AAMC PREview Professional Readiness Exam (Formerly SJT)

As you know, medical school admissions are complex, and now, there is an added element that schools are adopting as part of the process—a situational judgment test (SJT) now known as the AAMC (Association of American Medical Colleges) PREview. 

What is the AAMC PREview Professional Readiness Exam?

The AAMC PREview Professional Readiness Exam is a situational judgment test that has been designed to assist medical school admissions officers in assessing “your readiness to learn about issues related to professionalism in medical school.” In other words, it will give admissions committees insight into how well prepared you are to take on the challenges that medical school poses beyond the academics which are measured by your GPA and MCAT score. In addition, since the exam is standardized, it will remove subjective biases that may occur and allow each applicant to be equally evaluated on these professional competencies.

AAMC’s Situational Judgment Test (SJT) is now the Professional Readiness Exam

While the exam was being developed, it went by AAMC’s Situational Judgment Test, but it was announced in early 2022 that its name will be AAMC PREview moving forward. While the name has changed, what the exam is evaluating has not.

What is measured on the AAMC PREview exam?

The AAMC PREview exam will measure examinee’s across eight core pre-professional competencies for entering medical students:

  • Service Orientation
  • Social Skills
  • Cultural Competence
  • Teamwork
  • Ethical Responsibility to Self and Others
  • Resilience and Adaptability
  • Reliability and Dependability
  • Capacity for Improvement

How is the AAMC PREview exam structured and scored?

Examinees will be presented with a series of hypothetical scenarios that students may encounter in medical school. You will have to evaluate the effectiveness of a series of behavioral responses to each scenario. In other words, you will be required to judge how well you think each response to a scenario would play out.

Your score will be based on the following:

  • How well your effectiveness ratings align with the ratings provided by the medical educators the AAMC collaborated with.
  • You will be given full credit when your response matches the medical educators’ rating.
  • You will be given partial credit when your rating is close to the medical educators’ rating.

The overall score will be on a scale of 1-9. The higher your score, the more closely you align with medical educators’ ratings.

AAMC PREview Exam Testing Experience

To take the exam, you will need to download the ProctorU browser extension using your AAMC login credentials. During the exam, a real-life proctor will help check you in and monitor your exam. To avoid distraction, you will not be able to see the proctor while you are taking the exam. However, you may contact the proctor at any time if you need assistance with the system. Here is the exam experience step-by-step:

  1. Install the ProctorU extension
  2. Test your equipment
  3. Review the exam tutorial (optional)
  4. Log into your appointment and select “Write Exam” to begin your exam.
  5. With the proctor, review system requirements, identification authentication, exam rules, and prepare your testing environment.
  6. The proctor grants you access to the exam.
  7. Agree to the AAMC Examinee Agreement and Yardstick Assessment Strategies terms and conditions.
  8. Complete the exam in the 75 minutes given.
  9. Submit your exam and select the schools you wish to receive your score report.
  10. Complete a post-exam survey and check out.

The Difference Between the AAMC PREview and CASPer

CASPer is also a situational judgment test that has been administered for a number of years, but was not developed by the AAMC. Some schools will continue to use CASPer, so check the admissions requirements of the schools you are applying to and determine which SJT you need to take.

Why are medical schools using the AAMC PREview Exam?

In the admissions process, medical schools want to get to know as much about the applicant as they can. MCAT scores and GPAs will remain a very important part of the admissions process, as they inform admissions committees about the academic history and potential of an applicant. The AAMC Preview adds an additional layer of information—it lets admissions officers more easily identify applicants who demonstrate the core pre-professional competencies that are such an important part of medical education, but are not demonstrated in grades and test scores. 

What medical schools currently use the AAMC PREview Exam?

In 2022, for the 2023 AMCAS (American Medical College Application Service®), a select group of medical schools used the AAMC PREview Exam. The exam will be available for use by all medical schools in 2023 for 2024 AMCAS.

Carle Illinois College of MedicineResearch Only
Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & ScienceRecommended (Research Only)
Cooper Medical School of Rowan UniversityRecommended
Des Moines University Medicine & Health SciencesRecommended
Geisinger Commonwealth School of MedicineRecommended
George Washington University School of MedicineRecommended
Michigan State University College of Human MedicineRequired (either PREview exam or CASPer)
Morehouse School of MedicineRecommended
Oakland University William Beaumont School of MedicineRecommended
Saint Louis University School of MedicineRequired
Southern Illinois University School of MedicineRecommended
Universidad Central del Caribe School of MedicineRequired
University of Alabama at Birmingham Marnix E. Heersink School of MedicineRecommended
University of California at Davis School of MedicineRequired
University of California, Los Angeles David Geffen School of MedicineRequired
University of Hawaii, John A. Burns School of MedicineRequired
University of Oklahoma College of MedicineRecommended (Research Only)
University of Virginia School of MedicineRecommended

Who is eligible to take the AAMC PREview Exam?

Any applicant to a participating school may take the AAMC PREview Exam.

How to Register for the AAMC PREview Exam

Registration information for the AAMC PREview can be found here.

How to Prepare for the AAMC PREview Exam

The AAMC has provided a resource bank of preparation materials for the AAMC PREview Exam, and we encourage you to take advantage of these materials. Practice for any exam is always going to benefit you, especially for an SJT, which most likely will be new territory for you!

Review the AAMC Situational Judgment (SJT) Test Guides and Competencies

The AAMC PREview Examinee Preparation Guide provides detailed information about the format of the exam, scoring, and the competencies.

AAMC PREview Sample Scenarios and Responses

The AAMC has outlined and provided samples of how the PREview will test you. For each scenario, you will be asked to assume the role of a medical student since each will be a scenario you may face as a medical student. You will then be asked to rate a series of responses on a four-point scale from Very Ineffective to Very Effective.

Very Ineffective (1)Ineffective (2)Effective (3)Very Effective (4)
The response will cause additional problems or make the situation worse.The response will not improve the situation or may cause a problem.The response could help but will not significantly improve the situation.The response will significantly improve the situation.

Sample Scenario:

You have been selected to participate in a prestigious research program for a three-week period. However, you have been assigned an eight-week rotation that is over an hour away, and as a result, you will have to miss a weekly check-in for your rotation. This check-in is a required component of your rotation.

Please rate the effectiveness of each response to this situation.

1. Skip the weekly check-in for three weeks to participate in the research opportunity.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

2. Ask your attending to find a resolution so you can participate in both the rotation and the research opportunity.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

3. Do not participate in the research opportunity so you can attend the weekly required rotation check-in.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

4. Discuss with your attending if there is a resolution that can be found so you can participate in both programs.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

5. Tell your attending in advance that you will miss three check-ins.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

6. Attend the check-ins and look into research opportunities that are closer or at another time.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is AAMC-PREview-Professional-Readiness-Exam-Article-1.png

In the scenario above, the student has a dilemma—sure, they may want to do everything, but clearly, that is not possible given the circumstances. Let’s take a look at how these would likely be scored. Remember, you would get full credit if you match the medical educators’ rating and partial credit if you are close.

1. Skipping the weekly check-in would mean not completing the rotation, so that’s not good.

Very Ineffective – full credit
Ineffective – partial credit
Effective – no credit
Very Effective – no credit

2. It would be rather unprofessional to expect your attending to make the decision for you, as a professional, you need to own your decisions.

Very Ineffective – full credit
Ineffective – partial credit
Effective – no credit
Very Effective – no credit

3. While giving up a prestigious research opportunity may be difficult, there will be chances that will come in the future, and it is not a requirement like the weekly check-ins.

Very Ineffective – no credit
Ineffective – no credit
Effective – full credit
Very Effective – partial credit

4. Having a discussion with your attending is an effective way to show your commitment to the rotation but also explore if there is an alternate solution that works for both parties

Very Ineffective – no credit
Ineffective – no credit
Effective – partial credit
Very Effective – full credit

5. Telling your attending you are not going to attend is one way to go about this, but you are uncertain of how they will respond. 

Very Ineffective – full credit
Ineffective – partial credit
Effective – no credit
Very Effective – no credit

6. Going to the check-ins would mean fulfilling your commitment to the rotation and your medical education.

Very Ineffective – no credit
Ineffective – no credit
Effective – partial credit
Very Effective – full credit

Practice with sample AAMC Situational Judgment (SJT) scenarios and responses

You can practice with sample AAMC PREview scenarios here. Once you have familiarized yourself with the sample scenarios, you can take a full practice exam and look through the scoring rationale!

Take the AAMC PREview Exam Tutorial

Being prepared for test day means knowing what to expect. The AAMC has laid out the full test day experience in this tutorial that we encourage you to check out!

How will medical schools use the PREview

As mentioned above, the PREview will give deeper insight into the professional readiness of an applicant earlier in the application process. The practice of medicine is increasingly collaborative and physicians need to understand social determinants of health and have cultural competence in treating patients. The AAMC identifies 15 core competencies they are looking for in applicants. Historically, admissions committees would have looked for the 9 pre-professional competencies in the primary and secondary applications, personal statement, and interviews. The PREview exam lets them evaluate candidates earlier on eight of the competencies—oral communication is still evaluated in the interview. The PREview is designed to assess pre-professional and interpersonal competencies alongside academic metrics and is expected to better support the holistic admissions process.

Take a free practice test

How would you do if you took the MCAT today?

Take a free practice test

How would you do if you took the MCAT today?