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How long is the MCAT? Our detailed breakdown of time per question and how to practice exam timing…


Key Takeaway

The total MCAT exam time is 7 hours and 30 minutes (this includes all the optional breaks).

How to practice timing

Try doing 20 science questions in 30 minutes and 40 questions per hour to practice timing. This will help you get used to working under pressure and ensure that you can answer as many questions as possible within the time limit. Of course, it’s also important to make sure that you understand the material well. But with some practice, you’ll be able to strike the perfect balance between speed and accuracy.

How long is each section?

1. Test day certification – 4 minutes

Tutorial (Optional) – 10 minutes

2. Chemical and physical foundations of biological systems (59 Questions) – 95 minutes

[Optional 10-minute break]

3. Critical analysis and reasoning skills (53 Questions) – 90 minutes

[Optional 30-minute break]

4. Biological and biochemical foundations of living systems (59 Questions) – 95 minutes

[Optional 10-minute break]

5. Psychological, social, and biological foundations of behavior – 59 questions.

How long should I spend per question?

You should spend around 10 minutes on each passage of the CARS test and 8 minutes per passage for other MCAT sections. It’s important to note that some passages and questions will be more difficult and may require more time than others.

[Related article: When is the best time to take the MCAT]

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