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Distributed Practice and the UCAT: What you need to know Part 1

Over the last few years the education sector has been rampant with ideals of “studying smarter not harder”, doing “less work for more reward” and a series of other catch phrases that seem too good to be true. Nevertheless, there is one system that eclipses all others in the research conducted, the widespread implementation and the unanimous praise it has received from scientists, psychologists, students and teachers alike: distributed practice. In part one of this two part blog series, we look at what distributed practice means, why it works and why you should implement it for your UCAT study. What is...
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Distributed Practice and the UCAT: What you need to know Part 2

In part 1 of this blog, we looked at why it is important to study with distributed practice for the UCAT. In part 2, we will look at how to implement this into your UCAT plan. How to implement distributed practice for UCAT Here are some tips and strategies on how to best use distributed practice in your UCAT preparation (you can also use them in your secondary school and university study; or acquiring any skill for that matter): 1. Plan out a UCAT study schedule/timetable This is an important step. You need to make time for your UCAT preparation, even...
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Virtual Medical Interviews: Tips For Success

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in some changes to medical school admissions. A significant change has been the move from in-person medical interviews to virtual interviews at some universities. A virtual interview in an interview that uses technology such as video conferencing software such as Zoom, or other online communication platforms. Several medical schools have already confirmed that medical interviews this year will take place virtually, including: Monash UniversityThe University of New South WalesAdelaide UniversityCharles Sturt UniversityThe University of QueenslandAuckland University A virtual interview is very different from an in-person one and requires an understanding of how to best present yourself....
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Didn’t do well in UCAT? Here’s how to bounce back in four steps

The UCAT is one of the three criteria for most undergraduate medicine schools in Australia, and often holds equal weighting to ATAR. The UCAT may determine whether or not you receive an interview offer at certain universities, so many students put in the extra mile to maximise their UCAT results. There are many factors that can influence performance in UCAT, and receiving a lower mark than expected may feel like all our efforts have gone to waste. I’ve been there before, and although it may feel like the end of the world (I certainly felt that way), I can assure you...
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How will medical and dental schools use interviews? Here’s a summary

So, you’ve completed your UCAT and now you’re working hard to achieve high grades. But what about your medical interview? Medical interviews are perhaps the most under-recognised part of the medical entry admissions process. Highly able students who have excelled in their UCAT and ATAR have unfortunately missed out on a place in medicine due to failure to understand and prepare for interviews. Each university uses medical interviews differently, and it can be confusing. Here is a summary: Course How are students selected for interview? Type of interview Interview themes How are students selected for a place? Adelaide University (Medicine &...
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I am expecting a high ATAR and I scored highly in UCAT. Do I still need interview training?

This is a common question asked by MedEntry students. Such students, having used MedEntry’s program, have scored highly in UCAT. In addition, many expect to receive a very high ATAR. These students may feel that a place in medical school is guaranteed, so they wonder: ‘Why bother with interview training?’ Here is a question we received just this week from a student: ‘I expect an ATAR of 99.8+ and I achieved a UCAT percentile of 99. So do I still need interview training?’ The answer is: Congratulations, but definitely, yes! There are several reasons for this, including: Interviews are very different...
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5 ways to make the most of your post-UCAT pre-Interview time

If you have completed your UCAT exam, congratulations on getting through the marathon that it is! While you can relax a little, now is not the time to be sitting back and relaxing (sadly). Instead, you should start planning for applications and interviews! Here are five tips to make the most of your post-UCAT, pre-interview time: 1. Pump up your ATAR Before UCAT, chances are your other school or university study slipped a little (that’s okay, you were busy!). However, now you need to pick it back up and work hard! Academic results are also important when applying for medicine. The...
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5 ways to make the most of your post-UCAT pre-Interview time

Medical School Preferencing

Applications to study at most undergraduate medical courses close at the end of September. To apply, you will need to visit the Tertiary Admissions Centre for each state. MedEntry recommends that you apply for as many courses as possible, in order to maximise your chances of obtaining a place. For details about how to apply to medicine, check out our dedicated blog. Most states offer multiple undergraduate medical courses. Every university claims that their course is the best, and current students also tend to promote their own university. Additionally, there are various types of place that you can apply for. It can...
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How to Apply to Medicine at Australian Universities

Congratulations on your decision to pursue Medicine as a career! Medicine is a challenging field that will constantly test your ability to stay disciplined. But it is not all work; you will also find that Medicine is one of the most rewarding careers available. You will learn about many fields of study such as anatomy, physiology and pharmacology, and be able to directly apply them to a clinical environment. The deadline to apply for medicine in Australia closes at the end of September. This blog is designed to assist students with the application process. Entry Criteria into medicine Universities differ in...
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12 Factors to Consider when Choosing a Medical School, in order of Importance

Many MedEntry students find themselves in a fortunate position of having performed well in UCAT, so are now in an enviable position of being able to pick and choose which medical school to attend! So what are the factors you should consider when choosing a medical school? Firstly, MedEntry recommends applying to as many courses as possible, as there is no guarantee of entry into a particular university. This is because most universities use interviews as an important entry criterion, and interviews are, by definition, subjective. The weighting for each of the major criteria (academic grades, UCAT and interviews) varies depending...
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UCAT ANZ 2021 ONLINE TESTING CONFIRMED!

The UCAT Consortium has confirmed that UCAT ANZ 2021 will take place online for some students who have not yet been able to sit UCAT due to lockdowns.  What does this mean for me? All candidates will be given the chance to sit UCAT by the end of September. Students who have a current UCAT test booking at a UCAT testing centre in the next week should continue with their scheduled UCAT testing appointment. This applies to students who are residing in a lockdown area and have their UCAT test booked at a testing centre which is open, and which they...
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UCAT ANZ Score Advice: What Should You Do Now?

With UCAT summary test statistics released, students now have more information about how their score compares to other UCAT candidates. This blog will help you interpret your score and provide advice on what you should do now. You can convert your UCAT score into a UCAT percentile using MedEntry’s UCAT score-percentile calculator, available here: https://www.medentry.edu.au/ucat-score-percentile-calculator Scores above 2960 Interpretation Students scoring above 2960, in general, have a good chance of receiving an interview offer, provided they meet the minimum required ATAR for the particular university and course. A score of 2960 equates to approximately 90th percentile, which is generally required at...
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Preliminary UCAT ANZ 2021 Test Statistics Released!

UCAT ANZ 2021 preliminary statistics have been released, which will help students to interpret their UCAT 2021 scores. The majority of UCAT candidates have sat their 2021 UCAT test, so it is expected that the final UCAT summary statistics will not be very different from these figures. The UCAT 2021 preliminary statistics data is available at: https://www.ucat.edu.au/media/1469/preliminary-summary-statistics_august.pdf This UCAT data shows that: Students who achieved an overall scaled score of 2960 were in the 90th percentile, which is generally required for entry into standard undergraduate medical degrees (UCAT scores required are lower for dentistry, rural students, local students, bonded students and those...
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How Do I Know If I’m A Rural Student For Medical Entry?

The purpose of this blog post is to help you: Understand why it is important to determine whether or not you are a rural student when applying for medicine.Determine whether you are classified as a rural student for each university offering undergraduate medicine.Understand the difference between ‘rurality’ and bonded rural schemes. Why is it important to determine whether you are a rural student (or not)? In general, getting into medicine is easier if you are classified a rural student. Most Australian universities offer alternate access pathways or score adjustments for rural students who are applying for medicine.   This is because...
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3 Tips for Written Applications

Some universities, including James Cook University and the University of New South Wales, require you to submit a written application when applying for medicine. Written applications may be used to select students for interview or guide interviewers’ questions on the day. They are therefore an important part of the application process. When so many students are submitting applications, how can you make yours stand out? Here are some tips. Know what each medical school cares about Every school has a different focus: for example, James Cook university has a significant emphasis on rural, remote, Indigenous and tropical health. It is vital...
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I’m interested in studying medicine. Which subjects should I choose in year 11 and 12?

Your ATAR is often just as important as your UCAT score when it comes to applying for medical schools in Australia. Because of this, a lot of discussion around choosing subjects for senior high school remains. Here are four factors to consider when choosing subjects, in order of importance. 1. University prerequisities Some universities have prerequisite subjects that you must study in order to be considered for the medical school. This often includes subjects like English, Chemistry, Maths and in some cases, other Sciences. Some universities have a minimum score that you must achieve in each of the prerequisite subjects, so...
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CONVERT YOUR UCAT 2021 SCORE INTO A PERCENTILE

Want to know your predicted UCAT percentile ranking? MedEntry has released a calculator that will help you convert your UCAT scores into estimated percentile rankings. You can find the calculator here: https://www.medentry.edu.au/ucat-score-percentile-calculator The calculator produces accurate estimated percentile rankings using the deciles outlined in the UCAT ANZ 2020 Summary Test Statistics, for example, the mean cognitive total score of 2520 corresponding to approximately 50th percentile. Simply enter in your UCAT scaled scores for each UCAT subtest, and you will be provided with an estimated UCAT percentile ranking for the cognitive subtests, and a separate estimated percentile ranking for the UCAT Situational Judgement test. This...
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How Will Medical Schools Use UCAT? Here's a Summary

With the UCAT testing period underway, many students who have sat UCAT are wondering how UCAT will be used to select applicants into medical school. Most universities use a combination of three factors when selecting students into medicine or dentistry. These include: UCAT ANZ scores (either cognitive subtests* only, or all UCAT subtests)Medical interview performanceSecondary school performance (ATAR / IB) or GPA *UCAT cognitive subtests include UCAT Verbal Reasoning, UCAT Decision Making, UCAT Quantitative Reasoning and UCAT Abstract Reasoning Each university is different, and some universities change their medical entry requirements at short notice. Further, they are often not transparent about the weightings...
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7 TIPS FOR USING THE UCAT CALCULATOR

I managed to score 880 out of 900 in the UCAT Quantitative Reasoning section. A significant reason for this was my ability to use the UCAT Calculator quickly and effectively. In this blog, I discuss my top tips for using the UCAT Calculator. Learning to use the UCAT calculator took my mind off the time-consuming and seemingly never-ending calculations required to answer UCAT Quantitative Reasoning questions. I was able to actually THINK about how to solve the UCAT question without drowning in all the grunt work. Too many students are frustrated because they know they could have solved more UCAT Quantitative...
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UCAT vs GAMSAT

There are two major pathways into medicine: the undergraduate route (which generally requires you to sit UCAT) and the graduate route (which generally requires GAMSAT). As an aspiring medical student, it can be difficult to know which pathway to take, particularly when some universities strongly market the graduate route. MedEntry recommends that you choose the undergraduate (UCAT) route, as there are several advantages for you and your future medical career. For more information, check out this blog: https://www.medentry.edu.au/ucat/entry/medicine-at-unsw-or-usyd This blog summarises the differences between UCAT (University Clinical Aptitude Test) and the GAMSAT (Graduate Medical Schools Admission Test) to help you make...
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