Meet Gracie Luo, a happy DAT Bootcamp customer who recently conquered the DAT. I’ve asked Gracie to share her DAT experience with us as the featured student of May.
What is one piece of advice you would give to another student preparing to take the DAT?
My biggest piece of advice for success would be to create an organized, reasonable study plan for what topics and questions you want to cover day-by-day and have an actual test date already registered. I think this is the easiest way to keep yourself accountable. Ari’s study guide was wonderful and definitely worth checking out, but I tweaked it to meet my needs better as a student since I knew what my stronger and weaker topics were. When I would fall behind on my study guide, I would make sure to cover what I had missed the next day.
That being said, there is no shame in postponing your test date. I postponed mine by almost a month just because I didn’t feel mentally ready for such a big exam, even though I had already studied all of the material. I just didn’t feel 100% ready (I think it’s nearly impossible to feel completely ready for such a big exam). A month later, I knew that this was the most I could ever be prepared for the DAT so I just had to go for it.
How did you use DAT Bootcamp to prepare for the DAT?
I used DAT Bootcamp religiously. I did every practice exam because it was the closest simulation to the real exam I could find. The online format of the Bootcamp practice tests were very similar to the real exam, so that definitely helped me a lot when I was taking the real thing.
At the beginning, especially with the PAT section, I struggled a lot with timing. For the first few practice tests I took, I didn’t time myself under real conditions since I wanted to just focus on just getting used to the types of questions that were being asked. I also tried not to focus on the score itself, but instead the topics I would see myself consistently lacking in. I would take note of my weaker subject areas and go back to Chad’s videos, Cliff’s, or whatever resource I was using to reteach myself the material.
What would you do differently to prepare for the DAT?
I would definitely give myself more free time each week so my studying could be more balanced. Everybody has a different way of effectively studying. For me, I would spend ~8 hours a day 7 days a week in the library, with an hour break for lunch. I should have given myself more time to hangout with friends, work out, and do other things I enjoy.
Also one other thing I would like to say: I do not consider myself a naturally science-minded person, especially since I had struggled quite a bit in my general chemistry and physics courses during undergraduate. But knowing this exam stood in the way of my end goal of being a dentist was enough motivation for me to overcome my insecurities and give it my all. If I can do well on the DAT, you can do well on the DAT!!!
- General Chemistry21
- Organic Chemistry23
- Reading Comprehension21
- Perceptual Ability23
- Quantitative Reasoning23
- Academic Average22