UCAT®: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the UCAT exam?

The UCAT (University Clinical Aptitude Test) is designed to assist in the selection of candidates into many Australian and New Zealand health-related programs, such as medicine and dentistry. 

How is the UCAT Structured?

The UCAT is a 2-hour multiple-choice, computer-based exam with 5 timed questions: 

  • Section 1 – Verbal Reasoning

  • Section 2 - Decision Making

  • Section 3 – Quantitative Reasoning

  • Section 4 – Abstract Reasoning

  • Section 5 - Situational Judgement

What programs require the UCAT?

Country University Programme
Australia The University of Adelaide Medicine, Dental Surgery
Australia Curtin University Medicine
Australia Flinders University Clinical Sciences / Medicine
Australia Monash University Medicine
Australia The University of Newcastle/ University of New England Joint Medical Program
Australia The University of New South Wales Medicine, Optometry
Australia The University of Queensland Medicine (provisional entry), Dental (assured entry)
Australia The University of Western Australia Medicine (assured entry), Dental Medicine (assured entry)
Australia University of Tasmania Medicine
Australia University of Western Sydney Medicine
New Zealand University of Auckland Medicine
New Zealand University of Otago Medicine

Do international students need to take the UCAT?

Only a limited number of universities require international students to take the UCAT. Many instead require international students to take the ISAT (International Students Admissions Test). It is best to check on the university's website to make sure you are taking the correct exam if you are an international applicant. You should check with each university you are applying to.


Can I take the UCAT in Year 11?

No, the UCAT is only available to students currently in their final year of secondary school or higher.


When can I take the UCAT exam?

The first season of UCAT test takers in 2019, will have the opportunity to take the UCAT between 1st -31st July.


How do I register to take the UCAT exam?

Registration opens in early March, and they take place online through the UCAT ANZ site, where you will also need to pay a registration fee.


Where do I take the UCAT?

There are a number of test centres to sit the exam across Australia and New Zealand, for students who will be abroad for the month of July, they will need to contact the UCAT ANZ office to organise a suitable place to have the exam. Please check the UCAT ANZ website for more details. All registered students will be provided with the exact address and time of their test appointment on their admissions ticket. 


What will the UCAT test be like?

Students are advised to arrive at the test centre 15 minutes before the start of the exam to allow for registration. You will receive a laminated note board and a pen for rough work. You will then go to your assigned computer, and complete a brief tutorial on the computer interface. You have 2 hours for the test (2 hours 30 minutes if you are taking UKCATSEN) without any assigned breaks. It is advisable to use the restroom before you start your exam. Once you have finished the test you will be handed a print out of your score report. 


How is the UCAT scored?

Candidates will receive a score between 300-900 for all test sections, except for Situational Judgement (scored in a band format between 1 - 4, 1 being the highest). On average (based on UKCAT test taker statistics since 2006), the overall mean score is usually around 630 or 640, and an ambitious 90th percentile score usually starts around a mean score of 720.


Can I retake the UCAT?

If you are not happy with your score following your first sitting of the exam, you can re-sit the exam at the next administration without being penalized. The UCAT score is only valid for one year, so you can repeat it any number of times.  


When should I start preparing for the UCAT?

We recommend that our students spend at least 3-4 weeks preparing for the exam. This will give you enough time to work through the strategies and methods for the different question types and then work your way through the practice material and review the areas where you need further review. Everyone learns at different speeds and has different schedules to prep around, so just adapt to a study schedule that works best for you. Make sure you allow enough time for prep, practice and review.


UCAT is an aptitude test, how can you prepare for it?

The UCAT exam is designed to be tough for high achieving students, in order to help university programs differentiate between the many applications they receive. All standardised tests contain certain defined question types, and we have designed proven strategies for answering each of these question types for you to learn. This approach, coupled with test-like quality practice tests, will familiarize you with using the strategies, and will put you on track for achieving the best score you can on test day.