MCAT Preparation Statistics

Statistics are based off a survey submitted by MCAT test takers in 2016. 


The information presented is compiled from a post-MCAT survey administered by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) that is submitted only by individuals who have taken the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT). The data below presents information from the 2016 Post-MCAT Survey. 

1. How much time did you spend preparing for the MCAT exam (excluding time taking regular courses)? Approximate number of weeks:

Time (weeks)Percent
0-8 weeks29%
9-12 weeks31%
13-16 weeks 18%
More than 16 weeks23%

2. How much time did you spend preparing for the MCAT exam (excluding time taking regular courses)? Average number of hours per week:

Time (hours per week)Percent
0-10 hours per week23%
11-20 hours per week27%
21-30 hours per week21%
More than 30 hours per week29%

3. What kinds of resources did you use to prepare for the MCAT exam?

Name of ResourcePercent
The Official MCAT content list45%
The Official Guide to the MCAT Exam45%
MCAT preparation book (paper version) published by a commercial company70%
MCAT preparation book (electronic version or e-book) published by a commercial company29%
MCAT practice tests published by the MCAT program64%
MCAT practice tests published by a commercial company66%
The Official MCAT Self-Assessment Package23%
Materials (e.g. handouts, online modules) from an MCAT test preparation course produced by a commercial company66%
Materials (e.g. handouts, online modules) from an MCAT test preparation course produced by a university, medical school, or post-baccalaureate program12%
Khan Academy61%
Other educational materials that are not specifically labeled for MCAT preparation (e.g., textbooks, course notes, online modules)29%


4. In addition to the resources previously mentioned for each of the following areas, what other activities did you do specifically to get ready for the MCAT exam?

ActivitySubsections correspond to different areas testedPercent
Read on my own about this topicNatural Sciences73%
Behavioral and social sciences76%
Humanities61%
Research/statistics56%
Not Applicable14%
Participated in a study group about this topic areaNatural Sciences19%
Behavioral and social sciences15%
Humanities10%
Research/statistics11%
Not Applicable76%
Took an online course in the topic areaNatural Sciences22%
Behavioral and social sciences24%
Humanities18%
Research/statistics15%
Not Applicable69%
Volunteered in a setting that exposed me to this topic areaNatural Sciences28%
Behavioral and social sciences27%
Humanities16%
Research/statistics25%
Not Applicable48%
Volunteered or worked in a research lab that exposed me to this topic areaNatural Sciences41%
Behavioral and social sciences16%
Humanities5%
Research/statistics43%
Not Applicable40%