UKCAT Course Structure

The TestPrep course goes is designed to demystify non-knowledge testing and informs students of what the designers of the UKCAT test are looking for.  It illustrates tactics of preparation and deployment in a workshop-based form and also introduces candidates to the history and evolution of UKCAT-style tests; the latter is essential so that students might understand why and how the universities themselves are using the tests. 

Whilst it is not possible to devote a great deal of time to the non-cognitive element of the course, time will be allocated to a discussion of what that section entails and where it sits within the test.  However, most time will be devoted to those subjects which students from a science background have historically found daunting.  Those are the sections that test skills associated with verbal reasoning, and decision analysis.

All five skills sections will be developed using specially designed TestPrep materials and students will have a wealth of questions and answers to take away with them to use for testing in their own time.

Course Structure

The following is a guide to the structure of the course:



 10.00 – 10.30

The introductory session will consist of a short talk on how UKCAT is used at universities for selection purposes. We will reflect on the balance between applications to different institutions and how UKCAT fits into this process.

10.30 – 11.30           

Verbal Reasoning: Students will be introduced to a large book of worked questions, and though an answer book will be provided, the tutor will lead students through questions and set mini-tests that focus progressively on the development of verbal reasoning. 

11.30 – 12.30         


Quantitative Reasoning: Students will be familiarised with quantitative reasoning.  Historically, this section has proved the easiest for those with the science and mathematics background required in order to proceed through the academic stages of a medical application.  However, pitfalls still exist in terms of the style of questions which are asked, and sometimes, of the lateral thinking involved.  Students will be led through sample sets of questions and provided with a workbook (plus answers) to aid their independent preparation. 

12.30 – 13.30          

Abstract Reasoning: Students will be introduced to a large variety of questions designed to raise awareness of abstract reasoning skills. These are innate, but preparation for tests involves a concentration on various forms of picture and an understanding of how we see. Testprep has prepared several dozen sets of tests, which (though not all to UKCAT format) will prepare students for the business of doing the abstract test. 

13.30 – 14.00                


14.00 – 15.00           

Decision Analysis: Students will be introduced to decision analysis. This is often an initially confusing section that nevertheless resolves itself into an intelligible and even enjoyable exercise.  Decision analysis is not about code-breaking or deciphering as such—the codes are provided—but rather about understanding the nuances of language and grammar.  These are areas that scientists and medics may think they have neglected in their education, but we have discovered at TestPrep that there are skill sets which can be quickly assimilated to the task with the appropriate guidance from tutors and course materials.

A full hour of decision analysis of different types composed by different TestPrep authors will form the substance of this section. Students will be exposed to practice until the decision analysis section has been fully worked and tactics and strategies have been discussed and assimilated.

15.00 – 16.00          

Students will be encouraged, in small ‘breakout’ groups to consolidate the knowledge that they have gained and to practice questions from the point of view of examiners setting tasks. As small groups, they will then present questions to the larger class.

16.00 – 17.00               


Timed questions across all sections and exam techniques.  Approach to practise and self assessment will be discussed.

Course Schedule and Fees in 2012 





 Saturday 4 August

Imperial College London 

 10 am to 5 pm


Saturday 8 September   

Imperial College London 

 10 am to 5 pm


Please contact us for further information and dates.