The CASPer test is one of the most confusing medical school application components to prepare for, and students often turn to CASPer test Reddit forums in the hopes of figuring out how to prepare for CASPer. More often than not, they end up even more confused than before! The fact is, getting all your information about CASPer test from Reddit and other such online forums is a huge risk. In this blog, we’ll explain why using Reddit to prepare for the CASPer test is a mistake and what free resources you should be using instead. If you are looking for more CASPer advice, feel free to reach out to us via BeMo's CASPer Test Reddit page to speak with our experts!
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CASPer stands for Computer-based Assessment for Sampling Personal Characteristics, and it is a part of Acuity Insight's Altus Suite, a multi-level evaluation used in the application selection process of many professional programs. The CASPer test is an online situational judgement test that evaluates students’ soft skills, especially those that are required for their future profession. This is a completely non-academic test that is supposed to assess your personality and inter-personal skills in a way that can’t be evaluated in the rest of your application.
There are many professional programs and medical schools that don’t require CASPer which is why many students often neglect or sometimes even forget about CASPer test prep. However, remember that for the programs and medical schools that require CASPer, this test is an important part of the admissions process and can definitely play a critical role in your final admissions decision. For instance, many schools use CASPer to evaluate your application before the interview stage and only those students who meet their CASPer score cut-off are invited for interviews. A great CASPer performance is therefore essential if you want your application approved by the admissions committee.
As compared to knowledge-based exams such as the MCAT, CASPer is relatively simple; it consists of 14 scenarios, divided into 2 sections. The first section requires test-takers to video record their response to 2 follow-up questions in 1 minute. The second section asks test-takers to type up their responses to 3 follow-up questions with a 5-minute time limit. The scenarios in both sections may be text-based or video-based prompts. The CASPer test is not nearly as long or as taxing as the MCAT or LSAT. However, because of the subjective nature of the test and the somewhat tricky questions, it actually ends up being a great challenge for many students. After all, it’s not easy to figure out how to develop these “soft skills” overnight and many students are stumped by the test format and how to structure and compose their answers.
For many students, the greatest obstacle in CASPer test prep is all the misinformation out there on the internet. You may turn to Reddit Premed and Premed 101 forums in all good faith, hoping to find some useful tips and advice about CASPer. But there is absolutely no guarantee about the kind of information you’ll find there. Inefficient prep, backed by incorrect advice, is worse than no prep at all! The internet can be a wonderful resource, but you have to be careful about verifying what information you consume. When it comes to CASPer test Reddit forums, you have no way of verifying the accuracy of what you read and using them as a primary source of prep is hence a huge risk.
Here’s a quick overview of why you should avoid premed forums:
Let’s get into the top 5 reasons why you should NOT be relying on CASPer test Reddit forums for your CASPer prep:
There’s no denying you’ll get a lot of information on CASPer test Reddit. The point is, is it actually useful advice? Will it help or hinder you? And crucially, how can you even judge which users are genuinely trying to help? The answer is: you can’t! You’ll find all kinds of information about which schools ask for CASPer, what it involves, and how to prepare for it. None of it is verified, and a LOT of it is simply not true. Sometimes this is simply because of the nature of the admissions cycle – there could be changes to the format or process every year and old posts won’t necessarily reflect that. Someone may have been kind enough to compile a list of schools that require CASPer, but do they bother checking it year after year to ensure accuracy? They have no responsibility to do so, so why should they?
Other posters are simply not well-informed or not bothered enough to research their confident assertions. Remember, this is just how the internet works – anyone can offer a piece of advice couched in assertive, confident language, and set themselves up as experts, without any actual proof of their expertise. They end up perpetuating some dangerous myths that go against students’ best interests.
Myth #1 – You can’t prepare for CASPer
One of the biggest myths surrounding the CASPer test is that it’s impossible to prepare for this test. The official site claims this. You’ll also find many users on Reddit claiming that due to the subjective nature of the test, there’s no point in preparing for it. Some even share their own experiences claiming that they didn’t prepare at all and still aced the test.
This kind of assertion often gets taken up by the “hive mind” of Reddit and is echoed in post after post, without any kind of actual credible evidence to back it up, just anecdotal personal experiences. This is called the survivorship bias. If someone is successful due to their experiences or even pure luck, they believe what happened to them is actually the norm. This is an example of misinformation being not only foolish, but also dangerous. Naïve students might buy into this myth and decide to skip their own prep altogether, ultimately paying the price by struggling through their CASPer test and facing admission rejection.
Also note that some schools still don't take CASPer scores seriously and it's not part of their admissions process and while CASPer is not important for those schools, it is very important for schools that do consider CASPer scores in their admissions process. In fact some schools won't even invite you for interviews if you don't meet a certain CASPer score threshold EVEN if you have perfect stats.
The point is this? Should you really be making life decisions based on Reddit?
Everyone is a bit different. If you have had experiences that helped you with qualities being tested on CASPer you'll be OK. If not, you need to prepare. And the truth is, you can prepare for the CASPer test, whether you chose to go down the self-study route or take on expert help from professional academic consultants. We've shown in this study for example that our students can improve their practice scores by up to 23%. The latter is a good option for students who particularly struggle with understanding the unique aspects of the CASPer test and how to truly showcase your suitability in your answers. Experts can help you to improve your communication skills, get comfortable with the test format, and learn how to use your answers to showcase the qualities admissions committees are looking for.
There are also numerous strategies you can learn to help you tackle the different types of CASPer questions. In this respect, CASPer test prep is not unlike MMI interview prep, and there are quite a few similarities between these two admission components. In fact, our latest study about BeMo’s CASPer and MMI prep proves that both CASPer and MMI are highly coachable and students show significant improvement in performance with the right help. Through a program of learning proven strategies, practicing sample CASPer questions, and participating in realistic CASPer practice sessions, you can definitely improve your score. The secret to gaining any kind of skills in life is preparation and practice, and that applies for your CASPer test too.
You might even find that the administrators of the test themselves claim that it can’t be prepared for. The CASPer test is supposed to – naturally and spontaneously – bring out what kind of person you really are, so evaluators can judge if you have the right personality to be a doctor. The test format itself is more designed to test your ability to show these desirable traits – a very different matter from actually possessing them. This is why there are specific strategies students can actually learn to tackle the different types of CASPer test questions and improve their performance.
Myth #2 – CASPer test prep can be done in a few hours
This is another false piece of information that is often circulated on CASPer test Reddit. It’s simply not applicable for the vast majority of students. For the majority of students, we would recommend at least 6 to 8 weeks of CASPer prep time. That’s the time it takes to bring about meaningful change in your way of thinking and to consolidate ethical knowledge in your mind so that you can easily recall and synthesize it to answer CASPer questions.
Again, remember this is for someone that really needs help. If you don't, then good for you but just because someone on Reddit didn't need help (because their school didn't care, they didn't care, or because they had experiences that helped them), doesn't mean no one on the planet needs help.
Do You Really Want Unproven, Subjective Advice?
Many students, hassled by the medical school admissions process, want to share experiences with others who are in the same boat as them; they want a support system to help them contextualize their own challenges. This is completely understandable, but you should remember that advice you get on the internet is not verified, and it might not apply to you at all. As we’ve described above, there’s plenty of false information on CASPer test Reddit, but there’s also a lot of information that isn’t necessarily false and yet won’t work for you.
In general, the CASPer test is not very popular amongst students, as can be observed on Reddit. Reading such posts could provide a cathartic release for a student bogged down by the stresses of med school admissions, but actually following the advice would be a terrible idea! For instance, many Reddit users seem to dismiss the CASPer test, consider it unimportant in the admissions process, and in general take it very lightly. Now, this might be true from their perspective – maybe they’re only applying to schools that don’t require CASPer, or maybe they already have the skills to ace the test – but it’s an entirely subjective opinion that does not apply for the majority of students.
Similarly, a lot of students share detailed preparation guides for CASPer that worked for them, but may not work for you. Such information isn’t necessarily wrong or malicious. But every student has their own strengths, weaknesses, and study styles. One Reddit user’s detailed CASPer test strategy focuses mostly on studying up sample questions and strategizing answers, without much time for practice sessions. That might work for them but following the same strategy could let down a student with poor communication skills, who needs a lot of practice to internalize the strategies.
CASPer test Reddit is also home to a lot of well-meaning tips and generic advice, that might sound great on paper, but doesn’t match up to the reality of how the test is taken or scored. For instance, you’ll see a lot of people claiming that grammar and spelling are irrelevant in CASPer so students can feel free to make as many mistakes as they like. This assertion stems from the fact that, technically, CASPer evaluators are asked not to consider grammar and spelling so as to not penalize students for their adherence to the time limit. Many people naturally make the leap that grammar and spelling don’t matter at all! The reality is that testers are human, and answers riddled with errors are more difficult to comprehend – and hence more likely to be unconsciously marked lower. So, while you shouldn’t overtly stress about or focus on grammar and spelling during the test, you should do your best to avoid errors. The key is to practice writing answers so you can get used to crafting error-free answers in a short period of time. This is the kind of proven, nuanced CASPer prep strategy that you won’t find on CASPer test Reddit, where users don’t really have an incentive to delve beyond the surface level information into a deeper, broader analysis.
Want to learn some more proven CASPer test strategies? Check out this video:
Lack of Accountability
We’ve already talked about how there’s a lot of myths about the CASPer test that are carelessly perpetuated on CASPer test Reddit forums. One of main reasons this happens is due of the total lack of accountability for posters in such forums. Nobody is checking these posts to make sure the information is accurate, and none of these users take any responsibility for the disastrous consequences of following their advice.
For instance, you’ll see a lot of posters on CASPer test Reddit claiming that when it comes to CASPer, there are no wrong answers. This is also something the official test administrators like to claim. The CASPer is not an academic test, and it’s meant to be a framework to bring out the true personality of the individual. However, if there really are no wrong answers, then why is the test scored at all? A score necessarily indicates that some answers are better than others. There might not be any “wrong” answers but there are definitely inappropriate answers that you need to avoid!
Moreover, when it comes to CASPer answers, the “how” is just as important as the “what”. The structure of your answer, and the reasoning you present, are as crucial as your actual answer to the question being asked. Often, CASPer provides complicated ethical dilemmas with multiple conflicting perspectives, and asks students to explain how they would resolve that situation. The point here is not to take on any one perspective and champion it; you need to show that you can consider multiple view points and arrive at a reasoned, humanitarian solutions that works in the best interests of the group. That’s the kind of thinking that a doctor should exhibit and it’s not easy to cultivate this kind of thinking overnight.
When Reddit users dismiss the importance of the test, claim it doesn’t require any prep, or that any CASPer practice is a waste of time (and money), they are talking from their own perspective which does not apply to the majority of students. You should be wary of any advice couched in malicious terms, for instance, comments dismissing any students who decide to get expert help for their CASPer prep. There’s no heroism in dismissing your CASPer prep and refusing to get help when you need it. In fact, you could be making a serious mistake and the only one to suffer the consequences will be you, not Reddit users.
Taking their advice, you could end up with several medical school rejections, and since CASPer test scores are not released to the applicants, you most likely won’t even know why! And neither will any of the online forums be able to help you identify what you did wrong or how you can do better next time.
So why is it that so many posters on Reddit make such unverified claims about the nature of CASPer? Well, some of it could be genuine misinformation and misunderstanding on the part of the poster. Or, it could be part of a more concentrated agenda to bad-mouth competitors. You can usually identify such posts when they start by denouncing all forms of CASPer prep help, and then wrap up by claiming one company as the “exception” that actually provides “real” help.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter why such misinformation floats around these forums. Reddit users are not going to offer you feedback for your performance, nor are they going to guarantee your medical school admission. It’s best to avoid taking advice from people who don’t know anything about you and have no real investment in your future.
Impersonal Guidance and Short-Term Strategies
One of the key aspects of CASPer test prep is practice. Reddit is full of generic, impersonal advice that is hard for students to actually incorporate in their prep. Relying on online guides and theories you find in CASPer test Reddit forums can only take you so far! Like with any functional skills, you need practice to improve your CASPer test performance and the only way to get that practice is through realistic CASPer mock tests that closely imitate the actual test conditions. Moreover, this kind of intensive, practice-oriented preparation helps with the one of the biggest obstacles to CASPer success – interview day nerves! While CASPer isn’t an “interview” per se, you need to answer pre-recorded questions, using your limited time to deliver succinct, eloquent answers that effectively communicate what medical schools are looking for.
Want some expert advice on how to answer CASPer questions? Here are 5 Official CASPer test questions and our expert responses!
Practicing helps you get the confidence you need to remain calm and collected during the test and deal with each question as it comes. If you don’t have the skill to parse questions quickly and think out your answers on the spot, you’ll find CASPer questions extremely challenging. Practice will help you build these skills. And you won’t get that kind of practice from any online forums. Even practice sessions with friends and family don’t really help much. While your friends and family members may have the best of intentions, they lack the knowledge and expertise to give you accurate feedback. In fact, bad advice from amateurs can sometimes make you even worse than before! On the other hand, if you opt for consulting services from professionals such as those at BeMo, you’ll get expert feedback that can help you pinpoint your weaknesses as well as customized strategies to help you improve.
Another aspect of CASPer prep is that it can actually help you develop and refine important life skills that will stay with you for life. That’s why BeMo’s CASPer prep test strategy focuses on developing these core skills in students as opposed to just giving them haphazard short-term strategies. Our goal is to help students become the best version of themselves and that’s why we have such a great student success rate for our CASPer test programs. Some Reddit users simply see CASPer prep as an annoying, unnecessary, and negligible aspect of med school admissions. This is simply not true. When done right, CASPer prep can actually help you learn a lot about medical ethics, how to resolve conflicts, strategic thinking, and good communications. Why waste an opportunity to improve yourself? Especially when the alternative is to take on generic advice, impersonal strategies, and unproven shortcuts, that don’t even actually work!
Source of Anxiety and Stress
What is the goal of most students seeking out CASPer prep Reddit for help? Most likely, to find some reassurance, support, and guidance for this critical part of the admissions process. The irony is, too much time on Reddit can actually leave you feeling anxious and overwhelmed.
To begin with, there’s just way too much information out there in these forums. Wading through pages and pages of discussions, tips, strategies, all full of opposing takes and unverified claims, can be very overwhelming. Despite the barrage of information, you leave retaining nothing of importance, and with increased anxiety around what needs to be done. There’s no supervision or established format for how information is presented on Reddit and other such forums. It takes tremendous mental effort to go through all the pages to actually find something useful. And even then, you won’t have that mental assurance that the information you’ve found is actually verified or reliable.
Reddit users aren’t usually bothered with things such as structure, logic, comprehension, and veracity. Their posts and comments could be dashed off in a few minutes and are not designed to be logical or well-structured. Reading such posts can be incredibly frustrating and not to mention, a waste of time, if you’re looking for actual useful advice.
Worse, coming across strategies and tips that you either don’t understand or can’t implement can cause tremendous stress and make you doubt yourself. Remember that one of the biggest criticisms that the CASPer test faces is that the test-scorers are unable to keep their bias out of their evaluations. This often means that students from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds might be penalized in their score simply because they don’t exhibit the desired tricks of body language and communication that their more privileged peers do. Additionally, students from elite schools might already have the knowledge and skills required to ace the CASPer test and reading posts from their perspective can make you feel inadequate and hopeless about your own chances of success.
That’s why it’s important to remember that every student is unique and has their own strengths and weaknesses. If there’s any part of your med school application you’re struggling with, including CASPer prep, you can always get help to gain the necessary skills and improve your performance. There’s no shame in that! In fact, working towards improving yourself and recognizing your areas for improvement proves you have determination, humility, and clarity of mind – all very important characteristics in a future doctor!
Need CASPer prep help? Start by learning about the 4 things you must avoid during your CASPer test:
Free Resources You SHOULD Be Using
So, does this mean you should be avoiding the internet altogether as a resource for CASPer prep? Not at all! Reddit and other premed forums aren’t reliable sources of help, for all the reasons mentioned above, but there are other, more dependable resources you can leverage to make your CASPer prep easier. You should be looking for websites that can provide tried and tested strategies to help you tackle this test, and that are written and vetted by experts who know what they’re talking about and have your best interests at heart.
And that’s exactly what you’ll find on our website. We offer an array of useful, accurate, reliable resources to help you with your CASPer prep. BeMo’s resources include books and webinars as well as informative, detailed blogs about CASPer and engaging videos for those who prefer an audio-visual learning medium. From a verified and comprehensive list of schools that use CASPer to a guide to all the different types of CASPer test questions and scenarios, we provide you with all the information you might need to successfully tackle your CASPer test.
All of these resources are free and available for any student who wishes to use them. We also offer one-on-one consultations and personalized CASPer test consultation services. Don’t worry – that doesn’t mean we don’t hold any information back in any of our blogs, videos, books, or webinars – they are comprehensive and cover all aspects of the topic being discussed. If you have an independent style of study and find it easy to incorporate strategies you’ve read about in your own performance, then these CASPer prep resources might be enough for you. However, even if you chose to self-study for your CASPer prep, make sure you complete at least one practice session, so you are familiar with the test format, setting, technical requirements, and so on. The official CASPer website offers CASPer basic test prep tips as well as some sample CASPer test questions that you can use for this purpose.
However, many students find that they need additional expert guidance to understand strategies they’ve read about, and want hands-on advice and customized, targeted strategies to help them improve their CASPer test performance. Most importantly, they want to not only learn the strategies of how to excel at CASPer, but also practice the actual test, and receive expert feedback on their performance so they can understand their areas for improvement. If you’re such a student, you can consider scheduling a one-on-one consultation to avail the advice and guidance of BeMo’s CASPer prep experts.
No matter what your situation, you should definitely not be turning to Reddit and other online premed forums to get information about CASPer test prep! You will have absolutely no way of verifying the accuracy of information you find there, whereas our blogs and videos provide verified information and professionally approved prep strategies for CASPer. And definitely don’t fall for the myth that CASPer does not require any prep. Make sure you use all the reliable CASPer prep resources that we talked about above and put in the required time and effort to build the skills you need for a great CASPer performance!
Want a quick overview of why you should avoid Reddit Premed? Check out our video:
1. Should I use Reddit for CASPer prep?
No, you should not be using Reddit, Premed101, or any other online crowd-sourced forums as a source of information for your CASPer prep. Remember that while it’s tempting to seek out advice and tips from people so confidently and freely proclaiming them on the internet, there’s absolutely no guarantee that the information they provide is verified or accurate in any way. You don’t know the background or intentions of the person behind the keyboard. They are not accountable to you and have no obligation to provide accurate information. And even if they are well-meaning posters genuinely trying to provide their true perspective, at the end of the day, it’s just that – their perspective, not yours. Their strategies may not apply to you and their tips are often too impersonal and generic to help you out at all. Moreover, since the CASPer test is still the subject of much debate and confusion, the scope for misinformation and unsolicited advice increases all the more. Many students hold misguided notions about CASPer and try to pass it off as common knowledge on the internet. This is not only foolish, but also dangerous! Don’t fall into the trap of this “free” knowledge that is not worth the time you will spend reading it. You’ll simply end up wasting your time and effort, and probably disturbing your mental peace as well, and will be still no better off as regards your CASPer prep.
2. Is all the information on CASPer Reddit forums incorrect or unreliable?
Not necessarily! In fact, there are a few genuinely informative posts outlining CASPer prep strategies and providing useful test information. The problem is, with so much misinformation crowding up the CASPer test reddit forums, it might be difficult for you to differentiate between the “good” posts and “bad” posts. Moreover, even well-meaning posters who provide strategies and tips, are doing so based on their own personal experiences and biases. What works for them, might not work for you, and that might end up confusing you even more.
3. Is it even possible to prepare for CASPer?
One of the most common myths surrounding the CASPer test is that it is impossible to prep for, or that it doesn’t require prep at all! There are myriad of vested interests due to which posters might claim this on CASPer test Reddit forums, but please do not fall for this myth. The fact is, you absolutely need to prepare for CASPer or else you’re taking a big risk with your medical school application.
While the CASPer test consists of non-academic, scenario-based questions designed to evaluate your soft skills, it’s still possible to learn effective strategies to tackle each question. We offer personalized, one-on-one consultation services to help you learn these strategies, as well as CASPer practice sessions to help you get comfortable with the format. One of the biggest reasons people tank their CASPer test is due to extreme anxiety and nervousness. Our CASPer experts can coach you through the test format and give you customized feedback to help you improve your performance and build your confidence. So don’t believe the internet naysayers – you absolutely can and should be preparing for your CASPer test!
4. What reliable free resources are available for CASPer prep?
Firstly, you should check the official CASPer website for some basic CASPer prep strategies and tips. For more detailed information, you can check BeMo’s series of informative blogs and videos, as well as the books and webinars we offer on this topic.
If you feel these free resources are not enough to adequately prepare you for your CASPer test, you can schedule a free consultation with our admissions experts to understand your requirements and see if you could benefit from our individualized consultation services. Our CASPer prep program includes one-on-one strategy sessions as well as CASPer practice sessions for your benefit.
5. How can I prepare for CASPer?
To prepare for CASPer, you should first research and understand the test format, types of questions, timing, and what is being evaluated. Make sure you use reliable sources of information such as our blogs, videos, and webinars. Next, you should learn strategies to help you tackle the different types of CASPer questions. This is very important as there are no set questions you can expect on the test and there’s no way to know exactly which questions you get. Moreover, CASPer is a timed test, and you will need to stay calm, and think quickly on the spot, to answer questions. The best way to do that is to have strategies ready to tackle all the different types of questions. Finally, practice is extremely important when it comes to CASPer. You should ideally practice in near-identical final test conditions so you can get comfortable with the online, pre-recorded format. Try to seek expert feedback for your practice sessions so you can identify and correct your mistakes before the actual final test.
6. Do all medical schools ask for CASPer test scores?
No, not all medical schools require the CASPer test. You should check if the CASPer test is required on the admissions website of the schools you’re applying to. Remember that if even one of the schools you’re applying to asks for the CASPer test, you need to complete it, or your application may be rejected because it’s incomplete.
7. Is it worth it to pay consulting services for their help with CASPer prep?
BeMo’s CASPer test prep program is delivered by experts and provides the highest quality consultation services for our students. Moreover, our claims are backed up by the amazing success rates of our students and their glowing testimonials. We stand by the quality of our paid services! What you need to consider is the cost-to-worth ratio of taking on additional help for your CASPer prep. If CASPer questions are confusing you and you have no clear idea of how to do well in this test, or if you’re pretty well-versed in the CASPer prep strategies but want multiple practice sessions and expert feedback to improve your actual performance, then taking on expert help might be the right idea. Remember that at the end of the day, your CASPer performance could be the difference between an acceptance and rejection from your dream med school. The right investment in your future at the right time, could save you from the heartbreak and financial losses of getting med school rejections.
8. Is CASPer important in the medical school admissions process?
A common misconception among students is that CASPer is a negligible or unimportant factor in the medical school admissions process. Just think about it: if CASPer was so unimportant, then why would schools include it at all? Many schools elect to not include CASPer in their admissions process, so it stands to reason that those that do, value the results and consider it a vital part of their admissions process.
Schools use the CASPer test results in many different ways. Some may consider it along with students’ primary applications to determine who receives secondary applications, while others consider it as a pre-interview step and have mandatory CASPer score cut-offs for their interview invitees. CASPer scores could also be considered to determine which students on the waitlist are offered a place.
You should check the admissions websites of the schools you’re applying to if you want to know exactly how they use the CASPer test. But just remember that the CASPer test is an important part of your application and schools will be looking at your score as they make admissions decisions.
To your success,
Your friends at BeMo
BeMo Academic Consulting
Disclaimer: CASPer stands for computer-based assessment for sampling personal characteristics and is claimed to be a trademark of McMaster & Altus. BeMo does not recommend, endorse nor affiliate with CASPer, Altus or McMaster and vice versa. BeMo only provides preparation services and practice tests. To take CASPer, contact Altus directly.
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