Frequently Asked Questions

What is the MCAT average at your school?

Scores in Verbal Reasoning and Physical Sciences average 9-10, and 10-11 in Biological Sciences.

Do I have to take the MCAT exam?

Yes. You must take the MCAT exam and have your scores released to the LSU School of Medicine in Shreveport. MCAT scores are required.

When should I take the MCAT?

The best answer is to take it when you're ready to take it. Taking it just to see what it is like is pretty wasteful. In any case, you must take the MCAT no later than September a year before you hope to start medical school.

Will taking the MCAT for the first time in September hurt my chances of getting accepted?

No. Scores from the September test usually reach us in mid-October, when we are just beginning the interview process. If you are going to take the MCAT in September, the best thing to do is to send in everything else needed to complete your application way before October. That way, when your MCAT scores arrive in October your application will become instantly complete.

My first MCAT will be January and I would like to start medical school the next fall... is this too late?

For sure.

If I've been interviewed already ... any use re-taking it in January? March?

Yes and No. September is the last MCAT we will consider in deciding who will be interviewed.

I took the MCAT in 1993. Is that OK?

No. For example, if you plan to begin school at the School of Medicine in Shreveport in July 2010, the oldest MCAT we will consider is September 2006.

What's the most important part of the MCAT? Does anybody, I mean ANYBODY AT ALL, even look at my writing sample?

All parts are important for the Admissions Committee. They look particularly carefully at the Verbal Reasoning score because that is something that is not taught in medical school and medical school involves tons of reading and fast comprehension. Unless it is notably high or low, the Admissions Committee looks at your score on the Writing Sample mostly as a tertiary or quaternary factor in the admissions decision.

I've taken the MCAT three times. Do you see all of the scores I've gotten?

Probably. The new AMCAS application will show your Testing History and include the date of every MCAT you have taken since 1991. It will also show your scores if you released them.

I retook the MCAT and my scores went down. How is that going to affect my application?

It all depends on your scores and the size of the decrease. From a 35 down to a 32, highly unlikely; from a 27 to a 20, the opposite. Be prepared to discuss why your score went down, either in your personal statement or in an interview.