Toby Do | 24 AA
What is one piece of advice you would give to another student preparing to take the DAT?
First, everybody has his or her unique strengths and weaknesses in specific areas of the DAT. Depending on your diagnostic test, you will design your “own” study strategies to cater your time and energy to each area. Biology takes most of my time just because of the breadth and depth of it. General chemistry and organic chemistry are about practice. Practice, practice, practice. The more practices you put in, the more types of questions you encounter, the broader your knowledge. For Math, reading, and PAT, they require daily exercise and intensive practices to get better. Sometimes, it can go in reverse, but keep a good faith that handwork pays off down the road.
Second, everybody has his or her own pace of studying. While it is informative to see how other people are studying and performing, it is not absolutely to the best of your advantage to completely stick to somebody’s specific learning schedules and success story. You may want to “customize” your study timetable based on your interests and study habits. For me, I am a big fan of visual images, mnemonics, and other tips to learn concepts effectively. After learning the concepts, I will write all that I know on a blank paper. This puts your knowledge and memory to test. You will make sure that you do know what you know when it is in your toolbox.
Lastly, find yourself a DAT buddy / buddies. There are so many times that I thought I would not be able to continue but my friends pushes me through. Also, having somebody on the exact same boat is also worthwhile.
How did you use Crack the DAT to prepare for the DAT?
The practice is abundant and the explanation is deep enough for me to tackle my weaknesses and improve on my scores. I am especially interested in the reading and PAT sections. The science parts are also relevant. The application type of question really makes me think hard.
I also love the fact that the preparation course expands to 6 months. That’s plenty of time to go through all the resources, several times!
What would you do differently to prepare for the DAT?
I would buy Crack the DAT earlier! I hadn’t know much about the prepping company until one of my friends who was also induced into the Hall of Fame told me about it. After experiencing it myself I realized how much it actually helped me in laying the foundation for my sciences and learning the strategies to do each question differently.
I would also keep track of my progress: how much time I spent studying, how many practices I have done daily, etc. This would ensure a certain level of discipline and motivation for me to carry on through. By breaking the heavy load into small, doable tasks, I was able to study more effectively and less stressfully.