Prospective medical students are required to clear the UCAT exam which is an integral part of the admission process of Australian and British universities. New Zealand also includes UCAT in their selection process. So, if you want to study medicine in any one of these countries, start preparing for UCAT well in time to ensure that your UCAT preparation is foolproof.
UCAT exam is further divided into five parts or subtests. Each subset is based on a different skill and requires a specific approach to answer the questions. To master all these skills, you need to take them head-on one at a time. Multiple choice questions are asked in each subset in limited time. So time is of essence here.
Let us understand the complexity of these subsets so that you undertake this overwhelming task without being stressed out. Getting clarity on each subset will help save your time during preparation and help you master the same within no time.
- Verbal Reasoning – Here, you are required to interpret text passages and assimilate all the information to come out with plausible conclusion. Eleven passages are given to you, each passage having four multiple choice questions. The passages are generally long and time-consuming, so use smart techniques such as looking for keywords and making educated guesses where possible. Try not to go back and forth, skipping questions as this may create confusion. It has been observed that although verbal reasoning section seems straightforward, it is generally the least scoring section as most of the applicants are not able to complete it in the stipulated time.
- Abstract Reasoning – This section is considered to be the toughest part of the UCAT exam and so, requires a lot of practice. The unconventional questions may seem daunting at first, but you will be able to answer them correctly if you understand the pattern behind them. You need to be very quick as there are 55 questions to be answered in 13 minutes.
- Decision making – This section contains six types of questions that may confuse you if you don’t have a specific technique for each one of them. Remember to master the Venn diagrams as you will need to apply them in solving decision making questions.
- Quantitative Reasoning – this section tests your mathematical skills and questions are based on ratios, graphs, percentage and so on. Therefore proficiency in use of on-screen calculator will save precious time. Besides, polish your mental maths skills as some questions will require these skills as well.
- Situational Judgement – Being the final section of the UCAT, it assesses your decision-making skills in specific situations professionally. It is important to understand the ethics behind every question and think carefully before answering. Do not leave any question unanswered as there is no negative marking.
The UCAT can be given only once in a year, so if you are serious about applying to a medical school abroad, you cannot afford to be casual in your approach. Take UCAT preparation seriously and don’t forget to keep a track of deadlines related to the exam. Good luck!