The addition of behavioral and cultural material was recommended to provide a solid foundation for learning of these concepts in medical school.
According to the committee, psychological science should be understood by medical students as an essential aspect of healthcare. 43% of students take the MCAT within one year of graduation, 44% take the exam between one and four years after graduation and 13% sit for the exam five or more years after graduation.
The largest changes in the exam consist of testing in biochemistry, psychology and sociology concepts.
The addition of biochemistry material follows survey results placing biochemistry concepts as highest importance for success in future medical school curricula.
Each section is allotted either 90 or 95 minutes and tests between 50 and 60 questions.
Including breaks, the full examination lasts approximately 7.5 hours.
118 to 132 (in 1-point increments) for each of the 4 sections (Chemistry and Physics, Biology/Biochemistry, Critical Analysis and Reasoning Skills, and Psychology and Social Sciences). Gold zone (registration about 1 month or more prior to test date): US 0 Reschedule fee: US Cancellation refund: US 5 Silver zone (registration about 3 to 4 weeks prior to test date): US 0 Reschedule fee: US 5 Cancellation refund: n/a Bronze zone (registration about 1 to 2 weeks prior to test date): US 0 Reschedule fee: n/a Cancellation refund: n/a International testing: US 0 in addition to above. It is designed to assess problem solving, critical thinking, written analysis and knowledge of scientific concepts and principles.
Prior to 2006, the exam was a paper-and-pencil test; since 2007, all administrations of the exam have been computer-based.
Three separate surveys were sent asking about concepts in the natural sciences, research methods, and behavioral sciences.
The MR5 committee also consulted various expert committees from within and beyond the AAMC.