The University Clinical Aptitude Test (UCAT, previously UKCAT) 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 (UCAT ANZ), as a tool to assess candidates applying to study medicine and dentistry. As such, the UCAT is an essential component of your application. It is often used together with the personal statement and exam 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 2021, should you be planning to sit the exam in time for the 2021/22 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. For key dates, booking deadlines and registration dates, read Important UCAT test dates 2021. For UCAT 2021, the test is currently planned to take place in pearson vue test centres in the UK and internationally. This will be reviewed should COVID impact the admissions test. When booking your test, you can use the test centre locator to find the best UCAT test centre for you.
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 June 2nd, when registration opens and midday on September 22nd, when online registration for this application cycle closes.
Keep in mind that as the person who will be sitting the exam at the test centre, 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 things to remember when registering online for the UCAT:
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 required must be answered by the candidate, but there are some, which your parent or carer may have to help you answer. Once you have completed this step and booking opens, you can now move on to booking a suitable date to take the UCAT.
Once you have successfully registered your online web account, you will receive a password to the email address that you registered with. This 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 June 2nd, 2021, you have until 22nd September at midday 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 22 September, you can still phone Pearson VUE to arrange a test booking date up to midday, 28 September 2021. However, we strongly recommend to register as early as possible and thus tick-off a major box on your list. There are a wide range of dates available for you to choose when to take the exam with the last test date for the 2021/22 application cycle being 29 September, 2021. Applications to their bursary scheme also close on this date at 4pm (BST).
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 months of September/October, such as the UCAS application deadline on October 15th, making it a challenging month to sit the exam. You may also have the BMAT to prepare for. Not only this, but by booking your test later, you run the risk of not having the availability of a date and a test location most suitable to you.
If you think that you are not ready to sit your test and want to reschedule it, you must give ample notice to the pearson vue customer services team to avoid a charge.
A few more things you might wish to consider before booking your UCAT test date:
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. Start your UCAT practice early - theMSAG UCAT Courses are a good place to start, offering comprehensive preparation with plenty of practice tests and practice questions.
We hope this overview was helpful and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us at hello@theMSAG.com.
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