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The Perfect MCAT Score: What You Need to Know

September 2, 2022
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What is a Perfect MCAT Score?The Perfect MCAT Score: Is it Possible?3 Tips on How to Get a Perfect MCAT ScoreFAQs: Perfect MCAT Score

”Rohan

Reviewed by:

Rohan Jotwani

Former Chief Resident in Anesthesiology, Weill Cornell Medicine, & Admissions Officer, Columbia University

Reviewed: 5/13/22

Are you curious about whether or not getting a perfect MCAT score is attainable? This article will go over some information, tips, and frequently asked questions about the perfect MCAT score.

The MCAT is notoriously challenging for many aspiring med school students. If you’re in pursuit of a career as a medical professional, you’ll know that getting into the med school of your dreams will require a lot of hard work and dedication–and a high score on your MCAT.

The MCAT requires thorough knowledge and understanding of foundational principles of physics, biology, chemistry, and behavioral psychology. Students who take the MCAT are often advised to start studying at least three months before taking their test. 

While most aspiring med school students aim to get a score above average in order to meet admission standards, some students might want to go above and beyond and aim for a perfect MCAT score. This article will address some questions about getting the perfect MCAT score and how you can work towards getting it.

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What is a Perfect MCAT Score?

You might be wondering: what is a perfect MCAT score? To get straight to the point, a perfect score on the MCAT is 528, while the lowest score you can get is 472. Your score on the MCAT is based on the number of correct answers. You won’t lose any points for incorrect answers or unanswered questions; however, they will not count towards your total score.

It is important to know that on the MCAT, your raw scores will be converted into scaled scores ranging from 118 to 132, 118 being the lowest score you can get in each section. With this said, in order to get a perfect score on the MCAT, you will have to score a perfect 132 in each section.

The first three sections contain 59 questions each, and the final section contains 53 questions. So, if you receive a raw score of 50 on one section, your score might be converted into a scaled section score of 129. Note that the conversions can vary per year since the content on the MCAT may change and differ slightly in terms of difficulty. 

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The Perfect MCAT Score: Is it Possible?

Most students who took the MCAT between 2021-2022 scored an average of 511.9 on the test. Regardless of which med school you’re hoping to attend, you’ll find that having a competitive MCAT score within or above the average is a great asset. 

According to US News, the med schools with the highest acceptance scores averaged a total score of 517 on the MCAT. In 2021, scoring a 517 on your MCAT puts you in the 95th percentile of aspiring med school students who have taken this test. With this said, it is very challenging to get a perfect MCAT score, but it’s not impossible.

3 Tips on How to Get a Perfect MCAT Score

Now that we’ve talked about what constitutes the perfect MCAT score, we’ll be talking about how you can get it. We will be sharing some tips on how you can work towards getting a perfect score on your MCAT.

1. Have a Plan

As with any test, it will always serve to have a plan. Having a plan can also make the process a lot more manageable as you start studying. Especially with the MCAT, you’ll want to create a plan ahead of time due to the density of the material it covers. One way you can do this is by creating an MCAT study schedule

In doing this, you can first determine your timeline. Knowing how much time you have to study before you schedule your test is essential if you want to be effective. As you do this, make sure to take your day-to-day life into account. It is important to consider your extracurriculars as they also contribute greatly to the strength of your application.

While it is recommended that you give yourself at least three months to study if you’re aiming for a perfect MCAT score, it would be best to start studying more than three months before your scheduled MCAT date.

2. Know What to Study 

If you’re working towards a perfect score on the MCAT, it is important to consider what you’ll be studying. Having a good understanding of how the test is broken down can help guide your focus. 

As you likely know, The MCAT is a standardized multiple-choice test. The test is based on your knowledge and understanding of foundational concepts that are required to successfully get through med school. 

As mentioned, the four sections are: 

  1. Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems
  2. Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems
  3. Psychological, Social, and Biological Foundations of Behaviour 
  4. Critical Analysis and Reasoning

Each section is broken down as follows:

MCAT sections table
Source: The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)

In addition to these sections, you will also be tested on your scientific inquiry and reasoning skills throughout the MCAT. This will be classified into four different skills:

As you begin studying for the MCAT, make sure to create an outline of what is to be expected in each section. Focus on the content and understand each discipline like the back of your hand. To get a perfect MCAT score, you’ll also want to know how you can apply the foundational concepts and skills that are expected in each. 

3. Practice!

Once you understand the content, practice and review like no tomorrow. It is integral that you allot an equal amount of time to go through each section thoroughly. This will help you understand your strengths and weaknesses in terms of the MCAT content. 

Once you’ve pinpointed the areas you find challenging, you can then take more time to go over them later. 

To attain a perfect score, It is also essential to know what to expect for the MCAT. You will be taking the test for 7.5 hours total, with 10-minute breaks in between each section. The breakdown of the MCAT is as follows:

MCAT time allotted per section
Source: The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC)

As you study, it will be essential to take full-length practice tests. This will help you get used to the testing structure and time limits allotted for each section of the MCAT. 

Additionally, Taking full-length practice tests will also help you understand how certain questions are presented. This will give you a better idea of the types of questions you can expect and how you can best answer them on the MCAT. 

Understanding how test questions can be formulated will certainly strengthen your concentration and comprehension on the big day.

FAQs: Perfect MCAT Score

Now that we have gone through what makes a perfect MCAT score, as well as some tips and tricks on how you can work towards getting it, we will be answering some FAQs to answer any lingering questions you might have about the perfect MCAT score. 

1. Has Anyone Gotten a Perfect Score on the MCAT?

Though getting a perfect score is a challenging feat, some prospective med school students have gotten a perfect score on the MCAT. 

2. How Rare is a Perfect Score on the MCAT?

A perfect score of 528 on the MCAT places you in the 100th percentile of individuals who have taken the test. Based on the AAMC’s Summary of MCAT Total and Section Scores, we can approximate that 0.020% of individuals managed to achieve a perfect score on their MCAT.

Final Thoughts

As you start studying for the MCAT, it is essential to set a goal to help you keep your focus. While a perfect score on the MCAT is rare, it is possible to attain. With this said, a perfect score on the MCAT is not the be-all and end-all when it comes to submitting a competitive med school application. 

While working towards a perfect score can put you above other applicants, remember that there are other aspects that are heavily taken into consideration by every med school’s admissions team. 

It is essential to remember the importance of your current academic performance, extracurricular activities, and volunteer experience. Additionally, having stellar letters of recommendation and making a good impression during your med school interview also will greatly contribute to the success of your application.

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