Do Nurses Take the MCAT? Is It Really Mandatory?

Do nurses take the MCAT

Are you looking for ways to advance your career in the medical field? You’re probably wondering; do nurses take the MCAT or not?

The short answer is no. You’re not required to take the Medical College Admission Test to become a nurse.

It’s only necessary as an entrance exam to the medical school for those who wish to become physicians or doctors.

Graduate nurses can take a Doctorate of Nursing or Master of Science in Nursing. In this case, the entrance exam can be something like GRE.

Simply put, you only take the MCAT exam if you plan to leave your nursing profession to become a doctor.

Do Nurses Have to Take the MCAT?

No requirement says that you have to take MCAT to become a nurse. We’ve already established the test is for medical school.

Generally speaking, medical school and nursing school are different programs that are not interchangeable.

One prerequisite course for medical schools, like biology, is also covered in a nursing school. A nursing degree is simply a leg up to joining a medical school.

If you want to advance your nursing career, you can go for Nursing Practitioner (NP) designation or take a Graduate Record Exam.

GRE is a tough exam that tests critical reasoning, verbal reasoning, and analytical skills.

However, not all advanced nursing courses require GRE.

Before you meet the requirements for admission, you must check the tests covered. MCAT takes your career in a different direction, either as a doctor or a physician.

Sometimes, factors like time and money can make a nurse pursue a course to become a physician.

Maybe you’re ready to take on new responsibilities in a hospital, or you feel a genuine inclination to make a diagnosis.

See also: Responsibility of a Nurse

We’re not saying that nursing is not gratifying, but becoming a doctor can be more rewarding.

If you decide to embark on a journey from being a nurse to a physician, you should be fully aware of the investment you have to make in terms of time and money.

Most medical schools in the US require aspirants to take the MCAT test. That said, you must stick to a study schedule to make your application stand out.

Is the NCLEX Harder Than the MCAT?

MCAT comprises different types of exams:

  • organic chemistry,
  • biochemistry,
  • psychology,
  • physics,
  • and social science,

to mention a few.

NCLEX, on the other hand, tests critical thinking skills in your chosen profession.

Just like you can’t compare nursing school to medical school, there’s no way to contrast MCAT to NCLEX.

Some folks say NCLEX is harder because of the material covered. Others say MCAT is difficult because of the skills required.

Beyond that, NCLEX is a licensing exam, while MCAT is an entrance exam.

We are simply talking about green and red apples here.

So how hard is MCAT? No need to sugarcoat this – it’s probably the toughest entrance exam in a medical school.

But don’t be scared yet. The better you prepare, the higher your chances of getting a desirable score.

What makes MCAT appear hard?

It’s not a memorizing exam

You may have passed other medical school tests through memorizing, but not in MCAT.

Because it focuses on situational questions, you must apply what you’ve learned. It’s not just about answering the questions but giving the reasons behind the concept.

Do you get the picture?

It’s a long exam

MCAT covers multiple subjects.

You’re required to answer 230 questions, not to mention the exam takes over 7 hours.

Most students never finish the exam in some sections. Others end up guessing the answers to finish on time.

It’s more like a test of endurance.

The questions are tricky

Most people believe the exam is difficult because the test is all about critical thinking skills.

It accesses your ability to determine what is important and what is not.

Conclusion: Do Nurses Take the MCAT or Not?

You don’t need to take the MCAT test to be a nurse.

If you want to advance your nursing career, you should look for programs that emphasize clinical experience – not classroom work.

While you may have a better chance of getting to a medical school because of your nursing experience, a bit of research goes a long way.

If you want to transition from a nurse to a doctor, you should be ready for the MCAT exam.

It’s one of the toughest entry tests in a medical school, but not the most difficult.

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About Ida Koivisto, BSN, RN, PHN

Ida is both a registered nurse and public health nurse. Her passion is to provide as much valuable information about nursing to the world as possible. In her spare time from work and blogging, Ida loves to work out at the gym and spend time with relatives.