MCAT Self Prep Course Review

This course is for self-motivated MCAT home study students who seek a more organized and customizable study plan.
Written by: Adaora Ezike, MPH
Reviewed by: Kristine Thorndyke
mcat self prep logo

Editor's Ranking

3.2/5

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MCAT Self Prep is a great aid in helping you to better organize your MCAT prep study schedule. This is an affordable in-between for those who want a bit more guidance in their MCAT home study but don’t necessarily need a comprehensive course. If this sounds like you, then read this MCAT Self Prep Review and enjoy some exclusive discounts.

About MCAT Self Prep

mcat self prep review

MCAT Self Prep is known for its free MCAT course, which can be accessed by anyone online. Founded by Andrew, a pre-med who documented his plan and process for prepping for the MCAT, this course essentially compiles all of the great MCAT prep resources available online and packages it into a single on-demand course. 

As mentioned, the majority of the content you are going to be working through in the MCAT Self Prep course is not actually created by the company, but rather compiled, piece-by-piece, to create a course that you can follow yourself at a pretty affordable rate.

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Pro Plans Course Pricing Options

Basic Pro 

Price: $19.99

Summary: The first level of the Pro options – this covers all topics listed by the AAMC. Includes 10 content modules (plus Bootcamp with customization) and Create-you-own Study Plan Course. 

Advanced Pro

Price: $199.99

Summary: Includes all Basic Pro features PLUS access to 5,000+ Quizlet Flashcards covering every topic taught by Khan Academy. 

Deluxe Pro 

Price: $1,399

Summary: Includes all Advanced Pro features PLUS 9 Memorization, Strategy, and Medical School Application Courses taught by founder Andrew. Includes 5% off one-on-one tutor add-ons as well as a Score Improvement Guarantee. 

Tutoring Package Options

mcat self prep tutors

The tutors who work for MCAT Self Prep are all 97th percentile (520+) or higher MCAT test takers and their tutoring packages are tiered by the number of positive reviews the tutor has received. The lowest hourly-rate for their tutoring is $149.99 per session (for 40 sessions) or $299.99 per session (for a single session). When purchased in bulk, the per-hour rate comes in about $35 cheaper than Princeton Review’s cheapest tutoring package.

What I like about their tutoring recruitment process is that they recruit among students who used the MCAT Self Prep program to score 97th percentile or higher. This guarantees that the tutors know their way around the MCAT Self Prep curriculum. The sessions aren’t cheap (even if they’re cheaper than competitors), but there are pretty much no “cheap” MCAT tutors (we’ll let you know if we ever find these elusive creatures). 

Elite Tutoring

Price: $149.99-$299.99/Session

Summary: 97th percentile + scorers who have used the MCAT Self Prep Program to take the MCAT. These tutors have received at least 5 positive reviews from students. 

Premium Elite Tutoring

Price: $199-$399.99/Session

Summary: Same criteria as Elite tutors, but with at least 15 positive reviews from students. 

Premium Elite Tutoring

Price: $299-$599.99/Session

Summary: These are sessions with the head tutors, Timothy Nolan and founder Andrew.

Curriculum Review

The curriculum for the free and paid-for courses all include the 10 content modules. Each content module includes 15 lessons, totaling 150 lessons altogether. 

mcat self prep review

After each lesson, you will work through a designated Quizlet flashcard set to review (this is only accessible for the Advanced Pro ($99.99) or the Deluxe Pro ($999) memberships. 

At the end of each module, there is a Final Review, Final Practice, and AAMC Mini Exam.

Keep in mind that the AAMC mini exam requires purchase of the AAMC practice material (~$250) on your own. 

Speaking of buying third-party material, it should be understood upfront that if you intend to follow their study recommendations precisely, then you’ll need to purchase the following items:

  • $100 for Advanced Pro Quizlet
  • $250ish for AAMC content
  • $50+ for content review books (buying new will cost more)

The total for these third-party “recommended” items is going to be close to $400. You don’t need these materials, but if you decide to buy the Advanced Pro course, for example, you’re paying for the Quizlet set, but to access it, you’re going to need to pay for Quizlet access as well. 

Deluxe Pro Curriculum

If you decide to opt for the Deluxe Pro, you’re going to get access to the following Memorization and Strategy Courses:

  • Amino Acids
  • Metabolic Pathways
  • 100 Most Essential Equations
  • High Speed Math
  • 10 Most Commonly Missed Concepts
  • Science Passage Reading
  • Med School Application
  • Ultimate CARS Strategy
mcat self prep amino acids

a Metabolism Overview in the Metabolic Pathways Mastery Course that’s included in the Deluxe Pro curriculum

Some of these Deluxe Pro-exclusive courses have video content while others are standard lessons with images and homework assignments. Altogether, Deluxe Pro provides 100+ lessons related to strategy and high-level topics.

mcat self prep review

The real highlight of the courses, however, is the medical school application course. Here, you’ll access a master spreadsheet where you can find all of the tasks and timelines for getting your application completed and sent to your chosen med schools.

I’ve never seen this broken out in such a clear and concise manner for those trying to demystify the whole process.

MCAT Self Prep Platform

Many smaller test prep companies oftentimes do not have the same resources to invest in fancy platforms on-par with the likes Kaplan and Princeton Review. I think the same holds true here with MCAT Self Prep, which is why we wanted to address this in our MCAT Self Prep review.

The course starts off pretty easy to navigate, with the content modules and lessons that you can work through. Once you’re in each lesson, however, there seem to be a lot of disparate tasks hyperlinked within the text. For me, personally, I don’t enjoy toggling between different pages and tasks for one learning concept.

mcat self prep review

Here’s an example of the “Final Practice” segment of a module. As you can see, you need to complete specific tasks that aren’t integrated in the course platform.

One lesson within a module may contain a Youtube video to watch, followed by a hyperlink to buy AAMC practice questions, and then a link to the answers for the selected questions to work through.

mcat self prep review

There is a likelihood that you will be encouraged to buy some additional course materials (including AAMC official resources and MCAT books)

Similarly, there are no do-it-for-you analytics that you might be able to access in the Princeton Review or Blueprint MCAT courses. Although you can input section scores in the MCAT Self Prep study schedule excel sheet, it doesn’t really seem to have the same ability to pinpoint strengths and weaknesses with AI-style accuracy. 

That said, people have been studying for the MCAT successfully for many years before AI was invented. If you don’t mind a bit of extra work navigating the course contents, then you just might be able to save a few bucks with this course and still score very well on the MCAT. 

This is clearly a personal preference, as some people may not mind working their way through an excel spreadsheet to identify weak areas. If this sounds like you, then I would not let the platform get in your way of a valuable course. 

MCAT Self Prep Reviews from REAL Students

MCAT Self Prep has done a good job cultivating a community of MCAT test takers with their Facebook group. Anyone who has taken at least the free Ecourse can join this group, and this is where people post questions they’re having with the course and even organize virtual study meet-ups. 

In general, students seem very happy with their tutoring experiences, as these personal stories are shared on the MCAT Self Prep website. 

Reddit, known for its unapologetic trash talking of most MCAT prep companies, has been surprisingly positive towards this course. Most have found value from their free Ecourse as well as for their customizable study plan (which is only available for Basic Pro subscriptions). Users on Reddit have shared numerous MCAT Self Prep reviews like here and here.

They also offer many testimonials on their website for the course and for the tutors.

Who Needs MCAT Self Prep

This course is perfect for any student looking for a customizable MCAT study plan that is not afraid of a little DIY work to get there.

You will, however, need to manually track your progress using their study planner tool, buy a few extra third-party materials, and have more motivation than the average MCAT student.

If this sounds like you, then, by all means, we encourage you to try out this course for its sheer value and proven effectiveness. 

MCAT Self Prep – Home of the Free MCAT Prep Course MCAT Self Prep – Home of the Free MCAT Prep Course
3.5
$19.99

This course is for budgeting self-motivated MCAT home study students who prefer learning on-demand.

Get 10% OFF with promo: welcome10

Pros:
  • Extremely affordable options start at $9.99
  • Customized study plan organizes & tracks study goals
  • Tutors are actual 97th-percentile MCAT scorers
  • Founder makes himself available to students
Cons:
  • Official AAMC material not included
  • Dashboard feels clunky
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MCAT Self Prep FAQ

Is MCAT Self Prep legit?

MCAT Self Prep offers highly customizable (and affordable) courses that allow you to create your own MCAT study plan based on your diagnostic MCAT scores. You can also sign up for tutoring one-on-one with their head MCAT tutors.

Are MCAT prep classes worth it?

Having a solid study plan definitely makes investing in an MCAT prep course worth it. However, with the rise of ecourses, you no longer need to pay $3k+ for an in-person course. On-demand courses as well as the MCAT Self Prep Pro ($19.99) is enough.

Is MCAT Self Prep really free?

MCAT Self Prep dubs itself “home of the free MCAT” and yes, indeed, they offer a FREE MCAT prep course (no credit card required). This free online MCAT course is a compilation of online resources/videos put together in an easy-to-use learning platform.

How do you use MCAT quizlet?

MCAT Self Prep’s Quizlet flashcard collection has 5,000 cards that you can access by either purchasing on their website or gaining free access to (if you purchase their Advanced Pro or Deluxe Pro Subscriptions).

Are MCAT Self Prep’s flashcards good?

Their MCAT flashcards cover all the concepts taught by Khan Academy and match Kaplan and Princeton Review’s textbooks. This makes them a great purchase whether or not you want to invest in the MCAT Self Prep Pro courses.

MCAT Self Prep Course Alternatives

Blueprint MCAT

For students who think they may want a bit more face time with instructors, I like to recommend the Blueprint MCAT courses. Even with their on-demand course, you can opt-in for live office hours with your instructor and have a chance to clear up some questions during these sessions. For those preferring live online, they now offer this course option as well.

Blueprint Prep | MCAT Online Course Blueprint Prep | MCAT Online Course
4.5
$1999

A top-tier MCAT prep program that allows for custom study plans and analytics for targeting weaknesses.

Pros:
  • Generous unlimited 2-hour Live-Online Office Hours outside of class
  • New mobile-friendly format
  • Can test out of content you already know
  • Day-by-day study plan tool with simple drag-and-drop feature
  • Superb 6-book series called MCAT Review Book
Cons:
  • Lack of student reviews who have taken this course
  • It’s expensive for an on demand course
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Princeton Review

If you’re hoping for more guidance, I’d recommend the Princeton Review live online course. You’ll get 40 hours live online classroom time with your instructor as well as a host of physical (set of prep books) and online resources (AAMC official material, practice tests, etc.)

If the live online course is out of your budget, they also have an on demand course that is accompanied by a higher score guarantee. Overall, using this course is going to be easier to navigate and require less motivation than the MCAT Self Prep course requires.

The Princeton Review | 515+ Score Guarantee MCAT Test Prep The Princeton Review | 515+ Score Guarantee MCAT Test Prep
4.5
$3499

One of the highest-rated MCAT prep courses that offers on-demand and live-online MCAT prep as well as high score guarantees. Get 15% off with code: TPN15

Pros:
  • Subject-specific diagnostic exams pinpoint strengths & weaknesses
  • Personalized homework is assigned after every lecture
  • Up-to-date MCAT Complete 9-book set is included
  • 16 full-length practice tests simulate the format and time restraints of real MCAT
  • Access to all AAMC material
Cons:
  • No more in-person class options
  • 515+ score guarantee is extra
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Read More MCAT Detailed Reviews

Princeton Review MCAT Review

Blueprint MCAT Review (Formerly Next Step) – Plus Discounts!

Kaplan MCAT Review – Is It Worth the Cost?

Magoosh MCAT – Is This Budget Course Effective?

MCAT Self Prep Review – Bottom Line

If you’re not afraid to roll up your sleeves and work through a variety of content, then this is going to be a great MCAT prep course that saves you tons!

MCAT Self Prep – Home of the Free MCAT Prep Course MCAT Self Prep – Home of the Free MCAT Prep Course
3.5
$19.99

This course is for budgeting self-motivated MCAT home study students who prefer learning on-demand.

Get 10% OFF with promo: welcome10

Pros:
  • Extremely affordable options start at $9.99
  • Customized study plan organizes & tracks study goals
  • Tutors are actual 97th-percentile MCAT scorers
  • Founder makes himself available to students
Cons:
  • Official AAMC material not included
  • Dashboard feels clunky
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

What’s Next

If you’re still reading this MCAT Self Prep Review and you’re just not sold on the course, then have no fear. We have ranked the best MCAT prep courses that offer a range of learning styles including in-person, live-online, on-demand, and some hybrids of all 3. 

If you’ve decided an MCAT prep course may not be your thing, then have a look at these MCAT books that serve as proper home studying tools.

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