When taking the verbal section, many students are surprised by the amount of testing that they have to do. Although it is common knowledge that the verbal section tests your logic and level of comprehension, this is not the only area that will test these skills. The reasoning and critical analysis section of the MCAT, also known as MCAT CARS, consists of over two hundred questions. These two sections will determine not only what you know but how well you learn it. This is an important skill to be able to write an essay, especially one that is this complex.
The first section of the MCAT test will review the meaning of the four elements of cars; mileage, power, acceleration, and transmission. The purpose of this section is to examine your understanding of these four elements and how they are related. You will need to identify how cars differ from each other, why each element is important to cars, and how they affect the answer choices you make when attempting to solve a problem. One interesting method for testing these skills is by having students describe cars they have driven and explain the different aspects of each car in a way that will help you analyze their reasoning. This evaluation tip can be used multiple times throughout the test to reinforce your ideas and further develop your credibility with the class.
The next section will examine how you analyze the types of questions that can be asked on a given passage. In this paragraph, you will present an answer choice, usually from a scratch paper, that will help the reader understand the question. As a middle school student, you are probably used to answering questions based on what you already know, but as you go through this passage you may find yourself thinking in ways that you never thought of before. In this paragraph, use diagrams and pictures to reinforce your ideas. For example, if you are describing a car in your first paragraph, you should immediately show a picture of the front or back side of a car to emphasize how it looks.
The third part of the evaluation process includes developing a strategic plan. The strategic plan will allow you to follow your strategy through the entire test. This plan can be as simple as an outline of your main idea in a single sentence, or it could be a detailed explanation of how cars work. Once you have a concrete strategy for following through on your ideas, the middle school will be able to use the same strategy when confronted with a new question.
Finally, you will read a citation needed for the succeeding test. A citation needs to explain the main point of discussion for the passage in question and specifically detail which type of cars (internal combustion engine, drive train, etc.) that you are looking at in this particular paragraph. The modern car has many parts, so make sure that you give specific details about each section.
The above strategies will all be tested during the evaluation process. The main idea is that the student should use all available resources to support their main strategy for the passage. The strategies can be combined in the paragraphs to support one main idea. Be certain to use all types of strategies as you present your passage. Do not allow a student to complete the passage without using at least one of the strategies!