Your UMAT Wh-Question Guide!

Hello friends! We receive many queries from students who would like to seek our expert assistance in preparing for the UMAT. Here is a compilation of the commonly asked questions we’ve heard over a period of time, and a quick guide to the answers!

What is the UMAT?
The UMAT is the entrance exam for undergraduate medicine, dental, and health sciences programs for Australia, much in the same way that the UKCAT is the entrance exam for the same programmes in the UK. It is made by ACER (Australia Council for Educational Research). It is worth noting that some of the elements contained on the UKCAT are missing on the UMAT, such as code translation questions and ethical dilemma questions. There are three question types, and they occur in no particular order. There is non-verbal reasoning, basically the math questions. Then there is logical reasoning or problem solving, which will not call on the student to do any math, but rather, to read a short passage and think logically about it. Finally, there is “understanding people” which involves situational questions wherein the questions are about emotions and interpersonal skills.

What is a good score?
It is hard to say what a good score is beyond saying the candidate ideally needs to be in the 80th percentile or above. ACER produces the score via a complicated weighted formula that has never been and probably never will be disclosed to the public.

What universities can UMAT be used for? Which ones are particularly good?
Most medical programmes in Australia and New Zealand accept the UMAT. I will note that the University of Sydney, the University of Melbourne, Griffith University, and the Queensland University of Technology do not accept the UMAT. Additionally, Monash does not accept it for physiotherapy. The best university of the accepting schools is Monash, followed by the University of Queensland.

Who is eligible to take the UMAT?
You may only register for the UMAT if you have completed or plan to complete your final year of Australian secondary schooling by the year that the test is administered.

What is the difference between the ISAT and the UMAT?
The ISAT is for international students whereas the UMAT is for students who are on the verge of completing secondary education in Australia.

How does a student register for the UMAT?
Registration begins December 2014 and continues till 5th June, 2015, 5pm Australian Eastern Standard Time. It is possible to submit a late registration after the end date until 5pm AEST 19 June 2015 but a late fee of 65 AUD would be required. The regular registration fee is $240, with a concession fee of $140 for those who either hold a Health Care Card, Pensioner Care Card, or are dependents of those who do. This concession does not apply to those who take the test outside of Australia. If the test is taken outside Australia or New Zealand (there are test centers in London, Singapore, and Washington DC), there is an additional fee of $185. When you are ready, you may register at here.

How do I study for the UMAT?
The best way to study for the UMAT is to do lots of guided practice one-on-one with a tutor, along with plenty of self study. Such practice may be obtained at ICON+. Resources for self-study are best obtained at the UMAT website where you register. One old exam for study comes along with the registration fee and two additional old exams for practice are available for purchase through the website. Furthermore, aside from the additional sections in the UKCAT mentioned before, the UMAT is similar enough to the UKCAT that UKCAT books may readily be used to study for the test. For this, I recommend books by Mike Byron and Chris Tyreman. The student should aim to get at least two-thirds of all questions correct, as a rule of thumb.
I do need to note, neither the omission of certain UKCAT question types nor the relatively generous question time of over one minute per question (you have 180 minutes to do 134 questions) makes the test substantially easier by any means. The test needs to be taken quite seriously, as there is only one administration per year. Furthermore, the questions are quite difficult and there are no breaks!

When is the UMAT?
There is only one date for the UMAT every year. Next year, it will be held on 29th July, 2015. There is the provision for an alternative test date under extenuating circumstances. Additional details are at here .

When will I receive my scores?
Scores are mailed to the student at the end of September.

That’s all for now, folks! Hope this article was helpful!

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