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UCAT

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So, what is the UCAT?

The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) is the university admissions test that used in Australia, New Zealand, and abroad to help determine entry into a range of health science courses, including medicine and dentistry.

The UCAT is a two hour computer-based test which:

  • Consists of 5 separately-timed subtests
  • Consists only of multiple choice questions
  • Has no breaks between subtests

Candidates are able to choose when to sit the test from a range of permissible dates. Results will be available instantly upon finishing the UCAT.

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Ok, so what's in the test?

Verbal Reasoning

Verbal reasoning is the ability to comprehend, analyse, synthesise and drawing conclusions textual information. This is applying critical reasoning to written content.

44 Questions

29 seconds per question

Example Question:

Australia found that obesity rates in Australia have more than doubled in the two decades preceding 2003. This rise in obesity has been attributed to poor eating habits in the country closely related to the availability of fast food since the 1970s, sedentary lifestyles, and a decrease in the proportion of the labour workforce.

There are many ways to classify obesity, and a traditionally used one is to assess one’s Body Mass Index (BMI). This is determined by dividing weight in kilograms by height in metres, squared. If someone is overweight their BMI will be 25 or more. If someone is obese their BMI will be 30 or more. Someone who has a BMI of under 18.5 will be underweight. However, more recently, studies have shown that a BMI alone is not a good indicator of obesity, as there are people who carry excessive weight, but their health is not compromised, so they are not considered obese. A better measure would be to combine one’s BMI and their Waist to Hip Ratio (WHR), together with consideration of their lifestyle.

Indigenous Australians have Australia's highest level of obesity. Professor Paul Zimmet at Monash University released figures at the Diabetes in Indigenous People Forum in Melbourne, estimating the rate of diabetes from poor diet at 24% of all Torres Strait Islanders, and remarked that unless extra steps are taken with these groups, Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders will die out within 100 years.

  1. According to the passage, which of the following is true?
    (A) Australia has the third-highest prevalence of overweight adults in the world.
    (B) Out of the English-speaking countries, Australia has the third-highest prevalence of obesity.
    (C) Obesity rates have more than doubled from 1983 to 2003 in Australia.
    (D) All of the above
  2. Which of the following is the author LEAST likely to agree with?
    (A) A sedentary lifestyle can lead to obesity.
    (B) There has been an increase of poor eating habits since 1970 in Australia.
    (C) The labour workforce of Australia is smaller now than it had been in 1970.
    (D) Increased consumption of fast foods is one of the key drivers of the increase in obesity rates.

Decision Making

In the UCAT, decision making refers to an umbrella of related abilities centred on drawing conclusions from diverse and complicated sources of information.

An understanding of logical arguments is key for this section in addition to being able to interpret data from text, charts, tables, graphs, and other diagrams.

29 Questions

64 seconds per question

Example Question:

Not everybody at the music festival enjoyed Electronic Dance Music. All that did enjoy Electronic Dance Music also enjoyed Rhythm and Blues. However, some people who enjoyed Electronic Dance Music did not enjoy Jazz. All the people who enjoyed Rock at the concert also enjoyed Rhythm and Blues.

Place “Yes” if the conclusion does follow. Place “No” if the conclusion does not follow.

  1. Conclusion: At least some concert-goers that enjoyed Jazz also enjoyed Electronic Dance Music.
    (A) Yes
    (B) No
  2. Conclusion: At least some concert-goers that enjoyed Rhythm and Blues also enjoyed Jazz.
    (A) Yes
    (B) No

Quantitative Reasoning

Quantitative reasoning is more than numbers and mental arithmetic. It is focused on sound reasoning which is grounded in numbers: statistics, figures, and costs. All candidates will have access to an onscreen calculator. This section is comprised of nine Scenarios with four questions each.

36 Questions

40 seconds per question

Example Question:

Using Goldman Exchange, how many pounds did she exchange if she ended up with $1000?
(A) 793
(B) 800
(C) 1015
(D) 1261
(E) 1280

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Abstract Reasoning

Abstract reasoning tests the ability to discern, analyse, and synthesise information. Students must be efficient in iterative thinking with the ability to constantly generate hypotheses and modify them dependent on their success.

55 Questions

14 seconds per question

Example Question:

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Situational Judgement

Situational judgement focuses on clinical scenarios that involve university and medical students. These scenarios evaluate a candidate’s integrity and ability to respond to difficult situations. Broadly, this section seeks to evaluate the emotional quotient (EQ) that is more applicable to future careers in health sciences.

69 Questions

25 Seconds

Example Question:

James and Clair are both medical students. They are observing a colonoscopy, performed by a senior gastroenterologist, Dr Michaels. After the patient is put under anaesthesia, Dr Michaels instructs both students to perform a digital-rectal examination on the patient, as he believes that it would be a valuable learning experience.

How important to take into account are the following considerations for James and Clair, when deciding how to respond to the situation.

  1. The students did not get a chance to obtain consent from the patient for the digital rectal exam, as the patient was under anaesthesia.
    (A) Very important
    (B) Important
    (C) Of minor importance
    (D) Not important at all
  2. The patient was consented by Dr Michaels before the procedure, during which he explained to the patient that he might perform a digital-rectal exam to screen for certain diseases.
    (A) Very important
    (B) Important
    (C) Of minor importance
    (D) Not important at all

Check out the best ways to prepare for the UCAT

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