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This impending Wednesday is without a doubt one of the most terrifying – yet unusual days of the year. Throughout the past seven years, I have uttered the phrase “The UMAT is a game” innumerous times, and now, on the brink of becoming an actual doctor (finally!) and exiting the world of UMAT, I thought I’d pass on my suggestions for this game.    Suggestion 1: Your mood is your top priority. The UMAT is designed in such a way that your mood greatly impacts your performance. Why? Because it’s an exam of emotions, of empathy and of understanding. Feeling stressed/anxious/overwhelmed...
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It’s July which means the UMAT is less than a month away. This is a crucial time for all students and what you do in these final days will greatly impact your performance on the actual exam. Many of you would have started completing or already completed many practice exams on LMS and possibly ones provided by ACER too. If not, it is especially important that you do these as they can significantly boost your confidence, and hence your score. Additionally, these practice questions will also help you finally polish your skills as well as improve your time-management. Identify any particular...
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Is your son or daughter interested in becoming a doctor? Do you want to give them the best chance to succeed? Dr Edward Boyapati discusses how you, as a parent, can assist your child to achieve their goal.  Dr Edward Boyapati is the Principal Lecturer for MedEntry, Australia’s most trusted UMAT Educational Institution. He is also the father of two incredibly successful children, Ray and Ann. Both obtained 100th percentile in UMAT, were offered places to study medicine at all universities across Australia, won full scholarships to study medicine, were successful in entering highly competitive specialties (Gastroenterology and Dermatology) and achieved...
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Year 12 is a stressful time. Add in UMAT and the pressures of getting into medicine, and stress levels can rapidly sky rocket. As a parent it is easy to succumb to feelings of powerless as you watch your son or daughter struggle to prepare for such an important and difficult exam. However, there are many things you can do to boost their performance and have a positive impact on their wellbeing.  1. Provide a sound working environment  UMAT is a three-hour test requiring extreme concentration. The best way to prepare is to complete full length trial exams under test conditions....
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Your venue for the UMAT can become a very scary place very quickly. While being academically prepared is extremely important for UMAT, it is also useful to know what to expect when you get to the venue. Firstly, you’ll see a range of different students at the UMAT venue – while some are great to have a conversation with before the exam commences; others, not so much: 1. The Downplayer – This is a student who will consistently talk about how they have not done any practice for the UMAT, keep reinforcing that they’re going to fail and claim to have...
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Life isn’t the only thing full of surprises. The upcoming UMAT exam could hold a range of new, never-before-seen questions and it is important to know how to deal with these in an exam situation.  The first step is to identify these types of questions in reading time. When looking through your UMAT exam booklet, mentally note these questions and have them simmering away in the back of your mind. By doing so, you’ll be better prepared for these “surprises” and less likely to panic when you go on to attempt these questions. When writing time begins, start doing the questions...
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For twenty years since UMAT has been in existence, the UMAT was divided into three, separately timed sections: • Section 1: Logical Reasoning and Problem Solving • Section 2: Understanding People • Section 3: Non-Verbal Reasoning  In 2013, there was a significant change to the structure of UMAT. Now UMAT is presented as a single three-hour exam with 134 questions. It still consists of the three broad types of questions outlined above (now known as ‘constructs’), but instead of them being divided into sections, the questions from each construct are jumbled up. For example, the first unit you encounter may be...
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Many students who have scored 100th percentile in the UMAT have said that preparing for UMAT is like preparing for a marathon. There are many similarities: they both require significant motivation, consistent practice over a period of time and a clear head under pressure. Not to mention that for many people both a marathon and the UMAT are the hardest challenges they have faced so far in their lifetime. So what can we learn from marathon runners that will help us prepare for the UMAT? Step 1: Develop muscle In the UMAT you will have a limited amount of time to...
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Sometimes it can feel like the UMAT has got nothing to do with being a doctor. It can feel like just another one of the oddly-shaped hoops one must jump through in the medical entry process. However, this mindset that the UMAT is just a barrier to doctor-hood can be demotivating and counterproductive. In this post, I’ll give some real life examples of how each section of the UMAT relates to skills I’ve had to develop in medical school, and how UMAT preparation is related to, or perhaps even beneficial to, the study of medicine. Section 1: Logical Reasoning and Problem...
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Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day. – Mark Twain Brian Tracy’s 5 minute YouTube video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKOMTZ7PPLg discusses a time management strategy that has changed many people’s lives (including mine!). It discusses time management in the context of the workplace, but the strategy is applicable to UMAT and high school/university study too. This blog summarises the key points.  As Mark Twain said, if the first thing you do in the morning is to eat a live frog, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that’s probably the worst thing...
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Why doing well in English is essential for gaining entry into medicine and succeeding in your medical course and career. Some students love it. Others hate it: Reading books, writing essays and analysing articles where the content matter is highly subjective and there is no definitive ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer. English is the polar opposite of many subjects favoured by maths and science minded students because essay questions require a highly critical and subjective thinking style in order to write high scoring responses. However, like it or not, all students looking to study undergraduate medicine or other popular health science courses, need to do well...
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As many of you would have noticed, UMAT preparation takes time. And I mean a LOT of time! It’s often overwhelming trying to get those practice exams you’d promised yourself to get done as well as study for that first chemistry quiz if you’re in Year 12 or dealing with a cranky boss at work.    In many cases, students often lose time, confidence and their interest in UMAT since it simply adds to their already overwhelming workload. So before you start stressing about the 2016 UMAT exam, let’s just take a quick look at how you can manage studying for...
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For some people sitting UMAT, those nerves may not hit until the day of or the night before UMAT. We get butterflies in the stomach and perhaps even the need to vomit. These feelings are natural and can even help us to do better. But, for those of us who have difficulty handling the nerves, there are a few simple things to do to minimise them. Make sure you have everything that you need in advance A few days before the UMAT, read through the admission ticket and instructions and make sure that you have everything you need. Print out your...
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Most people find sitting the UMAT a nerve racking, stressful experience, but that does not mean you should allow those nerves to get the best of you.  There are some simple ways to help you get through this period and come out feeling great about your chances.  Take some of the pressure off of yourself.  If you’re anything like me, you expect a lot from yourself and that can result in a large amount of unnecessary pressure. That pressure can prove to be your undoing, but there are simple ways in which to take some of that pressure off. Remember that...
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Many students sit the UMAT for the first time thinking that they must to do well in UMAT because it is the only way for them to be accepted into their dream uni degree, medicine. This is untrue! This thinking places an enormous amount of unnecessary pressure on students. The reality is there are numerous ways to be accepted into medicine. Sitting UMAT, getting a good ATAR and smashing an interview may be the easiest and quickest way to get into medicine, but it is not the only one. Other options to be accepted into medicine can include:  • Taking a...
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With the exception of the Non-Verbal Reasoning component (section three), UMAT is primarily comprised of written – rather than pictorial – questions. Thus, it stands to reason that your UMAT preparation should include improving your reading skills. With that in mind, here are some of the many strategies you can use to develop your reading efficiency for UMAT.  Firstly, you must ensure that you read every single component of the stimulus, particularly for section two (Understanding People). A past UMAT stimulus, for example, described a middle-aged man. This information was included in the introductory stem of the stimulus, but nowhere else....
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I was fortunate enough to have jumped through the hurdles that lie on the way to medical school, and there are quite a few benefits on the other side. One of these is being able to talk to doctors, health professionals or community members that have had previous experience as interviewers. The following is an excerpt from a conversation I had with a past interviewer to understand what they are looking for in medical interviews.    1. As a community member are you concerned about the medical/dental focus of some of the scenarios? “The scenarios in the MMI (multiple mini interview)...
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In preparing for something as mammoth as a medical school interview, there are a lot of things to consider. When preparing you have to understand what type of language the interviewers might use, what to include in your answers and how you can respond both verbally and through your body language.   General advice for medical interviews • Walk into the room with a big smile. • Be confident, honest, friendly, understanding, respectful and empathic. • It doesn’t matter which side of the argument you decide to adopt, take your stance and defend your arguments until the end. Give reasons to...
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Preparation is key for any exam, and UMAT preparation is no different. But we’ve all had that horrible experience when the nerves hit, and all that preparation is thrown out the window because your brain is more interested in stressing itself out than answering the exam questions. But you can, of course, prepare for that too. 1.  Practice Since I’m supposed to be telling you what to do when it feels like preparation isn’t working, you might not expect a synonym for “preparation” to be the top tip. But it is, so hear me out. Nothing is as reassuring as the safety...
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Many of the personal qualities that the UMAT aims to assess in prospective medical students are the same qualities that are required to be a good doctor. Whilst the UMAT can only assess what you put on a paper in multiple choice format; the medical interview that will follow, can look for these qualities in person.    Your choice of words, body language, attitude and way of thinking will all be up for examination in the medical interview. Without some internal self-reflection, you will not be able to paint a detailed enough picture of yourself. A lot of these qualities we...
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