What is UCAT and how to prepare for it

What is UCAT?

UCAT stands for University Clinical Aptitude Test. UCAT is one of three main criteria used by most universities in Australia and New Zealand to select students into high demand health related careers such as medicine and dentistry (the other two criteria being performance in final high school exams and interviews).

The UCAT is a two hour, computer-based test which assesses a range of mental abilities identified by universities as important to practicing in the fields of medicine and dentistry. It consists of five separately timed subtests which each contain a number of questions in a multiple-choice format.

Why UCAT?

Because the demand for medicine, dentistry and some other health science courses is so significant, the year 12 score required to get into such courses became extremely high. Universities therefore needed another method for selecting students into medicine.

UCAT was developed with the goal to assess qualities considered desirable in the health professions, including problem solving, empathy and abstract reasoning skills. Many universities also use an interview to select students into medicine and dentistry. UCAT Medical Test

Whether or not you agree that UCAT effectively assesses qualities required to be a successful medical student and doctor, the reality is that you must sit UCAT to gain entry into many health science courses.

Why did UCAT replace UMAT?

The UCAT consortium states that UCAT replaced UMAT for several reasons, including:

The inclusion of additional constructs relevant to the admissions process.

Immediate results generated due to the computer-based nature of the test.

Greater flexibility in where and when the test takes place, including the availability of several test dates.

Ultimately, the Consortium of Australian School Leaver Entry Universities decided that UCAT was a more suitable test for assessing candidates for entry into medical and dental courses.

When is UCAT?

The UCAT will take place across the month of July in 2020.

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