Different Fees for MCAT and Why You Pay Them
If you wish to study in a medical school in the USA, you will most probably, need to take the MCAT. Most medical colleges in the USA, require their applicants to submit MCAT scores. The test fee includes the registration fee for the test, and other fees such as late registration, etc. The cost of the test that you incur, will also include the cost of preparation for the test. You will have to bear the expenses for any prep classes that you take, and for prep books that you purchase. In order to understand what the total cost of the test could be, read the following paragraphs:
- Cost of Registration for the MCAT: The fee of MCAT for regular registration for the test is $240. You have to pay this fee, if you take the test at one of the test centers in the USA. If you want to take the test in a country outside the USA, there is an additional fee of $80. Regular registration is usually open until two weeks prior to the test date. Late registration is open for about a week prior to the test date, but you have to pay an additional late fee of $70, if you want to use this facility. After you have registered for the test, you may change the date or the test center or both. The fee for change of date or test center is $70.
- MCAT Fee Refund: You may apply for a fee refund if you want to cancel your registration, but none of the additional fees will be refunded. The non-refundable fees include the late registration fee, fee for change of test date or center and the additional international registration fee.
- Fee Assistance Program: The AAMC offers the Fee Assistance Program (FAP) in order to help those individuals who are unable to pay the cost of taking the MCAT. The reduced fee is $85. You will also get free access to MSAR Online for one year. If you wish to avail this facility, you must apply for fee assistance before you register for the MCAT, as your registration fee will not be refunded. You need to check about your eligibility for this program at AAMC's official website. If you are eligible, you should complete the application form, attach the required documents and send it to the AAMC. Within about two weeks, the AAMC will inform you about its decision to accept or to reject your application. If your application is approved, it will be valid until the end of that calendar year. If you are able to use this facility, you will be able to reduce your test fee.
- Preparation for the MCAT: Most of the people who aspire to a career in medicine and health care, take MCAT prep classes to help them score well in the test. The cost of these prep classes varies from one course to the other. You will have to pay a lower fee if you opt for a shorter course. Personal tutoring is also available and is usually charged at an hourly rate. You may need to buy preparation books as well. Many prep courses include the cost of prep material in their course fee, but if you engage a private tutor or decide to study on your own, you may need two to three prep books. If you can find used books for sale, you will save on your total fee.
You can reduce the fee of MCAT in different ways. You could apply to AAMC for fee assistance. You should be careful about selecting a test date and center, and avoid the fee for a change of test schedule. You could also save on the amount you spend on preparation by proper selection of a prep course. It is better, however, not to try and save on the expense of preparation, at the cost of not preparing well for the test.
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