• Amy van Dongen

How has the UCAT changed in 2022?

How has the UCAT changed in 2022? Every change to the UCAT in 2022


The UCAT is a test that prospective medical students are required to sit for entry into most medical schools. It is designed to test a variety of different skills that medical schools deem to be important for their future students to have. The test is always evolving, so it’s really important to keep up with any changes that are happening with the test.


To make this easier for you, we’ve created a handy guide of all the changes made to the UCAT this year, and what they mean for you when you sit the exam!

The sections


The UCAT is made up of 5 sections:


  1. Verbal reasoning

  2. Decision making

  3. Quantitative reasoning*

  4. Abstract reasoning*

  5. Situational judgement*

Sections marked with an asterisk are those with changes in the 2022 cycle. Although some sections have changed, it is worth noting that the overall length of the exam has not changed and remains at 2 hours.


This article will explain thoroughly the changes that have been made to the highlighted sections, but if you want some tips on how to tackle the other two, click HERE for verbal reasoning tips, and HERE for decision-making tips!


Changes to quantitative reasoning


In 2022, there will be no change to the number of questions in the quantitative reasoning section, however, you will have one extra minute in which to complete the questions.

This means that you will now have 25 minutes to complete the 36 multiple choice questions in this section. This equates to around 41.6 seconds per question, whereas in previous years you would have had 40 seconds.

Clearly, this is not a massive change to previous years, with only just over a second extra to complete each question, so it’s up to you how you use this extra time! There are two options:


  1. Spend a small amount of time longer on each question

  2. Keep your question timings the same, with a little extra time at the end to review trickier questions that you have flagged

While this is a big change to the UCAT in 2022, using the 2021-style test for preparation will still help you get to grips with the questions that you will encounter. Just be aware of the slight change in timing and prepare for it!

Click HERE to find out what else to remember when sitting the quantitative reasoning test!


Changes to Abstract Reasoning


In the abstract reasoning section, there are now five fewer questions in the test for 2022 compared to previous years, however, you will also have one less minute to answer the questions.


So in previous years:

  • 55 questions

  • 13 minutes = 14.18 seconds/question

In 2022

  • 50 questions,

  • 12 minutes = 14.4 seconds/question

From this, we can see that even though there are changes to the number of questions and total time, really timings between 2021 and 2022 have changed only a little. Using practice tests with the old timings, therefore, will still be useful in your preparation for the test.


Changes to the situational judgement test


The situational judgement test has undergone the biggest change for 2022. There has been a reduction in questions from 69 to 66, but the time for this test remains the same.


  • This means that you will have 23.6 seconds/question this year

  • In previous years you would have had 22.6 seconds/question.

  • This means you have a little extra time to focus on the questions this year.

However, there is a new type of question that is being introduced for 2022, which complicates things a little more. But don’t panic! We’re here to help.


You will find that the new question style builds on a previous question type, so using old UCAT SJT questions may strengthen your ability to tackle the new style.


Under the standard, UCAT SJT appropriateness and importance questions candidates were faced with 4 different answer options. The new questions will simply have 2 answer options.


Let’s see an example to show how the old style is different to the new:


In the old test, you would then be presented with 5 factors, each of which you would have to determine to be one of four options:

  1. Very important

  2. Importance

  3. Of minor importance

  4. Not important at all

However, in the new test, you will be presented with 3 factors, and each needs to be assessed as either:


  1. Important, or

  2. Not important

Similarly, the appropriateness questions will be in the same format, with two options, appropriate/not appropriate, rather than 4 options.


Summary


In summary, there are the key changes to the UCAT for 2022:


  1. Quantitative reasoning has no extra questions, but 1 extra minute of time

  2. Abstract reasoning has 5 fewer questions, with 1 less minute to answer them

  3. Situational judgment has 3 fewer questions, with no difference in time

  4. Situational judgment also has a new style of question

At MasterMedPrep we can help YOU to maximise your UCAT score: