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Association of American Medical Colleges Tomorrow's Doctors, Tomorrow's Cures®

MR5: 5th Comprehensive Review of the Medical College Admission Test® (MCAT®)

The MR5 is AAMC’s fifth comprehensive review of the Medical College Admission Test® (MCAT®) since the exam was first administered in 1928. In standardized testing, periodic reviews of examinations are considered a best practice—particularly in fields with rapidly-changing knowledge bases. The current version of the test has been in use since 1991, and the new version (expected to launch in 2015) is likely to be in place until 2030.

The committee has just drafted its preliminary recommendations for the future exam. Committee members are scheduled to announce their final recommendations to AAMC’s membership and the pre-health community in November of this year. This update describes the conversations and work that provide the foundation for the committee’s preliminary recommendations. It lists the committee’s 14 preliminary recommendations and provides a basis for conversation. The update starts with background on the committee’s charge and work.

About the MR5 Process

The MR5 advisory committee was appointed by the AAMC in fall 2008. The committee was tasked with reviewing the MCAT® exam and recommending changes that are likely to increase the exam’s value to medical school admissions committees and examinees. The 21 committee members include: medical school deans, admissions, educational affairs, student affairs, and diversity officers, basic and clinical sciences faculty, pre-heath advisors and other baccalaureate faculty, a resident and a medical student.

The MR5 committee solicited input from several blue-ribbon and advisory committees and groups including the AAMC-HHMI Scientific Foundations for Future Physicians (SFFP) Committee, the AAMC Behavioral and Social Sciences Expert Panel, the Holistic Review Project Advisory Committee, the National Association of Advisors for the Health Professions, the Canadian Council on Medical Education, the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, and other groups.

The MR5 committee received over 2,700 completed surveys from baccalaureate and medical school faculty, administrators, residents, and medical students about medical school admissions and the current and future tests.

The MR5 committee held more than 75 outreach events to solicit input, including seven at last year’s AAMC Annual Meeting. Committee members will participate in more than a dozen council, group, society, and association meetings this spring.  They have published brochures, project newsletters and survey reports, and posted three videos on the MR5 website. More than 4,000 stakeholders have received e-newsletters. The committee is scheduled to announce its final recommendations at the 2011 AAMC Annual Meeting.

What Are the MR5 Committee's Preliminary Recommendations?

The committee has just drafted its preliminary recommendations for the future exam. Committee members are scheduled to announce their final recommendations to AAMC’s membership and the pre-health community in November of this year. This update describes the conversations and work that provide the foundation for the committee’s preliminary recommendations. It lists the committee’s 14 preliminary recommendations and provides a basis for conversation. The update starts with background on the committee’s charge and work.


Video Updates

A Message from the AAMC President and CEO

Darrell G. Kirch, M.D.

Darrell G. Kirch, M.D., President and CEO of AAMC, discusses possibilities for measuring personal characteristics in medical student selection.


A Message from the Chair of the Advisory Committee

Steven G. Gabbe, M.D.

Steven G. Gabbe, M.D., Senior Vice President for Health Sciences and Chief Executive Officer of The Ohio State University Medical Center, introduces the MR5 project.


A Message from the Vice-Chair of the Advisory Committee

Ronald D. Franks, M.D.

Ronald D. Franks, M.D., Vice President for Health Sciences at the University of South Alabama, discusses recent input on the project.