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How Is The UCAT Scored?

Published on
April 15, 2024

How do you make sense of your UCAT score? What is a good score? What should you do with your score? We’re here to answer all of your biggest questions about the UCAT scoring system

The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) is a computer-based medical admissions test used by a consortium of universities across Australia and New Zealand. This exam was introduced for Year 12 school leavers in 2019 for entry into medical, dental and clinical science degree programmes in 2020. It is used to guide judgement concurrently with academic qualifications, interviews and other extracurricular activities for medical entry. 

This test, delivered through Pearson VUE test centres throughout Australia and New Zealand, is designed to help universities select applicants with the most appropriate critical thinking and logical reasoning skills required for new doctors and dentists as well as assessing professional behaviours.

How Is The UCAT Marked?

The UCAT exam is split into five sections – Verbal Reasoning (VR), Decision Making (DM), Quantitative Reasoning (QR), Abstract Reasoning (AR) and the Situational Judgement Test (SJT). If you are applying for 2022 admission into medical school, you should note that many universities are excluding the situational judgement test from their prerequisite eligibility requirements. Currently, there is much debate in Australia and New Zealand whether the SJT is a good indicator of a future medical student as this section relies heavily on an understanding of medical ethics, which is not taught in the national Australian curriculum. 

Applicants who have sat the 2019 UCAT ANZ exam are believed to set the standard for 2020 applicants who are applying for 2021 admission into medical school and so on.  

Within the Situational Judgement test, full marks are awarded for a question if your response matches the correct answer and partial marks awarded if your response is close to the correct answer. 

What Should I Do With My UCAT Score?

After completing the UCAT, you will receive instructions to access your UCAT Score Report from Pearson VUE. This will be made available to you within 24-hours of sitting the exam. Your report can be either printed from your browser or saved as a PDF for your own personal use. The UCAT Consortium will directly communicate your results with the universities you have applied for in September, so you do not need to submit your results to the university itself unless they are outside the university consortium.

Universities outside of the consortium will not have access to your UCAT score. Your UCAT results will only be valid for one cycle. This means that if you sit the UCAT in 2021, your results from 2021 will only be eligible for 2022 admission into medical school

What Is A Good UCAT Score?

As the UCAT was introduced to Australia and New Zealand in 2019, there is no clear indicator as to a ‘good’ UCAT score. We can safely assume that anything higher than one standard deviation above the mean can be considered a good UCAT score.

What UCAT Score Do I Need To Get Into Medicine?

At this time, many universities in Australia and New Zealand do not have a threshold score. This means that there is no current prerequisite score to gain a medical interview or admission into medical school for UCAT applicants, however there is a prerequisite to have sat the UCAT exam itself.

As the UCAT ANZ exam is relatively fresh in Australia and New Zealand, it is difficult to gauge the current accuracy of test results in defining an appropriate medical or dental student. Furthering this, it would not be accurate to use prerequisites defined by universities in England, as Australia and England differ in teaching curriculums. It is expected that universities will alter their prerequisite UCAT score each year following 2019, similar to the GAMSAT exam.

How Are The Scores Used?

UCAT results are made available prior to most university application deadlines. The UCAT ANZ consortium advises that applicants should use their results to guide their academic choices, so as to say that a sub-par score may result in a dead-end application. In any case, universities will advise how they will use your UCAT results on their eligibility requirements section on their website.