MCAT Psychology Practice Questions

It is hard to ignore the importance of answering MCAT practice questions to get a high MCAT score. It is one of the most effective ways to ace the MCAT. In addition, answering practice questions will familiarize you with how the questions and answers are structured on the MCAT

At the same time, answering practice questions gauges your MCAT readiness by letting you know the areas and subjects that need improvement. 

This article will provide sample practice questions on one of the most challenging subjects covered in the MCAT psychology section.

What is MCAT Psychology?

The scientific study of thinking and behavior is called psychology. Psychologists are particularly interested in understanding and studying how the mind, the brain, and behavior interact. 

Psychology is one of the subjects covered on the MCAT because future doctors will need you to have a deep understanding of human behavior.

To respond to questions on the MCAT psychology, you must use your knowledge of fundamental concepts and your talent for scientific inquiry and reasoning. The MCAT in psychology tests your understanding of the psychological factors influencing how people behave, perceive, and respond to their environment and change their behavior.

MCAT psychology takes up 65 percent of the Psych/Soc component of the exam. So, out of 59 questions, 39 will be regarding psychology. Psychology plays a vital role in achieving a high MCAT score.

Psychology Topics to Study for the MCAT

Although most of the psychological topics seem fairly straightforward, the passage-based format of the section's questions necessitates a deeper comprehension of these subjects. 

Although it may sound cliche, students must be able to apply their information; simply memorizing is insufficient. 

The following is a list of the numerous topics you must study for the MCAT psychology.

MCAT Psychology Practice Questions

Most MCAT test-takers feel that MCAT psychology is one of the most difficult parts of the MCAT.

In this part of the MCAT, you will be given passages and questions on topics relating to psychology. These will assess your comprehension and application skills. 

Here are some practice questions for you to answer to check and assess your MCAT psychology level.

1. All of the symptoms listed below would be brought on by a demyelinating illness, such as multiple sclerosis, EXCEPT:

A. a spectacular deficit
B. a saltatory conduction increase
C. slower signal transmission along the axon
D. lessening of the central nervous system's white matter

2. Which part of the brain is in charge of coordinating sophisticated motor actions?

A. the frontal lobe
B. the cerebellum
C. the occipital lobe
D. the reticular activating system

3. What part of the middle ear produces vibrations that correspond to the sound waves hitting it?

A. Cochlea
B. Malleus
C. basilar membrane
D. tympanic membrane

4. What type of cell makes up the optic nerve, a bundle of fibers in the human visual pathway?

A. fovea cells
B. photoreceptors
C. bipolar cells
D. ganglion cells

Mcat Psychology Practice Questions 4

5. In the image above, two shapes—a circle and a rectangle—are perceived by humans, not a succession of lines. What explains this phenomenon the best?

A. Weber's Law
B. Parallel processing
C. Gestalt psychology
D. Bottom-up processing

6. A student is doing voluntary work in the stroke center of a hospital. When asked what he thinks the prevalence of stroke is among those over 65, the student responds that it's probably around 40%, despite data analysis suggesting that it's far lower. What causes this mistake?

A. base rate fallacy
B. confirmation bias
C. deductive reasoning
D. representativeness heuristic

7. Which of the following statements about bipolar disorders is true?

I. If any, their genetic inheritance is minimal.
II. They are linked to higher serotonin levels in the brain.
III. A diagnosis of any of them requires at least one depressed episode.

A. I only
B. II only
C. I and III
D. II and III

8. What does the James-Lange Theory of Emotion propose?

A. Physical responses are influenced by emotions.
B. Emotional changes are influenced by physiology.
C. Emotional changes are unaffected by physiological changes.
D. A person's beliefs regarding how their physiology affects their emotions

9. What stage of life is it that identity formation is most intensive, according to Erik Erikson?

A. earliest years
B. adolescence
C. from birth to two years
D. youthful adulthood

10. What is the earliest stage of cognitive development, according to Piaget?

A. sensorimotor
B. preoperational
C. concrete operational
D. formal operational

MCAT Psychology Passage 1

The way that people use health information is shaped by their personal disease experiences. Online resources for information are frequently crucial for patients with rare health disorders, which are defined as illnesses affecting fewer than 200,000 people in the United States.

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), sometimes referred to as "Lou Gehrig's disease," is an illustration of a rare ailment. About 1 in 100,000 persons worldwide are affected by ALS, which is caused by the progressive loss of motor nerves. A familial form of ALS, which is brought on by a hereditary genetic abnormality, affects about 10% of ALS patients. Apart from the familial variety, the etiology of ALS is mainly unclear, however it is thought that genetic and environmental variables play a role in the development of the disease.

It might be challenging to connect with and interact with others who share an uncommon medical condition, such as ALS. For those dealing with a rare health issue, online communication offers a type of social engagement despite enormous distances. Virtual peer networks offer essential social support to those with uncommon disorders.

According to research, women with uncommon conditions are more likely than males to use online support networks. Online support network relationships frequently develop into significant facets of an individual's personality. People with uncommon conditions indicate that connecting with others who share their condition is frequently simpler than attempting to connect with friends or family members who do not.

11. Which claim most effectively undermines social identity? a teenage girl with an uncommon illness…

A. conceals her condition from others to appear more confident around others.
B. tells her pals about her problem, and they believe it is a social impediment.
C. begins to think of herself as lacking since she feels that other people regard her as less capable.
D. learns that people with unusual conditions are viewed as less capable, and she becomes demoralized.

12. A rare condition becomes more common over the course of ten years to the point that it finally affects more than 200,000 people in the US. Which forecast fits the symbolic interactionism sociological paradigm the best, given the passage and this scenario?

A. As the ailment loses its stigma, affected people are less likely to hide it.
B. The government raises funds for research as more people get impacted.
C. The illness gets less emphasis as a health issue as more persons with it are treated.
D. As more people seek therapy for the ailment, it is more probable that insurance will cover it.

13. Which study of the social support networks indicated in the passage best exemplifies a macrosociological approach?

A. A study asks patients why they attended an online support network for their condition.
B. A researcher keeps tabs on the evolution of the number of websites devoted to uncommon diseases.
C. A researcher listens in on participants' conversations as they post posts in an online discussion board.
D. A researcher conducts interviews with patients who take part in a support group for uncommon diseases held at a nearby hospital.

MCAT Psychology Passage 2

Researchers have found that secondhand smoke exposure throughout childhood can have a negative impact on a child's health and development. According to studies, secondhand smoking can alter cognitive functions including decision-making, increase the incidence of cancer in adults, decrease dopamine levels throughout adolescence, and increase the incidence of asthma in adults.

Researchers tracked 938 people who lived in households between ages 0 and 10 with parents that smoked at least one pack each day in order to explore the impact of secondhand smoke throughout childhood on adult health outcomes. As a control group, researchers also gathered 912 children aged 0 to 10 who lived with parents who did not smoke any cigarettes. The study participants were issued a survey to determine whether they had any medical or mental health concerns, such as asthma, hypertension, diabetes, schizophrenia, depression, anger management problems, or cancer, between the ages of 15 and 60.

Researchers discovered a higher prevalence of each of the seven physical and mental health issues in the group that was exposed to secondhand smoke. The prevalence of asthma was found to be the most different between the two groups. When they reached the age of 60, 54 percent of those who had been exposed to secondhand smoke had some type of asthma, compared to 23 percent of those in the control group. Researchers also discovered that people exposed to secondhand smoking were more likely to develop schizophrenia by the age of 60 than people in the control group.

Researchers opted to include socioeconomic elements in a follow-up study to expand the study's focus. Researchers discovered that those with low socioeconomic status (SES), regardless of their exposure to secondhand smoking as children, had worse health outcomes. They did this by using the average household income and the amount of money allocated to local public schools as proxies for SES.

14. A researcher notes that the size of the secondhand smoking group and the control group differs, which would make the study's findings meaningless. This issue is:

A. True because bias will result from the different sample sizes.
B. Invalid because sample size does not affect statistical significance.
C. True because equivalent sample sizes are required to reach statistical significance.
D. Invalid because a difference of 26 people between two huge sample sizes won't be statistically significant.

15. Which of the following best explains why secondhand smokers have a higher prevalence of schizophrenia?

A. Serotonin hypothesis
B. Dopamine hypothesis
C. Epinephrine hypothesis
D. Acetylcholine hypothesis

16. Researchers recently discovered that people with low SES have lower health outcomes than people with high SES. Which of the following best explains this outcome?

A. epidemiology
B. food deserts
C. gender inequality
D. socioeconomic gradient of health

MCAT Psychology Passage 3

Behavioral psychologists frequently employ the technique of operant conditioning to influence behavior. When cats meow and receive catnip, researchers who are interested in operant training opt to explore a variety of reinforcement schedules. Catnip is regarded as a tasty treat for them.

The cats were divided into four groups by the researchers. Catnip is given to Group 1 every three meows. Every three meows on average, catnip is given to group 2. For instance, the catnip may be given out after two or four meows. Every time a meow is heard after thirty seconds have elapsed; Group 3 is given catnip. Finally, every time a meow is heard after an average of thirty seconds, Group 4 is given catnip. Depending on the length of time between meows, the catnip may be given out when a meow is heard after twenty or forty seconds.

The researchers found that the cats start to meow less frequently after a week without catnip. But when catnip is reintroduced, the cats start meowing again at their regular volume.

17. The Group 2 reinforcement schedule is referred to as:

A. fixed ratio
B. fixed interval
C. variable ratio
D. variable interval

18. Which cat reinforcement group has the highest chance of having the loudest meowing?

A. Group 1
B. Group 2
C. Group 3
D. Group 4

19. In a recent investigation, scientists found that cats typically go far farther around a body of water than other animals do. The cats' actions are an illustration of:

A. escape
B. avoidance
C. habituation
D. facilitation

20. Which of the following is an illustration of positive discipline?

A. A college student distributes $5.
B. Five bucks are given to a student.
C. An instructor awards a student a high score on a test.
D. A student is given detention by the teacher for interrupting class.

Answer Key:

Mcat Psychology Practice Questions Answer Key
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