Anna’s dramatic UKCAT day!

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July 6, 2013 by Emedica

It’s been all about UKCAT for me the last few months. I have become project lead at and not only have extended our question bank considerably but have also begun doing ‘UKCATprep’ sessions in schools! I hadn’t had any time to prepare for my own UKCAT at all which shouldn’t be a problem because I had no future career hanging on the result – I was only taking it for information! However – Hannah texted me just before I started to tell of her 3120 score (compared to my 2810 last year) and the pressure was on!

I got to the centre in plenty of time. My ID was in order, the only sign in hiccup was that I forgot to take my sunglasses off my head so was asked to put them in the locker with my bag and phone.

I was ushered in early and had my arms checked for ‘cheat devices’. I was given a three page double sided laminated note book…. and a permanent marker! This was new! I was told I could have a new notebook if I raised my hand. They must have heard that I was advising people to wipe their dry-wipe boards with their sleeves and come out in sympathy to all the mums and dads who do laundry!

Anyway – the test began. I was doing it under SEN timings – not because I have an SEN but so I could get a good look at all the questions to ensure our service was as good as possible.

Verbal Reasoning had a lot of the ‘new style’ questions and less than half were the traditional true / false / can’t tell variety. I finished this section with 8 minutes to spare (didn’t need those SEN timings here!)

Quantitative Reasoning held a couple of surprises – firstly there were several data sets with only one associated question. Previously there has been four questions for every graph or chart or plan but not so this year. Secondly – even with SEN timings I ran out of time. The last 10 questions were educated guesses made with no calculations being made. The last 3 were all option D – chosen at random!

Abstract Reasoning – NO new style questions at all.

Decision Analysis – was about four questions in when disaster struck! The fire alarm went off and we had to evacuate! We were ushered across the road where we stood, for over an hour. Thankfully it was sunny, thankfully it wasn’t a real fire (someone apparently burned toast) but it was very frustrating. Of course none of us had our phones, our wallets, our keys – they were all safely stored in the lockers.

When eventually we got back in a couple of us who weren’t taking driving theory tests were allowed to resume our tests – however the tests hadn’t been paused until about 25 minutes AFTER we left the room so I had run out of time for Decision Analysis and went straight to the SJT section.

Situational Judgement – this was as I expected. I clicked through them merrily and finished with time to spare.

My vital statistics were:

Verbal Reasoning 880

Quantitative Reasoning 780

Abstract Reasoning 790

Decision Analysis 340 (!)

Situational Judgement Band 1

They are trying to work out what to do for me now. As I am only allowed to take UKCAT once in a year they’ve got to make a decision about how to process my resit. I’ve spoken with Pearson Vue this morning and they’ve got to speak with UKCAT. Thankfully – my future doesn’t lie in their hands and I am grateful no one else was taking UKCAT at that time in that centre or they really may have a problem!

I hope I am able to resit again – it’s such a useful exercise for me in trying to guide other people through the UKCAT. Also – I was so close to beating Hannah!

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