Please note that the following information applies to the old MCAT exam. For students who are practicing for the MCAT using old MCAT practice exams, this information will be useful for understanding content in this section. In addition, this information is still necessary content in the new MCAT.
Content tested on this section is drawn from introductory biology and organic chemistry.
The biology portion of the test will concentrate primarily on two major groups of living organisms: the vertebrates and the microbes. Within these two general groups, your study should focus on concepts and information common to the life processes of organisms. These concepts include basic principles of molecular biology, cellular structure and function, and genetics and evolution.
Additionally, vertebrate systems will be approached from the organism or body-system level of organization. In this context, topics may focus on some aspect of the structure or function of a given body system, on the interaction of two or more body systems, or on the effects of an external factor (for example, a disease or an environmental influence) on the total physiology of an organism.
Organic chemistry plays an important role in the understanding of many biological reactions. You will be expected to call upon your knowledge of organic compounds and reactions to explain results, arguments, and experimental procedures in terms of reactions or principles of organic compounds. Because nomenclature, classifications of functional groups, and reaction mechanisms are important to the understanding of organic reactions, these areas will also be tested within the scope of the categories outlined in the Biological Sciences Topics listing.
How Our MCAT Tutors Can Help:
The non-passage questions on this part of the exam are for the most part strictly memorization and can be easily answered with content-based review. The real challenge comes from analyzing the various experiment passages and answering questions. This requires you to think like a scientist or physician, ruling out outcomes and answer choices, and choosing the best answer given the data. Our tutors help students hone their skills in scientific analysis on and deduction to simplify each passage, making seemingly complex material more manageable.
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To read about the new section, Biological and Biochemical Foundations of Living Systems tutoring, please click here.