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2013 DAT Breakdown – 22/22/19 by mcoope44

Canadian DAT Done – BreakDown

Hey everyone, I noticed a disturbing lack of Canadian DAT breakdowns on SDN, which is a shame because the tests are slightly different. For anyone who isn’t aware, the Canadian DAT differs in that it is on paper, and does not include the QR and Organic Chem sections. Also, instead of there being one break in the middle, you get a 15 minute break after each section. I had no idea about that going in and it helped TREMENDOUSLY, especially since I was able to hang out with people I knew who were also writing the DAT.

Background: I’m a third year science student (GPA: 3.90, sGPA: 3.87) currently taking the following science courses: anatomy, mammalian physiology, cellular physiology, and pharmacology. Last year I took a cell biology course, microbiology, genetics, and biochemistry. Of course I also took first year biology, general chemistry and organic chemistry. With that being said, you do not need all of these courses to do well on the DAT. Everything that you need to know for biology, I learned in first year general biology, with the exception of physiology. Because of this, if you are planning on taking the DAT sometime in the future I would heavily recommend taking some sort of human physiology course. It reduced the amount of studying I had to do drastically, and allowed me to shore up on other subjects like ecology and taxonomy that I felt weak in. If you’re still in first year and want to be prepared for the DAT bio before even starting your studying I would recommend taking evolution, ecology and physiology in your second year. 

I wrote my test February 23rd and started studying in the first week of January. Keep in mind that I didn’t have to study for organic chem and math, so you may want to give yourself more time than that. In January I studied around 2-3 hours a day at night when I was done studying for my school courses, and then in February once I was done midterms I amped up the studying to 4-5 hours a day. I had Spring Break the week before the DAT so I was able to study around 7 hours a day in the library doing last minute review. The important thing to remember when studying for the DAT is that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Make sure to consistently work hard everyday, but don’t burn yourself out by sitting in the library for hours on end. 

My marks:

RC: 23
Bio: 24
Chem: 20
PA: 19
TS: 22
AA: 22 (98%)

Materials used: 
Kaplan Blue Book, Barron’s AP Biology, Chad’s chem videos, Crack the Dat PAT, qVault (for bio only)

Quick thoughts…

Kaplan Blue Book was absolutely useless. I wasted however much money I spent on it (something over $100 I think), which is a total shame. DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK, YOU ARE WASTING YOUR MONEY. Even the diagnostic tests at the end did not come close to predicting my score. I got an 18 in bio 3 days before the test, which almost gave me a panic attack. Don’t waste your time and money on this book.

Two resources I used stood heads and shoulders above the others. If you are going to buy anything for biology BUY BARRON’S AP BIOLOGY (thanks for the rec glimmer). I bought it on Amazon for like 15 bucks and it was worth its weight in gold. It was exactly the level of depth needed for the DAT. DAT QVAULT is another amazing resource for bio, and was the perfect way to test my knowledge. 

Looking at my chem mark now I regret not buying destroyer and only using Chad’s. Chad’s was good, don’t get me wrong, but I think if you want to get a really exemplary score in chem then you’re going to have to do Destroyer. I would recommend Chad’s with the addendum that you should buy more practice problems to drill with (as far as I know Destroyer is the best and most relevant.)

Crack DAT PAT was about the same level as the test. I’m not ecstatic about this score, but I’m not too surprised as I was scoring around 19-22 on the practice tests. Angle rankings never really clicked for me, and even during the test itself I felt like I was making educated guesses. There were a couple of questions on the test that felt weird, but out of 90 questions I would say 85 of them would not be out of place on a CDP practice test.

Reading comprehension was kind of silly. I’m a third year student in the sciences, and two of the three passages were based on scientific topics that I’m familiar with (I’m not sure if I’m allowed to say what they were about.) I didn’t formally practice for this, but I used to read a lot so that definitely helped as well.

So yeah that’s my DAT. Big shout-out to all the big and little contributors on this forum, you’ve seriously made a huge impact on my score and I’m truly grateful. If any Canadian has questions about our DAT, or anyone has any questions in general feel free to message me or post in this thread. Good luck with your DATs!

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