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Blueprint vs Kaplan MCAT

Find out which prep course is superior in this detailed Kaplan vs Blueprint MCAT comparison

Becoming a doctor is a long and difficult road that all starts with scoring high on the MCAT. To do well on the exam, you’ll likely need to spend over 200 hours studying. As such, selecting the right prep course is crucial. In this post, we take an in-depth look at two leading MCAT prep providers, Kaplan and Blueprint, so you can make an informed decision on which is better for you.

  • Price
  • Video Instruction
  • Live Class Hours
  • Practice Questions
  • Practice Tests
  • Content Access Period
  • Books
  • Money Back Guarantee
  • Blueprint MCAT Live Online $600 OFF Applied In Cart
    $600 OFF Applied In Cart
    Claim Discount
    • $2,599
    • 160 Modules
    • 40
    • 4,000+
    • 15
    • 6 Months
    • Hardcopy
  • Kaplan MCAT Live Online Course 12% OFF Code: PREP12MCAT
    12% OFF Code: PREP12MCAT
    Claim Discount
    • $2,699
    • 130+ Lessons
    • 42
    • 3,000+
    • 17
    • 6 Months
    • Hardcopy

Outline: Blueprint vs Kaplan MCAT

Given this is a long, detailed comparison, we’ve included jump-to links above for your convenience.

Blueprint MCAT Live Online

Blueprint MCAT Prep

  • Multiple Course Options
  • Score Increase Guarantee
  • Multiple Course Options
  • Score Increase Guarantee
Our Score

9.7

  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
Pros
  • By far the best video lessons in MCAT prep (packed with awesome visual animations)
  • Live class instructors are engaging, funny and insightful
  • Smart course structure with integrated learning modules we found to be highly effective
  • 4,000+ high-quality practice problems with insightful explanations
  • Advanced analytics to help you identify patterns and weaknesses
  • New AI-based tutor for practice test and Qbank review
Cons
  • Kaplan's hardcopy prep books are better
  • Wish the Live Online course included more class time
Blueprint MCAT Live Online
$600 OFF Applied In Cart

Why Blueprint Is Better Than Kaplan For MCAT Prep

In order to compare the MCAT prep courses from Blueprint and Kaplan, we first need to dive into the nitty gritty details of each course. Let’s start with Blueprint.

Our Evaluation Of The Blueprint MCAT Study Materials

The Blueprint MCAT study materials are highlighted by two things: high-quality, in-depth content review and dynamic animated videos.

Blueprint has essentially broken down each MCAT subject into subtopics, and then developed 160 distinct learning modules for each subtopic, integrating video lessons, quizzes, drills, strategies, and passages into each.

The learning modules are thoughtfully designed to help students actually retain the content, not just simply memorize it. You’re required to tackle each subtopic and test out of it before moving on to the next subtopic.

While some MCAT prep courses are stale and boring, with just a mishmash of PowerPoint videos or pre-recorded lectures, Blueprint’s video lessons are the core of the course materials and are purposely designed to be both educational and entertaining.

The videos all have state-of-the-art production value, are fast-paced and extremely engaging, and use cool features and software tools to grab and hold your attention.

Blueprint mcat lecture
A Blueprint MCAT video lecture

Blueprint’s video instructors teach in front of a green screen as it populates with notes, images, graphics, illustrations, and funny cartoon animations to help you more easily visualize and retain complex concepts and systems.

Overall, I found the videos lessons to be awesome. They truly enhance Blueprint’s goal of keeping you engaged and learning all the way up to exam day.

Following each video session is a quiz, including a variety of question types to mimic the actual MCAT, and short problem explanations. While some problem explanations were a little short on detail, what I found particularly helpful were the sample highlighting for passage-based problems, where Blueprint shows you where you should have focused your highlighting and strike-through for ultimate efficiency.

Additionally, students have access to Blueprint’s Qbank with over 4,000 discreet questions and passages, which can be specifically filtered to create custom practice sets. I consistently found Blueprint’s practice work functionality to be very comprehensive and well-designed.

Blueprint mcat question explanation
Sample Blueprint MCAT practice question

Blueprint also provides every student with six prep books as part of its’ prep package. These prep books cover the primary MCAT subjects, including Psychology & Sociology, Physics, Biology, Biochemistry, Chemistry & Organic Chemistry and CARS.

From what I understand, these prep books underwent a complete revision a couple years ago and now closely track the coursework and serve as a complement to the main learning modules (rather than being just a supplemental tool).

In my opinion, the prep books are well-written and provide substantive reviews of the primary MCAT subjects. They’re excellent at breaking down and clearly explaining complex processes and biological systems, and contain relevant and helpful end of chapter practice problems and strategies.

Practice tests are an important piece of any prep course’s study materials, and Blueprint’s full-length practice exams are among the most representative of any I’ve reviewed (after the AAMC itself).

The practice tests are dead ringers for the official exam, and do an excellent job of duplicating actual MCAT questions in terms of length, content and difficulty. Obtaining a great score on the MCAT also requires mastering the mechanics of the test, and Blueprint testing interface is functionally identical to the AAMC’s, so working all the practice tests will help closely track your exam day experience.

Blueprint mcat quiz
Typical Blueprint MCAT quiz

Blueprint’s also uses some of the most advanced practice test scoring analytics I have seen, displaying not only what you got right and wrong, but why. This is crucial. The testing analytics uses advanced “intuitive data visualization” to assist in spotting patterns quickly to improve any problem areas.

Seamlessly bringing all of Blueprint’s study materials and resources together is the digital platform, which I love. In short, user interaction between the platform and course material is accomplished through the navigation bar at the top of the screen, which moves you easily and intuitively through all the coursework and other components.

The functionality of the platform is simple, intuitive, aesthetically pleasing, and is simply one of the best and most advanced I have encountered.

👉 Related: Blueprint vs Princeton Review MCAT Comparison

Highlight: Awesome Video Lessons

Blueprint’s video lessons are what truly differentiate it from other MCAT test prep providers. The video lessons are the highlight of the course materials, and are without a doubt graphically and visually stunning.

They are clearly designed with the dual goals of keeping you totally engaged while also more effectively retaining concepts.

Blueprint mcat video lesson
Engaging video lessons from Blueprint

As the video rolls, dynamic illustrations and animations bring intimidating, dense and complex material to life. I know that’s a flowery description, but it’s true.

Blueprint’s video instructors keep you totally focused and entertained with their insights, humor and wit.

Together, the amazing videos and superb instructors make for a powerful teaching combination that places the Blueprint MCAT core curriculum head and shoulders above the competition in my eyes.

👉 Read our full Blueprint MCAT review for more detail

Kaplan MCAT Live Online Course

Kaplan MCAT Prep

  • Self-Paced Online
  • Live Classes
  • Self-Paced Online
  • Live Classes
Our Score

9.5

  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
Pros
  • Good video-based lessons with ample graphics and strong content
  • 3,000+ realistic practice problems in Qbank with advanced filtering
  • Tons of prep material with 700 hours worth of content
  • Top-notch MCAT prep books for text-based learners
  • Access to unlimited livestream workshops
  • Mobile apps for studying on-the-go
Cons
  • The practice problem explanations are a little brief (would like to see more detail)
  • Slightly more expensive than Blueprint
Kaplan MCAT Live Online Course
12% OFF Code: PREP12MCAT

Why Kaplan Is Better Than Blueprint For MCAT Prep

Now that you have a better understanding of the strengths of the Blueprint courses, let’s turn the tables and discuss the major highlights of the Kaplan MCAT courses.

How The Kaplan MCAT Study Materials Compare

Kaplan hasn’t remained a top dog in the MCAT prep industry by offering an inferior course curriculum. Their coursework and study materials are undeniably among the best I’ve purchased and reviewed.

Kaplan’s MCAT curriculum is extremely comprehensive, covering absolutely everything you need to know in order to fully prepare for the exam.

Kaplan’s online coursework serves as the heart for virtually all its’ course formats, and is broken down into modules. These modules allow you get deep into the weeds through a mix of interactive video-based lessons, quizzes and book assignments.

Kaplan MCAT Study Schedule
Kaplan MCAT study schedule

However, it is with Kaplan’s interactive video lessons where the true value of the coursework lies. The lessons typically feature your instructor onscreen next to a sharp digital whiteboard which populates with a rich diversity of lesson text, notes, pictures, graphs, drawings, formulas, and various graphics.

The video lessons are super professional, high-quality, and make for a nice structured learning experience that assists in the retention of course material (much like Prep101’s).

The quizzes and book assignments closely follow and supplement the interactive video lessons, and serve to reinforce the module’s subject matter. I found the quizzes (in conjunction with Kaplan’s adaptive Qbank which allows you to build customized practice problem sets tailored to a specific module’s subject matter) to be particularly valuable diagnostic tools for exposing my weaknesses.

Kaplan MCAT Video Lecture
Kaplan MCAT video lecture

In addition to the high-quality online content, Kaplan also provides every student with seven hard copy prep books. All are well-written, extremely thorough, and very content heavy.

Although I usually prefer visual learning, I personally found the subject specific prep books to be nicely structured with a natural flow that expertly blended and expanded upon many of the subtleties of the video lessons.

Kaplan’s 17 full-length practice tests are an important component of the study materials too, and do a good job of representing and simulating the actual exam.

At 7.5 hours long each, this study component alone comprises 120 hours of learning by doing – a critical aspect of MCAT test preparation. Kaplan’s testing platform also does a nice job of mimicking the AAMC’s to further replicate a true exam-like experience.

Similar to the rest of Kaplan’s study material, its’ online platform and digital interface is top-notch, has a great layout, and some of the best functionality I have seen. The dashboard is clean, simple, and very professional.

Kaplan MCAT Prep Modules
The Kaplan MCAT prep modules

Although the interface may not have the sleek modern feel of Blueprint’s, it is nonetheless more than adequate and a nice complement to the study materials.

👉 Related: Kaplan vs Princeton Review MCAT Comparison

Highlight: Adaptive MCAT Question Bank

Kaplan’s Adaptive Qbank is a unique and, frankly, invaluable tool that quickly improves your test taking skills to help make the most of your limited study time. The Qbank contains over 3,000 practice problems and quizzes that you can customize by length, topic and subtopic.

An algorithm quickly adjusts and adapts the questions and problems to your learning and skill level, avoiding questions that are either too easy or difficult, and thereby speeding up the learning process. It sounds too good to be true, but I thought it worked really well.

Kaplan MCAT practice problems
Kaplan MCAT practice problem

In-depth explanations are provided, many allowing you to interact by rotating, labeling and zooming in on 3D images, and score reports further detail where problem areas may lie and further study might be required.

I definitely enjoyed working and playing with the Qbank, and felt the adaptive learning process helped to both reinforce retention of the subject matter and more quickly raise my practice test scoring.

👉 Read our full Kaplan MCAT review for more detail

Blueprint MCAT Live Online
$600 OFF Applied In Cart

Verdict: Kaplan or Blueprint For MCAT Prep?

Although minor differences exist between Blueprint and Kaplan, both have their relative strengths (many) and weaknesses (few). Yet, choosing between these two high-quality MCAT prep courses is difficult. They both are going to provide you with all of the elements you need to perform well on the MCAT. Hopefully, the following quick-hit recap makes this tough decision a little easier.

Study Materials: Kaplan’s curriculum is extremely impressive, and is overwhelming in sheer quantity and quality. It is time tested and rock solid. Blueprint’s coursework is equally compelling, and its’ integrated learning modules are forward thinking. Yet, it is Blueprint’s video lessons (with attention grabbing graphics and animation) that set it slightly above the competition. Edge – Blueprint.

Price: Both Blueprint and Kaplan are very competitive with each other on price points. However, when comparing the self-paced/on-demand and live online class options, Blueprint is technically the cheaper option in terms of MSRP. Edge – Blueprint.

Books: Blueprint provides 6 hard copy prep books (all specific MCAT subject related) to all of its’ students, while Kaplan provides 7 prep books. All are extremely thorough, well-written, do an excellent job of breaking down complex concepts, and closely track the coursework. I just personally felt the natural flow and structure of Kaplan’s prep books made them a little more user friendly. Edge – Kaplan.

Practice Tests: Blueprint provides 15 full-length practice tests, while Kaplan provides 17. Although you would think this would give the edge to Kaplan, I found Blueprint’s practice tests to be slightly more representative of the actual AAMC exam, its’ testing interface more functionally identical to AAMC’s, and their test scoring analytics more detailed and helpful. Edge – Blueprint.

User Experience & Interface: While this component is often overlooked when evaluating prep courses, fortunately both Blueprint and Kaplan have excellent online platforms. Simple, clean and super intuitive. Maneuvering is a breeze with either platform, and you’re never more then a few clicks away from your primary materials. Functionality is near equal. Tie.

Classroom Component: In my opinion, there is some differentiation between Blueprint and Kaplan on this metric, and your preference probably depends on your learning style. Blueprint’s instructors are all MCAT masters, are strenuously trained, excellent communicators, and through their free-flowing lecture style keep you constantly engaged with humor and wit. Kaplan’s instructors are also high MCAT scorers, very knowledgeable, vigorously trained, but in contrast, rarely deviate from their script and follow the curriculum to a ‘T’. For me, given the heavy nature of the content, I preferred the lighthearted approach. Edge – Blueprint.

Extra Resources: Both Blueprint and Kaplan do an excellent job of providing students with ancillary resources outside of their core study materials. Tie.

Online Content Access Period: Kaplan offers students for most of its’ course options access to online resources for 6 months after your course start date. Blueprint has more flexibility with its’ courses allowing you to choose access periods of 6, 9 or 12 months. Fortunately, most anecdotal test prep data seems to indicate that 6-months of prep is the typical sweet spot for most MCAT candidates. Tie.

Verdict: All in all, it’s a very close call, but our team ultimately thinks Blueprint is the way to go for MCAT prep.

👉 Next: Blueprint vs Magoosh MCAT Comparison

FAQ

Which MCAT prep course is better - Blueprint or Kaplan?

Both MCAT prep courses are excellent and get top scores, but if we had to pick just one, we’d give the slight edge to Blueprint primarily due to their awesome video lessons.

Which MCAT prep books are better - Blueprint or Kaplan?

When it comes to MCAT prep books, we think Kaplan beats Blueprint. We found the Kaplan MCAT prep books to be extremely effective for studying.

Do Blueprint and Kaplan offers MCAT score guarantees?

Yes, both Blueprint and Kaplan back their MCAT prep courses with score guarantees.