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Optimising your health for UCAT: What I learned from getting the flu two days before my UCAT exam and other lessons

Imagine you’re a hardworking student. You have consistently studied for the UCAT for several months and you are feeling pretty well prepared for UCAT exam itself (hopefully this is not too hard for you to imagine ?). Maybe you have a week before exam day and while you are beginning to feel the nerves of the situation, you are really not too worried. Because why should you be? You have studied hard. You have completed or come pretty close to completing your UCAT tuition course. You even went to one of those famous two day MedEntry workshops with the mighty Dr...
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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 ReasoningEach university is different, and some universities change their medical entry requirements at short notice.Here’s a summary:CourseHow is UCAT used?How is UCAT weighted?How are students selected for interview?How...
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UCAT ANZ 2020: A CANDIDATE SHARES HIS EXPERIENCE

ArrivalArriving at the UCAT test centre was a vastly different experience to arriving at a normal school exam. There was no congregation of students or any prominent signs explaining where to go.My UCAT testing centre was in the Melbourne CBD – at a normally busy office building which was completely deserted due to the current COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. Due to building security, I could not use the elevator. After several stressful minutes of walking around (during which time I thought I was at the wrong place), I found a small sign displaying a phone number that I had to ring. A...
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Tips for UCAT Test Day and the Night Before

The day before UCATEnsure that you have everything you need for UCAT test day: importantly, a printout of your UCAT email confirmation from Pearson VUE and acceptable photographic identification (the name must match the one on your confirmation email, and it must be unexpired). Also ensure that you know where your UCAT testing centre is, and how you are going to get there.If you are ill or have extenuating personal circumstances, you can reschedule your UCAT test. You can do so at least 24 hours before your test appointment by contacting Pearson VUE directly. If you find you are unwell or...
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UCAT ANZ 2020: MY UCAT TEST DAY EXPERIENCE

Arrival and registration I took the UCAT exam at a Pearson VUE centre in Melbourne. I arrived about 25 minutes before my scheduled UCAT start time. At the door I was turned around and told to read the instructions outside the door concerning COVID-19 and UCAT.Once I made it in through the door, I was immediately told to sanitise my hands using the handwash inside the door before grabbing a number. Having done this, I was told to sit in one of the nine socially spaced chairs for people waiting for UCAT registration. I was provided with a copy of the UCAT...
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How to Interpret Your UCAT 2020 scores

If you have just sat UCAT, congratulations! You have made it through one of the toughest and most gruelling tests of your career. This blog contains information on how to interpret your 2020 UCAT ANZ score report.How do I access my UCAT Score Report?After sitting UCAT, you will receive an email from Pearson VUE notifying you that your UCAT score report is available to view via your Pearson VUE online account. You will need to log into your Pearson VUE account to view your UCAT score report.How do I interpret my UCAT Score Report? Your Score Report will provide you with...
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What is a Good UCAT ANZ Score?

Students who sit UCAT ANZ receive their UCAT Score Report on the same day, often within an hour of sitting the test. The format of UCAT scores can be confusing. This blog answers some common questions about UCAT ANZ scores.How are UCAT ANZ scores calculated?UCAT ANZ scores are calculated by converting the number of questions you got right into a ‘scaled score’. Scaled scores range from 300-900 in each subtest. Pearson VUE do not publicly release details of how they calculate scaled scores, but they use statistical tools involving IRT (Item Response Theory).Your scores in each of the four cognitive subtests (UCAT...
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UCAT SITUATIONAL JUDGEMENT: 5 TOP TIPS

Situational Judgement UCAT questions test a different type of non-cognitive aptitude, and can be challenging if you do not have an effective framework to answer them. This blog covers five key tips for success in the UCAT Situational Judgement test.1.  Identify the key issue(s) in the scenarioWhen reading the UCAT Situational Judgement scenario, it is important to read actively, identifying the key issues raised. This will help you to judge the relative importance of considerations, or the appropriateness of various actions. For example, a consideration is likely to be ‘very important’ if it addresses a key issue raised in the scenario,...
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UCAT Scoring and Scaling: How does it work? Part 2

The blog “UCAT Scoring and Scaling: How does it work? Part 1” explained how the scoring and scaling of UCAT works.In this blog we will discuss what all that means for you in practice.Negative marking There is no negative marking in UCAT. Why? There is a lot of educational research and literature on this point, but in summary, if there is negative marking, risk averse students will not answer as many UCAT questions as those who are not risk averse. It is in the test designers’ interest that you answer all the UCAT questions. This is because they have greater certainty...
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5 Tips For UCAT Timing

If you ask any candidate sitting UCAT what the hardest part of the UCAT is, they will inevitably say one thing: timing. All questions in the UCAT are do-able if you are given unlimited time. If sufficient time is given, most students would be able to score very highly in UCAT. However, UCAT is designed intentionally to give you less time than is required to answer UCAT questions. This is the only way the UCAT Consortium can distinguish the top performers from the rest of the pack. In fact, each year over one fifth of UCAT candidates fail to mark an...
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5 Tips for UCAT Exam Day

1. Don’t panicThis might sound like another one of those easier said than done things that people around you might say, but it’s actually so important on the day itself! Plan ahead in advance for transportation to and from the UCAT exam centre. If you are taking public transport, keep in mind the possible delays caused and try to adjust for it. Better yet, get your family members to drop you off at the UCAT testing centre. This will reduce your worries and allow you to reach the UCAT centre smoothly. Even though this might sound like a negligible tip, you...
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Earplugs Update for UCAT ANZ

Candidates can request earplugs at the test centre if they wish to use them. At test centres where earplugs are available, candidates must use the earplugs provided and cannot use their own.Not all test centres can provide earplugs. If you are taking the test at one of the test centres below, you will be allowed to bring your own earplugs. If you bring your own earplugs to one of these centres, they will be subject to the following:The earplugs must be disposable and in unopened packaging.Test staff will ask candidates to open the packaging and will visually inspect the earplugs before...
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5 Tips for UCAT Abstract Reasoning

Struggling with UCAT Abstract Reasoning questions? Check out this blog which outlines 5 top tips.1.  Identify the pattern firstWhen you are first starting out with Abstract Reasoning UCAT questions, it can be tempting to focus on the test shape and try to ‘match’ it to the sets. This wastes valuable time and is unlikely to lead you to the correct answer. Instead, start by examining the sets and looking for a pattern. Once you have identified the pattern, it will be easy to determine which set the test shape fits into. 2.  Choose your own perspectiveSome questions are more easily solved if...
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UCAT Scoring and Scaling: How does it work? Part 1

A common question among students preparing to sit the UCAT is how does UCAT scoring work? This blog answers that question. Practical implications for the UCAT test taker are covered in Part 2 of this blog.Many UCAT companies claim that they can predict UCAT scores and percentiles from the number of UCAT questions that you answer correctly. This is unfortunately completely misleading and inaccurate. Most UCAT preparation companies have little to no understanding of the scoring process and therefore their platforms provide misleading information regarding predicted UCAT scores.In reality, UCAT scoring is an extremely complicated process. In this blog we will...
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UCAT ANZ 2020: NOTEBOARD AND MARKER PEN

Candidates sitting UCAT ANZ 2020 will have access to a noteboard and marker pen. MedEntry students who have attended, or will be attending a UCAT workshop will have received a noteboard and marker pen to help simulate the live UCAT experience, and to help with their UCAT preparation.Due to the coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic, UCAT UK 2020 candidates have the option of sitting UCAT from home. For this reason, in order to standardise the test taking experience, UCAT UK 2020 candidates will have a ‘scratch pad’ on their computer platform, as well as a physical noteboard and pen. This feature has been...
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UCAT ANZ 2020 AND CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19): SHOULD I WEAR A MASK AND GLOVES?

UCAT ANZ 2020 candidates who are sitting UCAT in Australia and New Zealand have been advised that they may wear a mask and gloves if they wish when sitting UCAT. This is not mandatory.Note that UCAT testing centres will not supply a mask and gloves. Masks and gloves brought by candidates to UCAT testing centres will be inspected by UCAT testing staff for security purposes.Candidates sitting UCAT ANZ 2020 in an overseas testing centre (outside of Australia and New Zealand) have been advised to bring a facemask, as some testing centres require students to wear one when sitting the UCAT.Why wear...
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Top 5 Under-Rated UCAT Preparation Strategies

1. Learn how to speed-readNot enough students are working on improving their speed reading. There are a lot of resources out there that can help you with this and I highly recommend delving into some of these (such as MedEntry’s UCAT Speed Reading trainer). The major problem I see time and time again is that in their UCAT preparation, students try to learn how to speed-read but do not end up doing so efficiently. They either fail to absorb content and miss key details or do not read at a particularly fast rate. This UCAT strategy is pertinent to the UCAT...
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UCAT 2020: Top Tips for Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning subtest of UCAT can be challenging, even for those who are proficient at maths. This is largely due to the extreme time pressure placed on students in this UCAT subtest.The commonest mistake made by students in the Quantitative Reasoning subtest is to approach it like you would approach a high school maths test – by calculating everything perfectly, checking your working and not being aware of common wrong answer traps. To do well in the Quantitative Reasoning subtest of UCAT, you need a strategic approach. This blog outlines five key tips.Tip 1: Use the UCAT calculator lessBecause you are...
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NEW UCAT FEATURE: MEME OF THE WEEK!

Want 5 extra exams free? Make a meme related to UCAT – and the best entry each week will receive 5 extra UCAT exams free!Each week has a theme which is related to UCAT and UCAT preparation. This week’s theme is:Difficulty of UCATMedEntry students can access the Meme of the Week feature and submit memes on the Community page of the online platform. Students can also like and comment on memes submitted by other students.We encourage students to generate and submit a meme, and the student with the best submission each week will be provided with 5 extra exams free. If...
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UCAT ANZ 2020 RESCHEDULING

UCAT ANZ 2020 will be proceeding in July. Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Pearson VUE have had to implement social distancing precautions to ensure the safety of UCAT candidates. This has led to some UCAT testing appointments at some locations having to be rescheduled.Students who have been affected will have received an email from Pearson VUE asking them to reschedule their UCAT testing date. These students can reschedule their UCAT testing appointment by logging into their Pearson VUE account and changing their booking. Students can change their UCAT booking online up until this Friday 5 June at 11:59pm AEST.Note that...
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