February 26, 2013

NMAT Series: 11 Self-review Tips


As I have said in NMAT Series: NMAT Overview, the NMAT is an exam that you have to prepare for if you want to ensure getting a high percentile rank (90+ or better). I took the NMAT twice so I know what I am talking about. Of my two takes, I have not enrolled in any review center because I was not willing to spend money for that. So, I self-studied. Here, I will be giving you tips on how to self-study whether you have enrolled in a review center or not.


Is it necessary to enroll in a review center?

It’s up to you. If you think you have a good background on the topics, and if you are willing to give extra effort, but unwilling to dole out cash, then self-studying is for you. Otherwise, you may opt to enroll in a review center. If you’re willing to spend money, time, and effort just so you can get that 99+, you may enroll in review center and then study on your own at home. However, I think that is unnecessary! NMAT must be taken seriously but not too seriously that you’ll rack your brains off doing all that work! It covers only the basics, and it should not bother you too much!


General Review Tips: Self-studying


1. Answer the practice test that will be emailed to you by CEM.
Once you're done with your payment, CEM will email to you a sample of the NMAT. It is helpful because it closely resembles the real NMAT. It's level of difficulty, exam type, and topics covered, are similar with the real NMAT's. One tip - don’t just use the answer key for checking. Try to research about the concepts involved in the questions to understand how they where answered.



2. Get a copy of the MSA NMAT Reviewer and go over it. It’s the only NMAT reviewer I know. I’m not sure if there are other NMAT reviewers, but it’s the only one I used. Although the problems and questions are a little more difficult than what’s given in the NMAT, it will still help build your confidence in answering and helps you practice your brain. Some of the concepts involved in the practice tests are actually helpful. However, take note that not everything in it will be necessary.



3. Time yourself while answering practice tests.

The NMAT is time pressured. I was surprised how time flew when I took it the first time. Even during the second time, I was not able to finish part 1! That's why I advise you, for best results, put time pressure when you practice.



4. Give attention to the subjects you are least familiar with.
It's frustrating to do an exam having to guess the answers to an entire subtest right? If your high school or college education were not able to give you a background on some of the subtests, then do yourself a favor, refresh yourself on these topics. In my case, verbal and social science were my weakest subjects. I tried to widen my vocabulary by reading books (I'm not sure if I succeeded), tried to read a little on psychology, and even asked a friend to explain some social science concepts to me.

5. Be resourceful. Use the internet to look for review materials, even if they are not designed specifically for the NMAT. Scavenge for your high school books. You don’t need to spend much. You can even borrow books from family and friends! For some online sources I found, check my post - NMAT Series: Review Materials






6. Take notes on the basic concepts that you encounter so that it will be easy for you to go over them in the future. If you’ve started studying long before the NMAT, this will be doable and will be helpful especially in the last days of your review. You can also use your notes as you try to answer more practice tests. Taking notes will save you from the trouble of having to go through the whole process of researching a concept again.


7. Never give up. Practice makes perfect. Sometimes you may feel lazy, tired or frustrated especially if you’re having a hard time answering the practice tests. Take breaks, but never give up on practicing! Remember, quitters never win! In fact, the more you practice, the more you'll get better on subtests especially perceptual acuity and inductive reasoning.



8. Don’t cram!

Cramming is the norm, but it’s not really beneficial. Yes, you’ll be able to save time and effort and you’ll have an excuse if results won’t turn out good, but you might also get excessively stressed and worried that you will not be able to perform well. In fact, studies have shown that crammers perform lower on exams than noncrammers.


9. Schedule your study time. This is to ensure that you have time to review. If you don’t schedule your study time, you are prone to putting it off the next day, the next week, or the next month and maybe, just maybe, you’ll end up cramming the night before the exam, and that is a no-no.



10. Do your best so that you will have no regrets.

No matter what your exam result may be, if you know you did your best, then you will not regret how you prepared for the exam. Also, don’t overdo your preparation especially if you are the kind who don’t like wasting time and effort. You just might regret studying too much!


11. The NMAT is important but, NEVER prioritize it over your college subjects.

I don’t think that your college subjects are worth sacrificing for the NMAT. I am encouraging you to prepare for the NMAT, but if that means giving up on one of your subjects’ exam, then, never mind. You can take the NMAT again, but it’s less likely for you to be given a chance to retake your college subjects’ exams.

Don’t get scared of the NMAT and don’t think of it as extremely difficult. With enough preparation, you can certainly reach your goal! Some even get high scores without much preparation (I have friends who crammed a few nights before and still got high scores)!


God bless with the NMAT! I know you can do it! :)

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38 comments:

  1. Thank you for this insightful ideas.:)

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  2. Hi Miss Cruzado! May I know what are the review materials that you used? Thankyou!

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    1. Joyce, check my post http://medicalschoolroadtrip.blogspot.com/2013/02/nmat-series-review-materials.html those are pretty much everything. I also suggest that if you know of friends who have undergone formal NMAT review classes, you can ask to borrow their handouts or have them photocopied and study those.

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  3. Hi..I really wanted to take the NMAT this coming November but my mom suddenly asked me to take the board exam for psychometrician this coming October.I did not enroll in any review centers for the both exam and I'm only doing a self review.Do you think it is better if I'll just take the NMAT on April?or should I give it a try on Nov? Thanks!:)

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    1. I don't know how difficult that psychometrician exam is but i think you can give jovember a try. Review by yourself after your other exam so that your attention will jot be divided. There's no harm in trying because you can take the exam again on april if you are not satisfied with the result. They'll consider your higher score when you apply in med schools anyway. You won't lose anything except for money if ever you'll repeat the test. ;)

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  4. Hey what is CEM hahahah

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  5. This is CEM https://www.cem-inc.org.ph/

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  6. Hi. . I just wanna ask if it is too late to decide to take nmat exam this nov.? Thank you.

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  7. Hi. .just wanna ask if it is too late to decide to take nmat exam for this nov.? Thank you.

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    1. It actually depends on you. If you think you have a solid background on the basics, high school science, math, english, then maybe it's not yet too late. I'm sorry for the late reply, I got busy with school and I was also thinking about what to say to you. I hope you've already decided :) Actually, there's no harm taking it now because if ever you'll be unsatisfied by the result, you can always take it again :)

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  8. Hi miss Cruzado. Just wanna ask.. What are the subjects included in NMAT

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    1. Verbal, Inductive Reasoning, Visual Acuity,Math, Biology Chemistry, Physics, Psychology

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  9. Hi miss cruzado..my name is johara. A regstred nurse,2010 graduate and currently working here in abroad.im planning to have vacation by november so that i could take NMAT. I know it will be hard for me since im not into school anymore. Maybe u can gve me tips on how to have high rank in NMAT. Ur response will help a lot.thank you!☺️

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    1. Taking a lot of practice tests will help you a lot :) try asking for tips from people you know who already took it :) just relax, study when you can and hope for the best :)

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    2. I think it would be helpful if you enroll in a review class. However if you don't have time for that you can check out my my compilation of helpful sites for review :) God bless johara! :) http://medicalschoolroadtrip.blogspot.com/2013/02/nmat-series-review-materials.html

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  10. Hello po. Just want to ask po. How can i make it easier for me to correctly answer perceptual acuity esp.the hidden figure part? I am having a difficult time on this part? Then, does the practice set really resemble the actual and real test? Thanks po

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    1. Actually, I also had a hard time with that and I still haven't figured out a way to answer that quickly. So I advice you to conc on other parts during the exam. It won't be the same exam but the type of questions and the way of asking would be similar.. :)

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  11. Hi Karla! Thank you for the wonderful insight about NMAT. I was wondering, can I already take the test for NMAT this coming December? I am only an incoming third year student and I was told by medican interns that I met recently that I can already take the test. Since I can take the test twice, I can have my first one as like my "practice test". But upon reading the CEM requirements for NMAT takers, I read that NMAT can only be taken by students who have graduated or graduating for the A.Y. 2015-2016. I'm confused, can you please help me understand this?

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    1. My classmates in college took the NMAT Dec of our 3rd year. So I guess it's okay to take it then. Your results would be valid until 2 years after. If you will be going to med immediately after college then there would be no problem about it :) Or, you can also opt to take next April, and then if you are not satisfied, take the NMAT again Dec of that year. You would be in your 4th year then. That could be an option :)

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    2. Hello. Is there a place or a website where I could find the schedule of the upcoming NMAT? The website that I found says that the next NMAT will be held on October. But it seems like there will be one this December. I'm really confused. Hope anyone could help me out :)

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  12. This was really helpful ^^, I only found out about the NMAT recently and I hate myself for not researching about this earlier. I would just like to ask when will the next NMAT be? I recall seeing from a website that it will be on October, but seeing the comment above, will there be one on December? I haven't even started reviewing yet and I'm having a hard time looking for materials I could use as a reviewer so I'm hoping that the next NMAT will be on December ^^, Any replies will be greatly appreciated

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  13. Hello, thank you for the tips, they're really helpful :) one question though, the review materials link doesn't seem to be available, it says "Sorry, the page you were looking for in this blog does not exist.".

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    1. Those sites aren't mine. Maybe they took the pages down or transferred to a different site. Anyway, I'll check the links again and update them :)

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  14. hello miss karla :) thank you very much for this blog. (though i havent visited yet any other medical school blog) im happy that i came to encounter with medical school roadtrip blog because it gave me evrything that i needed. actually im planning to take the NMAT again this november . it is my second time since i took the test wayback december of 2010. then i had my 'confusion' period in pushing through med school because i am currently working as a nurse at that time... but i'ved realize that becoming an MD is really my dream so i decided to push it the coming school year. i dont know if it is necessary to tell my story but i want you to know that your blog helped me (a lot) in its own way to fill the unanswered questions about medical school. i may not belong to the so-intelligent type but my heart is geared towards becoming a doctor. i really hope i will have the courage to push through this year ;)

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    1. I'm happy to hear your story Kriselda :) I hope you'll eventually reach your dreams and find that sense of fulfillment. God bless! Feel free to let me know what happens with your NMAT, and med school application :)

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    2. Karla mae cruzado. Anu po lahat ng topic sa nmat or anu po ung mga subject na tatamaan ty po in advance

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  16. Hello Karla, I am an Indian student, trying to get into DMSF. Your Page is just flipping a confidence in me. Thank you so much.

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  17. +karla mae cruzado can you please tell me tht is there any Negative marking in the NMAT exam?

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  18. +karla mae cruzado can you please tell me tht is there any Negative marking in the NMAT exam?

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    1. There are rather negative marks. Heard of people who had negative scores. The grading system of the NMAT is done in relation to the marks others had in the exam during that year. So say 99 will mean you were among the top 10 in the exam during that sitting

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  19. I'm in the Philippines now. I missed the exam and couldn't enrol in the medical school. I'm now taking up Masters in public health while preparing for the upcoming exams which I have registered for. I read your blog before I came and it's been good to me. Thank you

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  20. Hi,
    I'm planning to take the NMAT this 2017..but unlike you guys, my undergrad was not a pre-med course. I was in business administration. Currently doing my self study as of now regarding part II of NMAT. Do you have any tips on what should I remember on these parts? Will the practice set from CEM have the same coverage or topics for the actual exam? I actually don't know where to start. I've tried downloading previous practice sets and answering them one by one, studying the concepts for each number but I think it's not enough because topics might change. I also don't have time to enter a review center since I'm working. Thank you in advance!

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  21. HI...im a 2001 grad of BS pharm., i worked abroad for 10 yrs to help my family and myself financially and got married eventually, but ever since when i was a college I've been dreaming of becoming a doctor someday, but unfortunately need to work first but now I'm very much interested in studying and pursuing my dream to become a dr, regardless of my age now... my question is do i need to have a refresher course?...btw i worked as a pharmacist here abroad..your advice will be helpful to me.....thank you & god bless....

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    1. Refresher course for the NMAT? or Medicine in general? I'll try my best to answer..

      for medicine, maybe not, but for the NMAT, enrolling in a review class could be helpful if you are not confident about how much high school knowledge you've retained. The NMAT is a basic test and is similar to a college entrance test.

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  22. Hi po Maam Karla! I'm a Bs MedTech graduate from Zamboanga City and will be taking the NMAT this October. Currently, I'm reviewing for the MedTech board exams and only have a month to study for NMAT. Will the practice set and MSA reviewers be enough for self study? since I don't plan to enroll in a review center for NMAT. I'm really reaaaallly worried kase GG po tlaga ako sa physics at everything mathematics since weak po masyado foundation ko jan at Hope to have a reply from you. God Bless po! ��

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