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A twelve-year profile of students' SAT scores, GPAs, and MCAT scores from a small university's premedical program

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Abstract

PURPOSE. To determine whether significant correlations existed among quantitative and qualitative predictors of students' academic success and quantitative outcomes of such success over a 12-year period in a small university's premedical program. METHOD. A database was assembled from information on the 199 graduates who earned BS degrees in biology from Barry University's School of Natural and Health Sciences from 1980 through 1991. The quantitative variables were year of BS degree, total score on the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT), various measures of undergraduate grade-point averages (GPAs), and total score on the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT); and the qualitative variables were minority (54% of the students) or majority status and transfer (about one-third of the students) or nontransfer status. The statistical methods were multiple analysis of variance and stepwise multiple regression. RESULTS. Statistically significant positive correlations were found among SAT total scores, final GPAs, biology GPAs versus nonbiology GPAs, and MCAT total scores. These correlations held for transfer versus nontransfer students and for minority versus majority students. Over the 12-year period there were significant fluctuations in mean MCAT scores. CONCLUSION. The students' SAT scores and GPAs proved to be statistically reliable predictors of MCAT scores, but the minority or majority status and the transfer or nontransfer status of the students were statistically insignificant.

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