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Students preparing for the OAT may want to consider the benefits of completing an OAT course offered by Varsity Tutors. If you've ever spent time online searching for things like "OAT tutoring near me", then you probably already know how beneficial it can be to work with an OAT class educator during the test prep process. This assessment is designed as an admissions test for students seeking entrance into optometry education programs and is used to measure the potential success of the applicant. If you're interested in learning better study and test-taking techniques, contact Varsity Tutors today to get started with an OAT class.

Why Take the OAT?

If you're interested in a career in optometry, then you'll need to send in a valid OAT exam score to the optometry schools you apply to. Students who perform well on the test may make themselves a more attractive candidate for admission at the schools they're interested in attending. Putting together a solid application package is especially important for students who are applying to optometry schools. This is because there are only a total of 20 optometry schools in the United States and Puerto Rico combined. That means that there are very few slots available in each school's incoming class.

Earning a higher OAT score could even give an applicant the chance to earn more scholarship funds as well. Optometry school can be very expensive so it's important to take advantage of every scholarship opportunity that you have available to you. These factors are part of the reason why it's so important to to take your OAT classes seriously as you get ready to take your exam. Varsity Tutors can help you find the right OAT classes for your specific test needs when you get in touch with us today. Having a better organized overall test preparation process could enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of your study sessions.

OAT Exam Eligibility Requirements

There aren't many eligibility requirements that you need to consider when signing up to take your OAT test. However, the Association of Schools and College of Optometry (ASCO) recommends that potential test-takers complete at least two years of college education before sitting down to take the exam. They recommend this because performing well on the exam requires a strong understanding of science subjects like biology and chemistry.

ASCO also recommends that test-takers sign up to take the OAT exam well in advance of their optometry school application cycle. This is important because it gives test takers plenty of time to receive their score and still apply early to the schools they're interested in attending. It also gives them the opportunity to retake the test if they end up not being happy with their initial test score.

If you're interested in taking this exam a second time, then you'll first need to submit a new test application and testing fee. You'll also be asked to wait 90 days from your last attempt. This gives test takers a chance to study the material that may have given them challenges during their last test attempt. Additionally, candidates who have three or more test attempts have to apply in writing to take the test again. These individuals are also only allowed to take the OAT exam once in a 12-month period.

Breaking Down the OAT Exam

The OAT was designed to help optometry schools predict an applicant's academic ability and as well as the skills needed for success in the field, which include scientific knowledge and analytical ability. To that end, the exam has sections on Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Reading Comprehension, and Quantitative Reasoning. Below, you'll find a more detailed look at what you'll encounter in each of these test sections. Keep in mind that you can always get help learning more about these sections through OAT courses with Varsity Tutors.

The OAT consists of a battery of four tests

  1. Survey of the Natural Sciences (100 items)
  2. Physics (50 items)
  3. Reading Comprehension (40 items)
  4. Quantitative Reasoning (40 items)

The OAT's section on Chemistry and Biology is also often called the Survey of Natural Sciences. This test section asks you to demonstrate the chemistry and biology knowledge you've developed through your college coursework and test preparation process. Performing well on this part of the test will require you to work quickly, as it features a total of 100 multiple-choice questions, which test takers must answer within a 90 minute time limit.

There are 100 items in the Survey of Natural Sciences test as outlined in the following non-comprehensive bullet list:

  • Biology (40 items)
    • Diversity of Life
    • Genetics
    • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • General Chemistry (30 items)
    • Gases
    • Liquids and Solids
    • Solutions
    • Acids and Bases
  • Organic Chemistry (40 items)
    • Mechanisms
    • Nomenclature
    • Aromatics and Bonding

The next section of the exam, Reading Comprehension, gives test takers a total of 60 minutes to read a series of complex passages. You'll also need to answer 50 multiple-choice questions within this time limit. Here, you'll need to demonstrate an ability to understand dense written material, analyze it, and use the information you learn to answer questions.

Next, the Physics test section gives test takers 50 minutes to answer 40 multiple-choice questions. You'll need to have a strong understanding of physics topics like vectors, optics, and thermodynamics in order to perform well on this test section. Finally, the last test section you'll encounter is Quantitative Reasoning. This section will assess your mathematical abilities through a series of problems that you'll need to solve. You'll be asked to demonstrate your knowledge of math topics ranging from advanced trigonometry to simple arithmetic.

Given all of this information, there's clearly a lot that you'll need to do in order to prepare yourself to take the OAT exam. Often, students seek a professional OAT class instructor to help them with their test preparation process. If you think working with an OAT class educator would be the right fit for your studying needs, then you can easily get started with one by contacting Varsity Tutors today.

Finding Your Own Ideal OAT Class

You have a few different options to consider when deciding which OAT courses would be the best fit for your needs. When selecting an OAT prep course, you should consider whether that OAT prep course matches your learning style and test goals. If the answer is no, then you may want to consider some of the other OAT prep courses offered by Varsity Tutors. Continue reading for a more thorough look at the OAT prep courses you can choose from.

One option you can sign up for is a private OAT prep class with your very own OAT course tutor. When you take an OAT prep course, your OAT course can evaluate your current skill level and design a tutoring program that suits your specific needs. After identifying a baseline, the tutor can set specific benchmarks for you to meet throughout the OAT classes. You can take an OAT course with confidence, knowing that your time won't be wasted.

The tutor focuses on honing your skill-level in weak areas and helping you to learn the best way to study and retain material. Four tests are included in the OAT, as mentioned above. These tests can be discussed during OAT prep classes so you can get a better idea of what can be expected on exam day. You'll be hard-pressed to match the personalization in the learning process that you get from a private OAT prep class.

Another option you may be interested in is taking a series of small group OAT prep classes. This style of OAT prep classes may be right for you if you've previously enjoyed learning in the classroom environment. Your OAT course instructor will teach you and a small group of peers everything you need to know before sitting down to take your upcoming test. You'll even have the option of working with your OAT course educator in a one-on-one setting if you need extra help with a particularly challenging test topic. If this option appeals to you, then you don't need to search online for "OAT classes near me". Instead, just get in touch with an educational director at Varsity Tutors to learn more.

The OAT consists of multiple-choice questions. During OAT prep courses, you can go through practice questions so that you get an idea of what you have already mastered and areas that you need more help in. You may have more experience in Physics, but not in Natural Sciences. The tutor knows that you have unique study needs and learn in your own specific way. Whether you are a better visual or auditory learner, the tutor can tailor the OAT class to your unique learning style and abilities.

Your schedule may be busy with current coursework and other responsibilities. When you work with a tutor for OAT courses, you can be connected with one who is flexible. This instructor can work with your busy life to schedule one-on-one sessions in a quiet learning environment. You'll have every opportunity to ask the tutor any relevant questions to the course of study and will receive timely responses. The tutor-student relationship is an important dynamic that needs to cultivate open communication.

One of the benefits of Varsity Tutors is that you can take OAT classes in an online environment, on our Live Learning Platform. You can receive tutoring in an online OAT prep class by a qualified tutor who can help you increase your confidence level for the exam day. You will need to have a solid internet connection to participate in these online learning sessions so your tutoring will be consistent and uninterrupted. That will create an optimized learning process to help hone your study skills and better prepare you for the OAT.

Finally, your test preparation educator can also help you develop your general test-taking skills. For example, have you ever struggled with test anxiety? It's an unfortunately common occurrence for students who are taking important exams like the OAT. However, your instructor can show you techniques that you can utilize to deal with any test anxiety you experience. This can make it easier to stay focused while taking your exam. Your instructor can also help you with things like managing your time more effectively when taking tests, a skill that's important to have on a test like the OAT with restrictive time limits. These are skills that you can use on the OAT exam as well as on any future tests you may take.

OAT Test Statistics

There are only 20 optometry schools in the United States and Puerto Rico so the admissions process at these schools can be very competitive. The score that you earn will lie somewhere on a scale ranging from 200 to 400. The median test score is usually around 300. If you want to earn a 90th percentile score, then you'll likely need to score closer to around 350.

Given the competitiveness of the optometry school admissions process, you may need somewhere around a 90th percentile OAT score to make yourself an attractive candidate for admission. Of course, this is something easier said than done. To perform better than 90% of test takers, you'll need to work harder and smarter during your test preparation process. Instead of looking up "OAT help near me" online, why not let Varsity Tutors provide you with the guidance you need to get more out of your study sessions?

Getting Started

Performing well on the OAT could be a difference-maker in terms of the optometry schools that you're ultimately admitted into. However, the exam can be very challenging to take without any guidance. Do you think you would benefit from working with an expert educator during your test preparation process? If so, you don't have to look up "OAT instructors near me". Instead, just get in touch with an educational director at Varsity Tutors. They can help you pick the best test preparation plan for your specific needs. If you're trying to prepare for the OAT and want to work with a tutor to better prepare for exam day, contact Varsity Tutors. You can hone your study and test-taking skills by completing an OAT prep class.

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