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Why practice exams are the best UCAT preparation


Be under no illusions: the UCAT is the single hardest and most important test you will ever sit. This is a scary (and for some maybe terrifying) thought. So what can you do to make it less daunting? The answer may seem counter-intuitive: the best way to make UCAT seem do-able is to face it over, and over, and over again. How? By completing high quality, full length trial exams under timed exam conditions.

UCAT is scary because it is so different to any other test you have done in school – it is much harder, longer and much more time-pressured, not to mention completely different in terms of content. But what if you could make it seem like part of your normal life? Get up on a Saturday morning, have breakfast, and do a 2 hour UCAT trial exam? Well, that’s exactly what you should do between now and UCAT. Make doing a full length UCAT trial exam part of your weekly routine. If you do this, when it comes to the day of UCAT, it will not seem as scary.

Remember, MedEntry practice exams are the best possible preparation for UCAT. They contain the most difficult questions and are created to accurately simulate the most recent UCAT tests. While MedEntry drills are great for skill development, they are easier and they cover every type of question that has appeared in UCAT over the last decade. As UCAT draws nearer, practice exams are the most efficient, targeted and effective preparation you can do for UCAT. 

The most common feedback we get every year from MedEntry students is that they wish they did not ‘save up’ their UCAT exams, or leave them to the last week. UCAT cannot be crammed for; the best way to improve is through consistent practice, reflection and discussion. Keep in mind that completing a UCAT exam doesn’t just take 2 hours – it takes several hours in addition to that, to re-attempt the questions you got wrong and review the solutions and engage in discussionw ith your UCAT study-buddies. If you complete the exam on a Saturday, you can plan to review it on the Sunday.

Here are some tips for completing UCAT practice exams:

  1. Complete the exam under strict time conditions! 
  2. Do not give yourself any breaks, except a brief bathroom break if you need one urgently
  3. Complete the practice exam in a quiet room, without distractions
  4. Practice using a desktop computer if possible
  5. Use only the materials that are allowed on test day (no calculators, dictionaries, highlighters or food, for example)
  6. Use only the noteboard and pen that MedEntry provides (for those who have Platinum package)

Doing a full length UCAT trial exam may seem scary, but think about how much more scary it will be if the first time you completed an exam under strict conditions was the day of the live UCAT. Practice exposing yourself to UCAT test conditions over and over, and it will start to become like second nature. You can then walk into the UCAT relaxed and confident.

Feedback over the years suggests that the MedEntry exams are harder than the live UCAT. Exams are thoroughly researched and updated every year to reflect changes in the UCAT. MedEntry offers the following trial exams:

  • 10 full length practice exams (all with feedback and fully worked solutions), available as part of all packages
  • Option to upgrade to an additional 5 exams (i.e. 15 exams in total)
  • Full length simulated exam (available as part of the Platinum and Diamond packages)
  • Free full length UCAT exam on the website


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