Do You Get a Calculator on the MCAT?

Do You Get a Calculator on the MCAT?

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Posted in: MCAT

You are not allowed to use a calculator on the MCAT. However, this can be a good thing — it means the math on the MCAT is relatively simple to complete because it must all be done by hand. In other words, there should be no new math concepts to learn in your MCAT study schedule

The MCAT includes sections that involve mathematical calculations in the Chemical and Physical Foundations of Biological Systems section. In designing the exam, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) focuses on questions that assess your critical thinking, problem-solving, and reasoning skills, including your ability to perform basic calculations without the aid of a calculator. This is intended to reflect the type of skills required in medical school and as a practicing physician.

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The math that is on the MCAT is fundamental arithmetic, algebra, and trigonometry. It is not a test used to test your mathematician skills. You can practice your basic mental math skills and develop skills in approximating answers for quicker calculations. 

Taking a practice MCAT test can give you a good idea of what areas you need to focus your studies on. If the math in your practice test is difficult, spending a little more time boosting your skills can be beneficial come test day. Make reviewing MCAT math tips part of your study strategy so you’re not caught unprepared on test day.

If you’re worried about the math or any other part of the MCAT exam, we can help you prepare for test day with our 99 percentile MCAT tutors. We’ll help you get familiar with the MCAT format, including question types and section breakdowns.

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