Scoring Tables for MCAT
MCAT Scoring Tables and Statistics
What are MCAT Scoring Tables?
Every year the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) publishes the MCAT exam statistics on their website. This is done using a scoring table, which presents facts and figures, such as the percentiles, scaled scores and raw scores of the exam, of that particular year. The AAMC has been making the scoring tables since a very long time. A scoring table of MCAT is a representation of scores on all administrations around the world in a particular year. Presently, one can find the data for the past ten years on AAMC's website. To request for a scoring table, of the years prior to the past ten years, you need to mail the AAMC at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Importance of an MCAT Scoring Table
The final percentile of an individual is awarded in comparison and in relation to all other test-takers of a given year. This is what a percentile determines. The test scores are calculated on a curve. It is a standardized practice for almost all competitive exams. A curve helps in the conversion of a raw score to a scaled score. The process of converting a raw score into a scaled score is known as equating. Equating basically sets right the minor variations that occur between two tests, with regards to the difficulty level, editions of tests etc. The scoring table is a sum total of all these factors that are laid in a comprehensive manner by the AAMC for the sake of convenience. The point to be noted here is that the scoring table only retains scores that measure academic knowledge and skills that are needed to qualify for admission in a premed school. These have been used extensively by both academicians and colleges to better understand the role of the test in producing better doctors. Sometimes the statistics in these tables have been useful for changing questions types or paper patterns to check in the intake of medical students into colleges.
How To Understand An MCAT Scoring Table
The scoring table of MCAT publishes statistics. These statistics are important for enhancing your understanding of the viability of your scores. Let us look into the details of what constitutes a table and how to understand it better.
- Scores of similar measurements should be compared. For example, your scores in the Verbal Reasoning section must be compared to that of other test-takers' Verbal Reasoning section scores and not Biological Sciences section scores, since this will be deemed as inaccurate.
- Percentile ranks are very important aspects of scoring tables and can be used as a measure of comparison since the percentile ranks are based on test-takers who have taken the test in the recent 3-year period.
- Scores presented in these scoring tables are based on a system of 'Standard Error Measurement'. Simply put, don't make decisions on your scores based on very small score differences.
- Score tables also help in measuring the overall 'deviation' from the mean score (25.1). Deviation in this case means how far away the test-takers are from the mean score, which is also the average score.
The table consists of test scores in a bar graph as well as in a tabular format. Bar graphs are formed between the actual scores achieved on the scale of 2 to 44. The tabular format on the other hand lists the scaled scores adjacent to the 'percent achieving score' and then comes the percentiles. So if you have a scaled score of 36, from a sample table you can determine that your 'percent achieving score' is 1.6 and your percentile is between 95.9 to 97.3. Here is a link to the latest 2011 scoring table that has been published by AAMC https://www.aamc.org/students/download/264234/data/combined11.pdf.
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