on each section. So if the average section score is a 125 on the new test, a “good” score will be around a 127 or 128. That gives us an aggregate “good” score around a 508.
With the MCAT becoming harder than it’s ever been in decades, the importance of being well-prepared is higher than ever. Be sure to keep up with Next Step to find more info about the new exam as the AAMC releases it. Like us on facebook and give us a call at 888-530-NEXT to speak with a representative.
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