For professional programs, you will be required to take an admissions test as part of your dossier. It is recommended that you take your admissions test no later than June of your application year. Some students choose to take the test earlier in order to have the option of a re-take while others choose to take the test later in the hopes that more study time will result in a higher score. However, it is important to note the application deadlines, so we highly recommend that the exam is not taken later than June.
- Dental Admissions Test (DAT)
Dental Admissions Test (DAT)
All US dental schools require this exam. Prior to taking the test, you will need to have completed the biology, general chemistry and organic chemistry course requirements. The test is administered year round.
The GRE is required for most graduate programs; some programs may accept another admissions exam. The test will measure verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing. The test is administered year round.
- Medical College Admissions Test (MCAT)
All US medical schools, both MD and DO, require this exam. The test has four components examining: biology/biochemistry, chemistry/physics, verbal reasoning, and the psychological, social and biological basis of behavior. Prior to taking the test, you will need to have completed all of the PreMed prerequisites. Exams are not offered in October, November, or December; most exams take place between April and September.
- Optometry Admissions Test (OAT)
All US optometry schools require this exam. Prior to taking the text, you will need to have completed all of the PreOptometry prerequisites. The test is administered year round.
- Physician Assistant College Admissions Test (PA-CAT)
Launching spring of 2020, the PA-CAT is a specialized test that is designed to measure applicant knowledge and application in key prerequisite science subjects typically required for PA school. The PA-CAT measures general academic ability and scientific knowledge necessary for success in the demanding Physician Assistant curriculum. As this is a new exam, many PA programs will take GRE and PA-CAT exam scores, but it is anticipated that programs will gradually phase out the GRE and phase in the PA-CAT.
- Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT)
The PCAT is required for most pharmacy programs; however, some may accept another admissions exam. Prior to taking the text, you will have needed to complete all of the PrePharmacy prerequisites. The exam is offered at varying points through-out the year; be sure to visit the website for more information regarding the exam schedule.
PCAT Study Schedule resource: https://onlinepharmd.sjfc.edu/resources/pcat-prep-two-four-month-study-schedules/
- Test Preparation
Often times, as PreHealth advisors, we are asked about test preparation. We find that test preparation preferences vary from student to student, so it is important that you determine what works best for you. Some students rather study on their own, while others prefer to purchase test preparation programs. Please note that some companies offer practice tests that students can take for free, so do your research.
No matter which route you choose to go, all students benefit from focused, intensive review before taking an admissions test. Plan your study schedule well in advance of taking the examination in order to adequately prepare yourself for all sections of the exam.