UCAT

The University Clinical Aptitude Test is used in the selection process by the majority of UK University Medical and Dental Schools.

Access Arrangements

The information below is subject to change.  Arrangements for the 2020 test cycle will be updated in due course.

All access arrangements need to be arranged in advance and some require you to apply for approval before you can book a test.  Testing without access arrangements in place will not be accepted as a mitigating circumstance.  Those indicated with a (*) are subject to test centre availability. 


Am I entitled to access arrangements? 

You may be entitled to access arrangements if you have:

  • Cognition and Learning Needs e.g. General and/or Specific Learning Difficulties such as Dyslexia or Dyscalculia.

  • Communication and Interaction Needs e.g. Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

  • Sensory and Physical Needs e.g. a Hearing or Vision Impairment; Physical Disability.

  • Social, Mental and Emotional Needs e.g. Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD); Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD); Mental Health Conditions.

Candidates with different conditions or a short-term illness or injury should contact the UCAT Office for advice.  Please also refer to our information on mitigating circumstances.

Extra time will not be allowed if a candidate’s difficulties are primarily caused by English not being their first language or if they only relate to handwriting issues.


What access arrangements require approval? 

You must apply for approval to sit one of the extended versions of the test or have these special arrangements in place:

Test Versions

  • UCATSEN - 25% extra test time

  • UCATSA - standard test time with 5 minute rest breaks before sections

  • UCATSENSA - 25% extra test time with 5 minute rest breaks before sections

  • UCATSEN50 - 50% extra test time

Special Arrangements

  • Separate room* - evidence must specify you need to test in an individual room.  Our test rooms accommodate around 15 candidates which we consider meeting the requirements for testing in smaller rooms.

  • Access to medical items or medically necessary food/drink at your workstation* (e.g. for diabetes) not included on the comfort aid list (below). This arrangement requires a separate room, which is subject to test centre availability.


What access arrangements do not require approval? 

The following accommodations must be arranged at least 5 working days in advance of your test by calling Pearson VUE Customer Services on +44 (0) 161 855 7409.  You do not need supporting evidence.

  • Wheelchair access*

  • Adjustable height desk*

  • Changes to the test colour scheme and/or font size (info sheet)

  • Coloured overlays (provided by candidate)

Comfort aids
Some medicines, medical devices, mobility devices and other items are allowed into the test room after visual inspection and do not require any arrangements.  A full list of permitted comfort aids is available here: Comfort Aid Information

Earplugs can be requested at the test centre.

Any unapproved items you take with you will need to be stored in a locker and can only be used outside the testing room.  If they are required during testing, please raise your hand to notify the invigilator.  The test cannot be paused and will continue running; you will lose time whilst out of the test room. You are advised to take any breaks between subtests, if possible, to limit the impact on test time.


How do I apply for access arrangements? 

Please complete an Access Arrangements Application (link below) with correct supporting evidence.  You must be registered and know your candidate ID (in the format UKCAT + 6 digits). 

Applications open: date to be advised
Application deadline: date to be advised  

You are advised to apply at least 10 working days before you intend to test as applications can take up to 5 working days to be processed.  You will be notified of the outcome by email.  If you have not heard from our office within this time please email the UCAT Office and we will check on progress.  Before contacting us please check that an email has not been sent to your junk or spam folder.  Please do not submit multiple applications.

The UCATSEN may be booked in advance of your eligibility being approved but we strongly recommend you wait for confirmation before sitting your test.  If you have not been granted approval to sit the UCATSEN by the deadline your chosen Universities will be told that we cannot confirm your entitlement to extra time in public examinations and they may not accept your result.

All other extended versions of the test can only be booked once approval has been granted. 

If you leave it very late to apply, your options may be limited depending on test slot availability.


What supporting evidence do I need?

We require a recent, signed letter, on headed paper from your school/college or university, which should:

  • Explicitly state the amount of extra time you are entitled to in public exams (e.g. 25%).

  • Explicitly state the amount of time for any rest breaks.

  • Explicitly state any other accommodations you are entitled to in public examinations.

  • Confirm on what basis this entitlement has been agreed, for example a diagnosis from a qualified medical practitioner or an assessment by an educational psychologist / specialist teacher.

If you cannot provide a letter, we may be willing to accept one of the following:

  • A copy of a ‘JCQ Form 8 Application for Access Arrangements’ that has been completed and signed by the Head of Centre/SENco and Assessor.

  • A report from an educational psychologist or appropriately qualified specialist teacher. It must explicitly recommend a specific amount of extra exam time (e.g. 25%) and/or other accommodations in public examinations.

  • A recent letter (dated 2020) from a specialist (e.g. a consultant, psychologist or psychiatrist). It must detail your circumstances and make a clear medical recommendation for a specific amount of extra exam time (e.g. 25%) and/or other accommodations in public examinations.

Apply for Access Arrangements


What access arrangements cannot be provided?

Due to the nature of the UCAT exam and the test centre environment the following accommodations cannot be provided under any circumstances: 

  • A reader or computer reader.

  • A paper version of the test.

  • A scribe.

  • Unlimited, ‘on request’ or ‘stop the clock’ breaks.


What if my access arrangements cannot be met?

You should still register and make an Access Arrangements Application with supporting evidence.  We will then assess your application and advise you how to proceed.  We will consider applications from (date to be advised) and the deadline for any requests is (date to be advised).


Further information

Any access arrangements approved by the UCAT Office are only valid for sitting the UCAT in 2020.  Our decision applies solely to your sitting the UCAT.  It does not relate to any aspects of University admission processes, your fitness to study medicine/dentistry or your fitness ultimately to practice. 

The UCAT Offices does not inform Universities which approved version of the test you have sat when we deliver results.  Nor do we pass on details of your disability, special needs or medical conditions. 

University Medical and Dental Schools encourage applicants to declare their disability, special needs or medical conditions to them as early as possible in the admissions process.  This is so that they can start to put the right support in place for you before you arrive.