Kaplan Review MCAT Preparation Course Review

February 20, 2024

minute read

A proven way to prepare for the MCAT is to take review courses. In addition, of course, you can choose to buy prep books containing subjects and topics covered by the exam, but it is always better when you have a guide to follow.

Among all sites that offer prep courses, the Kaplan MCAT preparation course is some of the best and most well-known programs for students. The classes are easy to follow, and they have different packages to choose from depending on what is more convenient for you.

Before purchasing one of their packages, let’s first understand what they offer with this Kaplan MCAT prep course review. 

This article covers all the points that will help you decide if the Kaplan MCAT prep course is right for you.

Kaplan Review MCAT Preparation Course: Everything You Need to Know

Here’s everything there is to know before you decide to avail of Kaplan’s MCAT prep course: 

What is Kaplan?

Kaplan is one of the largest educational services providers worldwide. They have been around for more than 80 years now, founded by Stanley Kaplan in 1938. 

The company’s primary purpose is to provide various services to help students excel in their academic endeavors.

Currently, they have around 12,000 tutors in 30 countries for various courses. Their services are well recognized and have helped many people succeed in their education.

One of their services is the Kaplan MCAT prep course, the topic that we will focus on in this article. This course is detailed and comprehensive, covering all the essential concepts you need to know to get a high percentile score.

These prep courses come in different options: 

  • on-demand
  • live online
  • and in-person.

They have an online platform that is easy to navigate for students who prefer to study online. They also have locations in 43 states across the USA, which allows students to partake in in-person classes if this is more effective for them. 

Curriculum & Coursework,

The content of a Kaplan MCAT prep course, may vary depending on the package you purchased. They have a mixture of traditional reading materials, interactive sessions, practice questions, and video-based lessons.

Kaplan MCAT Prep Courses

1. Video-based lessons

Kaplan’s video-based lessons are not instructor-led. Every enrolled student has access to over 150 hours of these educational videos. It acts more as a refresher, as most lessons were already discussed during a student’s undergraduate study.

Aside from that, they are well-designed as well. Most of them are filled with vibrant graphics, voice-over audio, and more elements that will make you retain information better than just regular reading. In addition, they are delivered in a  whiteboard format with illustrations and figures about different MCAT concepts.

Videos are great for understanding the main points and tend to be easier to follow during the review.

2. Modules

Kaplan prep courses provide various units and modules during your prep course. They are well-organized, but there is no need to follow them in a linear pattern. They are already provided for the course as a whole. 

You can jump from lesson to lesson if you feel you already know the previous topics or if there are some concepts you wish to understand further. However, this is not the same for an instructor-led course.

3. Interactive lessons

The interactive videos provided by the Kaplan MCAT prep course have matching practice quizzes and book assignments to better immerse yourself deep into the concepts. It is also an excellent way to measure your progress over time and see which aspects need further improvement.

They also focus on giving factual information regarding the subject material about everything you need to know to prepare you better for the MCAT.

4. Practice tests

If you enjoy practice tests during your review, the Kaplan MCAT prep course has plenty of them! In addition, the course has the Qbank system feature, where you can take short quizzes throughout the curriculum. 

Even better, the Qbank adapts to your skill. Therefore, it is a handy tool for keeping up with your progress. It provides enough challenges based on your level and highlights the knowledge gaps that require further attention.

They also have 16 full-length practice tests that you can take. It is an excellent way to train yourself to answer questions with a time crunch and familiarize yourself with most of the MCAT’s exam structure
Kaplan Prep Courses Content

5. Additional content

Kaplan has an MCAT Channel, and all the lessons are organized there. It varies by topic presentation, but they are always relevant to your MCAT review. 

Their instructors also go live six (6) days per week, and you are free to watch them no matter what plan you are currently on. 

Additionally, you don’t need to keep up with the live broadcast schedule because they are recorded, and you can go back to the missed lessons.

Kaplan has around 90 hours of recorded sessions that you are always free to watch when you purchase an MCAT prep course. 

With Kaplan, students can consume a wide variety of content to maximize their preparation for the MCAT examinations

Kaplan MCAT Prep Courses Typical Content Each Module

Kaplan Prep Courses Pricing

Note that the Kaplan MCAT prep courses are not all the same. 

They offer a variety of review courses, and you can choose depending on what you need and what is the most suitable for your budget. But, of course, all of them vary in content and execution as well.

Undeniably, the courses are pricey, and there are cheaper alternative options out there, but Kaplan’s prep courses are one of a kind. There is a reason why many people are still purchasing and consuming these courses.

With that in mind, these are the packages Kaplan offers alongside their price and course inclusions:

1. On-Demand

Price:

Duration:

USD 1,799

6 months

USD 2,099

9 months

USD 2,299

12 months

The On-Demand plan comes in three (3) options depending on the program duration. The price ranges are also different, with the 6-month review duration being the lowest and the 12-month review duration being the highest. 

You can get a better price deal if you purchase the 12-month review plan, as you will only pay a minimum of USD 192 per month compared to the 6-month, which is around USD 300 per month. 

In terms of the content, it is a self-paced program, making it an ideal course for those who prefer flexibility in their review schedule. It doesn’t have live sessions or in-person meetings. It is also the most affordable program offered by Kaplan. 

Adding to that, you will get full access to all course materials. You can check out the pre-recorded sessions and instructor-led lessons on Kaplan’s MCAT Channel. 

This course also includes more than 150 hours of video instructions, 16 full-length practice exams, and 2,900 practice questions on the Qbank system.

OnDemand Kaplan MCAT Course Prices

2. Live Online

Price:

Duration:

USD 2,499

6 months

USD 2,799

9 months

USD 2,999

12 months

The Live Online program also has three (3) course durations, similar to the on-demand plan. 

The price for these programs is USD 2,499 for 6 months, USD 2,799 for 9 months, and USD 2,999 for 12 months. The longer the course duration is, the more you can save on cost. 

This plan is perfect for people who enjoy having interpersonal connections with their instructors. It includes 12 scheduled online classes where the student can interact with the tutor and ask questions if necessary. 

All of Kaplan’s instructors are experienced and have proper knowledge of the covered subjects, student guidance, and assistance. 

Usually, the classes are three (3) hours long, as interactive elements are included between you, the instructor, and other students taking the course in real time. 

This plan also gives you access to their course materials, which are great resources for self-paced studying.

Live Online Kaplan Course Prices

3. In-Person

Price:

Duration:

USD 2,899

6 months

USD 3,199

9 months

USD 3,399

12 months

Due to the pandemic, they temporarily canceled the in-person Kaplan courses. However, it is now back and ready to accept students all over the US. Some students prefer this setting, as it mimics the interaction inside a regular classroom. 

If you are willing to travel from your house to the review venue, this program is the most ideal for you.

It involves up to 700 hours of review guidance. You still have access to Kaplan’s course materials, but it follows a stricter schedule, unlike the previous plans. 

In-person Kaplan Course Prices

4. Bootcamp

Price:

Duration:

USD 6,999

5 to 6 weeks

Among all MCAT prep courses offered by Kaplan, Bootcamp is the most expensive. It also has the shortest duration, lasting only five (5) to six (6) weeks of challenging sessions. 

This is great for students with limited time who want to make the most out of it before taking the MCAT exam.

However, this is not just for everyone. It can be pretty intense and follows a strict daily schedule of one-on-one sessions, small group studying, and content review. Like the other plans, you can access all of Kaplan’s course materials.

Bootcamp Kaplan Courses

5. Additional Services

Kaplan MCAT prep courses can also be purchased alongside additional resources, like a one-on-one session with a tutor. 

They will help you develop a study plan that works for you. They don’t just assign a random instructor to every student, but they will ask you to take an evaluation first of your academic background, MCAT goals, and study preferences. 

Kaplan will find a tutor that suits your needs best, so you can have a better experience while studying.

This may vary, ranging from USD 3,699 for ten (10) hours of private tutoring to USD 6,899 for a maximum of 40 hours of one-on-one studying sessions. 

Kaplan Review MCAT Preparation Courses: Pros and Cons

After knowing what the Kaplan MCAT preparation courses have to offer, it’s time to look into some of the pros of cons of the programs:

The Pros of Kaplan MCAT Prep Courses

Kaplan’s MCAT prep course has a lot of things to offer, but its best feature is the Qbank system

With over 2,900 questions available when you purchase one of their plans, you have more chances of familiarizing yourself with the exam.

Kaplan QBank System

It is also adaptable and adds more challenges as you go. It highlights your knowledge gaps, knowing which parts need further improvement and the concepts you understand best. This level of personalization is usually not present in other courses, allowing Kaplan to stand out.

Their 16 full-length practice exams also give you 16 opportunities to simulate the authentic examination experience. 

Aside from that, the course is easy to follow. Their versatile and wide variety of content gives the students the flexibility to maximize the system.

Lastly, Kaplan has a refund policy that secures your purchase. They also have a higher percentile score guarantee based on their previous students’ performances. 

The Cons of Kaplan MCAT Prep Courses

Now that we’ve established how good Kaplan’s MCAT prep course is, let’s also mention some of its drawbacks. One of them is the limited mobile app navigation.

Kaplan has an app where you can also access the MCAT prep course, but it only contains 1,000 flashcards and is not as immersive as the web content. This is understandable, considering studying is much better when using the web version. 

However, it would be better if the app had more features that may benefit the students rather than having only flashcards.

It is also notable that Kaplan only focuses on core concepts and not so much on the in-depth explanations of each subject. 

The course merely acts as a refresher rather than an introductory. Its main purpose is to fill your knowledge gaps from the lessons you already know. 

Finally, it’s worth mentioning that most of Kaplan’s courses are expensive compared to other MCAT preparation courses and programs in the marketplace. This reason might make it unattractive to many students as they may not be able to afford the programs.

Kaplan Review MCAT Preparation Course:  Users Experience and Customer Reviews

Many students say good things about their experiences from taking a Kaplan MCAT prep course, especially if you pair it with their book set and flashcards. Here are some of their user experiences from the previous years.

The Student Doctor Network

The reviews on the Kaplan MCAT prep course on The Student Doctor Network shows the pros and cons of the program. 

Some students say they would not recommend the course because it didn’t help them that much and that it is better to buy the Kaplan book set instead.

On the other hand, others said it helped them with their learning, sticking out to their study habits, and getting a higher score on the MCAT, thanks to the practice tests. 

It is also essential to understand that the course contents are primarily for reviewing and not for in-depth explanations. They also teach strategies and get the student to be familiar with the passages and high-yield topics.

These are some of the reviews gathered from the forum:

Kaplan Prep Course Reviews on the Student Doctor Network Forum
Kaplan Prep Course Reviews on the Student Doctor Network Forum 2
Kaplan Prep Course Reviews on the Student Doctor Network Forum 3

Verdict: Is Kaplan Review MCAT Preparation Course Worth it?

Kaplan’s MCAT prep courses are great options to consider for your MCAT preparation journey. The versatility and relevance of their contents alone are worth the hype, plus the overall experience you will have if you choose to go with them.

The courses, in general, have good student reviews; Kaplan as a company has a proven track record of success and reputation.

However, as mentioned above, the price range for these courses might put them out of reach for many MCAT test-takers and students. 

There are a variety of lower-cost and affordable prep programs out there in these situations. 

As we always tell our students: you shouldn’t pay a lot for content review because that can be free from places like Khan Academy. The only thing that deserves an investment is learning the strategy of HOW to study for an exam like the MCAT. Getting a tutor, for example, is a high yield approach to maximizing your MCAT score.

We also have MCAT strategy specific courses to help you achieve your goal MCAT score - all created from top MCAT scorers, who’ve been through the journey.
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