While our study guide is 30 days long, most MCATers will need roughly 90 days total (roughly 60 days of also doing practice passages) to get to an MCAT CARS score they’ll be happy with. I’ve outlined the schedule I recommend to my students below, as well as the materials that you’ll need to complete the schedule.

Here Are the Materials I Recommend:

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Phase I – For the first 30 days, while you cover the major strategy points in this guide, I recommend you use passages from either EK 101 or TPR. In this phase of your preparation, you’ll do a total of 79 passages. I’ll explain how and when to do these passages in the guide.

Phase II – In the next 30 days, you’ll take 14 CARS Full-Length Practice Tests. I recommend using Testing Solutions’ Practice Tests (T1-T8) as well as your remaining passages from EK101 and TPR. You’ll also use the AAMC Question Packs. In this phase, you’ll do 117 passages.

Phase III – In the final 30 days, your CARS prep will largely be integrated with your taking of full-length MCAT practice tests. You will take all four of EK’s full-lengths, two of Next Steps’ full-lengths, complete the AAMC CARS question packs (Vols 1 and 2) and the two available AAMC practice tests. Also, there are break days built in. On some break days, you’ll do two passages, just to keep you sharp, while on other break days, you’ll just rest. In this final phase of your preparation, you’ll do 103 passages. Thus, if you follow this schedule to the “T,” you’ll do 299 CARS practice passages. If you do that many practice passages, and follow the techniques I outline in this guide, you’ll come as close to a guarantee of scoring 129+ on the CARS section as is possible. I have never had a student that has actually followed this schedule and not been happy with their score.

This schedule was designed to fit into whatever general schedule/ approach you’re employing for the other three sections. Most days, you’ll spend around an hour and a half on CARS, but sometimes more will be required. The key to mastering the CARS is to do a little bit each day. You cannot cram for the CARS. This section must be respected. Just like how you eat an elephant, remember that it’s just one bite at a time, one day at a time. WARNING: Do not get behind on this schedule. If you’re worried about that, build in some extra break days at the end of the schedule (Which is to say, start this schedule 100 days out from your test instead of 90, however, the compressed and rigorous nature of this schedule does build your stamina and prepares you for the rigors of test day, so don’t let too much time lapse between practice tests.) It is not possible to do two days in one to catch up.


Week I:

In Week I, you’ll do one passage per day.

Day 1 – The Plan/ Getting Your Materials
Day 2 – Breaking Down the MCAT CARS Section
Day 3 – Reviewing/ Timing
Day 4 – MCAT CARS Myths: The “Don’ts”
Day 5 – How to Approach the MCAT CARS Section – The Passage
Day 6 – Passage Types: Argumentative
Day 7 – Argumentation: Modality


Week II:

In Week II, you’ll do two passages per day, timed individually.

Day 8 – Passage Types: Descriptive
Day 9 – How to Use Keywords
Day 10 – Health, Wellness, and Stress Management – The Second Key
Day 11 – CARS Question Types: The Main Idea
Day 12 – CARS Question Types: Passage Detail
Day 13 – CARS Question Types: Implication
Day 14 – CARS Question Types: Inference *Break -Don’t do any passages today.


Week III:

In Week III, you’ll do three passages per day, timed individually.

Day 15 – CARS Question Types: Application
Day 16 – CARS Question Types: Integration of New Information
Day 17 – CARS Question Types: Attitude
Day 18 – CARS Question Types: Meaning of a Term
Day 19 – CARS Question Types: Author Technique
Day 20 – CARS Question Format: Negation Questions
Day 21 – CARS Question Format: Roman Numerals *Break -Don’t do any passages today.


Week IV:

In Week IV, you’ll do four passages per day until the 25th day and then do five passages per day. Do the passages consecutively, timed together.

Day 22 – CARS Answer Pathologies – Part I
Day 23 – CARS Answer Pathologies – Part II
Day 24 – CARS Answer Pathologies – Part III
Day 25 – How to Take a CARS Full-Length Practice Test
Day 26 – How to Review a CARS Passage
Day 27 – How to Review CARS Questions
Day 28 – How to Review CARS Answers *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week V:

You’ll do six passages on Day 29 and Day 30. Do the passages consecutively, timed together.

Day 29 – Putting it All Together: How to Review an Entire CARS Practice Test
Day 30Advanced Study Techniques
Day 31 – 9 Passages from EK101 or TPR (90 Minutes)
Day 32 – Review 9 Passages
Day 33 – 9 Passages from EK101 or TPR (90 Minutes)
Day 34 – Review 9 Passages
Day 35 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week VI:

Day 36 – 9 Passages from EK101 or TPR (90 Minutes)
Day 37 Review 9 Passages
Day 38 – T1 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T1
Day 39 – Review T1
Day 40 – T2 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T2
Day 41 – Review T2
Day 42 *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week VII:

Day 43 – T3 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T3
Day 44 – Review T3
Day 45 – T4 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T4
Day 46 – Review T4
Day 47 – T5 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T5
Day 48 – Review T5
Day 49 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week VIII:

Day 50 – T6 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T6
Day 51 – Review T6
Day 52 – T7 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T7
Day 53 – Review T7
Day 54 – T8 – Testing Solutions CARS Full-Length Practice Test T8
Day 55 – Review T8
Day 56 *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week IX:

Day 57 – (9) Passages from AAMC CARS Question Pack (90 Minutes)
Day 58 – Review CARS Practice Test Question Pack
Day 59 – (9) Passages from AAMC CARS Question Pack (90 Minutes)
Day 60 – Review CARS Practice Test Question Pack
Day 61 – (9) Passages from AAMC CARS Question Pack (90 Minutes)
Day 62 – Review CARS Practice Test Question Pack
Day 63 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.


Week X:

Day 64 – (9) Passages from AAMC CARS Question Pack (90 Minutes)
Day 65 – Review CARS Practice Test Question Pack
Day 66 – Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 1
Day 67 – Review Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 1
Day 68 – Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 2
Day 69 – Review Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 2
Day 70 – *Break – Do (2) Passage from AAMC CARS Question Pack


Week XI:

Day 71 – AAMC Official MCAT Sample Test
Day 72 – Review AAMC Official MCAT Sample Test
Day 73 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.
Day 74 – Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 3
Day 75 – Review Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 3
Day 76 – *Break – Do (2) Passage from AAMC CARS Question Pack
Day 77 – AAMC Official MCAT Practice Exam (Scored) 1


Week XII:

Day 78 – AAMC Official MCAT Practice Exam (Scored) 1
Day 79 – *Break – Do (2) Passage from AAMC CARS Question Pack
Day 80 – Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 4
Day 81 – Review Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 4
Day 82 – *Break – Do (2) Passage from AAMC CARS Question Pack
Day 83 – AAMC Official MCAT Practice Exam (Scored) 2
Day 84 – AAMC Official MCAT Practice Exam (Scored) 2


Week XIII:

Day 85 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.
Day 86 – Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 5
Day 87 – Review Exam Krackers Full-Length MCAT 5
Day 88 – (5) CARS Passages from AAMC Study Guide
Day 89 – *Break – Don’t do any passages today.
Day 90 – Test Day

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