Thursday, September 16, 2010

Review of PCAT score - one low area

Question: I recently recieved the following PCAT scores:
Verbal Ability: 442 - 96%
Biology: 425 - 86%

Reading Comprehension: 402 - 48%
Quantitative Ability: 426 - 80%
Chemistry: 485 - 99%
Composite: 436 - 95%

Although I am very happy with my composite score, my reading score is terrible and really stands out from the rest of my scores. I was wondering that since I am applying to top tier schools, will this reading score severely affect my chances? Should I retake? Thank you!

Answer: I find it peculiar that you would have such a depressed Reading score with an excellent Verbal. What was your written essay score? Usually when we see low Reading/Verbal scores, they are married to each other - both high or both low.

I will say this, however, if you are going to have one area of weakness on your PCAT a single low Reading/Verbal score is what you would choose. Particularly if the other is a 96% as yours was. I would be more concerned if your Chemistry score was in the 40's.

I don't think I would worry much about the single score affecting your chances at all. Your composite is top shelf and that is most important. Your 99 Chem score is impressive as well. If your statement and grades are good and your LORs are adequate/strong, you shouldn't have much to worry about. I would probably recommend against retaking the PCAT. However, if you felt confident that you could replicate the scores in the areas of strength while improving your Reading subset, it would just depend on how much time/money you wanted to spend.

Good luck.


Canada Pharmacy said...

I have given that exam and get very good marks. And we all are very happy. And I have done lot of hard work on those subjects.

Anonymous said...

I am having the exact same issue. I actually scored the exact same composite 436 95% but did slightly better in the vocab and biology sections (97 and 98%ile) and even worse in reading comp (43%). My reason for this was not studying reading comp at all because I had done so well on practice tests. On the actual test I ran out of time. Did this person get accepted to any schools?? My gpa is not great (3.34) but I am a chemical engineering major and have taken a heavy course load which I plan on using as an explaination for grades. I hope one terrible score is not going to ruin me!