The University Clinical Aptitude Test, abbreviated UCAT, is a computer-based exam used by the Consortium of UK Universities and other international universities to select candidates for their medical and dental programs. The exam is organized by the UCAT Consortium, a charity and limited company managed by the Consortium of UK Universities since its inception in 2006. With the increasing number of highly qualified applicants, the admission tutors of the Consortium of UK Universities struggled to make fair selections; therefore, they developed the UCAT Consortium with the aim of
- Determining the qualities of applicants that will make them effective clinicians, doctors, and dentists
- Boosting the participation of underrepresented social groups in the study of medicine, dentistry, and clinical sciences
- Increasing selection fairness by assisting universities in making distinctions between candidates with similar qualifications
The test is not used alone but is used in combination with other admissions processes like academic qualifications, UCAS applications, etc. to aid selection. UCAT has partnered with Pearson VUE, which conducts the test throughout the UK and worldwide each year.
Overview of UCAT
|University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT)
|Computer-based aptitude test
|Number of subtests
|5 (verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning, decision-making, and situational judgment)
|Number of attempts allowed per cycle
|For the UK universities £70 and for international universities £115
UCAT Eligibility and Fees
UCAT is a compulsory admission requirement for medical or dental degree courses at the consortium of universities in the UK and internationally. For medical, dental, and clinical science degree programs in Australia and New Zealand, students can sit for the University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT ANZ) conducted by the consortium of universities in Australia and New Zealand. UCAT ANZ is identical in content and format to UCAT. The only difference is that
- Medical universities in Australia and New Zealand have earlier admissions deadlines than UK universities
- Australian and New Zealand universities accept only UCAT ANZ and not UCAT, unlike UK universities, which accept both
Applicants must check the entry requirements for each university and course before applying for UCAT. But there are no general exemptions from the test. The test is delivered by Pearson VUE at their test centers located in 130+ countries worldwide. In cases of a pandemic, war, civil unrest, or natural disaster where the applicant is unable to travel to a test center, the test is conducted online.
Candidates are allowed to sit for one test during any test cycle. Multiple tests are not allowed for a single candidate and are considered misconduct by the exam authorities, and results are withdrawn. Students can, however, take the test again in the next cycle. Students are also prohibited from taking practical reruns of the test. UCAT analyzes all applications and might take action if the candidate takes a test as a practice run.
Also, applicants are not allowed to sit for both the UCAT and the UCAT ANZ in the same year. Individuals affiliated with the UCAT coaching business as tutors, content developers, etc. are not eligible to take the exam.
Students can pay the test fees either through a debit or credit card. The test fee for UK universities is £70 and for international universities is £115. Applicants from the UK can apply for the UCAT Bursary Scheme using the UCAT Bursary Voucher. Candidates applying to Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine (Singapore) can utilize International Voucher to pay their fees.
List of Universities That Accept UCAT
|University of Aberdeen
|University of East Anglia
|University of Leicester
|Anglia Ruskin University
|Edge Hill University
|University of Liverpool
|University of Edinburgh
|University of Manchester
|University of Birmingham
|University of Exeter
|University of Newcastle
|University of Bristol
|University of Glasgow
|University of Nottingham
|Brunel University London
|Hull York Medical School
|Queen Mary University of London
|University of Central Lancashire
|Kent and Medway Medical School
|Queen’s University Belfast
|University of Chester
|King’s College London
|University of Sheffield
|University of Dundee
|University of Leeds
|University of Southampton
|University of St Andrews
|University of Sunderland
|University of Warwick
|St George’s, University of London
|University of Surrey
|University of Worcester
|American University of the Caribbean
|University of Kurdistan Hewlêr
|Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine
Australian and New Zealand Universities: UCAT ANZ
|The University of Adelaide
|University of Tasmania
|Central Queensland University
|The University of Western Australia
|Charles Sturt University
|Western Sydney University
|The University of Newcastle/University of New England
|University of Notre Dame Australia
|The University of New South Wales
|The University of Auckland
|University of Southern Queensland
|University of Otago
|The University of Queensland
Students must use the Pearson VUE registration system to register for the UCAT, which is a two-step process involving creating an account and booking a test. Step one is to create a UCAT account online by visiting the Pearson VUE registration system. You will need to provide your legal name as it appears on your photo ID, along with additional details like gender, age, nationality, ethnicity, etc. Once the account is created, you will receive a username via email to set up your password, along with a UCAT candidate ID. The entire process takes one business day.
The next step is to book a test. Before proceeding, eligible students can apply for the bursary and access arrangements (to sit for an extended version of the test), which must be approved by the UCAT Office. Candidates must also go through the fitness test policy before booking the test. To book the test, they can log in to their UCAT account and select a test date. Once the process is complete, they will receive a confirmation email. Students must make sure that they book the test before the deadline, as any bookings made later will not be entertained.
UCAT Syllabus, Test Format, and Score
The UCAT is a multiple-choice test that evaluates a variety of cognitive skills that medical and dentistry schools have deemed crucial. It consists of the following subtests
- Verbal reasoning
- Quantitative reasoning
- Abstract reasoning
- Decision making
- Situational judgment
Each subtest has a 1-minute instruction time and the test must be completed in 2 hours without any pauses. Only correct answers are considered and there is no negative marking for incorrect answers. Each question carries one mark. Marks are converted to a scale score that ranges from 300-900 for 4 subtests and for the fifth subtest, situational judgment the score is expressed in one of four bands with band 1 score being the highest.
|Number of questions
Candidates will be given a copy of the UCAT score report before they leave the test center. They can also use their UCAT account to access the score report. The preliminary scores and deciles are published in mid-September every year. The final scores, deciles, and percentiles will be sent to the chosen university in early November. UCAT score is valid for one year only.
The UK has some of the best-ranked medical and dental colleges in the world. Thus, the selection criteria for these universities are quite tough. They require students to answer the UCAT, a computer-based aptitude test. The test is conducted by the UCAT Consortium in partnership with Pearson VUE at over 130 Pearson test centers spread across the UK and worldwide. UCAT is held once a year and lasts for 2 hours, during which candidates are required to answer questions based on verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, abstract reasoning, decision-making, and situational judgment. The scores of the test are then sent to the respective universities, which help them select the best candidates who will make effective clinicians, doctors, and dentists.
Interested students can get in touch with our admissions counselors to learn more about the UCAT exam and its details. At Gyanberry Gyanberry, we offer seamless admission services for students who are interested in studying abroad. We have helped thousands of students get admission to their dream universities in the UK and worldwide. Book a free video call to experience a smooth admissions process.