Medical College Admission Test going paperless

by Allison Wickler

Pre-med students no longer will need a No. 2 pencil to take the Medical College Admission Test, but there will still be other issues to face.

The MCAT, a prerequisite for students applying to medical school, will be administered only via computer beginning in 2007, which will limit the number of seats at each test.

Past years offered two testing dates; now 19 test dates, ranging from Jan. 27 to Sept. 8, will be offered.

Judy Beniak, director of the Health Careers Center at the University, said she sees a lot of positives in the new electronic test format.

“This does build on the students’ skill at informatics, and that’s an important dimension to life as a health professional nowadays,” she said.

Biomedical engineering junior Deepa Mekala plans to take the MCAT this spring and said taking the test on a computer will be more difficult, but she is optimistic.

“I know that test-prep classes will probably prepare you for it, so it’s probably not unmanageable,” she said.

There are no computerized test centers at the University, but Beniak said the Health Careers Center has been working to get computer test seats on campus.

Currently, testing sites are in Edina and Woodbury.