7 Best MCAT Prep Course of 2020 Reviews | For Effective Test Preparation

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Are you studying for that big test? If so, I’m sure you are aware that your chance of success is much improved when equipped with the best MCAT prep course. MCAT test prep routines prepare you for the test to come. The courses cover a variety of topics as well as test-taking tips to get you as ready as possible. 

You can easily pinpoint some of the best options out there by checking out reviews and articles. We found reviewed some of the top rated MCAT prep books as well. 

5.0/5

  • The courses are a maximum of 6 weeks
  • You can use their free flashcard app to study
  • The best option on the market overall

4.9/5

  • Scheduled sessions every weekday for specific topics and questions
  • You can customize the schedule to your needs
  • Top-tier class well worth the cost

4.8/5

  • The subscription length is optimal
  • Plenty of practice content and videos
  • Free trial available

How to Choose the Right MCAT Prep Course For You

You can look at any number of MCAT Prep course options but how can you really choose which is the best? You can’t until you try them out. I dug deep into the realm of options to figure out which is best. The following information includes some helpful tips as well as how I evaluated the top courses out there. 

Let’s get started, shall we?

Best MCAT Prep Course Reviews

5.0/5

Princeton Review MCAT Course home page

Features:

  • Multiple course options to choose from 

  • A guarantee score of 510+

  • Courses available in person or online

  • Courses designed for the best results without taking all of your time

The Princeton Review MCAT course is one of the best on the market. I love this course because you can study hard for a shorter time frame and still get the maximum results. You can use the Princeton Review MCAT books on a self-paced study or you can dig into the course. 

The courses from Princeton Review come with a guarantee of making a score of 510 or higher. Not many courses guarantee a specific score but do guarantee passing. If you really want to dig in and boost your score, Princeton Review also offers courses for 515+. 

They have a variety, including several different budget options. Some of their choices allow you to study from home using the Princeton Review MCAT books in a self-paced study program. 

Other courses are available both online and in person. You should plan for the in-depth courses to run about 6 weeks, regardless of whether you choose to do it in person or online. The self-paced program obviously works on your own timeline but I would recommend trying to stick to a similar schedule or else you may never finish. 

This is a pretty expensive course, no matter which way you do it. The self-paced option is the lowest cost. However, you’re putting a lot on the line to take the MCAT and the course is well worth the cost if you can swing it. 

You can use their middle option, which is their most popular choice. The MCT 510+ course is mid-range on price and is available online or in person. It comes jam-packed with everything you need and saves some money compared to other course options. I think this is the best deal overall. 

While you’re at it, you should take advantage of the free MCAT Flashcards app that the Princeton Review has created. It has flashcards with relevant content but you can also create your own flashcards and track your progress or set alerts. This is a nice bonus to study on the go. 

The goal of the MCAT Princeton Review is to provide busy students with quick results without taking an excessive amount of time. If you’re going into the medical field, you can typically map out a timeline. This company’s goal was to make it easier to continue any school coursework while also preparing for an important step into the future. 

They have a lot of courses and you should choose whichever one you feel will be right for you. I feel the best value for money lies in the 510+ course. They even have a statistical refund rate of <2%, which means they are making good on the promise to get you that high score. 

When you look at this option compared to its competitors, it has the most to offer for the price involved. Be aware of the costs related to different module choices but you will find this one is the top pick for its premium content and access.

Things We Liked

  • You can personalize your course based on your needs
  • The courses are a maximum of 6 weeks
  • You can use their free flashcard app to study
  • The best option on the market overall

Things We Didn't Like

  • The cost is higher than what some might be willing to pay

4.9/5

Blueprint MCAT prep  home page capture

Features:

  • 15-months of access to AAMC resources

  • 4,000+ practice questions available

  • 6-18 months of access to Blueprint program

  • Readily available office hours as well as email or phone service

Next on the list for the best MCAT prep course is this valuable option from Blueprint. In terms of MCAT courses, this one has a lot to offer. This is an optimal option and it’s going to cost you. In terms of cost, this is actually the most expensive course on our list, higher even than Princeton Review. But, I believe it’s well worth the cost for the results. 

Blueprint gives you personal solutions, including office hours from instructors for an individual approach. In terms of service, this one has it all. You can get help online, through email, or through the office hours, which means you can always get your questions answered in a timely manner. 

Another downside to this option is the amount of time you have access. Initially, your access is only 6 months. If you plan wisely, this shouldn’t be a problem but 6 months is on the low-end of available study time. You can get up to 18 months of access for an additional cost. 

Blueprint guarantees a higher score for using their course. If you’ve taken the test or a pre-test and you use Blueprint and don’t score any higher, they refund your money. Their refund statistics are low, which means their approach works quite well. 

This course offers you 15 practice exams as well as more than 4,000 practice questions. That’s a lot of content, which could come in really handy for truly testing and preparing your knowledge. 

The course has a lot of really neat features, including the ability to “test out” of a section that you are more comfortable with. This gives you the ability to do minor reviews of the content you feel you have a handle on so you can spend more time focusing on the content you struggle more with. This is purely optional but it’s certainly a neat feature to have available. 

The basis of this prep course is established within a specific module and calendar for you. They use a unique blend of studying, lessons, reading, and quizzes, much like coursework for a college class might. 

With your Blueprint subscription, you also get 15 months of access into AAMC resources, including practice questions and full-length practice exams. 

They are constantly reviewing and analyzing their program to improve it in every way possible. The study schedules are customizable. The classes offer 2-hour sessions every week day. These classes include featured instructors teaching specific topics and answering questions on the same topic. 

It was a hard toss-up between Blueprint and the Princeton Review for the #1 spot on our list. They both have a lot to offer but both are also relatively expensive and not everyone can afford those costs, especially when they’re just preparing to enter med school. 

Things We Liked

  • Program offers the ability to “test out” of modules you are familiar with
  • Scheduled sessions every weekday for specific topics and questions
  • You can customize the schedule to your needs
  • Top-tier class well worth the cost

Things We Didn't Like

  • The access to content is limited to 6 months, unless you want to pay more

4.8/5

Magoosh pricing plans

Features:

  • 12-month subscription access

  • Based wholly online 

  • Budget-friendly option

  • 700 practice questions and 3 practice exams

Not all of us have a hefty budget to spend thousands of dollars. That’s what Magoosh MCAT prep course options can really come in handy. This is the best budget-friendly option out there and it won’t let you down. 

A program being cheap doesn’t mean it won’t deliver results. With Magoosh, you can get an awesome guarantee for the absolute best value for the money. This one stands out in terms of cost and quality and it really has a lot to offer those who are willing to take the leap. 

Magoosh offers a 10+ point improvement on your test scores. While some courses offer a specific minimum or just an “increase”, they promise to increase your score by at least 10 points. 10 points can make a significant difference when it comes to med school acceptance and career paths later down the road. 

This program has s study schedule and content that is equipped with more than 380 videos for your learning and studying pleasure. You will get access to more than 700 test questions in your subscription. Your subscription is 12 months in length.

With the Magoosh MCAT courses, you also get 3 practice exams. This is perhaps where the cost pulls the program down. Many other programs offer far more practice questions and more practice exams to work with. It’s up to you to determine whether these practice questions and practice exams will be sufficient for you. 

My philosophy is this is better than nothing. I know that on a budget, you still need a solution, and this is a very honorable option. It’s cheap without being cheaply made, at the same time, it is slightly more limited than some of the other choices reviewed here. 

Everything about this course is self-paced but they do have recommended study schedules to try to keep you on a scheduled plan. These schedules are designed to keep you on track and moving forward. The course is also compatible with almost all smart phones, tablets, and computers. 

With Magoosh, you can get a free 7-day trial. The trial has 60 lessons and 16 practice questions to give you a feel for how the course is set up and what to expect as you progress. If you don’t improve your score by 10 points, you get a full refund.

Things We Liked

  • You can beat the value for the money
  • The subscription length is optimal
  • Plenty of practice content and videos
  • Free trial available

Things We Didn't Like

  • Practice exams and practice questions are fewer than what I would like to see but still a good amount.

4.7/5

Kaplan MCAT courses capture

Features:

  • Teacher-led live discussions, available on demand as well

  • 10,000+ questions and 16 practice exams

  • 5-month subscription allowance

  • 8 exam prep books provided

The Kaplan MCAT review course is another pricy course. I personally prefer Princeton Review or Blueprint over this option but it’s still a good option and you may like this one better. Unfortunately, you get even more limited access time, this course is meant for the fast track. 

With Kaplan, you get 5 months of access for a price just as high as the other expensive options. This time is more limited than what I like to see but it also gives you the incentive to stick to a schedule and move quickly through the course to the test. 

Kaplan guarantees a higher score but does not guarantee a specific score increase. If you raise your score by 1 point, they have fulfilled their guarantee. However, a higher score is a higher score and that’s what really matters here. 

In terms of content, they have plenty of it available. You will have access to hundreds upon hundreds of training videos, designed for students. There will also be nearly 100 teacher-led sessions. These sessions are live streamed but they are also available to watch whenever you are ready for them. You can access them at your convenience. 

One of the best parts of the Kaplan course is the availability of tons of questions and lots of practice exams. You can hardly beat a database that offers 10,000+ practice questions and 16 practice exams for every subscribed user. 

This is one of the most extensive question content accesses available and definitely one of the highest sources for practice exams. I’m not impressed with the subscription length but the content and the practice questions available make up for that. 

I do feel as this one is slightly overpriced considering the length of access to resources but if you follow the timeline, the resources are a good value for money. Kaplan offers the best MCAT prep books, providing you with 8 prep books. You also get access to AAMC’s resources and practice materials. 

If you follow the schedule and the timeline, you will get your money’s worth in the limited timeframe. There is no free trial here so you either buy it or you don’t and there’s no backing out once you commit. 

When you click that complete button purchase, be ready to get started right away to take advantage of your subscription and get that MCAT passed with an improved score before your time runs out. 

Things We Liked

  • Extensive number of practice questions and practice exams
  • Access to AAMC resources
  • Solid course and schedule
  • Guaranteed score improvement

Things We Didn't Like

  • The cost is high for a reduced subscription length

4.5/5

MCAT Self Prep home page capture

Features:

  • Multiple package options to choose from

  • Budget-friendly choices

  • Self-managed study option

  • Simple lessons to progress through and master

MCAT Self Prep offers an interesting solution. This choice comes at an in-between price that isn’t terribly high but also isn’t a budget price score. They also have free and cheap options but they’re fairly limited as far as capability. You can pick and choose what option is best for you but the best option also comes at a mid-level price. 

The best option is cheaper than our high-dollar options but more expensive than budget-friendly Magoosh. The nice thing is, you can pick and choose which one fits your budget and you will get a valuable resource no matter what you choose. My review is primarily based on the premium option but I wanted you to be aware that there were other picks to choose from as well. 

MCAT Self-Prep is self-managed, much like the name suggests. The course does offer a score improvement guarantee on the deluxe pro version (premium), which is a nice bonus for the extra cost associated. 

The availability of content varies as to which subscription you take. Here are the levels of access. 

  • Content access with sponsored advertisements

  • Content access with no ads, study plan, score tracker

  • Content access with no ads, study plan, score tracker, 5,000 flashcards, review books

  • Content access with no ads, study plan, score tracker, flashcards, review books, additional review and strategy courses, score improvement guarantee

The downside to this particular program, especially when you consider the cost of the options, is that they don’t offer practice exams in the same manner as the other options. 

You will find questions and quizzes throughout but it’s not the same format. Where most of these are designed to prepare you for the test, the practice exams can come in handy for that preparation alone. It makes this course almost feel like there is something very important missing in terms of preparation. 

Don’t get me wrong, this course offers a lot of value with relatable content and study tools but it would certainly be improved with the addition of practice exams. The most noteworthy aspect of MCAT Self-Prep is the ability to choose something that works in your price range. 

I always say that something is better than nothing. If you have little to no budget to work with, spring for the free option and at least that will give you a little something to go with. There is no specified subscription time so you pay for it and can access the content as long as your heart desires as far as we can tell. 

Things We Liked

  • Work at your own pace
  • Choose from free to expensive packages
  • Relative content that builds with each package
  • 5,000 practice questions 

Things We Didn't Like

  • No practice exams available

4.4/5

Dr. Flowers MCAT Prep Plans

Features:

  • Online text review program

  • Specific course schedule

  • 3 plans available 

  • Flashcards offered for study purposes

The Dr. Flowers MCAT Review program is another one that is unique. It’s a good mid-range cost that won’t break every budget out there but also isn’t the cheapest option on the market. Considering the length of the subscription and what it has to offer, the cost is on point with other choices. 

On the downside, this subscription really pushes you to move fast with limited time. When you jump in, be ready to hit the ground running. Study hard and get through that test in a reasonable time frame. The subscription length is only 4 months, which may cause worry for some. If you pace your study schedule appropriately, you should be fine. 

This test does not offer a specific score or even an improved score. Their guarantee is based solely on passing the test. This guarantee may or may not be better than others. If you’re a first-time test taker, the guarantee is pretty nice since it just promises that you will pass.

The content is acceptable. This is one of the factors that reduces the overall score. There could certainly be more content for the cost but it has enough to get you there. This program teaches on 345 concepts. 

The other downside to the content is that while it has sufficient content, it’s all taught through text. This may be a downer for people who don’t learn as easily this way but it’s a great option if you learn and study well with reading. There are absolutely no videos in is prep course material. 

The Dr. Flowers course offers 4,220 practice questions, which is a reasonable amount. Again, we find ourselves with a program that offers no specific practice exams, so it does lose some rating based on that knowledge as well. 

This program has a well-paced study plan and offers study flashcards, both of which can be very helpful. Stay on task with the study plan for the best results. As with some of the other options, this company does offer different pricing options. 

These are specifically-timed courses, with an 8, 12, or 16-week option and varying budgets for each one. With the guarantee, if you do not score 508 or higher, they offer you an extension to your subscription at no cost. 

Things We Liked

  • Relevant content designed to help you succeed
  • Guarantee to pass the test
  • Study planners and schedules to keep you on track
  • Plenty of practice questions available

Things We Didn't Like

  • No practice exams offered

4.3/5

Examkrackers MCAT Prep Course Features

Features:

  • Unique platform, run by top students

  • Practice tests and significant content 

  • 6-12 months of access

  • Well-designed study books that are a big hit

The Examkrackers MCAT prep course is quite unique. It’s taught by both instructors and medical students. This means that you are getting an inside look based on what other medical students found helpful to pass or improve their MCAT scores. 

It’s certainly a prep course with a twist but it did earn its place here on our top picks for a reason. It’s something worth looking at on your way to the MCAT exam. This is led by students who scored high on their own MCATs. The problem with that is just because they scored high, doesn’t mean they can teach the content. 

Let me be clear, this program is costly. It’s just as expensive (in some cases more so) as the other premium options we’ve listed here. At the same time, a lot of students have provided testimonials that this was the program that truly helped them. 

There are several package options, depending on what you need or want from the program. The Examkrackers course is known for its study books. Students love the books and content and find them very helpful. 

You set up a study plan and you get 6-12 months of subscription access, depending on what you choose. The course is broken out into 12 weeks of lectures. These lectures are pre-recorded and available at your convenience. 

This program uses a lecture, test, review setup that students seem to find very helpful for getting the information down. The platform itself could use some upgrades but there is plenty of content and access to practice tests. 

Things We Liked

  • Operated from a student’s perspective
  • The books are awesome for studying and very helpful
  • The practice tests are realistic
  • Lessons are pre-recorded and reviewed

Things We Didn't Like

  • No guarantees and no refunds

How We Evaluated Our Picks for Top-Rated MCAT Prep Courses

I took highly-rated options and tried them out myself. Using the information provided, the tips and tricks, and all of the data available, I was able to narrow down the playing field significantly. 

Some options are simply more user-friendly than others while some are suited to hit the ground running and learn everything in a short time frame. I selected my top choices carefully based on the amount of relative information, the ability to take practice tests and quizzes, and the value for the money. 

Ultimately, I wanted to know that the source would truly help me plan and prepare for the MCAT

Comparison Table of Our Top Picks

MCAT Course

Star Rating

Guaranteed

Subscription Length

Cost

Princeton Review

5.0/5

510 or 10 pts

12 months

$$$

Blueprint MCAT

4.9/5

Increase score

6-18 months

$$$

Magoosh MCAT

4.8/5

+ 10 pts

12 months

$

Kaplan MCAT

4.7/5

Increase score

5 months

$$$

$MCAT Self-Prep

4.5/5

Increase score

-

$$

Dr. Flowers MCAT

4.4/5

Passing score

4 months

$$

Examkrackers MCAT Prep Course

4.3/5

-

6-12 months

$$$

Who Needs an MCAT Prep Course and Why?

Virtually anyone who is preparing to take the MCAT would qualify as a candidate for an MCAT prep course or MCAT study books of some sort. We highly recommend that if you’ve been studying and taking the practice tests, you carefully review how well you are doing. 

The MCAT is one of the most important tests you will take in the medical field. You want to excel and you want to pass. There are several things you can reasonably consider to determine if you need a prep course for yourself. 

Ask yourself these questions. 

  1. What is my goal for the test?
  2. How soon will I be taking the MCAT?
  3. Do I feel confident in my knowledge and ready to take the test?
  4. Do I have a definitive timeline for medical school?
  5. How are my practice exams looking? 

The MCAT is designed to help you study and prepare for the MCAT. You don’t want to take it until you’re nearing the time for the official test. 

Factors to Consider

The thing is, many people study and learn in many different ways. You want to be sure that the MCAT prep work that you decide to do is really what is going to be right for you. Courses are set up differently. 

You need to consider whether you will be successful taking a self-study program or whether you need to sit in a prep classroom. What kind of learner are you? What do you need to gain from the program?

Another important factor is your timeline. Some courses have a strict timeline while others move at your own pace. Be sure to pay attention to how the course works and what it provides. 

I also recommend looking for MCAT courses that provide practice tests for you to take. These are a useful way to gauge where you are with the necessary knowledge for that big test. 

Benefits of an MCAT Prep Course

The MCAT prep course is not designed just to help you pass. It is also designed to help you get the best score. If you use your prep course appropriately, you might find yourself scoring much higher than if you opted for no course to guide you. 

Some courses even guarantee that you will get a higher score or they refund your money. Some courses let you redo them over and over at no cost if your score isn’t sufficient. 

The primary benefit of an MCAT prep course is the preparation to pass the MCAT and to do so with a score to be proud of.