What is the UCAT ANZ? 40 Top Questions Answered

Want to be a doctor or a dentist? If so, there's a good chance the UCAT will be a hurdle in your way.

In this article, we provide answers to the top 38 UCAT questions so you know exactly what to expect.

1. What is the UCAT ANZ test?

The UCAT ANZ (University Clinical Aptitude Test for Australia and New Zealand) is a standardised computer-based assessment designed to assess students’ ability to interpret numerical and written information presented in various formats. All UCAT sections are related to important qualities for medical professionals.

The test is used to compare and rank applicants across Australia and New Zealand. Although the UCAT might sound scary, it's actually a lot less stressful than you might think, as long as you approach it in the right way.

UCAT key information infographic with details about number of questions, price and how long to prepare for

2. What is the difference between UCAT, UKCAT and UCAT ANZ?

No difference: they are all the same test. In terms of the names, the UKCAT is an old acronym for the exam and the UCAT ANZ is Australia and New Zealand only.

3. Why take the UCAT ANZ?

Admission to medicine and dentistry is extremely competitive as the number of applicants far outweighs the number of available places. 

The UCAT helps medical schools decide who to invite to interview and sometimes who gets the final offer. Getting a good score will increase your chances of getting accepted.

UCAT test student looking thoughtful, with hand on chin

4. How many questions are in the UCAT ANZ?

The UCAT consists of 228 multiple choice questions across five sections. Each section has a different number of questions and time allocation, as shown below:


Time (+1 minute for instructions)

Number of questions

Verbal Reasoning

21 minutes

44 across 11 passages

Decision Making

31 minutes


Quantitative Reasoning

25 minutes


Abstract Reasoning

12 minutes


Situational Judgement

26 minutes


5. How long is the UCAT ANZ?

The UCAT takes two hours to complete. Each section has one minute for reading the instructions. 

6. What is being tested in the UCAT ANZ?

The UCAT tests aptitude rather than academic knowledge. Each section of the UCAT aims to test a different component of cognition:

UCAT Abstract Reasoning Sets A and B, abstract shapes
E.g. The Abstract Reasoning Section: preparation is key to understanding the different types of problems

7. How long does it take to prepare for the UCAT ANZ?

This depends on how ready you are for each section of the UCAT, but as a guideline we recommend giving yourself plenty of time, ideally a minimum of six weeks.

As it's an aptitude test, some students may be able to get a good score with just a month’s preparation. The question to ask yourself is, ‘Will I risk jeopardising my future career if I prepare too little?’ There are a limited number of medical school places so you need to score as high as you can to give yourself the best chance of gaining entry.

Many students start preparing months before the test, so make sure you are ready for the intense competition. Doing 20 minutes to an hour a day over months is a great way to learn the ins and outs of the exam without the stress.

Check out the following resources to guide your preparation journey:

8. Who can sit the UCAT ANZ? How many students take the UCAT ANZ each year?

You can sit the UCAT in your final year of secondary school and any year after that. Around 14,000 students sat the UCAT ANZ in 2021.

9. How hard is the UCAT ANZ?  

Most students find the UCAT challenging not due to difficulty, but because of the large number of questions that need to be answered in just two hours (228 in total!). 

Research indicates that students who use preparation materials and study more for the UCAT score higher.

Adopting the right mindset is crucial for UCAT success. Find out how to build an optimal mindset, plus explore strategies to help you throughout your UCAT journey and on test day in our Ultimate Guide to UCAT Mindset Mastery.

UCAT test graph showing Decision Making and Abstract Reasoning.
How hard is the UCAT for you?
Medify shows where you stand compared to the average user

10. Which universities require the UCAT ANZ?

The UCAT is compulsory for the following courses:

Medical School


The University of Adelaide

Medicine, Dental Surgery, Oral Health

Charles Sturt University

Dental Science, Medicine

Curtin University


Flinders University

Clinical Sciences/Medicine

Griffith University

Dental Health Science

Monash University


The University of Newcastle/University of New England


The University of New South Wales


The University of Notre Dame

Medicine pathway

The University of Queensland

Medicine (provisional entry pathway), Dental Science

University of Southern Queensland

Medicine pathway

University of Tasmania


The University of Western Australia

Medicine (direct pathway), Dental Medicine (direct pathway)

Western Sydney University


The University of Auckland


University of Otago

Medicine, Dentistry

Learn more about UCAT universities

11. How do I prepare for the UCAT ANZ?

Read our in-depth guide to UCAT preparation, or just learn the four key steps:

  1. Learn about the different styles and formats of the questions, as well as strategies for solving them
  2. Practise with plenty of questions to become faster at answering correctly
  3. Simulate with mock exams to gauge your readiness for the time pressure
  4. Review your performance and focus on weaker areas

Try our free UCAT questions to give yourself a better understanding of the exam. 

To ace the UCAT, we recommend using a comprehensive preparation course. Medify's UCAT ANZ Online Course provides 20,000+ questions, 24 unique full mock exams, 40+ mini-mock exams, 50+ hours of video tutorials, and personalised performance feedback to help you improve your score.

If you're looking for more hands-on support, such as UCAT tutoring, books, and live courses or workshops, explore our Courses and Tutors Directory.

Graphic showing student studying on laptop

12. Are Medify’s UCAT tests harder than the actual UCAT ANZ exam?

Medify has a team of experts following UCAT developments and continuously responding to student feedback to make the simulated tests as realistic as possible.

For example, we updated the entire Verbal Reasoning section, and it is now the most up-to-date and realistic resource on the market. If you prepare thoroughly with Medify’s software, you won’t have any nasty surprises on the day. 

Also note, there is no advantage to using harder mock exams instead of accurate mocks during your UCAT preparation. In fact, unrealistic mocks may be detrimental to your progress because they can provide you with a wrong impression of the exam and lead to you feeling demoralised. This can negatively affect your motivation levels and final UCAT score.

Visit our blog and Admissions Guide to find more information about all the sections of the exam.

13. When is the UCAT ANZ in 2024?

The UCAT is held between 1 July and 9 August 2024

You need to book by 17 May 2024 (the final late booking deadline is 5 June 2024 but will incur an extra fee of $185). 

Check out the full list of UCAT ANZ deadlines

14. How do I book the UCAT ANZ?

You need to create a web account with Pearson VUE first. Then you can book your test session.

15. Can I change my UCAT ANZ test date?

It’s possible to postpone your exam with appropriate notice. However, if you miss the deadline you can lose the fee. Cancelling and rebooking is sometimes better.

16. Can I cancel my UCAT ANZ booking?

You can cancel your test for a refund until 10 June 2024. However, a refund fee of $50 will be deducted. Please note that late fees are non-refundable.

Cancelling or rescheduling appointments cannot be made via email; they must be done through your account or by calling UCAT customer services.

There will be a rescheduling fee of $25 if you reschedule your test after 29 June 2024.

17. Can I take UCAT ANZ the year before I apply to medical or dental school?

Yes, the UCAT is taken the year before you want to begin your studies.

18. Can the UCAT ANZ be used for admission in the UK?

Yes, you can use your UCAT ANZ results to apply to medical and dental schools in the UK.

You may wish to study in the UK for various reasons, such as studying at your dream university. Applying to both ANZ and UK medical or dental schools can also provide a strategic advantage by maximising your chances for entry.

Find out how UCAT ANZ can be used for admission in the UK

19. How much does the UCAT ANZ cost?

In 2024, the UCAT costs $325 for tests taken in Australia and New Zealand and $395 for tests taken overseas.

All fees are charged in Australian dollars.

Graphic of a hand holding Australian dollars

20. Are concessions available for the UCAT ANZ?

Australian candidates in financial need may be able to get a concession/discount and sit the UCAT for a reduced fee after providing supporting evidence. 

New Zealand candidates and candidates sitting the UCAT ANZ outside Australia are not eligible for concession.

Detailed information on concession eligibility and how to apply

21. What about UCAT ANZ access arrangements?

UCAT access arrangements are available for students with a disability, upon providing evidence:

  • UCATSEN: You get 25% extra test time
  • UCATSA: You get five minutes of rest break before each section
  • UCATSENSA: You get 25% extra test time and five minutes of rest break before each section
  • UCATSEN50: You get 50% extra test time

Furthermore, adjustments can be made to font size to help anyone with visual impairment during the exam.

Find out about your eligibility and the application process

22. Can I resit the UCAT ANZ? How many times can I sit the UCAT ANZ?

You may resit the UCAT an unlimited number of times as long as you meet the eligibility criteria, but only once per year.

23. Where can I take the UCAT ANZ?

The UCAT can be sat at Pearson VUE test centres across the world.

Graphic showing a hand holding a mobile phone with a map

24. How is the UCAT ANZ graded? (UCAT ANZ deciles 2023)

Your raw scores (the number of questions you answer correctly in each section) are converted to scaled scores between 300 and 900. The cognitive subtests (VR, DM, QR, AR) are added up to provide you with a total scaled score that ranges between 1200 and 3600. 

Based on this total scaled score, you will also receive a percentile rank that shows how well you’ve performed relative to other candidates in your year. For example, a total scaled score of 3000 in 2023 meant you were in the top 10%, or 9th decile.

The scaled score for the Situational Judgement Test also ranges between 300 and 900 but this is not included in the total scaled score. For instance in 2023, if your SJT score was 635, you would be in the 7th decile and around the 75th percentile.

25. Do I get penalised for wrong answers?

No, you don’t. Guess the answers that you are unsure about or do not have time to concentrate on. You have nothing to lose.

26. What is a good score on the UCAT ANZ test?

This is difficult to say as it varies from year to year and also depends on the universities you apply to. 

A score in the 90th percentile or higher (=3000) would give you a chance of securing interviews, provided that you have a top Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR score). 

Even with a lower UCAT score, you will stand a good chance if you have a very high ATAR, or if you qualify for special admissions schemes or bonus points.

What is a good UCAT score?
UCAT ANZ 2023 average scores

27. How do universities use UCAT ANZ scores?

Your UCAT ANZ score will be used alongside other parts of your application, such as meeting the minimum academic requirements. However, each university uses UCAT ANZ scores differently.

For instance, some universities may set a UCAT ANZ cut-off score (note that thresholds can vary from year to year), and use this to rank applicants for both interview and final selection, whereas others may use your UCAT ANZ as part of final selection only.

As such, it's important to note that there is no clear ‘pass’ mark for the UCAT ANZ. You should aim to maximise your overall score as much as possible to give you the best chance of securing a place at medical or dental school.

Find out about specific UCAT ANZ requirements for medical and non-medical courses in Australia and New Zealand.

28. How can you get into medicine without the UCAT ANZ?

A high UCAT score takes you closer to medical school, but even with a low UCAT score, there are several options:

1. Not all direct or provisional entry medical programmes require the UCAT (e.g. James Cook University and Griffith University). Read about the full entry requirements of each medical school

2. You can take a gap year and sit the UCAT again

3. You can go through the graduate entry pathway

4. You can study medicine overseas (e.g. UK, Eastern Europe)

Graphic showing a student standing in front of a university

29. When do UCAT ANZ results come out?

Your UCAT scores are available shortly after you finish the test, on the same day. To find out how well you performed in your cohort, you will usually need to wait until September for the final results.

30. How do I send my UCAT ANZ results to my chosen universities?

Your UCAT results are delivered directly to the chosen universities. You don’t need to take any further action once you’ve completed the exam.

31. How is the UCAT ANZ different from the GAMSAT?

The Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT) is an entrance exam used by graduate medical and dental courses.

The UCAT is a purely skills-based test, whereas some sections of the GAMSAT assume prerequisite knowledge in sciences. The GAMSAT also requires you to write an essay, whereas the UCAT consists entirely of multiple-choice questions. Both exams require a high level of critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Did you know that sitting both the UCAT ANZ and GAMSAT can maximise your chances of getting into medical school? Find out more in our article on UCAT vs GAMSAT: Similarities and Differences.

32. Are papers and pens allowed in the UCAT ANZ?

You can’t use a pen and paper for notes. You will be provided with a small whiteboard (or laminated sheets), a marker pen and a board rubber.

33. What can you bring into the UCAT ANZ test centre?

Nothing is allowed into the testing room apart from the indoor clothes you are wearing and any permitted items on the Pearson VUE Comfort Aid List. 

Person VUE says: ‘All personal belongings (including bags, coats, hats or head coverings, papers, books, pens, watches, wallets, keys, IDs, mobile phones, food/water/drinks) must be placed in the lockers provided before you enter the test room. The only exceptions permitted are religious apparel, headwear worn for medical reasons and small hair clips/hairbands (less than 1/2 inch wide).’

34. How long are UCAT ANZ scores valid for?

The UCAT scores are valid for a year. This means that if you sit the UCAT in 2024, you can only use it for entry to medical and dental programmes commencing in 2025.

Graphic showing someone marking dates on a calendar

35. Are you allowed a calculator in the UCAT ANZ test?

There is an onscreen calculator to use during the QR test. No personal calculators are allowed.

Check out our 8.5 tips to master the UCAT calculator

36. Should I sit the UCAT ANZ as a New Zealand high school student?

The University of Auckland and the University of Otago require students to sit the UCAT ANZ during the common first year for entry to medicine or dentistry. However, there is nothing stopping you from sitting the UCAT ANZ during your last year of high school.

In fact, preparing for and sitting the UCAT ANZ in high school gives you an edge over other students. Furthermore, sitting the UCAT ANZ in year 13 opens up doors for direct entry medical and dental schools in Australia.

37. How do I contact the UCAT ANZ customer services?

You can email ucat-anz@monash.edu. For Pearson VUE-related queries, you can call (Australia: 1800 512 320, New Zealand: 0800 451 260) or email Pearson VUE customer services

38. How does Medify use data to help you ace the UCAT ANZ?

Medify provides the most accurate feedback on the market. 70% of those who take the UCAT use Medify, so we feed that enormous data set back into the system.

That means we can compare, with unparalleled accuracy:

  • Your scores for each section
  • Time taken across all questions

39. What is Medify’s number one piece of advice for the UCAT ANZ?

Little and often. Trying to cram for such a time-pressured test can be very stressful and leave you at a disadvantage.

In our experience, the best students take a proactive approach early in the year, so by the time they take the exam, the format is second nature.

40. Where can I get further information about the UCAT ANZ?

Refer to the official UCAT ANZ website, in particular the FAQ section.

Graphic showing two hands almost touching

Do you need help with preparing for the UCAT ANZ? Don’t worry, head over to our UCAT ANZ Online Course and we’ll get you signed up to guide you through this whole process.

We provide a huge bank of 20,000+ questions, 24 unique full mock exams, 40+ mini-mock exams, 50+ hours of video tutorials, and performance feedback. Plus, we've upgraded our UCAT mock exams 13-24, revised our practice question bank, and updated our mocks and mini-mocks to reflect the latest UCAT ANZ changes, to enrich your preparation journey.

What should I do one month before my UCAT?

Graphic of calendar showing one month left

Keep practising! A month sounds like a long time, but time will quickly vanish. Set SMART  (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely) goals such as reaching a certain score by a certain date or time. 

Niche down even further on your weaknesses – by this stage you should just be focusing on what you find hardest. Make sure you factor in breaks and days off into your schedule, as well as any important events which you need to attend.

Read the 'Good medical practice' by the Medical Board of Australia if you haven’t already. It will inform you about the different duties of healthcare professionals and how they should respond to different scenarios, which is essential for the Situational Judgement Test section of the UCAT.

Try Medify's Skills Trainers, such as inference scanning for Verbal Reasoning, to maximise your score (these are included in our UCAT ANZ Online Course). Make sure you've also completed plenty of UCAT practice tests.

The UCAT exam is two hours with no breaks in between, so practise at least two hours each time to build your mental stamina. You should also simulate the exam environment as closely as possible – this means treating every mock test as if it were a real one. 

For instance, you should sit mock exams at the same time of the day as your actual UCAT exam and ensure there are no distractions. By mirroring the test conditions, not only will it prepare you for what to expect on test day, it should also help to decrease any anxiety leading up to the exam. Otherwise, your brain has to process the ‘new’ way of completing the test.

What should I do one week before my UCAT?

Graphic of calendar showing one week left

At this point, you'll know the format of the exam inside out and will have practised the questions enough times to get used to UCAT timings. Don’t give up – keep preparing in an environment where you cannot be interrupted.

Remember, a lot of your preparation will have been done in the weeks and months before this final week, so be careful not to overdo it and become too fatigued. Your motivation may drop or you might ‘peak’ before the test. Your body needs rest too. 

Now is a great time to introduce or increase self-care in your regime. Whether it’s watching Netflix, gaming, or just running a bath, it’s important to detach yourself from UCAT revision from time to time to avoid the risk of burnout.

In this week you should also prioritise your nutrition and sleep. Eat well, do not miss meals and keep hydrated. Make sure you get a good night’s sleep in the days before the test by avoiding late night cramming or staying awake into the early hours.

If it puts your mind at rest, you can check last year’s UCAT scores, but remember that this is all about your personal journey and performance, so don't get hung up on that information!

What should I do one day before my UCAT?

Graphic of calendar showing one day left

We do not advise doing a mock this close to the exam. Revision won't help you much at this stage and can actually leave you worse off. Instead, use this time to wind down and get yourself into a relaxed state. This will enable you to perform at your best on test day.

Try to get to bed early and avoid things that can affect sleep, such as looking at your phone before bed. If you think that you will struggle to sleep on time, you could try doing some exercise during the day to tire yourself out. 

Exercise can boost your brainpower by oxygenating your brain, helping you learn and aid sleep. Plus, activity makes your body release endorphins, which can reduce anxiety and stress levels.

Make sure you double check your UCAT test centre information, the travel route to the test centre, the time of your UCAT exam, and so on, so you’re well prepared for test day. If someone else is giving you a ride to the test centre, it’s worth reminding them.

What should I do on the day of my UCAT?

Graphic of calendar circling today's date

You should start the day off with a nutritious breakfast and give yourself enough time to arrive early to the test centre to avoid feeling flustered, rushed or stressed.

Remember that buses and trains can be late and that traffic may be heavier than you had hoped, so allow extra time whichever way you are travelling. Find out how to choose a UCAT test centre.

Make sure you know how to get to the test centre – for instance you could consider taking a map with you. If you’re using your phone for directions, make sure it’s sufficiently charged and that you have spare data (otherwise you can download the map ahead of time to use offline).

On test day you will be expected to arrive 30 minutes before your scheduled test time to complete the check-in process.

You need to bring:

  • Your test confirmation email
  • Photographic ID from the approved list

When you arrive at the test centre, it’s likely that you’ll be experiencing a heightened sense of adrenaline. his is completely normal, but it could be helpful to learn some strategies for adopting a winning mindset on test day to reduce your stress levels, and enable you to perform at your best. For instance, you could focus on your breathing to help you relax.

Don’t forget, during your test there are one minute introductions between each subtest. You can skip these, but we recommend using the time to mentally refresh yourself.

If you’ve stuck to your revision plan, and followed our advice above, the best thing you can do on test day is to try and keep as calm as possible. Take solace in the fact that you have prepared for weeks/months to get to this point, and channel any nervous energy into doing the best you can during your UCAT test. 

What should I eat and drink leading up to the UCAT?

You should think about your diet well ahead of UCAT test day. Focus on foods that release energy slowly (that is, which have a low glycaemic index, or GI) which will stop you from feeling hungry. These are ideal for UCAT preparation, as well as on test day itself.

Try eating protein and low-GI carbohydrates, such as meat or baked beans, brown (whole grain) rice or pasta, or wholegrain breakfast cereals or muesli. However, do not stray far from your usual diet on the day of the test in case you feel sick. You may want to try these foods out at the same time of day a few weeks in advance.

Be wary of energy drinks and coffee. If you’re not used to them then don’t drink them, especially in large quantities. Caffeine can acutely increase anxiety, and the sugar rush of an energy drink is soon followed by insulin slamming on the brakes, leaving you feeling worse than before. These products are no substitute for a good night’s sleep, eating properly and exercising.

No food or drink is allowed in the test room so eat a healthy meal before your UCAT test and ensure you’re hydrated. While you should make sure you’re drinking enough water, do not overdo it, otherwise you might need the toilet while the timer is ticking.

Please note, access arrangements are available if you have a disability, learning difficulty or long-term medical condition. You may be entitled to extra time and/or rest breaks, and allowed certain items, such as water, at your test centre workstation. 

What happens at the UCAT test centre?

  1. At the registration desk, you will be asked to show a valid photographic ID and a printed/electronic copy of your confirmation email from Pearson VUE. 
  2. You will be asked to sign a signature pad and take a photograph.
  3. You will be given a laminated notebook and a black marker pen. You may also request earplugs.
  4. Do not take anything other than your ID into the examination room. A locker or a coat hanger will be available.
  5. Go to the bathroom if you need to.
  6. Once the staff have prepared your exam, you may enter the exam room. You may be asked to undergo a body check (e.g. turning up your pockets and rolling your sleeves).
  7. The staff will guide you to the seat, or you may be able to choose your desk. Take some time to prepare yourself and relax. Your two hours have not yet started.

What is the UCAT test environment like?

This image shows a typical UCAT test environment:

Taking the UCAT at a test centre

There is no audio element to the test, but you can request earplugs to block out any noise that might disrupt your concentration. 

You will have access to a basic onscreen calculator which may be useful for the Quantitative Reasoning and Decision Making sections.

You will be given a laminated notebook and marker pen. Consider using these for:

If you require an additional notebook and pen, you can raise your hand and ask the invigilator. Although the invigilator will check that your pen is working before the test, we advise double-checking this to avoid seeking assistance during the test.

What happens during my UCAT test?

  1. Once you are ready, follow the on-screen instructions.
  2. Your exam will be in the following order:
  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Decision Making
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Abstract Reasoning
  • Situational Judgement
  1. You will have one minute before each section to read the instructions. You can skip it, but this will not give you an extra minute to answer the questions. Use this time to give your mind a quick break.
  2. If you have any issues, such as requiring a toilet break, you can quietly raise your hand. However, your time will continue running.
  3. After your exam, there may be an opportunity to answer a short optional survey on UCAT ANZ preparation and the quality of the venue.
  4. Raise your hand when you've finished and the examiner will guide you out of the exam room. You need to return your laminated board and marker pen.
  5. Collect your belongings and leave the test centre.
  6. Your UCAT ANZ results will be available in your Pearson VUE account within 24 hours. You will receive an email with instructions to access your score report through your account. All results will be delivered to UCAT ANZ Consortium universities automatically.
  7. If you’ve achieved the scores that you desire, well done.
  8. Even if you haven’t achieved the scores you wanted, congratulate yourself for getting through a really tough process. You've done exceptionally well just to get to this point. Plus, you can always take the UCAT again next year or consider graduate entry to medicine – do not give up on your dream!

Do you need help preparing for the UCAT ANZ? Head over to our UCAT ANZ Online Course and we’ll get you signed up to guide you through the whole process.

We provide a huge bank of 20,000+ questions, 24 unique full mock exams, 40+ mini-mock exams, 50+ hours of video tutorials, and performance feedback. We've also upgraded our UCAT mock exams 13-24 and revised our practice question bank to enrich your preparation journey.

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