1. First-semester biochemistry:
The MCAT requires a thorough understanding of biochemical concepts and processes, such as metabolic pathways, energy production and utilization, enzyme action and regulation, cell structure and function. Students should understand how these concepts relate to human health and disease.
2. Introductory biology:
This topic area covers fundamental biological principles such as the cell cycle, evolution, genetics, heredity, and ecology. It also includes basic concepts of anatomy and physiology.
3. General chemistry:
Students will need a solid grasp of the chemical makeup of the body’s molecules and the ways they interact with one another in order to do well on this section of the MCAT. Topics include atomic structure, equilibria, kinetics, phases of matter, chemical equations and reactions, thermodynamics, intermolecular forces, acid-base chemistry, and organic chemistry.
4. Organic chemistry:
Organic chemistry is a branch of chemical science that involves the study of carbon-based molecules. This section of the MCAT tests knowledge in areas such as bonding and structure, stereochemistry, nomenclature, acid-base reactions, synthesis and properties of various classes of organic compounds.
5. Introductory physics:
This topic area requires an understanding of the physical principles underlying motion, energy, heat transfer, electricity and magnetism, optics and wave behavior. Students should have a good grasp of calculus in order to properly prepare for this portion of the exam.
6. Introductory psychology:
This section covers aspects of psychological development throughout life stages, and various psychological theories such as behaviorism, psychodynamic theory, learning theory, cognitive psychology, and social psychology.
7. Introductory sociology:
This section covers basic concepts of sociology including culture, socialization, stratification, deviance and crime, family systems, gender roles and racial/ethnic dynamics. It also explores various theoretical perspectives in the discipline such as functionalism, conflict theory and symbolic interactionism.