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UCAT 2023: Everything You Need to Know

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Thinking about sitting the UCAT ® Exam in 2023? The UCAT ® is a mammoth exam many students spend months preparing for. It’s a key hurdle for entry into undergraduate medicine and an exam that only becomes available in your final year of high school - You’ve got to balance all your high school studies and assessments with finding the time to prepare for the UCAT exam. To give yourself the best chance of success at this key junction, it’s crucial that you get up to speed and learn as much as you can about sitting the UCAT ® exam in 2023.

This guide to sitting the UCAT ® Exam in 2023 will help you plan for the UCAT ® key dates, help you set some expectations around the exam and more. The topics covered are:

  1. When is the UCAT ® 2023 exam in Australia?
  2. How do I register for the UCAT ® ?
  3. UCAT ® Exam Testing Locations
  4. Undergraduate Medical Admissions Process 2023
  5. How Hard is UCAT ® ?
  6. Further UCAT ® Preparation Materials

When is the UCAT 2023 exam in Australia?

UCAT 2023 Dates

An important list of UCAT ® 2023 dates can be found below:

Concession Scheme opens
Access Arrangements open
1 February 2023
Booking Opens 1 March 2023
Concession application deadline 10 May 2023
Access Arrangements application deadline 17 May 2023
Booking Deadline 17 May 2023
Late booking deadline 31 May 2023
FINAL late booking deadline 5 June 2023
Cancellation deadline 10 June 2023
Testing begins 3 July 2023
Last testing date 11 August 2023
Results delivered to universities by early September 2023

For 2021, the UCAT ® testing period was extended from 1st of July to 20th of August due to unforeseen lockdown public health orders across Australia. Some applicants had to sit their exam in early September in NSW due to the special circumstances involving extensive COVID-19 cases. UCAT ® in 2022 was set in July-August, with available testing centres bookings ranging from the 1st of July to the 12th of August.

UCAT ® 2023 will be set in July - August 2023 with available testing centres bookings ranging from 1st of March to 17th of May. Late bookings are accepted until the 31st of May and final late booking until the 5th of June, but additional fees will apply.

How do I register for the UCAT?

UCAT ® registration 2023 can be done online via the official UCAT ® website. UCAT ® bookings in 2023 are generally managed and carried out by Pearson Vue Testing Centres.

For 2023, the UCAT ® registration deadline is the 17th of May 2023.

It is important you keep track of UCAT ® registration dates, as late bookings are often charged a ‘late fee’.

UCAT ANZ Test Fees 2023

The UCAT ® ANZ Test Fees for 2023 are as follows:

Tests taken in Australia or New Zealand $325
Concession Fee (Australia only) $199
Tests taken overseas / outside Australia and New Zealand $395
Late fee Additional $85
Final late fee Additional $185
Refund fee $50 of the test fee deducted

Concession Fees

Candidates with a current Health Care Card (HCC) or Pensioner Concession Card , issued by Centrelink, will be eligible for a reduced testing fee (concession fee - $199). An application is required to be submitted.

  • Concession Scheme Opens: 1st February 2023

  • Concession Application Deadlines: 10th May 2023

To lodge an application, follow the steps outlined on the official UCAT ® website

How can I apply for UCAT?

There are 4 key steps you’ll need to take to apply for the UCAT ® exam:

  • Register online via Pearson VUE by creating a new account

  • Book a UCAT ® test date

  • UCAT ® Test Day

  • UCAT ® Results + Medical School Interview Offers

The following table showcases important information that details each step of the UCAT ® application process. It is important to note that the earliest you are able to sit the UCAT ® exam is in your final year of high school.

UCAT Application Process

Steps to take Details
1. Register online via Pearson VUE by creating a new account
  • You must create an account before you can register a UCAT ® 2023 booking.

  • You can only have one account, previous candidates should use their same Pearson VUE login.

  • Your legal identity should be used, as these will be confirmed with the universities.

  • You should use an email & phone number that you check often, as your booking confirmation and other forms of communication will be delivered via this method.

  • After registration, an email will be sent with your login details within 24 hours

  • Candidates looking to apply with $strong Concession Schemes or Access Arrangements should submit their application before booking the exam (Step 2)

  • You can access Pearson VUE’s login page here.

2. Booking a UCAT ® test date
  • Login via your Pearson VUE account

  • Follow the prompts to select a date suitable to undertake your UCAT ® exam.

  • A payment prompt will soon follow.

  • Successful bookings will receive a confirmation email from Pearson VUE.

3. UCAT ® Test Day
4. UCAT ® Results & Interview Offers
  • UCAT ® raw scores are released a few minutes after you have sat your test.

  • A percentile calculator will be released on the official UCAT ® website, usually within a month after the testing period.

  • Visit our UCAT ® Scores Guide to learn more about how UCAT ® scores are calculated and what is a good UCAT ® result

UCAT Cancellation

If you decide to cancel your exam, you will receive a refund, but $50 will be deducted from what you have paid. This does not include the late fee, which is non-refundable. You can cancel your exam up until 10th of June 2023. After the 10th of June, your refund request will not be accepted.

UCAT Rescheduling

Rescheduling can be done up to 24 hours before the test appointment time. You can reschedule your test through your Pearson VUE account. There are several steps after you select a new location/date/time. Ensure you receive a confirmation email after you have completed the steps.

If you miss the rescheduling deadline, you will not receive a free reschedule or a refund. You will need to pay the exam fee again, but you can still reschedule your test by calling Pearson VUE customer services. The helpline is available from 9 AM to 6 PM local time, from Monday to Friday. This means if you would like to reschedule your Monday booking, it needs to be done before Friday.

Rescheduling is subject to the availability of appointments (whether there are spots available on your specified date at your specified location). Candidates should be prepared to travel if no other booking times are available at a preferred test location.

What happens if I miss my exam?

If you miss your examination for whatever reason, whether it may be illnesses, family, personal circumstances, as well as forgetfulness or lateness, you will forfeit your test fee. This also includes presenting invalid identification documents.

You will need to wait for around 24 hours for your appointment status to change to “no-show”. You will then need to book another appointment by calling Pearson VUE customer services. It is important to keep in mind that a rescheduled appointment must occur within the testing period , and if there are no available bookings, then you will need to resit next year.

UCAT Exam Testing Locations

Australian UCAT Exam Test Centre Locations 2023

A list of available UCAT ® test centre locations can be found below. Generally, all major cities in Australia will have testing centres available for UCAT ® 2023:

ucat 2023 Australian Map

Australia UCAT Test Centre Locations

State UCAT ® Test Centre
ACT Canberra
ACT Armidale
Newcastle
Orange
Parramatta
Port Macquarie
Sydney
Wagga Wagga
NT Alice Springs
Darwin
QLD Brisbane
Bundaberg
Cairns
Gold Coast
Maroochydore
Rockhampton
Toowoomba
Townsville
SA Adelaide
Port Augusta
TAS Hobart
Launceston
VIC Ballarat
Bendigo
Churchill
Geelong
Melbourne
Mildura
WA Bunbury
Perth

New Zealand UCAT Test Centre Locations

Auckland
Christchurch
Dunedin
Invercargill
New Plymouth
Wellington

Can I sit the UCAT at home in 2023?

No. Candidates will not be able to sit their UCAT ® at home and are required to travel to a testing centre location.

2021 was a special year where some candidates sat their exam at home with ProctorU, however this was due to public health orders.

Undergraduate Medical Admissions Process 2023

The Australian medical admissions process is extremely competitive, and is even more so for undergraduate applicants. For undergraduate universities, the medical applications process is split into 3 components:

  1. ATAR/GPA
  2. UCAT ®
  3. Medical Interviews

Almost all undergraduate universities will require a UCAT ® medical interview. A list of undergraduate medicine universities in Australia which utilises UCAT ® in 2023 can be found below:

  • University of Adelaide

  • Central Queensland University (provisional)

  • Charles Sturt university (Joint Program in Medicine)

  • Curtin University

  • Flinders University

  • Griffith University

  • Monash

  • University of Newcastle/University of New England (Joint Medical Program)

  • UNSW

  • University of Queensland (provisional)

  • University of Southern Queensland (provisional)

  • University of Tasmania

  • University of Western Australia

  • University of Western Sydney (Joint Program in Medicine)

Visit our guide on UCAT ® Medicine to learn more about what role the exam plays in your medical school admissions journey.

UCAT Medical Applications Timeline 2023

Below is a summary of predicted key dates for universities with UCAT ® entry requirements.

Note: The Joint Medical Program (UoN/UNE), Joint Program in Medicine (WSU/CSU), UNSW medicine both have a separate application that is required to be submitted via their website.

Steps to take Timeline
UCAT ® Registration Closure 17th May (31st May for a late-fee, and 5th of June for a final late-fee)
Sit the UCAT ® 3rd July - 11th August 2023
UCAT ® percentiles released August/September 2023
UNSW Medical Application Portal + Joint Program in Medicine Application Closure 30th September 2023
UAC/SATAC/VTAC/QTAC etc. preferences closure November 2023
Interviews Released Late November 2023 - Early February 2024 (depending on university)
Offers Released January - February 2024

How Hard is UCAT?

The short answer is that it depends, and it depends primarily on each individual's background and skills. The UCAT ® is predominantly a skills-based exam. As it is not a knowledge-based exam, it can be difficult to study and practice for.

The UCAT ® requires reflective practice rather than brute-forcing questions. The questions in each UCAT ® subtest are not difficult, but rather the exam is predominantly more time-pressured. With a range between 14 seconds - 66 seconds per question depending on the section, the exam is difficult in the sense of time and stress management.

If you’re wondering how hard the UCAT ® exam is compared to the GAMSAT ® exam and other ways in which the two exams differ, check out our guide UCAT ® vs GAMSAT ® : Everything You Need to Know.

Further UCAT Preparation Materials

Now that you’re aware of all the key dates for 2023, make a start on your preparation with our guides and free resources:

  1. UCAT ® Scores
    Everything you need to know about how UCAT ® scores are calculated and what is a good UCAT ® result.
  2. UCAT ® Abstract Reasoning
    An overview of what to expect from UCAT ® Abstract Reasoning and how to prepare.
  3. UCAT ® Quantitative Reasoning
    An overview of what to expect from UCAT ® Quantitative Reasoning and how to prepare.
  4. UCAT ® Situational Judgement
    An overview of what to expect from UCAT ® Situational Judgement and how to prepare.
  5. UCAT ® Decision Making
    An overview of what to expect from UCAT ® Decision Making and how to prepare.
  6. UCAT ® Verbal Reasoning
    An overview of what to expect from UCAT ® Verbal Reasoning and how to prepare.