by Giulia Bankov April 04, 2019 4 min read


The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT) is a widely recognised exam used by UK medical schools and as of recently, medical schools in other countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, too, as a tool to assess candidates applying to study medicine. As such, the UCAT is an essential component of your application that is often used together with the personal statement and grades to score candidates and offer those who have shown good performance a medical interview.


We at theMSAG recognise that the application process can be extremely stressful, so we have collected all the information you are going to need to complete your registration for the UCAT, should you be planning to sit the exam in time for the 2019/20 medicine application cycle. 

The registration for the UCAT is a two-step process using the Pearson VUE online system, which is outlined in detail below. 


Step 1: Register online

Once you have decided that you want to apply to medical schools that require the UCAT exam, the first thing you need to do is register online. This can be done by creating an online account with Pearson VUE at any time between 9am on May 1, when registration opens and 5pm on September 18, when registration for this application cycle closes.
Keep in mind that as the person who will be sitting the exam, you personally are responsible for registering for the test - you cannot authorise another individual nor your school or college to do this for you. 
Key notes to remember when registering online for the UCAT:
  • Multiple accounts are not allowed, so make sure you are only registered once
  • When registering, use your legal name exactly as it appears in the form of ID you will be bringing with you on test day

When registering for the UCAT, the website will prompt you to fill out a questionnaire, which is used to collect demographic data on medical and dental school applicants. Most of the questions are required to be answered by the candidate, but there are some, which your parent or carer will have to answer. Once you have completed this step, you can now move on to booking a suitable date to take the UCAT. 


Step 2: Book a date to sit the UCAT

Once you have successfully registered your online account, you will receive a password in your email that will provide you with access to your new Pearson VUE account and will allow you to proceed with booking your test. Don’t forget that once registration opens on 1 May, 2019, you have until 18 September at 5pm to book your test date online, after which time no further payments for the exam will be accepted. 

The UCAT is payable at the time of booking it online and most major payment cards are accepted. While online registration closes on 18 September, you can still phone Pearson VUE to arrange a booking date up to 1 October at 12pm. However, we strongly recommend to register as early as possible and thus tick off a major box off your list. There is a wide range of dates available to take the exam from which you can choose, with the final test date for the 2019/20 application cycle being 1 October, 2019. Make sure you pick a date that is most suitable for you and that will give you enough time to prepare well but equally try not to leave it until the last possible moment as other application deadlines are approaching in the month of October, making it a challenging month to sit the exam. 

Not only this but by leaving to book your test later, you run the risk of not having the availability of a data and a test location most suitable to you. 

A few more things you might wish to consider before booking your UCAT test date: 
  • Check your eligibility for extra time and, if such is allowed, ensure you book the correct test 

Remember that the UCAT test is only delivered in Pearson VUE test centres. There are more than 160 test centre locations in the UK where you can sit the test, so by booking early on you are likely to have the choice of a convenient location wherever you may live. Even if you live abroad, most major cities will offer a location where you can sit the test, as more than 130 countries have a test centre. Make sure you familiarise yourself well in advance before your chosen test date with the available test centres near you and book the most convenient one.

Once you have completed your registration and booking and have decided on the date you wish to take the test on, it is time to start preparing for it. A high UCAT score is frequently used as a cut-off by medical schools when offering interviews, theMSAG UCAT Courses are a good place to start, offering comprehensive preparation with plenty of practice tests. 

We hope this overview was helpful and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact at

Giulia Bankov
Giulia Bankov

Giulia is a graduate medical student at the University of Glasgow. She previously studied Neuroscience at King's College London and completed her Cognitive Neurobiology and Clinical Neurophysiology at the University of Amsterdam.

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